What a day at Rosehill. Three G1s on offer as we see some of the best sprinters, milers and 3yos on show. If this is the forerunner to The Championships, then they are going to be amazing. Hard to see them actually topping racing like this.
The weather is a key factor. Rain started earlier in the week and there hasn’t been much opportunity for the track to dry. A heavy surface is more than likely. Don’t forget they did race there last week which has an impact.
Besides NSW, there is feature racing in the west as the 2YO’s do battle in the Group 2 Karrakatta Plate.
Rosehill Race 7 – George Ryder Stakes Group 1 (1500m)
The $1m Group 1 George Ryder and what a fantastic field assembled. It is a shame this will be run on a considerably rain affected surface but we have to play with the cards we are dealt. Some very interesting recent history in this race. Amazingly, no female has won this race since Heat of the Moment in 1986. This has to be due to the Queen Of The Turf being run on the same day, over the same distance for many years and all the good mares such as More Joyous, Typhoon Tracy opted for that. The last three winners have all come through the Canterbury Stakes and six of the 15 acceptances in this event come into this via that race.
The track could impact the speed map here. 7 FAT AL has drawn barrier 15 and has the ability to push forward. Expecting 8 LIDARI, 14 EL ROCA and 9 TERRAVISTA all to be thereabouts from wide draws.
Of those coming out of the Canterbury Stakes, it is hard to go past 12 RED TRACER. She had no luck at the start in that race but picked herself up and ran home very well for third. Unfortunately for racing and the Autumn Carnival, the two that beat her have succumbed to injury/illness. Hardly a better horse in the wet than 12 RED TRACER and she appears to be going as well as ever. Not overly concerned by barrier 13, especially on a wet track and expecting her to be hard to beat.
11 TRES BLUE has not had a start since failing in the Melbourne Cup but from what we have seen in his trials, he is absolutely flying. We have blackbooked him on two occasions. Extremely disappointed he is first up in this event on a wet track as we feel he is a better horse on top of the ground and would give any race a shake at the moment if he got conditions to suit. He is going too well to leave out of any exotics at a big price but definitely concerned about the wet track.
Another that we have followed since trialling well has been 9 TERRAVISTA, and the 4YO hasn’t let us down winning two on end in fine style. No doubting this horse is flying and he owes us nothing. Winner of six from eight but unseen on wet ground. Always a query but if he handles it, expect another forward showing.
1 BOBAN returned to form with an impressive win in the Group 1 Chipping Norton last start. Not entirely convinced the horses he beat on that occasion are going that well and he may have been flattered. At his best he is a star of the Australian Turf but still not convinced. Also, not sold on him on wet tracks and at the price we are happy to risk.
Loved the run of 4 SACRED FALLS first up in the Canterbury in what was arguably the worst part of the track. He won the Doncaster on a Heavy 10 last year and relished wet tracks. If he has taken any improvement from that run he looks a major player here.
A very intriguing runner here is the international 2 GORDON LORD BYRON. The 6YO is super consistent and has plenty of class being a dual Group 1 winner. From all reports he has settled into Australia well and he definitely handles all conditions. First up on a bog track may be a bit of an ask but not willing to leave him out of wider exotics.
6 SPEEDINESS was somewhat disappointing last start in the Canterbury but an improved performance definitely wouldn’t surprise here. The tongue tie goes on for the first time and expecting him to get through the wet. Drawn ideally, he looks one at odds that could be thereabouts.
Expecting improvement from 13 STREAMA also. It is not like her to miss the placings at two consecutive starts, especially to kick off her preparation but she had excuses last time and gets a few things in her favour today. She is a class animal and handles wet.
The 3YOs are intriguing runners. Not convinced 14 EL ROCA handles wet tracks but he is a very good horse. 15 EUROZONE doesn’t have that same problem, winning three from three on the slow. His run in the Randwick Guineas was good and he can run well. Not sure barrier 1 suits.
A fantastic and a very intriguing race. The rain affected surface certainly makes it challenging. Definitely feel that 12 RED TRACER and 4 SACRED FALLS are the ones to beat. Could back both of these or rove them in trifectas and first fours with 6 SPEEDINESS, 13 STREAMA, 9 TERRAVISTA (guesswork on wet), 11 TRES BLUE. The two 3YO’s 14 EL ROCA and 15 EUROZONE have to be respected. Risking 1 BOBAN to an extent due to price but hard to leave him out of the exotics.
Ascot Race 7 – 2yo Group 2 Karrakatta Plate (1200m)
The Karrakatta Plate is WA’s richest two-year-old race, a Group 2 event over the 1200m worth $500,000. In recent years, the race has been dominated by the fillies who have won five of the last six outings since 2008. The only colt to win in the last six years was LUKE’S LUCK who nosed out another filly that day, KEEPER QUIET. It is interesting to note that although the colt won that day, the next nine across the line were all fillies, further supporting their recent dominance in the race. Another key stat is that apart from last year when MS FUNOVITS came over from Victoria to claim the race, no horse has won their lead up race and gone on to win the Karrakatta since 2006.
An all WA line up is assembled here with seven colts and nine fillies to face the starter in what looks a very even Karrakatta Plate.
Let’s start with the fillies and the key chances look to be the current two favourites, 8 CADENZA and 9 FULD’S BET and roughie 17 VITALISM.
9 FULD’S BET and 8 CADENZA fought out the Gimcrack Stakes last start and are deservedly the two favourites today. 9 FULD’S BET will try and get across to sit on the pace from barrier 13 while 8 CADENZA will settle midfield from her draw. 8 CADENZA will be trying to defy history and become the first horse to win the Magic Millions – Karrakatta Plate double and she looks ideally placed to do this. 9 FULD’S BET cannot be faulted to date and provided she doesn’t get used up too early, will stick on for a long way. The blinkers going on is a key gear change.
17 VITALISM has gained a run as the emergency and although her form looks only average, she has a huge chance in this. On the basis she can settle closer than she has in her past two starts and utilise the good barrier, she can sprint well provided she gets the splits at the right time.
Although the fillies are currently heading the market, the colts look a much more even bunch and a few look key players. 1 JEZPARK, 2 ROMMEL, 3 HOBART JONES, 4 STAR GLITTER and 5 DJANGO look to be the leading contenders.
Paul Harvey should take 5 DJANGO straight to the front from gate 1 or at worst sit third on the fence behind the leaders. He has done nothing wrong winning two from two and provided he hasn’t trained off looks a big chance. However, it is tough to try and lead all the way in a Karrakatta and no horse has done it in the past decade.
Perth Stakes winner 1 JEZPARK has won his last two starts when sitting close to the pace. To us, he hasn’t been overly impressive in either of them and has just been, more or less, in the right place at the right time. Having said that, all you can do is win and from barrier 5 he should get into a lovely spot just behind the leaders. This is his fifth run in this preparation which is a long time to stay up for a two-year-old.
2 ROMMEL was absolutely huge in the Magic Millions when first up and absolutely flying home to get beaten by the narrowest of margins. He then came out last start and did what he had to in a small field when leading all the way. From a bad barrier he will have to most likely drift back again, but he is adaptable and has a ton of ability. If things fall his way he will be hard to hold out.
3 HOBART JONES has been building for this race ever since winning his first two career starts back in December. He has run on well at his two starts this campaign and the 1200m looks right up his alley. He would have appreciated drawing a bit wider and Brown will be hoping to not get cluttered up back in the field.
4 STAR GLITTER got horrible luck first up when stuck three wide the entire trip on the speed. Hopefully he takes a sit just off the pace today as he does possess a nice turn of foot. Provided he has taken no ill effects from the tough run last time and isn’t flat, he can play a part.
A cracking edition of the Karrakatta and it looks a very even contest. Recent history suggests we should angle towards the fillies and the market also suggests this. A horse at decent odds is 17 VITALISM who looks set to run a huge race providing she settles closer in running. 8 CADENZA looks the one to beat but will need to make history in doing so, while 4 STAR GLITTER and 3 HOBART JONES look to be the leading colts.
Ascot Race 1 – CALIFORNIA VALLEY (each way if available)
Ascot Race 7 – Small bets on VITALISM and STAR GLITTER at big odds
Rosehill Race 7 – SACRED FALLS (each way), RED TRACER and exotics.