Things get serious this Saturday with some heavy hitters returning and Group 1 action at Randwick.
The Winx Stakes is a ripper, where to look – Kolding, Verry Elleegant, Mo’unga, old Dreamforce, and many more?
While we’re stuck on the lounge for the foreseeable future, there’s some quality flesh running on good surfaces, from a racing sense it looks a cracking day. I’m planning on giving the day a big go, please stay in touch including checking out the comments for live updates and chat race-to-race.
Dixie’s 2021 tally
Outlay: 336 units
Return: 412.30 units
Stats are based on one unit being equal to a $1 win bet, New South Wales dividends. See the comments for any changes based on scratchings or track condition.
Race 1 – 8 Ten Bells (one unit)
Pushing the corn flakes aside to dabble on the Highway, 8. Ten Bells has only had the three starts, winning two of them, and is well drawn and well weighted coming to town. There’s a few horses that may get a stitch late, she has a win at 1200 metres so should run through the line. 3. Surooj was good at Scone last time but might prefer it wet. 10. Newtown Braveheart wears the old bluebagger silks and isn’t the worst at odds.
Race 2 – 2 Shuffle Up (one unit)
2. Shuffle Up stepped up to 2400 metres for the first time last start and broke the Kensington track record, not bad – even considering the limited amount of distance races on the inner track. He looks to be healthy and enjoying getting the extra trip. 8. Mr Bond is flying, running around them and belting them at the provincials in his last two, he could measure up here. 7. Red Santa comes up from Melbourne and looks a good staying type, while 5. Torrens isn’t going as badly as his form suggests. I’m done with 6. Accountability, backs up after giving nothing last week?
Race 3 – 8 Canyonero (one unit)
An early Midway this week. A pretty evenly matched lot as usual, I’ll dabble on 8. Canyonero, who put the spruiked Yiyi to the sword last week running on impressively. 1. Monegal should be ready now two starts into her prep, she’s better than these on her day. 7. Majella is another favoured by the firm track, while 11. Tampering has run against some good horses and been competitive, just too short in the market for me.
Race 4 – 7 Wairere Falls (one unit)
Bookmaker buddy 7. Wairere Falls has tested punters’ patience over the last 12 months, looking like a world beater before just not getting the job done recently. He broke that hoodoo last start and rates on top here as a result. The $9 around at the minute is juicy. 14. Always Sure rated next best and there’s been a push since markets opened. He’s right down in weight and has been running without luck. 11. Loveplanet and 2. Pesto are the faves but will win without me. 3. Papal Warrior is in my numbers.
Race 5 – 13 Nags to Riches (two units)
I am keen on 13. Nags to Riches to press on after her fresh win in Wednesday grade. James McDonald gave her a stack to do there, coasting in last before peeling to be the widest runner. Her finishing splits were good and 1200 metres should be more suitable. 11. Brazen Gem is worth considering, she’s always up near the top of my numbers and more so now the tracks have hardened up. Her last two efforts have been good and she draws well. 2. Cuban Royale is starting to be a bit more consistent and is going well, leaving out 8. More Prophets, who is talented but can find trouble.
Race 6 – 1 Four Moves Ahead (two units)
Not willing to muck about here, I’m wondering if 1. Four Moves Ahead might be best on soft ground, but she was the dominant filly last season and trialled nicely, so I need to go her way until someone else steps up to take the title. Who? Potential challengers include the undefeated 7. Tilianam, 5. She’s All Class (just off the top weight last prep, now advantaged weight-wise) or maybe the lightly raced Godolphin hope 12. Trifaccia. Interesting.
Race 7 – 11 Hightail (two units)
Now we’re talking. I really like 11. Hightail, who drops right down in weight, and will be hard fit and appreciate the good track. He’s been good in these sort of second-tier sprints. 5. Chat has been fantastic this prep and will get the gun run. 2. Viridine is class but doesn’t win often. 10. Embracer will go forward and is three from six at 1200 metres and prefers it dry.
Race 8 – 2 Think It Over (one unit)
Welcome back Group 1 racing! It’s a beauty. I landed on 2. Think It Over, who took the George Ryder in the autumn at any old price and bobs up fresh into this. He’s met every challenge to date and should be in the mix. 4. Dreamforce is a ripper. There were ticks all over my print-out with great fresh stats, 1400 metres stats and good track numbers. Does he still have that spring having turned nine? 12. Verry Elleegant ($8.5 million prize money) is a superstar but will possibly need one run before peaking, while stablemate 1. Kolding (only $6.4 million) is always around the mark at HQ.
Race 9 – 12 Lillemor (one unit)
If you thought the last race was tricky, good luck here. 12. Lillemor is a fighter, she was under the pump in both runs last prep and produced late to get the job done. This is another step up but she’s down in the weights, can run time, should sit just off them and loves a rock-hard track (five from seven on good). $30+ is too good to knock back. There’s some class here, and a lot of ticks around the place, including for 3. Tailleur, who is a potential top-liner, 8. Written Beauty and 11. Fiteuse. 1. Entriviere comes from the Te Akau family and is another to watch.
Race 10 – 15 Above and Beyond (one unit)
Another one at any old price to finish, 15. Above and Beyond might just bob up here. He’s at his best on good tracks and is in well at the weights here. A sneaky 1000/1 race-to-race double is top of mind (Twitter be ready). 5. Academy runs well second-up and 1400/good is spot on. 12. Atishu joins Team Waller from NZ and may be looking towards bigger and better things.
Great day, good luck all. Please stay safe and enjoy the racing, I’ll try to comment pre/post races with my thoughts, feel free to join the conversation.