SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 2018
Racing at CAULFIELD with fine weather in Melbourne and currently looking at a GOOD (4) surface.
RAIL: +9M (ENTIRE CIRCUIT). We head to CAULFIELD with the rail out +9M. Hoping for an even track (pace dependant), expecting no major disadvantage on pace, but as always be sure to keep a close eye on early races for best guide.
Race 1: We start with the two year olds over 1200m with the usual guesswork involved, especially in Victoria where we still have this issue with a mix of official and unofficial trials. It’s 2018 but maybe one day! Always like the runners with race day experience and for this reason, leaning towards MESSERSCHMITT at $5+ (BET365) who won well at Ballarat. Main dangers ARISTOCRATIC MISS and KINKY BOOM. Note, no third dividend.
SUGGEST: MESSERSCHMITT (EACH WAY) @ $5+, FIRST FOUR (F / 4, 5 / 1 / F) (CONFIDENCE 30%)
Race 2: Next is another two year old event, this time a Group 3 over 1000m and think best value lies with the McEvoy/Kah combination here in **LOGAN RIVER** at a respectable $6+ with CROWNBET, BET365 and SPORTSBET. Didn’t handle the Sydney way of going so a total forgive but loved the colt’s work late. Combination of McEvoy and Kah is white-hot and at the price, happy to make a BEST VALUE bet of the day. Main dangers ENNIS HILL, ENCRYPTION and SUNSET WATCH. Note, no third dividend, but still like each way.
SUGGEST: **LOGAN RIVER** (EACH WAY) @ $6+, FIRST FOUR (F / 1, 5, 6 / 3 / F) (CONFIDENCE 35%)
Race 3: Next is a benchmark 78 for the 3YO fillies over 1400m. Small, yet ultra-competitive affair and this is tough. Slight lean, given best value on offer with LUCKY CAT at a respectable $6.50+ with UBET. Will appreciate good pace up front and given the small field won’t need to be too far off the leader, even if sitting dead last. Throw a blanket over the rest, note no third dividend.
SUGGEST: LUCKY CAT (EACH WAY) @ $6.50+ (CONFIDENCE 30%)
Race 4: Next is the Robert Hunter Handicap over 2400m. Another small, but ultra-competitive affair which seems to be a theme of the day. Really like the price on offer here for *SHOREHAM* at a very juicy $12+ with SPORTSBET, UBET and UNIBET. Has come back very well this prep, winning well three starts back and can most definitely improve over the longer trip here, which is required as does need to turn the tables on hot favourite here LAST WEEK despite a 2kg swing against in the weights from two starts back. However, at nearly six times the price and the longer trip, happy to play and although normally longer prices, happy to make a BEST LONGSHOT bet of the day. Also, want to have something on top weight SAYED ($7.50+ with UNIBET) who I also think will appreciate the longer trip here and doesn’t know how to run a bad race, so should be right in the thick of things late. Main dangers LAST WEEK, BINT EL BEDU and AL HARAM.
SUGGEST: *SHOREHAM* (EACH WAY) @ $12+, SAYED (WIN / EACH WAY) @ $7.50+, FIRST FOUR (4, 5, 6 / 1, 3 / F / 1, 3) (CONFIDENCE 35%)
Race 5: Next is a benchmark 78 over 1100m and a race I have an extra interest with the return of our filly IF NOT NOW WHEN. Everything needs to go right with her, given her get back style and fact she can only sustain a relatively short sharp sprint, hence isn’t one that wins out of turn unfortunately. Capable at this level, but this is a strong BM78 to what she’s been facing in recent times. Cutting to the chase, there looks a standout here in the form of **HANDSOME THIEF** (at $4+ with most operators), who wasn’t missed last time flying late once the race was all over after extremely strong backing late. Always a very good sign, when from the Weir stable. Definitely looks the one to beat and happy to make a BEST VALUE bet of the day at what I consider decent value considering. Main danger MISS WONDERLAND who drops from Group 3 (Standish) level when starting at 5/1, hence big drop in class.
SUGGEST: **HANDSOME THIEF** (EACH WAY) @ $4+, FIRST FOUR (6 / F / F / 1) (CONFIDENCE 45%)
Race 6: First leg of the main quaddie is a Listed W.J Adams over 1000m. SNITTY KITTY is the one to beat, but poison odds for mine in red figures ($1.75 - $1.85). Think better value lies with the two at the top of the weights here in CRYSTAL DREAMER ($6+ with LADBROKES, BOOKMAKERS, BETSTAR) and THERMAL CURRENT at $9+ with UBET. THERMAL CURRENT, similar to INNW needs plenty to go right to win, but keeps running well and finding one, two or three better. Meets CRYSTAL DREAMER 5kg better at the weights for their battle in December, when only beaten 0.6L. While CRYSTAL DREAMER is low flying and can win here, despite the jump in weight. Note, no third dividend.
SUGGEST: THERMAL CURRENT (WIN / EACH WAY) @ $9+, CRYSTAL DREAMER (WIN) @ $6+, FIRST FOUR (F / 1, 2 / 1, 2 / F) (CONFIDENCE 35%)
Race 7: Next is a benchmark 84 over 2000m. Not a massive amount of pace on paper so pace/tactics and how track is playing will be important. Think best value lies with a couple towards the top of the weights in O’LONERA at $8.50+ (UNIBET, SPORTSBET) and PORTION CONTROL at $14+ with SPORTSBET. O’LONERA will appreciate any lack of tempo, as will be right there on the pace, and gets handy 3kg claim from the very much in form Steph Thornton, dropping from 61kg to 58kg. Has had two good wins from past three starts, so in form. PORTION CONTROL will need them running on or able to (dependant on pace) here, however Zahra is a gun jockey and can hopefully have the galloper “close enough, if good enough”. Doesn’t win out of turn, given racing style but normally there or thereabouts, which should be the case here at a juicy price. Main danger BEDFORD.
SUGGEST: O’LONERA (EACH WAY) @ $8.50+, PORTION CONTROL (EACH WAY) @ $14+, FIRST FOUR (F / 9 / F / 1, 3) (CONFIDENCE 30%)
Race 8: Penultimate event is the Group 3 Manfred Stakes to be run over 1200m. Again not a great deal of pace on paper, and as a result think best value here lies with OVERSHARE at a very tidy $12+ with BET365. Forgive first up run down the straight behind potential future star, should be able to cross comfortably from the wide gate, senior jockey Dunn rides and only need to go back three starts for a good win over Bandipur which ties in very well with key rival I DID IT AGAIN who has been heavily backed in early markets. And that just so happens to be the other I want a saving play on at $4.20+ with most operators. Has done little wrong in short career, resumes and the money says ready to fire first up.
SUGGEST: OVERSHARE (EACH WAY) @ $12+, I DID IT AGAIN (WIN / EACH WAY) @ $4.20+, FIRST FOUR (F / 3, 9 / F / 3, 9) (CONFIDENCE 30%)
Race 9: And we finish with a benchmark 84 over 1400m. tough finish and unfortunately think the market is pretty much spot on here with the three shortest in the market, the three on top in MALAISE, TROGIR and MANOLO BLAHNIQ. Had MALAISE drawn a better gate the gelding would definitely be top pick as is simply low flying, but just wary of where it gets in the run from there, although was wide last time from wide gate after heavy backing (was a PLUNGE notification) and still too good. Going to lean on one I’m giving one last chance to at the best odds of the three in MANOLO BLAHNIQ at $6.50+ with LADBROKES, BOOKMAKERS.COM.AU and BETSTAR. Actually think 1400m will suit, although that is undoubtedly the main query here, with most racing 1000-1200m. Then although not in the top pick category, want a longshot play on top weight *MAGIC CONSUL* at $41+ with most operators. Very consistent type, the concern here is first up (has won 1 out of 8), but at the price, happy to take the punt wound up to run a race fresh. More than capable if that’s the case. At the price happy to make a BEST LONGSHOT bet of the day. Main dangers the other two mentioned in MALAISE and TROGIR, expecting the winner to come from the three, so just the three for final leg of your quaddie.
SUGGEST: MANOLO BLAHNIQ (EACH WAY - PRIMARY) @ $6.50+, *MAGIC CONSUL* (EACH WAY – SECONDARY) @ $41+, FIRST FOUR (5, 13 / F / F / 1, 15) (CONFIDENCE 30%)
Average odds $10.16+ per suggested runner!
** BEST VALUE **: LOGAN RIVER @ $6+, HANDSOME THIEF @ $4+
*BEST LONGSHOTS*: SHOREHAM @ $12+, MAGIC CONSUL @ $41+