Merry Christmas Punters! Derby Day has arrived and is full of gifts for us all to enjoy, 4 Group 1 races are surrounded by some high quality G2 action. There is quality all over the card and not a second to look away or blink.
Race 1: Zoutori could arguably be the bet of the day here, will jump at a short price but is worth every cent punters place on him ($2.20 Playup). Was third behind Sunlight and Santa Ana Lane last start and connections have sent him here as opposed to the VRC Classic, matched Santa’s run home in that last run. James Cummings will be looking for a winner early with Virdine, raced home well at Caulfield over 1100m, quicker then Trekking who went onto third in the Everest.
Race 2: Flit will be the most popular on track come Saturday, coming off a great Thousand Guineas win where she looked hungry for a bit further, gets that here! Fair to say the 3kg she gives them here is unders, Chips in ($2.35 Playup). Vegas Jewel was super at Caulfield last start, gave them a start and took the scenic route home and narrowly missed. Miami Bound will enjoy coming back to her sex, good each-way bet.
Race 3: Dalasan had a nightmare run in the Caulfield Guineas, was wide all the way and still ran home well. Draw will be helpful and deserves another chance. Groundswell was huge in that Guineas beating Soul Patch and Kubrick who have both gone onto win since, worth following that form here ($3.30 Playup) but maybe save on Dalasan. Heirborn has been set for this and will command respect, flew home against the pattern last start with a day fastest final 200m. That was after 10 weeks off!
Race 4: Downdraft gave itself every chance on Australian debut and just didn’t find the kick, cant forget its Europe form. Hush Writer was great when scoring last time out, opposition was probably a bit below his level but he loves the long trips. Worth following ($4.80 Playup). The Chosen One was a pass mark in the Caulfield Cup, ran on well and was behind some very good horses.
Race 5: Melody Belle is the star import here, the Kiwi mare has won her last 3 starts all at G1 level. Chased Te Akau Shark which is great form. Princess Jenni is following last prep, was terrific then and has been god again. Had no luck when it counted last start and deserves forgiveness, might be showing overs here ($8.00 Playup). Savatiano was all honours when winning at Caulfield last start, was ridden to perfection and found a great kick. Fidelia is well over the odds here, was very good last start when just missing at Caulfield and Flemington will suit much better. Great each-way value ($15 Playup). Pohutukawa finished strongly last start and will love it at Flemington also, will eat the mile. Angelic Ruler, Spanish Reef and Amphitrite deserve respect also.
Race 6: Bivouac gave punters nightmares last start when he got trapped on the rail in the Manikato, was never in the race and you can completely forget that run. Just pretend it didn’t happen. Exceedance was just behind Bivouac and Yes Yes Yes (Everest winner) and has the class to win here, will enjoy Flemington and will have all chances down the straight. Microphone has won down the straight twice and that form is priceless, will be well worth his price here ($10.00 Playup).
Race 7: Shadow Hero ran a faster final 200m last time out then Cox Plate runner up Coastlevecchio. Soul Patch had as quick a final 200m in the Caulfield Guineas as anyone but the winner, cruised home over 2040m last start and there’s no doubt he will run the trip, get on ($4.80 Playup). Thought of That has been the talk of the town for reason out of his control, Mark Zahra on board now and has loved having the blinkers on last two starts.
Warning has been set for this and will be right in this, does like it here and should enjoy the trip. All four above are class above, take your pick.
Race 8: Land of Plenty is always a huge improver second-up and that shouldn’t change here, may be overs. Night’s Watch was waiting for runners to disappear last start when running into trouble, always runs well but can find trouble when it’s not there. sticking with him though ($7.00 Playup.) Fierce Impact won well second up and will come here fitter for that run, can easily build on that and perform here. Royal Meeting was good once luck arrived, cant count out.
Race 9: Manicure has been good this prep, always runs well and is incredibly honest. Battled hard against the breeze behind Tofane who was superb. Will be fitter here the top weight. Tofane was all honours last time out, forgive her run in between last two wins where she was ridden far to warm. Leave a winner on her ($6.50 Playup). Pippie will lead and should take some catching, had some issues when missing out last time and we can ignore that, was excellent before that. Humma Humma was great when scoring last time and deserves respect here.
Melbourne Cup day is nearing and there’s plenty happening, horses are dropping out like flies which is sending the market into chaos.
Constantinople ($7.00 Playup) looks likely to start favourite, issues with his ability to finish ahead of the rest but has class. Mer De Glace ($8.00 Playup) was superb in Caulfield Cup and will eat the 2 miles, Japan form has been impeccable so far. Vow and Declare ($10 Playup) was huge in the Caulfield Cup and will be right in the mix. Surprise Baby ($13 Playup) will carry the local hopes, looks like the distance wont be an issue and will be exciting to watch his work.
Watch this space for more Melbourne Cup form.
*All odds correct at time of writing.