23 January 2016 (Racing at Moonee Valley - Money Valley)






Racing at MOONEE VALLEY with the penetrometer reading 4.81, after 9.5mm of rain yesterday, so currently looking at a SOFT (5) surface. Walked the track this morning and there are definitely quite dry/firm areas throughout, however also several areas which are worse than the SOFT (5) rating. The inside looks set to cut up on the assumption runners don’t completely ignore the inside early on. The ideal place to be is 3-4 off the fence, with the rail and more than 6 wide not the place to be. Makes for some very tactical racing, where good jockeys are worth their ‘light’ weight in gold.  

RAIL: +3M (ENTIRE CIRCUIT). We head to MOONEE VALLEY after last racing here three weeks ago on January 2, 2016 when the rail was in the TRUE position. Normally a fairer rail position, however as stated above think 3-4 off the fence is the place to be. As a result, those on pace, no worse than midfield should be benefited as long as they are able to get off the fence (ideal spot just outside leader or one out, one back). i.e. inside barriers for the sprint races might not be the place to be today, however several longer distance races today, hence jockeys should have time to get off the fence should they be caught there early. As always, be sure to keep a close eye on the track and how it’s playing in the early races for best guide. I think we’ll have a much clearer indication after the first few.


Race 1: We start with a benchmark 84 for the fillies and mares over the famous 2040m distance at Money Valley. And this looks a relatively straight forward start in the form of the in-form YULONG BABY who gets a very handy 2kg claim with Michael Dee aboard. Doesn’t want to get boxed in on the fence too far back, so hoping they take advantage of gate 1 to settle just behind the leaders and given the 2040m distance should have plenty of time to get out and make her run. Suggest a play on a WIN only basis at $2.70+ with SPORTSBET.



Race 2: Open handicap over 1200m and a tricky affair for mine, despite what the market seems to suggest. Best value here most definitely in the form of bottom weight STREET PRIDE @ $18+ (SPORTSBET), who should be able to cross comfortably enough from gate 7 and on the assumption they go no harder than an even tempo, should give them something to catch. As mentioned above, don’t want to be simply leading and hugging the rail, so hoping Linda Meech has done her homework and elects to comes 2-3 wide around the bend and end up 3-4 wide in the straight. Main dangers INNER CIRCLE and DANUKI. No doubt SNOOPY has a good chance also, but no value and rock bottom odds for mine @ $2.80+, hence happy to risk at the price.

SUGGEST: STREET PRIDE (EACH WAY) @ $18+, FIRST FOUR (roving 2, 4, 9 / F), (2, 4 / F / F / 9), (F / 2, 4 / F / 9), (F / F / 2, 4 / 9) (CONFIDENCE 30%)


Race 3: The fillies and mares again, this time a benchmark 90 over 1200m. Like two here first up from decent breaks. Loved the trial of CALAVERITE in Sydney, expect Craig Williams to take advantage of barrier 4 and be close to the pace, and if so should be hard to beat @ $3.40+ (UNIBET). Suggest a primary play on a WIN only basis. Then, on the assumption there is ‘some’ support, think CHOOSE @ $10+ (SPORTSBET, LUXBET) is definitely right up to beating these first up. Been on the sidelines for a long time, hence hoping to see some support and if so a secondary each way play.



Race 4: Now for the three year olds over 2040m. FLYING LIGHT @ $3.10+ (SPORTSBET) the clear top pick here after we were on last time when just missed behind the above average Yulong Baby who hopefully has already opened up our account in the opener. No Yulong Baby’s here, should get a lovely run in transit, Dylan Dunn just needs to ensure he gets off the fence at the right time from barrier two and given the 2040m distance, shouldn’t be an issue. Can hopefully use Michael Dee’s ride from race 1 as the guide should he prevail, as both (Yulong Baby, FLYING LIGHT) set to get the same run (drawn 1, 2 respectively) over the same 2040m distance. Suggest a primary WIN only play. Also want to dabble on *ROMANZE* for the white-hot Ellerton and Zahra stable with Ollie aboard. Drawn and set to get the ideal run given how we think the track will play and as a result can step up in this grade at a juicy $26+ price tag with LUXBET and SPORTSBET. Suggest a secondary each way play. Given the odds will make our BEST LONGSHOT bet of the day.

SUGGEST: FLYING LIGHT (WIN - PRIMARY) @ $3.10+, *ROMANZE* (EACH WAY – SECONDARY) @ $26+, FIRST FOUR (F / 1, 12 / F / 1, 12), (F / 1, 12 / 1, 12 / F) (F / F / 1, 12 / 1, 12) (CONFIDENCE 55%)


Race 5: Vobis Gold Star over the specific 1514m distance and there doesn’t look to be a great deal of pace on paper. At first glance was wary of BURNING FRONT from barrier 2 given the shorter distance, but given the lack of pace on paper, expecting Brad Rawiller to be able to possibly simply stay one off the fence all the way around and simply peel a couple of extra horses wide on the turn and if this occurs, think he will be terribly hard to run down. Suggest WIN only play @ $2+ (UNIBET). DEL PRADO the obvious danger, absolutely flying, but weight swing and race pattern to better suit BURNING FRONT. Respect Damien Oliver aboard though, looks to be back to his best and in great form of late, so wouldn’t surprise to see him settle a little closer to give him every chance. Narrow end to the early quaddie.



Race 6: Benchmark 78 again over the famous Moonee Valley 2040m circuit and a tricky race, with pace/tactics key with a difficult speed map to nail. Slight lean ALROUZ purely given the better than expected $16+ price tag with LUXBET. There is a chance there could be some pressure up front, especially dependant on how the track is playing and how keen certain jockeys are to get to certain positions, however on the assumption they don’t go crazy up front, then think he can give a good sight at a nice price. Main dangers definitely BULLISH STOCK (who I’d be all over had he drawn better, just not sure where he lands from barrier 9, but does have Craig Williams aboard), PRIMA and USE THE LOT.

SUGGEST: ALROUZ (EACH WAY) @ $16+, FIRST FOUR (roving 7, 11, 12 / F), (7, 11, 12 / F / F / 4), (F / 7, 11, 12 / F / 4), (F / F / 7, 11, 12 / 4) (CONFIDENCE 30%)


Race 7: Now for the big one, the Group 2 Australia Stakes. Amazing how quickly the bigger races start again, before we know it, it’ll be the Sydney carnival. And this is super tough with pace/tactics again crucial to the chances of many, with strong pace on paper. This will really test the 3-4 lane we have predicated today, as the majority look set to eye off that spot, and unfortunately/fortunately 12 can’t fit into 2. This is one race that, a brave jockey might just try something different (back to the rail? out wider?) and it could come off. Slight lean MOURINHO first up but will need Vlad Duric to be on his toes. Can settle just behind the leaders who will most likely be KIEVANN and SIRBIBLE, from gate 2, I want him ideally one off the fence ready to peel three wide on the turn. $9.50+ (LUXBET) a decent enough each way price for a smaller each way investment given the tricky nature of the race. Ripper of a race, many winning hopes, best ride may prove the difference. Will throw the on pacers/leaders (HOLLER, SIRBIBLE, KIEVANN) into the first fours in the hope they don’t go crazy and are in the ‘fast lane’ that they could have first dibs at, should there happen to be one…we obviously hope so, as well as the swooper in WRITTEN UP should they go crazy.

SUGGEST: MOURINHO (EACH WAY) @ $9.50+, FIRST FOUR (9, 10, 11, 13 / 9, 10, 11, 13 / F / 2), (F / 9, 10, 11, 13 / 9, 10, 11, 13 / 2), (9, 10, 11, 13 / F / 9, 10, 11, 13 / 2) (CONFIDENCE 25%) 


Race 8: Benchmark 84 over 1000m, with decent pace on paper, so another tactical affair. Key is how the track is playing by race 8, mainly whether the rail is a no go zone or not, similarly out very wide with the faster lane no doubt getting plenty of action by now. Slight lean BAWCATME who gets the right weight swing on key rival RUNSATI (3kg for 2L defeat), on any other day drawn well in 2, but will need Dwayne Dunn to be on his toes to get to the right place at the right time on the turn and when they straighten. May need some luck, but at $12+ with BET365 happy to take the punt with a good jockey aboard. Main danger the obvious in SHAKESPEAREAN LASS (hard to beat but getting short at $2.80+ with tricky gate) ahead of the Ellerton/Zahra runners TREVINDER (weight and barrier the concerns) and ROLL THE IGNITION (pace up front the concern).

SUGGEST: BAWCATME (EACH WAY) @ $12+, FIRST FOUR (F / 7 / F / 10), (1, 7, 9 / F / 1, 17, 9 / 10), (1, 7, 9 / 1, 7, 9 / F / 10), (F / 1, 7, 9 / 1, 7, 9 / 10) (CONFIDENCE 30%) 


Race 9: We finish with a benchmark 84 over the mile and want to play two here. Top pick VOLCANIC ASH who is drawn to get the right run, hence suggest a WIN only play at $3.30+ (SPORTSBET, WILLIAM HILL, CENTREBET). Then also want to have an each way play at one who looks big overs here in PREPEE at a very juicy $17+ with BET365. Was super last time beaten a lip by two above average gallopers in Anaphora and Yellen, so don’t understand the price. Given the odds, will make our BEST VALUE bet of the day.

SUGGEST: VOLCANIC ASH (WIN) @ $3.30+, **PREPEE** (EACH WAY) @ $17+, FIRST FOUR (F / 4, 14 / F / 4, 14), (F / F / 4, 14 / 4, 14), (F / 4 / F / 3, 5, 10) (CONFIDENCE 40%) 



Average odds a juicy $10.25+ per suggested runner!

** BEST VALUE **: PREPEE @ $17+