Category Archives: Spot Plays

Horse Racing Graded Stakes Analysis – June 6

Horse Racing Graded Stakes Analysis – June 6

by: Ed Meyer

Belmont Park

Race #6 – The G2 Fort Marcy – 1 1/8 on the turf – 3:59 pm EDT Selections / #4 – Flop Shot / #7 – Devamani / #8 – Social Paranoia

#4 Flop Shot hails from the barn of Chad Brown with Javier Castellano in the irons. He gets first time Lasix and comes in nine months off the shelf. He ships over from France where Brown wins 30% with overseas runners making the move, and 5 for 5 ITM on the sod. He cuts back in distance, and his dam Dancequest (IRE)  has 2 starters, 2 winners, and 2 turf winners to her credit. #7 Devamani comes from the Chad Brown barn with Joel Rosario in the saddle. He’s a strong closer and just missed at Tampa Bay getting added distance to run today. He’s had a three month layoff and the barn scores at a 30% win clip with rested runners. #8 Social Paranoia goes to post for Todd Pletcher and Manny Franco in the driver’s seat. 3rd off the shelf yields a 22% win rate and he’s 3 for 3 ITM at Belmont. Franco should have him in mid pack ready to strike. He is on an upward move and deserves a solid look.

Race #7 – The G3 Westchester – 1 1/16 – 4:32 pm EDT Selections / #9 – Code of Honor / #4 – Payne / #1 – Endorsed

#9 Code of Honor comes from the Shug McGaughey barn with John Velasquez getting the call. He’s been off 7 months since the Breeders’ Cup Classic and cuts back in distance on the drop down in class. He’s a mid pack closer with a solid work tab looking to fire fresh and ready. #4 Payne enters in for the Chad Brown barn and Kendrick Carmouche getting the nod. He’s been off for two months and looks for four in a row. An early style runner and Carmouche wins 17% with speedy type runners. He is 3 for 3 ITM at Belmont. #1 Endorsed hails from the Bill Mott barn with Joel Rosario in the saddle. They’re winning 30% as a team. 2nd time off the layoff and an impressive win shipping in from OP. He draws the golden rail where it wins 23%.

The annual CASH IS KING Tournament begins June 20th.  The final Saturday of the Cash Is King Warm-up contest is this Saturday, June 6th.  Jump in and play.

Race  #8 – The G3 Intercontinental – 7f on the turf – 5:04 pm EDT Selections / #5 – Newspaperofrecord / #7 – Regal Glory / #9 – Rose Flower

#5 Newspaperofrecord enters from the Chad Brown barn with Irad Ortiz in the irons. They are winning at a staggering 29% as a team. An early speed style runner and Ortiz scores 23% with these types of runners. Her dam Sunny Times (GB) has 4 starters, 3 winners, and 2 turf winners to her credit. She’s been off 11 months since the G1 Belmont Oaks and may improve with a cut back in distance. #7 Regal Glory comes from the Chad Brown barn with Jose Ortiz in the saddle. A speedy sort who has been off for 7 months since the QE II at KEE. Been working well at Palm Meadows and could be dangerous on the pace. #9 Rose Flower comes in for Christophe Clement and Manny Franco gets the call. She is 1 for 1 at the distance and will come rolling late in the lane. Since shipping over from France she has been turning heads.

Race #9 – The G1 Carter – 7f – 5:36 pm EDT Selections / #10 – Mind Control / #11 – Vekoma / #5 – Network Effect

#10 Mind Control is a son of Stay Thirsty with John  Velasquez in the irons. Looking for 4 in a row and been away from the races for three months. He stretches out to 7f and Johnny V fits like a glove for this mid pack stalker. #11 Vekoma is a son of Candy Ride with Javier Castellano in the driver’s seat. He’s a closer coming off a two month break where the barn scores 20% with freshened runners. His late punch is impressive down the lane. #5 Network Effect enters in for Chad Brown with Irad Ortiz getting the nod. This late runner is making the 3rd off the layoff run and Ortiz scores 23% with closers. When he and Brown team up good things happen as they win 29% together.

Educated Guess for the 2016 Prix Arc de la Triomophe (the Arc)

Historically the Arc is won by:

1) A three year old

2) That has won at a mile and a half

3) Is very well bred

4) Has run fast at a mile and a half

5) Did not run its best race going into the Arc (prep race was below standard)

6) Has a good post to save ground in the run

The only horse that fits all these criteria is #11 HARZAND

The favorite, Postponed, is the fastest horse on paper but he had a long campaign and is 5 years old.  Horses 5 years years old and older have only won ‘the Arc’ 7 times since 1920.  He also looked like a tired horse in the 10 Furlong York International.  I won’t be using Postponed on top.

Friday Night Australian Racing 3/25/2016

Race 3B Australia (Rosehill) Friday, March 25, 2016 3B NEVILLE SELLWOOD STAKES ($150K) 10:55pm EDT (9:55pm CDT, 7:55pm PDT) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Pick 3 (3B, 4B, 5B) 4yo+ OPEN G3

Paul Joice from Racenet (AUS) made a compelling argument yesterday that #6 Sir John Hawkwood (5/1 ML) and #8 Centre Pivot (8/1 ML) are the two value plays in this race, and after consulting my speed figures I have to agree with him.  “Sir John” appears to be in the better form and I lean to him but it might be a good idea to bet a small amount on both runners to win.


Race 4A Australia (Caulfield) Friday, March 25, 2016 4A JACK ELLIOTT HCP ($80K) 11:10pm EDT (10:10pm CDT, 8:10pm PDT) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 3yo F OPEN Selections 1 – 6 – 9 5

#1 Petits Filous (expected to be 8/5) is a winner with a career record of 5-4-0-0.  Even if the price is short it’s worth backing her.  Trainer reported this week she’s going “super.”


Race 6B Australia (Rosehill) Friday, March 25, 2016 6B VINERY STUD STAKES ($500K) 12:50am EDT (11:50pm CDT, 9:50pm PDT) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 3yo F OPEN SW G1

#5 Risque (4/1 ML) was right there in the Group1 1 mile race at Flemington.  Out of that race Tarzino shipped to Sydney and won the Randwick Guineas.  4/1 is a very good price on this horse.  #1 Jameka (7/2 ML) is not as brilliant as Risque but is more proven at longer distances and appears to be reaching peak form.  A very logical exacta box.


Race 7B Australia (Rosehill) Friday, March 25, 2016 7B THE BMW ($1.5M) 1:30am EDT (12:30am CDT, 10:30pm PDT) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 3yo+ OPEN G1

#2 Who Shot Thebarman (7/1 ML) is getting to the peak of his form and when he’s right he’s one of the top long distance runners in Sydney, if not Australia.  #1 Our Ivanhowe might be a gate scratch – it’s up to the track vet(s) if he runs.

Friday Night Australian Racing 3/11/2016

Race 1B Australia (Flemington) Friday, March 11, 2016 6 furlongs TBV THOROUGHBRED BREEDERS STKS ($150K) 8:40pm EST (7:40pm CST, 5:40pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 2yo F OPEN G3

#2 Selenia (4/1 ML) is fast and tough and won last week “down the straight” at Flemington.  Coming back on 7 days rest is a very positive sign.


Race 2B Australia (Flemington) Friday, March 11, 2016 7 furlongs MSS SECURITY SIRES’ PRODUCE ($200K) 9:15pm EST (8:15pm CST, 6:15pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 2yo OPEN SW G2

#8 Hot Dipped (estimated 4/1 at post) is undefeated and I am sticking with the “Hot” hand.


Race 3A Australia (Rosehill) Friday, March 11, 2016 6 furlongs BEDE MURRAY MAGIC NIGHT STAKES ($175K) 9:35pm EST (8:35pm CST, 6:35pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Pick 3 (3A, 4A, 5A) 2yo F OPEN SW G2

#2 Calliope (7/2 ML) was a gate scratch after becoming cast in her barrier stall 7 days ago.  I picked her to win last week, so I cam going to stay with her this week.


Race 3B Australia (Flemington) Friday, March 11, 2016 5.5 furlongs GOODWOOD RACECOURSE TROPHY ($120K) 9:55pm EST (8:55pm CST, 6:55pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Pick 3 (3B, 4B, 5B) 3yo OPEN Listed Race

#4 Stellar Collision (8/1 ML) is on undefeated 3 for 3 roll.  I’m stayin’ with the hot horses today.


Race 5A Australia (Rosehill) Friday, March 11, 2016 5.5 furlongs SMOOTH FM MAURICE MCCARTEN ($150K) 10:50pm EST (9:50pm CST, 7:50pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 3yo+ OPEN G3

#2 Craftiness (5/2 ML) drops 13 pounds of a very solid try on February 6th.  Draws better today and sould be ready to a top effort.


Race 5B Australia (Flemington) Friday, March 11, 2016 7 furlongs TAB KEWNEY STAKES ($200K) 11:10pm EST (10:10pm CST, 8:10pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 3yo F OPEN SW G2

#3 Badawiya (6/1 ML) has had a really nice career and her trainer is the best in Melbourne with sprinters.  I expect her to be ready after the layoff.


Race 6B Australia (Flemington) Friday, March 11, 2016 6B LEXUS NEWMARKET HCP ($1.3M) 11:50pm EST (10:50pm CST, 8:50pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super OPEN G1

This race is the second most important sprint race in Australia, which may not initially make an impression until one considers that the fastest grass sprinters in the world are bred in Australia and then race in Australia, Hong Kong and/or Dubai.  Today features the best of the best in #6 Japonime and #1 Chautauqua.

#6 Japonisme (7/2 ML) is a Group 1 winner down the straight against 3 year olds already, and his last race against race favorite #1 Chautauqua was very solid, beaten only a head.  I am optimistic Japonisme can turn the tables today with a 5 pound weight swing.

Friday Night Australian Racing 3/4/2016

Race 1A (Randwick) 6 furlongs, 2yo Fillies Group 2, 8:20 PM EST

Going to give #2 CALLIOPE (3/1 ML) another chance.  Her speed figures and sectional times are better than the favorite’s and the Sydney based O’Shea/Goldolphin machine has been nearly invincible this season.  Plus I like Calliope getting back to Randwick (Sydney), where she broke her maiden in a stakes race, earning a huge number.  Randwick has much bigger turns than Caulfield.


Race 2A (Randwick) 6 furlongs, 2yo colts Group 2, 9:00 PM EST

#1 CAPITALIST (estimated 4/5 at post time) is the top 3yo colt in Sydney for sure, and is right there with Extreme Choice, who won the $1,000,000 Blue Diamond at Caulfield last week.  I think this is a really exciting, undefeated and untested horse.


Race 4A (Randwick) 1 mile, 3up Fillies & Mares, Group 3, 10:10 PM EST

There is a saying in Australia:  “Back mares in form.”  In other words, stay with the mares on a hot streak.  #1 ALL CERISE (5/1 ML) has won her last four races, and because she is slightly going up in class she doesn’t have to pick up any weight off her last two wins.  She drew well in post 5 and Sydney’s best jockey, Hugh Bowman rides for top trainer Chris Waller.


Race 4B (Flemington) 13 furlongs, Open, Listed (Purse AUD $120,000), 10:30 PM EST

#1 Signoff (5/2 estimated post time odds) is just better than these.  He’s giving at least eight pounds to all of his competitors, but he’s also dropping weight with a small class drop, from 135 pounds to 132 pounds, the weight he carried two races back.  Much respect with top Melbourne trainer Darren Weir calling the shots, especially in a long distance race.


Race 5A (Randwick), Canterbury Stakes, 6.5 furlongs, Group 1, 10:50 PM

Chris Waller is not known for having many of of his stable stars fire first off the layoff (“first up”), but #2 KEMADEC (estimated odds of 5/1 at post) has had two barrier trials AND a racetrack gallop between races recently, which tells me Waller is pretty serious.  The $2.6 million dollar earner can crush these if ready.


Race 6B (Flemington) Open Listed Stakes, 5 furlongs (straight course), 11:50 PM EST

#4 Headwater (7/2 ML) last year at this time was considered the favorite for the AUD $3.5 Million Golden Slipper.  That did not go well but he has two wins at this distance and drew well in barrier 10 (closer to the stands).  He gets nine pounds in weight from a decent older mare (#1 Lumosty) who is reported to be fit for her first race off the layoff but has had a less than brilliant career.


Race 7A (Randwick) Randwick Guineas, One Mile, 12:10 AM EST Saturday

#1 Press Statement (estimated odds 3/5 at post) is one of the three best horses in Australia.  He dominates his own age group.


Race 8A (Flemington) Australian Guineas, One Mile, 12:30 AM EST Saturday Picks 5-2

#5 Xtravagant (estimated odds of 2/1 at post time) is putting up races in New Zealand that would absolutely crush this bunch.  The downside is sometimes he can have “bad days” where he sweats up and fights the rider during the warm up, leading to less energy at race time.  He will be the favorite tonight so try to get a view or two of him before the race prior to wagering.  #2 Tarzino (7/1 ML) loves Flemington and he will prosper running down Flemington’s three furlong-long stretch run in his second race off the layoff.  If the odds on Xtravagant are too short for you, Tarzino is a good second option.



Friday Night Australian Racing 2/26/16

Race 6A (Randwick) – Guy Walter Stakes (Group 2, 7 Furlongs), 11:45 PM EST, Purse AUD $175,000  Picks 3-2

This race is named in honor of recently deceased Australian trainer Guy Walter, who in many ways through his success on the racetrack and kindness to jockeys was similar to trainer Allen Jerkens in the USA.

#3 SOLICIT (3/1 ML) looks like the lone speed and has always threatened to be a Grade 1 winner, putting in a good fight against champion Winx last out.  At this Grade 2 level she has a good chance to win.  Since Solicit isn’t a great finisher, she could be vulnerable to a late challenge from quality router #2 TINTO (9/1 ML), who is in great recent form and has earned more money in her career than any other mare in this field.


Race 6B (Caulfield) – Futurity Stakes (Group 1, 7 Furlongs), 12:05 AM EST Sat, Purse AUD $500,000  Picks 3-1-8

I should mention here that the top contenders in this race are all within a length or two of each other, so do not take a short price.  I believe #3 TURN ME LOOSE (3/1 ML) is one of the best milers in the world and expect improvement second off the layoff.  #1 BOBAN (11/1 ML) reunites with jockey Glen Schofield, and together they have won some big races, and they drew well in post 2.   #8 SCISSOR KICK (16/1 ML) is a very talented horse that should be able to close into fast fractions.


Race 7A (Randwick) – Chipping Norton Stakes (Group 1, 8 Furlongs), 12:25 AM EST Sat, Purse AUD $600,000  Picks 11-3

#11 WINX (my estimate of 4/5 at post) is one of the top 3 or 4 horses (male or female) in Australia and she is the only true miler in this race.  Most of these horses want 10 furlongs or longer and are using this race to get fitter for future races.  #3 HARTNELL (9/1 ML) has a lot of talent but is very inconsistent.  His best race beats the others for second.


Race 7B (Caulfield) – Blue Diamond Stakes for open 2yo (Group 1, 6 Furlongs), 12:45 AM EST Sat, Purse AUD $1,500,000  Picks 1-10-3 

Australians love their two year old racing, and this is the top race in Melbourne for two year olds (the AUD $3,500,000 Golden Slipper, run in Sydney, is considered the greatest 2 year old race of all, similar to an American winning a Preakness Stakes or a Breeders’ Cup race).

16 horses will run in this race.  Usually an outside draw is not wanted in these big races, but IF (a big if) #1 EXTREME CHOICE (3/1 ML) can break well from post 13 and find some cover on the backstretch he just looks tons the best to me in here. #10 SAMARA DANCER (7/1 ML) is undefeated and has a nice closing style.  Her speed figures are light but she drew well in post 5 and there will be plenty of pace on.  #3 FLYING ARTIE (4/1 ML) is the long-term prospect to watch out of this group.  In his qualifying race he was somewhat green and did not let down until the last 100 yards.  He will relish today’s distance and will do even better going 7 furlongs or a mile.

Friday Night Australian Racing 2/19/2016

FRIDAY NIGHT 2/19/16 AUSTRALIAN RACING PICKS (before scratches):

5B (Rosehill) – #1 First Seal – 6.5 furlongs 11:05 PM ESTFIRST SEAL (2/1 ML) was considered a top mare before having to miss the Australian spring with a hoof problem.  By all accounts she is 100% healthy now.

6A (Flemington) – #4 Palentino (the night’s best value) – 7 furlongs 11:25 PM EST…Most observers believe PALENTINO (7/1 ML) is the most talented horse in this race and he won very well over the track and distance in November.

6B (Rosehill) – #5 Sweet Fire – 6.75 furlongs 11:45 PM ESTSWEET FIRE (3/1 ML) appears to be going the right way and is drawn well in post 2.

7A (Flemington) – 5.0 Furlongs 12:05 AM SatBLACK CAVIAR LIGHTNING STAKES#1 Chautauqua (currently 8/5) is the pick if he runs. He might scratch on race day.
If Chautauqua scratches use #5 Exosphere (who will become the even money favorite if Chautauqua scratches).

7B (Rosehill) – #1 Press Statement (the night’s most likely winner) – 7 Furlongs  12:25 AM SatPRESS STATEMENT (expect 4/5 odds at post) is probably the best miler Australia has produced in decades.  This two-time Group 1 winner is starting this preparation at 7 furlongs but he will eventually run longer distances.

Friday Night Australian Racing 2/12/16

The C. F. Orr Stakes (Race 7C at Caulfield, near Melbourne, 12:30 AM EST Saturday) is the first Group 1 race of the Fall Australian season.  18 horses are entered and it should be a great race.  Here are my picks for the Friday night the 12th (Western Hemisphere time).

Race 1A Randwick 5.5 furlongs ($125K) 8:40pm EST (7:40pm CST, 5:40 pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 2yo OPEN LR  Apprentices Cannot Claim

#1 Prized Icon (123) 7/2 ML.  Was disadvantaged 1st on the layoff when he had to run on a very wet, heavy track and never really found his stride until it was too late.  The horse that beat him that day is also considered to be very talented.  Both of his runs are good enough to win today, and I think the extra half furlong in distance will suit.


Race 1C (Caulfield) 9 furlongs (BM96) ($80K) 9:30pm EST (8:30pm CST, 6:30pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Apprentices Can Claim

#4 Tashbeeh (130) 3/1 ML.  Has turned into a win machine, winning three of its last four starts, and he is able to run at the level because a apprentice, Dylan Dunn, takes the mount.  Speed figures continue to improve and this horse knows where the line is.


Race 2C (Caulfield) 6 Furlongs KEVIN HAYES STAKES 3yo F OPEN G3 ($150K) 10:00pm EST (9:00pm CST, 7:00pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super

#2 Risque (125) 3/1 ML was a Group 1 winner in New Zealand in November and comes back in this spot for the sizzling Hayes/Dabernick/Lindsay Park operation.  She has a good 6 furlong record (2-1-1-0) and overall record (6-3-2-0).  Her best wins this.


Race 3C (Caulfield) 5.5 furlongs LADBROKES BLUE DIAMOND PREL-Fillies ($200K) 10:30pm EST (9:30pm CST, 7:30pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Pick 3 (3C, 4C, 5C) 2yo F OPEN SW G2

#3 Calliope (122) 6/1 ML looks to be a special horse and I am very willing to take the 6/1 Morning Line Odds in the key fillies prep for the AUD $1 Million Blue Diamond in two weeks time.


Race 7C (Caulfield) 7 furlongs LADBROKES C.F. ORR STAKES GROUP 1 ($500K) 12:30am EST (11:30pm CST, 9:30pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super

#7 Turn Me Loose (130) 5/1 ML Was a top three year old that won a AUD $1 Million mile race on Melbourne Cup week over older horses in very fast time.  A horse that Turn Me Loose beat that day, Lucky Hussler, came back to win a restricted AUD $948,000 stake in January.  Lucky Hussler is now the favorite but I have seen both horses run several times and Turn Me loose is the better animal.

Friday Night Australian Racing 2/5/16

GOOD WEATHER AHEAD!!  I looked at the weather reports for Melbourne and Sydney, and both cities should be dry and the turf should be a “Good 3” (U.S. Firm) at Caulfield and a “Soft 5” (U.S. Good) at Randwick.

Race 3A (Randwick):  RANVET (BM93) ($85K) Friday Feb 5th, Post Time = 9:55pm EST (8:55pm CST 6:55pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super, Pick 3 starts here (3A, 4A, 5A) 3yo+ 5 furlongs. Apprentices can claim.

Picks: 9-1-4

At the very tricky 5 furlong distance it us usually a good idea to stick with the horses with the best career record at 5 furlongs:  #9 Felines (3/1 ML), who appears to be on the improve and gets 16 pounds from the co-favorite #1 Craftiness (3/1 ML).  #4 Got The Boss (9/1 ML) is 3 for 3 at the distance and can add value in the exotics.


Race 4A (Randwick):  T’BRED NSW BREEDERS CLASSIC ($175K) Post Time = Feb 5th, 10:30pm EST (9:30pm CST, 7:30pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 4yo+ M OPEN G2, 6 Furlongs

Pick:  #4 only

This is a wacky race, as every horse in here comes from off the pace, but #4 Ive Got The Looks (5/1 ML) is pretty reliable at the 6 furlong distance (16-6-0-1) and Team Snowden can get them ready.


Race 5A (Randwick):  INGLIS CLASSIC ($250K) Post Time = Feb 5th, 11:05pm EST (10:05pm CST, 8:05pm PST) W, P, S, Ex, Qu, Tri, Super 2yo OPEN SW, 6 furlongs

Note:  This race is limited to yearlings that were purchased through the Inglis sales company, based in Sydney.  Picks:  12-2-15

#12 Soviet Secret (11/1 ML) is an obvious threat off its run at Sandown near Melbourne.  This shipper has a nice closing style and wins with slight improvement.  #2 Rafha’s Choice (8/1 ML) is very quick early and will have to be caught.  Drew very well in post 4.  #15 Maddison Avenue (18/1 ML) is working like a runner and appears to be the fastest of several debut runners.

Friday Night Australian Racing 1/29/2016

Race 1A (Flemington), BM78 (think N1x allowance), 5.5 furlongs (straight course), 8:25 pm EST.  Purse = AUD $50,000.

My picks 6 (chalk) and 9 (value)…#6 Supido (2/1 ML) won in July 2015 going down the straight leaving from post 1and won easily, keeps top Melbourne jock Craig Williams, but has not been seen since. If he is ready to go his 2015 speed figures indicate another blowout win could be possible.  It is USUALLY an advantage in these straight course sprints to draw a wide barrier (posts 9-10-11, etc), closer to the fan’s side of the course.  The outside draw lets a horse “work into a race” without having to use too much energy or having to avoid a lot of traffic.  #9 Chivari (ML 10/1) appears to be the main early speed drawn well in post 10.  This one can add a lot of value to your horizontal wagers.


Race 2A (Flemington), BM90 (think N3x allowance), 6.0 furlongs (straight course), 9:00 pm EST.  Purse = AUD $80,000.

My picks 7 (upsetter) and 4…Generally an unappealing race. #7 Not A Happy Camper (11/1 ML) can compete with this group of underachievers after drawing post 5, and #4 Zupacharged (5/2 ML) has run three fast races in a row.  Having said that, I would not be surprised if anyone won this race.


Race 1C (Doomben), Open Handicap.  5.25 furlongs (bend clockwise), 9:28 pm EST.  Purse = AUD $65,000

I am pretty excited about #2 Itz Alrite (5/1 ML).  This horse ran OK for 3rd in its first start, then gets a nice vacation and comes back with a 46.40 trial for 4.25 furlongs on Jan 19th, which is really moving.  Breeding is top notch (espcially for a Doomben-based two year old) and the apprentice that rode for the fast trial takes the mount.  Usually the Australian crowd is pretty savvy when it comes to juveniles, I expect this horse to be in the 2/1 range at post time.


Race 3B (Rosehill), Canonbury Stakes, 2yo Colts and Geldings, 5.5 furlongs 9:55 pm EST.  Purse AUD $150,000

Races 3B (colts and geldings) and 4B (fillies) are to help identify runners for the A.A.M.I. Golden Slipper, a AUD $3,500,000 Group 1 stakes at Rosehill in late March.  Australians take their two year old racing nearly as seriously as we take the Triple Crown, and the races are very competitive.

In Race 3B I feel confident in tossing #2, #3, #4.

My picks  8-1-5:  I am going to stake a shot with #8 Star of Monsoon (7/1 ML).  I love to see Danehill in an Aussie pedigree and his trial time was comparable to the other first time starters.  The fact he only got one trial tells me his connections are “quietly confident.”   #1 Tessara (4/1 ML) is fast but will have to go wire to wire from the rail and the speed figure from his one win was nice but not overpowering.  #5 Defcon won two of his three trials in good time.  I would have much preferred to see Blake Shinn ride for Team Snowden, but Brenton Avdulla is also a top rider.  #6 Guard of Honor (9/1 ML) is in good hands and #7 Pewter (9/1 ML) comes from a barn that has had success in the Golden Slipper series before.  Certainly can’t eliminate either #6 or #7.


Race 4B (Rosehill), Widden Stakes, 2yo Fillies, 5.5 furlongs 10:30 pm EST.  Purse AUD $150,000

A lot of good fillies are lined up in this race.

My picks 1-9-10:  #1 So Serene (7/2 ML) ran an insane early pace figure in a $504,000 restricted race, and lost the lead late.  Trainer Gai Waterhouse saw enough and switches to top stable Jock Tommy Berry.  Gai is “double handed” here and goes to her second jock Tim Clark on #9 Global Glamour (7/1 ML).  Usually Gai uses two trials to get her first time starters ready.  #10 Honesty Prevails (8/1 ML) is bred to be a very good horse and is training like a very good horse for the obscure Rick Worthington.  Can’t eliminate.