The Golden Rose Stakes, Dato Tan Chin Nam and more: Preview and tips
Nechita (Image: AAP)
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The Golden Rose signals the first group one of the 2012/13 racing season, and while there may be a handful of good three year olds missing, and the best in Pierro isn’t there, it’s great to have elite level racing back.
We also have the group two Theo Marks and group three Kingston Town at Rosehill, where we may see this year’s winner of the Epsom and/or Metropolitan Handicaps.
Down in Melbourne, the group two Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes has provided many Cox Plate winners in recent years, and last Spring’s hottest form race, the Stocks Stakes for mares, is also being run.
Feature: The Golden Rose
I love looking for precedents when it comes to the stakes races, never more so than when assessing a group one.
Looking back over the running of this event (excluding the one run in the Autumn of 2008 due to EI), a few notable trends jump out:
- Five of the last six winners have won their previous start, with only two horses fitting that category tomorrow – Nechita and Albrecht;
- Each winner has been in the first four in betting, with three of the last five paying around the $7-$8 mark, with the other two starting as the punters-elect;
- Only one winner has come out of the Run to the Rose, and three of the last five winners have used the Up-and-Coming Stakes, which Albrecht won, as their lead-up race;
- No filly has won the race, which must be a concern for those looking at the $2.20 about Nechita.
The three significant formlines leading into this race are:
- Nechita, who’s Silver Shadow win has been franked by Dear Demi and Meidung providing the quinella in the Furious;
- Albrecht, whose Up-and-Coming win was held up by Tatra winning the Ming Dynasty;
- Pierro in the Run to the Rose, who isn’t running – but most of his competitors from that day are.
I’ve got no problem agreeing that the potential superstar filly Nechita is the one to beat, but I’ll always look for value where I can.
Based on all of the above, and after assessing the market, I have no choice but to put Albrecht on top at $9-$10 fourth favourite.
This is also taking into account the fact that Peter Snowden has elected to put stable rider Kerrin McEvoy on Albrecht instead of Epaulette, who ran third behind Pierro last start.
This gives me an inkling that the former has him covered, and therefore potentially all of those who ran in that race.
Selections – 6. Albrecht, 10. Nechita, 3. Your Song, 4. Kabayan
Feature – Datao Tan Chin Nam
Sticking with the two themes of the day, precedents and value, there’s only one horse to look at in the race formerly (and forever to some of us) known as the ‘Feehan’.
The Memsie Stakes invariably provides the winner of this race and, with four of the first five in the betting coming out of it this year, is likely to do so again. In fact, four of the last five winners of this crucial Cox Plate lead up ran either 2nd or 4th in the Memsie.
The early money has been for Rekindled Interest as the ‘Valley Specialist’, defending champion, and third place-getter in last year’s Cox Plate. But he hasn’t won since saluting on this day a year ago, and I’ll leave $3.50 alone for a horse that’s hasn’t been in the winners stall for eight starts.
Green Moon will be the spruik horse out of the Memsie, and rightfully so in many ways. He was the eye-catcher coming from near last in a race devoid of a hot tempo, and deserves his spot near the top of the ‘big three’ markets. But he doesn’t necessarily strike me as a Moonee Valley horse, and although the stable is flying, I want to see him run well there before I take $3.70 about him in this.
Happy Trails finished 2.5 lengths in front of Green Moon in the Memsie, and his second place in that race is more than enough to see me put him on top at double the price of the aforementioned two, especially in light of the precedent highlighted above.
Often in horse-racing we fall in love with a fast-finishing horse that has ‘next start’ written all over them, only to ignore the one at twice the price that comfortably beat it home. There was nothing wrong with Happy Trails’ run, and he’s another than is making vast leaps in improvement between every race in recent times.
He’s already accounted for Southern Speed this campaign, which hasn’t been beaten in two starts since, and while he is faced with a wide barrier again tomorrow, he should be able to do as he did in the Memsie, and slide across to take a position on a moderate tempo.
Happy Trails will look the winner at some stage, and I daresay will be in front at some point in the straight. I don’t mind taking $7 about a horse under those circumstances.
Selections – 7. Happy Trails, 4. Rekindled Interest, 3. Linton, 5. Green Moon
We couldn’t back up Lady of Harrod’s at $31 with Affable at a similar quote in the first last week, but while there were only two horses out of fifteen more despised than her in the betting, she ran a very nice seventh from the extreme tail of the field, and is on track for a future goal in races at a mile and beyond.
I do like to fill my boots early, so I’ll be looking at race one in Melbourne again for something at odds.
Last week at Flemington, there was a bit of word around for Bel Thor, coming off a big maiden win at Bendigo. Last at the turn as he was, he ended up putting them away by 3.5 lengths. The third horse in that race, a Peter Moody mare by the name of Mumbeilly, has since won to legitimise Bel Thor’s performance.
He jumped at $9 last week in the race that Jimando won, but knuckled at the start and did plenty wrong after that, so you can forget that he ever ran.
Peter Snowden’s Forget, who ran third in that same race, is favourite tomorrow, but Bel Thor gets the benefit of a 3kg swing in the weights thanks to his wayward efforts in the barrier.
At a price of $15 he may just blow them away on sheer talent if he can fix up his manners, so look for him to be charging late.
Above all though, enjoy the day’s racing, with nine black type event across Rosehill and Moonee Valley. You may just see the next superstar of the Australian turf, and I’ve got a feeling that you’ll be seeing a Spring major winner as well.
Cameron Rose is a born and bred Melbournian, raised on a regime of AFL, cricket and horse racing. He likes people who agree with him but loves those that don't, for in his mind there is nothing better than a roaring debate. He tweets from @camtherose.
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