Please see below for our #BlackBook runner comments for Sunday, 31 October 2021. The runner's highlighted are our #BlackBook runners (the key runners of focus), while those included in the 'other' section of each race are additional runner's that have jumped out well enough to be worth noting. Our figures and benchmark ratings are from PuntingForm.
MORNINGTON - Race 3
#9 UNFLINCHING (7) - A & S Freedman
Lovely bit of work from the 3yo colt UNFLINCHING, closing well to finish a very close 2nd in Heat 16 on Oct 13. A son of I Am Invincible who was a $280k purchase from the MM Gold Coast Yearling Sale, he looked to be a nice mover once he got some clear room in the straight having over-raced for most of the first part of the jump out as he ran in restricted room. Only his first jump out, but we’re happy to follow him - expecting another jump out prior to debuting this prep.
Another nice jump out from UNFLINCHING, backing up his Oct 13 run with a win in Heat 7 on Oct 20. He left the gates well to get to the front with ease but got the head up a bit as the jockey took a strong hold. He was headed in the lead but cornered well and responded to some very slight urgings from the jockey to get back in front and hold on by a length or so in nice time for the day. As mentioned previously, he is a $280k I Am Invincible colt and looks to have some talent. The slight query is on him over-racing at the start, but think he’ll have enough talent to overcome this.
MORNINGTON - Race 5
#11 SUGAR POP (11) - C Jennings
Loved the way SUGAR POP went through the motions in Heat 7 on Oct 10, travelling hard held throughout in behind the speed before getting a gap late as they crossed the line and then cruising to the front alongside Pitchanun past the line. The 3yo filly was a $90k MM purchase and had a previous jump out on Sep 17 when last, only thing is the other horses in this heat were Age Of Chivalry, So Is Bon, Yulong Command and Vilana… a pretty good jump out field for a maiden galloper. Caroline Jennings has had a few go well since moving to Flemington, expect this filly to be similar. Keen to follow.
#1 DREAM WITNESS has always shown some talent at the jump outs, taking out Heat 3 on Oct 18 in the fastest 800m time of morning and doing so comfortably after a solid 3rd on Oct 4. She was poor on debut but did start $5.50 that day and improved nicely second up when 3rd at Sale. Given time, she looks to have returned in nice order ahead of her preparation as a 3yo now.
MORNINGTON - Race 7
#13 STARLIGHT SCOPE has returned in nice order, winning a Oct 13 impressively and backing that up with a hard held 2nd in Heat 2 on Oct 27. She jumped clearly the best and was an easy 1L in front immediately after jumping but was heavily restrained to drop back to the field, leading throughout and only just going down on the line to a hard ridden Fast And Fruious. Slick bit of work, she can make a winning return the the races.
Mornington, Race 3 - UNFLINCHING
VIKING REBEL will appreciate getting onto a dry track after debuting at Moe on a Heavy8. He was disappointing that day but did start $2.90 so there was some market expectation. DOLLAR CHASER has all but won in his three runs this preparation with the tongue tie going on here.
Loved UNFLINCHING's jump outs and think he's the one to beat on debut but we don't want to be getting involved at the ~$2.30 currently available. Mornington can be a bit of a grave yard for favourites that get back, which we expect him to do. He might just be too good for this lot though.
If he gets out to $3+, then look to have 1.00 units or so on him for a low confidence bet. Monitor.
Mornington, Race 4 - BANDERAS
Huge run from this 3yo gelding first up, missing the kick and then having no luck throughout yet finished within 4L of the winner and within 1.3L of 2nd... he ran the meetings fastest L800m and L600m as well as the meetings second fastest L400m and fourth fastest L200m, all without having clear galloping room. That run is also the best last start benchmark rating and the best peak benchmark rating coming into this. The worry is the form around him, there hasn't been much come from the race.
He does step up from 1000m to 1200m, which is a big tick and we think that if he jumps with them and gets clear room in the straight, he'll be in the finish. He was smashed in early markets, opening $26 on TAB.
Our $8.50 in early markets comes to $7.48 post deductions, so we've locked in a nice price with him at sub-$6 this morning. Favourite looks to go alright but think we have a nice bet at a nice price.
Mornington, Race 5 - SUGAR POP (+ DREAM WITNESS)
With SKIPPING GIRL and JUICE BOX running at Cranbourne on Friday plus a few other scratchings, we're left with a relatively small field here and only 2-place dividends. We're still keen to be with SUGAR POP at a nice price.
DREAM WITNESS has jumped out well and we'd expect her to go forward with Craig Newitt riding. It's very hard to trust the stable from their jump outs though as they consistently win jump outs and then don't perform race day... happy to let her go around and see her bring it race day.
We really liked SUGAR POP's latest jump out and she held her own against a lot more experienced horses. Caroline Jennings has been going at a recent strike rate of 20% and you can generally trust her horses if they jump out well at Flemington. She was a nice $16 in early markets, which comes down after deductions but still think there is some value in the $9 to $9.50 available this morning. Happy to be with her on a low/medium confidence bet - think she can run well.
Mornington, Race 7 - STARLIGHT SCOPE
Resumes at the home track and jump outs have been super. Ratings wise she can be competitive here but the 1200m looks to be short of her best, breaking the maiden over 1515m however she's always been very competitive and only once finished outside the top 4 in six career runs.
Happy to let her go around today with no bets.
As a rule of thumb, our new 'units' system will be based on the following staking plan:
0.25 units is a speculation ('spec') bet at a bigger price.
0.50 units to 1.00 units is a low confidence bet.
1.00 units to 2.00 units is a medium confidence bet.
2.50 units to 3.00 units is a high confidence bet.
5.00 units is the maximum bet and is a 'special', or a very high confidence bet.
Total outlay is 1.50 units.
Mornington, Race 4:
BANDERAS ~ 0.50 units WIN @ $8.50 (TAB) - now $7.48 post deductions.
Mornington, Race 5:
SUGAR POP ~ 1.00 units WIN @ $16.00 (TopSport) - now $10.88 post deductions.
Overall: -6.76 units (since 21 Oct, 2021).
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