BALLINA — Matt Jones
No Hat No Play lost the rider last start on the Gold Coast when supported and before that was luckless in his races due to wide gates. He’s drawn wide again. Rothford will get a better run this time from the inside gate and won’t have as much ground to make up. Golden Lily hasn’t won or placed in eight starts but was formerly trained in town and raced in much better company.
Betting strategy: No Hat No Play win
Stellar Jewel has finished second at past two starts but could have easily won both. She’s suspect at the trip but will plough through the wet conditions. Mother To Race Her was just behind Stellar Jewel last start but gets a 2.5kg weight swing. Handling the wet track is a question mark. Infinite Reign has a win on the heavy and drops well back in class from a Lismore Cup run. Real Elusive looks a hope due to her form.
Betting strategy: Stellar Jewel win
After a string of placings, Marokawa can improve off that thanks to a good gate. Amorita has won first-up before and, if she gets a touch of luck from a wide gate and doesn’t run into traffic in the straight, she can give them a test for a leading stable. Toffee Drop ran a close third to New Horizons last start and that’s pretty good form for this type on race. A repeat of that effort brings her right into this.
Betting strategy: Quinella 3, 9
Play Now’s connections are sweating on their mare getting a run in this race because she’s shown good enough form to be a threat. Canister may have finished ninth on debut on the Sunshine Coast but was less than three lengths off the winner. Schill Rock You will have to be forgiven for her last-start 12th when she began awkwardly and bumped another runner.
Betting strategy: Play Now if starts, Canister if not
Star Of Harada only has to carry the weight (62kg) well and he’ll be very hard to beat. He’s won on a heavy track but probably doesn’t want that here with the weight. He won well first-up and is proven second-up and is unbeaten at the distance. Dansu won a slightly weaker race but has been in top form and has a win on a heavy track. Has won four times at the distance. Dubawi Sniper will improve second-up but tends to get better with a few runs. Siroccan Lad ticks all the boxes on paper but hasn’t been seen at the races since February. He is super when fresh.
Betting strategy: Star Of Harada win
Queen Of Kingston will look to find the lead and set her own tempo. She loves 1400m and the trainer thinks she’s a city-class horse in Brisbane already. Just watch her in the parade ring though because she can play up a bit. If Balius and Cashing Up start, they’ll take beating. Champagne Rock comes up from weaker grade but it a grand old horse. Voltaire Lumiere ran well in a strong race at Doomben last start and has won four from six at the track including one early in the year.
Betting strategy: Queen Of Kingston win
They’ve got to carry big weights on unsuitable ground but Black Wand and So You Wish look to be leading chances. So You Wish is bred to run a very strong mile which might help him considering this will be more like a 2000m race if the track is heavy. Black Wand ran over 1350m last start as if he’ll relish a mile. Tycoon Rossa wasn’t great second-up which can happen after a slashing first-up run so give him another chance now that he’s fitter. Sapper Tom might be the one to watch at odds. Betting strategy: Tycoon Rossa each way