Midweek racing brings quality fields and competitive betting races to our TV screens, literally. With the current crowd lockouts for racing, it will be an eery sight on our screens as the races are run void of any spectators at the track. But the most important thing is that they are still running, so let’s get into it. The Kensington track at Randwick plays host to an eight race card, with the quaddie legs looking particularly strong. Sandown likewise hosts an eight race card, continuing their twilight theme on a Wednesday with races starting at 3pm. Doomben, Gawler, Ascot and Launceston are out other venues, but PlayUp form analyst Lewis Willoughby has narrowed his focus into Sydney and Melbourne. Take a look at his five key plays for the day below, including a best bet and a value selection.
Sandown R1 #1 Bavyvista $3.00 at PlayUp – Comes here second up in his career after a promising run-on debut at The Valley behind Sovereign Legend, who looks to have an abundance of talent. Over the 1200m journey that day, Bayvista sat outside the leader and did his best work through the line late, holding ground on the winner without threatening. Steps up to the 1400m second up looks ideal, and this is arguably an easier race than the one he faced on debut, now that Commodus is scratched. He maps to sit outside the leader and should prove to be the best horse in the race.
Sandown R5 #4 Pariano (VALUE) $8.00 at PlayUp – I can make genuine excuses for the past two runs of this mare. Two back at Flemington over 1000m she wanted to over-race and the jockey stated that she was not suited by the straight track. Last start when finishing 8th at The Valley over 1200m, she pulled up with a slow recovery rate after going back early stages, then over racing and striding forward, a very messily run race. She now gets a massive class drop from BM78 to BM64, which is much more suitable for her. Three starts back she beat the talented Montenegro Man over this distance/grade. Twice a winner at the 1000m, she will push forward and be very well positioned on speed, and the 2kg claim for L King brings her right into contention. She is a great each-way bet.
Sandown R6 #7 Hey Mighty $2.50 at PlayUp – Waterhouse & Bott trained colt returning from city-class races to a midweek race at Sandown. Last start at Flemington he was second up in a BM70, led and was claimed easily in the straight, although he did well to box on and hold his ground. Comes here back in grade to a BM64 third up, and only has to rise 2kg in weight. The key about this race, however, is the lack of speed on paper. Hey Mighty should roll forward and lead comfortably in typical Waterhouse fashion, and with no other noted on pace horses, he could control the tempo in front all to himself and be very hard to catch. The rail is out +9m here today, so it makes the task much more difficult for anything trying to run on. Jumps, leads, controls and wins is the way I’m hoping this plays out.
Randwick R4 #5 All Time Legend (BEST) $3.20 at PlayUp – This Les Bridge trained gelding was very well found last start when winning dominantly at Kembla Grange. That was first up from a freshen over the 1400m journey, and he gave nothing else a look in when bolting away with a great turn of foot. Strips fitter here and stepping to the 1550m should be a positive, as he gave the impression that more ground would be suitable. Drops 1.5kg from last start, maps to sit nicely up on speed from barrier 2, and K McEvoy sticks aboard. Gets all the ticks on paper, can win.
Randwick R5 #6 Covert Ops $3.10 at PlayUp – Have always had a lot of time for this Sun Bloodstock gelding, after a huge run-on debut finishing 2nd at double figures, and I’ve followed him from there on in. He lost his way slightly, but has now come back this preparation and won two in a row, very dominantly as well. They were both 900m wins at Newcastle, and this will be his hardest race yet. Up in grade, and up to the 1100m journey, but that should be no issue third up with residual fitness. The soft conditions expected add to his chances, he has won and placed on a soft and was third on a heavy 8 at Randwick as a 2YO. Needs some luck slotting in from barrier 10, but he is racing in career-best form and it’s hard to look away from him.