The Winter Carnival moves back to Doomben this Saturday after a successful day at Toowoomba. The Doomben Cup and BTC Cup are the highlights.
The track as of Thursday is rated a Soft 5. We will probably see an improvement to the Good range with mostly clear weather forecast. The rail is in the true position.
Ballet Suite (2) failed last start in the Group 1 ATC Oaks over 2400m. However she simply didn’t handle the damp surface. The start prior in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes was excellent. She settled in the 2nd half of the field before charging to the line for 4th. She was just 1.4 lengths off Fenway and First Seal. That is great form for this. Back on a firmer surfaces she’ll be hard to beat.
Bohemian Lily (1) grabbed the cash for us as a Best Bet last time out at the Gold Coast. Will race handy and be in it for a long way. 3rd up should be at peak fitness.
No Tricks (5) is a former NZ filly who was competitive in Group company over there. Bred to get the trip.
Col ‘N’ Lil (4) Finished just behind Bohemian Lily last start. She keeps stepping up to the mark as she progresses.
Glorious Red (3) has been caught wide her past few starts but still managed to finish close to the winner. Draws barrier 1 here and will get a much sweeter run. Expect improvement.
This is a very even affair for the 3 year old lads over 2000m. I’m going with Sadler’s Lake (3). This guy has been ok this time in but I feel he hasn’t really appreciated the heavy racing surfaces in Sydney. Back to a good surface here and reunited with Blake Shinn, we should see an improved showing. He should be at optimum fitness 3rd up. He’s drawn out in barrier 11 but there is very little speed engaged here so I don’t see any problems for Shinn to get a nice position 3rd or 4th in running.
Upham (7) has improved each time he’s raced and I thought was clearly doing the best behind Worthy Cause last time at the GC. Will take some catching from a forward position.
Jumbo Prince (1) won like an odds on pop should last start at Toowoomba. He’s always around the money and has looked very good this campaign.
Chillin With Dylan (5) finished strongly in the Worthy Cause/Upham race last start showing the rise in distance here won’t be a problem. A sneaky hope around the $17 mark.
Inauguration (6) can be forgiven for his last start failure after racing 3 wide without cover. Prior form can’t be ignored.
I dare it’s going to be the story of the day but again we have a very interesting race. I’d like a better price about Traveston Girl (11) as I think it’s a bit short in a race of this quality but that’s the way I’m going. She races the older mares here for the first time but going on her past form she’s up to it. She competed well in Group company in Melbourne during the Spring Carnival and came close to tasting Group 1 glory. She resumed 2 weeks ago on the Gold Coast in the Guineas and put in a ripper 1st up. She drew wide and never got on the track yet she still had the audacity to finish off strongly to finish 3rd by a length. That suggests to me she’s in good nick and looking forward to a good campaign. Unlike last start, she has drawn perfectly in barrier 3. From there Tegan Harrison will be able to lead or box seat. She will carry just 54kg which will make her hard to pass in the straight against with more weight.
I’ve Got The Looks (1) grabbed us the cash last start in an impressive showing. She rises here 4kg but will again get a gun run. Shinn in the saddle.
Dublin Lass (5) resumed well with a win. Gets a sweet run and the services of Queensland’s best, Damian Browne.
Mihiri (8) is a quality mare from a top stable resuming here. Barrier may be a concern but previous form can’t be ignored.
She’s Clean (2) resumes here. Bad draw and will be better over further but class can’t be ignored.
I thought the run of Bodega Negra (9) was really good given the troubles he endured last start at the Gold Coast. After drawing wide he raced at the back of the field. He was held up on the turn, entering the straight and most noticeably at the 200m mark when The Peak broke down. At that point he was finishing strongly. What impressed me was the way he picked up after the setback to finish just 2 lengths from the winner Neo. He meets that horse 2kg better here and will get a better run from barrier 2. He loves this track and distance with 5 podiums from 6 starts. With clear running he’ll be in the finish. He’s definitely worth an each way ticket at double figure odds.
Neo (2) is the obvious danger after his last start win. He’s been racing in super fashion this time in. Up in weight but will get the run of the race. Having said that, I feel he may have been slightly flattered last start.
Laser Hawk (1) has 60kg to lump but class wise is above this lot. The drop in class will suit and was a Group 3 winner 2 starts back. Should get a nice run.
Epic (3) showed signs of a return to form last start when finished off well in the worst going to be just 2.1 lengths from Neo. He loves this track and distance and will get a much better run.
The 2 year olds go around here in the Champagne Classic and there should be a fair bit of speed. I’m going with Le Chef (1). This bloke was in fine form prior to a spell. He won the Magic Millions in fine fashion. He sat just behind the leaders before finishing strongly. I can see a similar scenario here. He’s drawn barrier 2 for Luke Tarrant who will be able to position the horse nicely. He warmed up for this with a 10 length trial win in quick time.
Sempre Libera (15) is bred to be a superstar and she may yet become 1. She looked good winning a midweek race 2 starts back before finishing a close up yet unlucky 4th to Ottoman. Shinn will give her every possible chance.
Counterattack (5) resumed last start and looked good breaking his maiden. Prior form was around some handy types and looks set to make himself a player this winter carnival.
Sampeah (3) competed strongly in group company in Melbourne a few months back. Obviously talented but gate and get back style a concern.
Madotti (11) will be steaming home and is a knock out chance at double figure odds.
The 1st up run of Estonian Princess (6) was excellent at the Gold Coast. She found the line strongly over 1200m suggesting she’s come back in great order. Her form last prep was very good with close up finishes in Group company. Those were over 1500m and 1600m so you know she’ll be strong at the end of this. She’s drawn well in barrier 4 which means Kerrin McEvoy won’t have to settle that far back.
Charlie Boy (5) was very good 1st up in the Hall Mark. He made ground up in the straight that day and will take benefit from the run. Form last prep was solid in Group company. Notably his 2nd to Famous Seamus 2nd up.
Fast ‘N’ Rocking (3) is a quality galloper but could be found out over 1350m here.
Gundy Spirit (10) has been finding the line strongly and can measure up to the interstate horses.
I’ve been a fan of Pornichet (10) for some time and I won’t be jumping ship here in the Doomben Cup. He missed a start in the Hollindale and was taken to Tooowoomba for the Cup. He won that as expected with 60.5kg. He won’t have any trouble backing up after 7 days as shown by his display in the Doncaster after winning the Neville Sellwood a week before. Gets the services of Blake Shinn who will be able to give the horse a super run from barrier 4. Stable reports he is flying.
I’m Imposing (8) could apply for a pension but his strong finish for 3rd in the Hollindale after 35 days off suggests he is right up for this.
Leebaz (7) will race on the speed and get every chance. His win in the Hollindale was full of merit.
Foreteller (2) ran well in the Hollindale and can never be written off in a race like this. Group performer.
If Pornichet wins the Doomben Cup then I’ll be a very nervous man heading into the BTC Cup. I’m backing the Rocky Rocket, Our Boy Malachi (8) and have a very nice paying double going with Pornichet. Our Boy Malachi is in super form. An obvious statement given he has won 17 of 19 starts. However he has really stepped up since going to Sydney with Team Hawkes. He’s drawn barrier 7 for Tommy Berry. Tommy will be able to cross and take up the box seat or possibly lead. He’ll be tough to beat from there.
Trust In A Gust (2) is a favourite of mine and has put together a great winning record in Melbourne. Will get a beaut run for Brad Rawiller and will be strong at the end. – Scratched
Srikandi (15) resumed at the Gold Coast 2 weeks ago and was outstanding. Barrier a concern and may use up a bit early. Gun jockey.
Sacred Star (6) is a Group 1 winning gelding from NZ who races well fresh. Will be finishing strongly.
Roger James has a history of bringing nice types over from NZ for the winter carnival. It looks like he has a really good filly here in
Shees Flawless (15). She’s won her past 3 starts over this trip in dominant fashion. Last start she won the Group 3 Breeders Stakes by 2.5 lengths. She’s drawn nicely in barrier 5 for Kerrin McEvoy who will be able to take up a forward position. I like the way she can lead and then boot away. Bummer man….Shees Flawless has been scratched.
***The scratching of Shees Flawless is disappointing. I’ll make Miss Cover Girl (12) my top pick.***
Miss Cover Girl (12) has won 7 of 11 and is a last start Sydney winner. She’ll be finding the line strongly from a nice draw.
Rekindled Power (9) has drawn badly for Blake Shinn but enters this in good form. It’s last start 3rd in a Group 2 was eye catching. Will be strong at the business end.
Deiheros (1) resumed recently and put in a strong showing. Was excellent winning at the Gold Coast on Millions day. Will enjoy a sweet run from barrier 1.
Race 1 – Ballet Suite (2)
Race 7 – Pornichet (10)
Race 8 – Our Boy Malachi (8)