Punters get a late Christmas present
IT’S something of a tribute to the training and owner ranks that three days after busy Boxing Day card and three days before New Year’s Day, Randwick serves up one of the stronger Listed Christmas Classic Day cards tomorrow.
While the feature itself is a little down on numbers, the quality is there and certainly the support races boast good depth.
With the track fast returning to Good 4 under a snap heat blast, a small crop of older and tough sprinter/milers line up in the Christmas Classic (1200m), headlined by the return of Group 1-winning mare Alizee, having her first run as a four-year-old since that Queen Of The Turf win at the autumn Championships.
Even allowing for a smart fresh record and strong work at the trials, she would need to be primed ready under 60.5kg against this lot.
And with last start Listed Razor Sharp winner Fell Swoop also lumping the same weight, I’m heading straight for the lightly-raced fouryear-old mare Problem Solver who looks supremely in at the weights and from an inside draw.
Problem Solver, who has only missed a place twice in 11 starts, put the writing on the wall resuming at Rosehill five weeks back and then collared a smart sprint field under 57kg at Wyong second-up.
Remember, she ran the top class Houtzen to a long head at Group 3 level in autumn and she’s one horse I’m looking forward to firing at the Gold Coast.
Smart five-year-old Randwick mare Savvan also
“maps” beautifully secondup after hitting the line hard resuming in a BM 88 at Randwick two weeks back. My Christmas Classic Tips:
1. PROBLEM SOLVER; 2. Savvan; 3. Alizee
Save plenty for Godolphintrained four-year-old Deprive who can go back-to-back third-up in a suitable BM 78 (Race 8) over 1200m.
Before all that, an absorbing Group 3 Belle Of The Turf (1600m) for the fillies and mares unfolds at Gosford today, with plenty on summer trial for a trip to the Gold Coast Magic Millions.
I have no doubt four-yearold Victorian Aloisia ($4.00) wins the class battle after her flashing second in the Group 2 Villiers, but is being asked to back-up on a harder and tighter track carrying 4kg more, although she’s drawn to get a lovely smother back in the field and saved for one last crack.
Her presence means a few runners are well in at the weights on the 54kg limit.
One of those, Randwicktrained four-year-old Sweet Deal ($13.00) looms as the best value (if she goes that way having also accepted for a BM 88 at Randwick tomorrow).
She has powered home to win her last two at Rosehill in both open and mares BM 78 grade, the most recent carting 60kg, and she’s primed now for class rise up to the mile.
Another four-year-old of Godolphin’s is Organza ($10.00) who wasn’t beaten far in a strong BM 88 at Randwick last start and the consistent five-year-old Sexy Eyes ($7.00) who is also aided by the extra journey, are also well-weighted chances. My Belle of the Turf Tips:
1. SWEET DEAL; 2. Organza; 3. Aloisia
In the other feature — the Listed Gosford Guineas (1200m) for the three-yearolds — this looks a lovely race for the Snowden-trained Military Zone ($3.50) second-up at
A progressive son of Epaulette, Military Zone returned with a powerful closing BM 76 effort behind Deprive coming from mile back and at his only other second-up run, finished hard to win a BM 70 at Randwick overhauling the smart Danawi.
The Hawkes filly Tell Me ($4.60) — shooting for four ina-row having progressed from a maiden win to BM 76 success in little time — is the obvious measuring stick and she’ll comes across either lead or sit outside the pace. My Gosford Guineas Tips:
1. MILITARY ZONE; 2. Tell Me; 3. River Bird
Good Luck @NeilEvansmail
Neil Evan believes Problem Solver’s draw will benefit the mare in tomorrow’s Christmas Classic.