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Opinion

Golden Slipper Day: A look at the five Group 1s

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Expert
25th March, 2021
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What a difference a week can make. The sun is expected to shine in Sydney both today and tomorrow, which should make for a pleasant outing at the Golden Slipper meeting.

The track is still going to be on the heavy side. It’s a Heavy 9 at 6am Friday, but course management suggests we could possibly see an upgrade to the Soft 7 by lunchtime tomorrow.

Based on all the information I have at hand, I have previewed the race as a Heavy 8 and I don’t expect the fence to be the place to be by the second half of the card.

Well done to Racing NSW for putting back the whole carnival by a week, though. While it may seem like a simple decision, it does come at a cost. However, the benefit to the industry is huge.

Around Australia, the metro meeting in Victoria is at Bendigo for the Golden Mile. I have kept my attention to Rosehill again today, but I am keen on Annavisto in the Bendigo Guineas.

Up north, they are racing at Doomben in Queensland, but if you want a winner in the Sunshine State, I suggest backing Hard Yaga in the last at Cairns.

There are some listed races on the Adelaide program as they gear up for their winter carnival, while Perth racing is at Ascot as per usual for this time of year.

Good luck if you’re having a flutter – and please do so responsibly.

Rosehill (NSW)

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The track is rated Heavy 9 at time of writing. Rail out three metres.

Race 4 at 2:30pm: $700,000 Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m)
This was a five-horse field last week and now there are nine confirmed runners, but it shouldn’t change the outcome. The race will be won by either Addeybb or Verry Elleegant.

As much as I love the Chris Waller-trained mare, I’m going to have to go with the import Addeybb, who was so impressive here last year and will handle all conditions. New entrant Colette was a touch disappointing last run and at her best could be competitive here, but I think the top two hopes in the market will be battling it out in the final furlong.

Suggested bet: Addeybb (#1) to win.

Race 5 at 3:10pm: $600,000 Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m)
A great three-year-old race this and plenty of winning chances. I’m happy to take on the favourite, Mo’unga, who looks to be a little short in an open race. I loved Lion’s Roar’s run in the Randwick Guineas and if the fence is off, he can come from behind again and sweep around the field to win.

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Those looking for some value might lean towards Sky Lab, who is double figures and has won on a heavy track before.

Suggested bet/s: Half stake on Lion’s Roar (#1) and Sky Lab (#11) to win.

Race 6 at 3:50pm: $1 million Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m)
Thirteen runners make up this field and nine of them are probably winning chances. That’s why I’m looking for value.

Junipal is probably unproven at this class of race but he has been set for the assignment and was more than handy last spring. Ciaron Maher and David Eustace appear to have set him for races like the George Ryder this autumn and even though he is first-up, I think this wet tracker will love the conditions in Sydney.

You’ll get close to $21 or maybe even better on race day so let’s hope we see a big run from the five-year-old.

Suggested bet: Junipal (#11) each-way.

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Race 7 at 4:30pm: $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m)
The feature race of the day appears to be a genuine raffle as a result of the track conditions.

I tossed and turned over this selection both this week and last week but ended up deciding on the runner with the unbeaten form. The filly Four Moves Ahead has two wins from two starts and has won on a heavy track before. From barrier 10, Nash Rawiller will have options from the jump and I suspect he’ll take a positive position just off the speed. Being caught a little wide won’t be an issue.

While her winning margin in the Group 2 at Randwick wasn’t huge, the time didn’t lie, which means she’s got a bit of class on her side.

This race has produced a few upsets over the years but an unbeaten filly with wet track form ticks enough boxes for me and Four Moves Ahead is still an each-way price.

Suggested bet: Four Moves (#13) to win.

Race 8 at 5:10pm: $700,000 Group 1 Galaxy (1100m)
The Galaxy is probably the best race on the card but who knows what the track will look like at five o’clock? A bog is what I would suggest.

That’s why I’m going with bottom weight Tailleur, who carries just 51kg with Rachel King in the saddle and has a barrier that will give her options. This Godolphin mare has won six races from eight starts with two minor placings. She’s also won three times from four attempts on a heavy track.

There’s no doubt this is a huge step up in class from what she has been tackling of late, but the Galaxy is a handicap for a reason and this featherweight chance is a big hope.

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Punters think so, too. She has been backed from $8 into $5, which is a good sign for those keen on her.

Suggested bet: Tailleur (#12) to win.