This Wednesday, we head to Sandown Lakeside, where we near the end of the twilight and night racing season. It’ll be an eight-race card, with the feature coming in the last race, a Benchmark 70 handicap.
The bureau predicts a lovely Melbourne day, with it being 21 degrees and sunny. This could be the last time to get out to the track before the winter hits, so get down to Sandown and enjoy it.
We’ve got a two-year-old Fillies handicap in the first. It’s a pretty open race here, but I’ve landed on Miss Harriette. She made good ground late on debut behind Cheer Leader, who has since franked that form, and she had no luck at all at Group 3 level last start behind Flit.
She’ll get back from Barrier 7, and should appreciate an uninterrupted run. Good chance.
Angel Rock seems the main danger. Her form behind Lady Naturaliste and Li’l Kontra shapes as a good form line for this, and she didn’t have the best of luck last start. Barrier 1 is the query, but she’ll run well. Watch the market on Fiorente’s Girl. I thought she was very impressive to the line in a recent trial at Tatura, and she can run a good race on debut for the Hayes stable.
Recommended bet: Each way bet on No.9 Miss Harriette.
A maiden Plate over 1400 metres at set weights is the next race to dissect. It seems a race in three here, and I think Secretly Discreet is the one to beat. She trialled well in the lead-up to her debut run, where she travelled three wide and narrowly went down to Eighteen Carrot, and then she missed the kick at Pakenham and had to sustain a long run which took its toll late in the race.
She draws perfectly from Barrier 1, and if she jumps with them and gets a nice run on the speed, she’ll be hard to beat with the blinkers on first time. Judge O’reilly shapes as the main danger. He chased hard behind Maliseet two starts back, before just missing after diving on the line against Stocktaka, who franked that form by winning here last Wednesday.
There looks to be a decent speed on up front, which should allow for him to run them down late. Mellors isn’t without a chance. He fought hard after leading to finish second twice at the Valley last preparation, and if he’s come back a better horse this time in, he can run a big race on the speed.
Recommended bet: Win bet on No.11 Secretly Discreet.
The first of the Benchmark 64 handicaps comes in the third.
Woman, now out of the Hayes Yard, looks tough to beat. The blue blood mare has only had the two starts, but she has been pretty impressive in both of them.
She won with ease at Canterbury back in 2017, before having a 78-week break. She resumed at Pakenham and didn’t have much room in the straight, but still zipped through late to finish third. She’ll be better for that run, and she draws perfectly from Barrier 4. Hard to beat.
Cozhecancan is the danger. He ran really well two starts back behind Winning Partner, before not seeing out the mile last start at Ballarat. He comes back to 1300 meters today, and maps to get a beautiful run on the speed. Can win.
Smuggling can run well. He couldn’t catch the breakaway leader two starts back, and then sat on the speed at Benalla and won by three lengths. He will give them some cheek up front.
Recommended bet: Win bet on No.6 Woman.
We’ve got a Class 1 handicap over 1200 metres here. Diamond Effort went down narrowly to Blonde Disposition at Seymour two starts back, before dominating her rivals by six lengths at Cranbourne over Chap’s Dream. She draws well from Barrier 6 to get a nice run, but at $2 I’m not sure she’s a betting proposition.
I’ll be having something small on Fergus Magergus. He broke his maiden last preparation leading all the way at Ararat, and then came home solidly at Kyneton. He finished three lengths off Winning Partner last time he was first up, and with a hot speed on they’ll make it a legitimate 1200-metre test. He’ll be coming home strongly with even luck. Everywhere Mann is another at odds who can run a big race. He finished third, five lengths behind Victory Kingdom two starts back, before breaking his maiden at Seymour. Can give them something to run down.
Recommended bet: Each way on No.5 Fergus Magergus.
We’ve got a Benchmark 64 handicap for the three year old fillies here in the fifth. A couple of runners represent good value here, and one of them is Thermeda. She’s come back in good order, breaking her maiden at Terang, and then finishing three lengths off Blonde Disposition last start. She draws well from Barrier 4 to sit on the speed, and she should be fit now being third up. Overs in the market at $19.
First Tier is another who represents value. She was unlucky resuming behind Kashiwa, and she finally broke her maiden at Seymour last start. She doesn’t draw as well as Thermeda, but if Chris Symons can find her a spot in the run, she’ll be right in it. Debate has good form lines in Sydney, behind Call me Royal and Red Chandelier, and she should be fitter now third up. The barrier is the main query with her.
Recommended bet: Each way plays on both No.7 Thermeda and No.11 First Tier.
One of the more intriguing races of the day comes here, in a Benchmark 64 handicap over 2400 metres. It’s a very open race, but I think there’s two value runners in the race, and one of them is Chouxting The Mob.
He won with ease at Kyneton three starts back, before being caught four wide at Bendigo. He finished just under four lengths off Bianco Nuovo last start, but with the blinkers coming on for the first time, he’s a good chance to turn the tides on the two favoured runners. He draws well from Barrier 6, and Dwayne Dunn jumps on board. He’s a good chance.
Exclusively Ours is the other one I’ll be specking at double figure odds. She ran in the Oaks last preparation, which was out of her grade, and then the connections ran her in the Tasmanian Oaks two starts back, where she finished five lengths off them.
She come back to a maiden at Sale, and stormed home to win. She’ll appreciate the rise to 2400 metres, and she gets in well at the weights as a three year old. She’ll run a big race. Wee Gilly ran a neck off Bianco Nuovo last start, but with them at even weights this time, she could easily turn the tables on him.
Recommended bet: Each way plays on both No.7 Chouxting The Mob and No.13 Exclusively Ours. Also playing exotics around No.7, No.13, No.5, No.1 and No.4.
Another Benchmark 64 handicap awaits us today, this time over 1500 metres. It looks a two-horse race here, and I landed on Eighteen Carrot out of the Waller yard. There are some queries regarding Barrier 10, but at $8 he represents good value.
He resumed with a good win at the Hillside track in front of Secretly Discreet, and then had no chance after being posted three wide without cover last start. Michael Walker needs to get him across early, and if he does, he’ll be hard to hold out.
Toorak Warrior looks the main danger. He was unlucky not to finish closer to Jumbo Ozaki two starts back, and then done well to finish second after being posted three wide without cover last start. He draws well from Barrier 1 today, and with even luck he’ll be hard to beat. Watch the market on Venezuela. He’s having his first run for the Williams team, and his trial win at Cranbourne last week was impressive.
Recommended bet: Win bets on both No.9 Eighteen Carrot and No.7 Toorak Warrior. They look very hard to beat.
The lucky last on the program comes here, with a Benchmark 70 handicap over the mile.
It’s a pretty good race this, with some smart ones going around, but it’s hard to see Silent Roar losing here. She ran under three lengths off Shoko in a group three, and Kenedna in a group two last preparation. She resumed at the Hillside track in a Benchmark 78 race, where she was posted three wide with no cover, and did well to battle on for third there. She draws well from Barrier 1 to sit on the speed, and she’s undefeated second up. Best bet on the card.
Abinger might be worth saving on. She resumed finishing second to Irish Butterfly, and then finished third again last start behind Oregon Dreamer and Truly a Star, who have both won since. She draws well from barrier eight, and she’ll appreciate the rise to the mile. The only danger. Music of the Night is the best of the rest. She wasn’t disgraced in a group three two starts back, and she come back to this type of grade at the Valley, where she finished second. She’ll run well.
Recommended bet: Win bet on No.7 Silent Roar, with a saver on #11 Abinger.
Best bet: Race 8, No.7 Silent Roar.
Second best best: Race 7, No.9 Eighteen Carrot.
Best value: Race 5, No.7 Thermeda.