Rail Position: True Entire Circuit
Dual Track Meeting: N
Track Type: Turf
Track Condition: Good 4
Track: We have to be pretty confident that the track will play well. All of the Melbourne metro tracks are at the moment. Winds dying down on Saturday also assist. At this stage there is some chance of a few showers but the track drains so well and I don’t think they will play a big part.
Viridine a very nice horse who trialled really well before a forgive at Moonee Valley in a Group 1 when found them a bit slippery. Closed well last time and ready to rock now at 1200m. Zoutori’s recent trial was only fair. He comes out of the right race but does he want further? I don’t want to take even money after that trial. Malibu Style a decent roughie who loves Flemington. Tyzone a fair price also.
Flit has the class and I think 2000m will not pose an issue. I wouldn’t be lining up to back her in the Oaks just yet, though. Song Brocade building but will be better on Oaks day – would like to see her finish off strongly again here. She looks to be a runner who will relish the step in trip next Thursday. Miami Bound and Vegas Jewel next best behind Flit for Saturday, though.
A classic race on Derby Day that is now third on the program instead of the opener! Dalasan brings the strongest form lines and the market has respected in every start this prep. Maps well. Groundswell bounced from a maiden to compete in Group 2 and Group 1 races very quickly. On the way up and the obvious danger. Brandenburgh to round out the trifecta.
Melbourne Cup spot on the line as we know. Downdraft will appreciate Flemington, but most of the Europeans do. Expect he settles handy from the low draw. Youngstar is proving to be a tease but no doubt set to peak at the pointy end of her prep. Hush Writer settles close to speed with Haky. Sound and The Chosen One bring good Caulfield Cup form to the table here.
Cracking race and always a highlight on Derby Day. Pohutukawa gets run of the race midfield and Bowman on is a big plus. Set for the race. Savatiano is suspect to high pressure and will paddle late. Baccarat Baby should stick on well. Melody Belle is class but has a sticky map – she is top pick on ratings but not the best value in the early play. Happy to be taking on the likes of Amphitrite, Aristia and Fidelia who are all get back run on types who need plenty to go right.
I actually like the fact that Bivouac had a glorified barrier trial last Friday night for this. Many come into it on the freshen trying to extend preps and as we have seen in the past in this race, some simply don’t come up on the day. Remember some of these three year olds have been in work since July. Exceedance is the main danger but I have the gap between them longer than the market does. Brooklyn Hustle a forgotten horse who has been set for this with a nice turn of foot. Think she will be big odds and a good multiple filler. Microphone is slightly underdone and needs to lift to win this. Cosmic Force strong win last start but rating still below his wet track win last prep suggests he wants his shoe in the ground further to run a peak. Would be surprised if the winner comes from beyond that bunch.
Hasn’t the market taken an odd stance against Shadow Hero who to my eye has done just about everything right and brings the right form. Sure, slight knock on running the trip strong but many of them do. Thought Of That I would have taken to the Mackinnon instead but can concede looks to have the right run on speed in what looks a moderate tempo at best. Soul Patch good at Moonee Valley but still a few lengths off the toppy. Wanted to back Warning but don’t like the map. Will need a D Oliver Masterclass.
Verdict: Shadow Hero
Cracking race – gee we seem to have a lot of mile races in the Spring though. Plenty of the same just go around and around. Nights Watch better at a mile than he is 2000m and maps sweet here. Obviously could have finished closer to Real Impact in the Toorak and the latter draws the car park here after a sweet run at Caulfield. Best Of Days is flying, Cascadian wide draw may be a positive while So Si Bon gets back to Flemington after excuses last start. The clock loved Chief Ironside at Moonee Valley. Really deep race with lots of chances and opinions that will float around the market.
Verdict: Exotics including Nights Watch, Chief Ironside, So Si Bon and Best Of Days
Neat little finish to round out the day here. Manicure rates strongly as does Pippie on the freshen. Prefer Humma Humma around a bend. Tofane won stylishly last start but you are paying a premium to follow her. Resin double figure odds and trending toward peak but prefer with sting out. Speaking of step runs, Prophet’s Thumb looks ready for one of those while Miss Iano will get last crack out wide – a blowout hope who will SP big odds.
Verdict: Prophet’s Thumb and Miss Iano EW