23 October 2015 (Manikato Stakes Night at Moonee Valley)





Racing at MOONEE VALLEY with the penetrometer currently reading 4.72, so currently looking at a GOOD (4) track.

RAIL: TRUE (ENTIRE CIRCUIT). Back to Moonee Valley for the first time in three weeks when the rail was also in the TRUE position. Favoured on pacers on that occasion, but given the break expecting/hoping for an even track, with early races and speed maps/pace in race your best guide.

Race 1: We start Moonee Valley’s showcase weekend with the three year olds over 1000m. Tricky, even start with most runners with claims here. Looks to be decent pace on paper and after tidy work at breakfast with the best, we’re going to give VICEROY the slight nod here @ $4.20+ with SPORTSBET. Suggest a WIN only play, in addition to an each way dabble on best value runner OUR VIDIA @ $15+ (SPORTSBET) who gets weight relief from the top pick and will appreciate any pace on up front. Only 7 runners (maximum) so note no third dividend.

SUGGEST: VICEROY (WIN) @ $4.20+, OUR VIDIA (EACH WAY) @ $15+, FIRST FOUR (1, 4, 6 / 2 / 3 / F) (CONFIDENCE 35%)


Race 2: Another small field with a maximum of 7 runners over 1500m for the greys. ROCK FORTHE LADIES has opened up extremely short and despite being ‘a chance’ cannot entertain $2.50+ for a last start Benchmark 60 Nowra winner who won well but in very slow time, especially when compared with other races that day. Respect the Moody yard always, but big ‘unders’. Instead, prefer to work from the form line from last Wednesday’s gray race at Caulfield where 4 of these were involved. Slight lean SLATE ON EDGE at the slightly better $8+ price (SPORTSBET) ahead of TOTOLO @ $7+ (BET365). Suggest backing them both on a WIN only basis. Hoping they are left alone up front and pinch a break on the turn to fight this out. Main danger the one who beat them last time in SECRET TOY BIZNESS @ $6+ (SPORTSBET) and GIRL IN FLIGHT @ $5+ (BET365, CROWNBET). Happy to risk ROCK FOR THE LADIES at the skinny quote.

SUGGEST: SLATE ON EDGE (WIN) @ $8+, TOTOLO (WIN) @ $7, FIRST FOUR (1, 4 / 2, 5 / F / F) (CONFIDENCE 35%)


Race 3: City Jeep handicap over the famous 2040m. Not quite a Cox Plate calibre field, but a good, even field nonetheless. Doesn’t look to be a heap of pace on paper and if that eventuates, think TEMPS VOLEUR @ $7.50+ (SPORTSBET) and LORD DURANTE @ $6+ (SPORTSBET) can pinch a race winning break on the turn before fighting out the finish. Suggest WIN only plays on both with saver first fours with main dangers (at decent odds) NESBO and KILLARNEY KID. OUR VOODOO PRINCE every chance, but ‘unders’ here, so save for multies/savers/etc.

SUGGEST: TEMPS VOLEUR (WIN) @ $7.50+, LORD DURANTE (WIN) @ $6+, FIRST FOUR (8, 9 / 4, 7 / F / F) (CONFIDENCE 35%)


Race 4: Country Cup over the mile. Like **KOURKAM** @ $7.50+ (most operators) here first up after tidy work here at ‘Breakfast with the best’, proven first up form (5:3-0-1) and it was only 4 starts back that he was Group 2 placed beaten only 2.3L over the mile, behind Suavito and Sertorious. Doesn’t find anything close to them here, and looks to represent excellent each way value @ $7.50+. Weight the query with 60kg, but banking on class and enforcing the ‘best horse’ rule. At the odds, will make our BEST VALUE bet of the day/night.

SUGGEST: **KOURKAM** (EACH WAY) @ $7.50+, FIRST FOUR (F / F / 2, 11 / 1) (CONFIDENCE 40%)


Race 5: Now for 55 second challenge and every chance the overall winner comes out of this, with an extremely hot pace expected here. Extremely difficult, but given the messy speed map, happy to play around **RIFLEMAN** who will need luck from the gate, especially with the big weight, but may be able to slot in nicely given the hot pace. $21+ (most operators) excellent each way value. given the odds will make a BEST VALUE bet of the day/night. GRANE the other who looks perfectly suited here and suggest a play at $7.50+ (CENTREBET, WILLIAM HILL) on a WIN only basis. Main danger, one of our faves in KLISHINA (who snagged us a slice of a nice first four last time by running 4th) who will appreciate the hot tempo, although rock bottom odds given usual racing pattern. Will be charging late whatever happens.

SUGGEST: **RIFLEMAN** (EACH WAY) @ $21+, GRANE (WIN) @ $7.50+, FIRST FOUR (6 / 2 / F / 1), (F / 2 / F / 1), (roving bankers 1, 2, 6 / F) (CONFIDENCE 30%) 


Race 6: Open Bertocchi Handicap over 1200m. Very hard, very even, luck in running and tactics key. Think best value lies with GALAXY PEGASUS @ $10+ (most operators) who saluted for us on Cox Plate day last year almost 1 year ago to the day. Then give *KING BUDDY* a blowout hope at a massive $81+ with UNIBET. Given the odds will make our BEST LONGSHOT bet of the day/night. Main dangers IT IS WRITTEN, CASHED, RELDAS, RAIN AFFAIR and TUDOR. Race runs very deep, so keen to play a few first fours in the hope of some big dividends.

SUGGEST: GALAXY PEGASUS (EACH WAY) @ $10+, *KING BUDDY* (EACH WAY) @ $81+, FIRST FOUR (1, 2, 7, 9, 11 / F / F / 10, 12), (F / 1, 2, 7, 9, 11 / F / 10, 12), (F / F / 1, 2, 7, 9, 11 / 10, 12) (1, 2, 7, 9, 11 / 1, 2, 7, 9, 10, 11 / 1, 2, 7, 9, 10, 11 / 10, 12) (CONFIDENCE 30%) 


Race 7:  And now for the feature, the Group 1 Manikato Stakes. Last year we saw one of the greatest finishes of the year, arguably ever. Time to see what the 2015 edition has in store. Cracking field as expected and the logical and obvious choice is arguably the world’s best sprinter in CHAUTAUQUA. But, he won’t be having things his own way and do have a slight concern on barrier 2 and being forced to be crowded and race between horses, although he did seem to handle it okay last start, albeit down the straight. Pace and tactics here are key with plenty of pace on paper, but how many won’t to take on old BUFFERING up front as that’s normally a battle seldom won. Looked for value, looked for odds, but going to simply settle on two of the best sprinters in the world in CHAUTAUQUA now out to a better $2.50+ (BET365) and TERRAVISTA @ $6+ (CROWNBET). Playing around the two big boys here and hoping for a good old fashioned heavyweight battle. 

SUGGEST: CHAUTAUQUA (WIN) @ $2.50+, TERRAVISTA (WIN) @ $6+, FIRST FOUR (F / 2, 3 / 2, 3 / F), (F / F / 2, 3 / 2, 3), (F / 2, 3 / F / 2, 3) (CONFIDENCE 55%) 


Race 8: We finish with the lucky last again over the famous 2040m. With the scratchings, think IMPERIAL LASS gets into the right spot and should be hard to run down @ $4.50+ (BET365). Reckon it's wide open from there, so taking the field and hoping for some blowouts in multiples.

SUGGEST: IMPERIAL LASS (WIN/EACH WAY) @ $4.50+, FIRST FOUR (F/ 6 / F / F), (F / F / 6 / F), (F / F / F / 6)  (CONFIDENCE 40%) 



Average odds a tidy $15.88+ per suggested runner!!!

** BEST VALUE **: KOURKAM @ $7.50+, RIFLEMAN @ $21+