In what looks set to be one of the best metro meets of the Victorian spring, the wind will finally not be playing the role it has in recent Caulfield meetings. West South-Westerly wind gusts up to 12km/h are expected which isn’t really strong enough to be wrecking too much havoc for runners. That will merely be a light breeze across them during stages of the day and maybe slightly behind them down the back straight. Doubt it favours anyway
There has been plenty of rain at Caulfield with a little over 5mL landing Wednesday night and Thursday morning, as well as around another 5mL Thursday night. The track probably won’t be irrigated due to the rain, so I’d expect we start a Soft5. There’s a chance of showers during the day so if they hit, we could potentially get into that Soft6 range. If not, it there's a chance we could be on a Good4 at some point later in the meeting.
The rail is now back in the true position after being out in the 6m position on September 26th, which was on a soft surface. During that meeting, most of the winners got off the fence. There’s a chance that early on the inside 6m, being on the fresh ground could an advantage, which will assist those on-pace. In typical Caulfield manner though, I imagine if there’s any sort of moisture that’ll start to chop out and they’ll begin to get wider as the day goes on. Given it is Melbourne, it’s hard to predict the rain.
I’m planning for a very fair track. Best horse with the best map, which will be race-pace dependant. Best advice would be to adapt to what you see on the day.
RACE 2 - THOROUGHBRED CLUB STAKES
LETZBEGLAM will lead, BELLA NIPOTINA her outside. Don’t think CAPRICCIO or TARCOOLA DIVA have the early speed to contest the lead so they will be the next pair. HIGHLY DISCREET I think will push up from barrier 3 to not let SWATS THAT in; John Allen will need to make the decision to sit 3-wide or go get cover behind her. MUNTASEERA has no gate speed so will be 2nd last and CAVE HILL has even less, will be last.
LETZBEGLAM will appreciate being back around a bend and should run them along at an even tempo at least. Speedy BELLA NIPOTINA will keep her honest otherwise and CAPRICCIO could press forward if she doesn’t go quickly. LETZBEGLAM will want to lead so will have to be going at a fair gallop.
Small field with a bit of pace on most the runners map pretty well. CAPRICCIO maps really well, as do the leaders. HIGHLY DISCREET gets a great sit and SWATS THAT gets a cart into the race from her. TARCOOLA DIVA box-seating also looks to get a kind run.
MUNTASEERA gets to a pretty average spot 2 pairs behind leader and on the fence. Not many get up from there. CAVE HILL will also get well back and it may be a bridge too far.
I’m happy to be against MUNTASEERA. I don’t think she gets the 1200m and spotting some of these a start whilst searching for luck in run just isn’t a winning recipe. BELLA NIPOTINA, coming out of a G1 fail, where 3 and 4-wide on a v-fast speed could be a bit busted up, however probably ready for 1200m now and this is a massive drop in class. If LETZBEGLAM can run along, she will be mighty hard to run down and has put up some serious numbers as a two-year-old. Good enough to turn the tables on SWATS THAT and is definitely better suited back at Caulfield around a bend. HIGHLY DISCREET ran a real nice race against the pattern last start running a better L600 than SWATS that and was far better through the line she maps in front of SWATS THAT and could turn the tables. SWATS THAT was 3-wide no cover last start, however I’m convinced that was the better ground and that she had the run of the race. It really depends how John Allen rides her and with that uncertainty, accompanied by the potential of the track getting into that Soft6 range, not sure I can be with her.
Would need a price of $2.70 or better to be with SWATS THAT I believe, but she’s clearly the horse to beat. Merit to backing any of BELLA NIPOTINA/LETZBEGLAM/HIGHLY DISCREET.
RACE 4 - KENO NORTHWOOD PLUME STAKES
There are likely 3 speed influencers in this race; XILONG, FELICIA and HOW WOMANTIC. FELICIA will press forward, as she won’t want to be 3-wide, XILONG will hold the fence and lead too. HOW WOMANTIC I’d say will want to make FELICA work a little, but will drop back into the one-one spot. PARMIE and IN GOOD TIME should settle on pace. I think that intent will be shown on ALGADON MISS as if they don’t, I’m not sure that she can swoop better than some of the others in this race. Her and LYRE should slot into the running line, although there’s a slight chance they could be cast 3-wide (Not a massive disadvantage out of the chute at Caulfield). EMBRACE ME and TOO GOOD TOO HARD shouldn’t be worse than midfield from their draws. BROADWAYANDFORTH comes next and the rest will have to go back from their horror draws.
I can see this being run at a good tempo; each horse will get their chance. Thinking definitely faster than even, possibly closer to fast.
In a tricky race to map, I’d have to say that PARMIE is the map horse. Box seats from gate 1 and if she brings her best and gets some luck, she’s right in it. ALGADON MISS and LYRE if they slot in are also map horses, however aren’t disadvantaged if they’re 3-wide. HOW WOMANTIC too I think gets a fantastic run. XILONG and FELICIA aren’t at any sort of disadvantage out front either.
Not the worst race to be a backmarker I don’t think with predicting this to be a pretty fast run race. However, I don’t want to be rails in run. Think that IN GOOD TIME, TOO GOOD TOO HARD and BROADWAYANDFORTH will need a heap of luck and are low percentage plays. MY PENDANT too probably not the greatest play.
Personally here, I think the smart play is with XILONG and LYRE. XILONG is the class horse, trialled really well and can keep going off a fast tempo. LYRE was completely unsuited last start; didn’t begin well, in a race which was run very slowly and the sit and sprint nature of it just wasn’t in her favour. She can still produce a big sprint absorbing a fast tempo, which I think she gets, and so of the get back horses I think she’s the main one that can win. The likes of FIESTA, EXHILARATES, BONS ABROAD and MY PENDANT will spot her too much of a start. The two main dangers to these two are FELICIA and HOW WOMANTIC. FELICIA will have to ride a fast tempo, which she hasn’t done well in the past. If she chooses not to go forward, she’ll be 3-wid without cover and I don’t like that for her. HOW WOMANTIC for me is a massive query on a Soft5/6, however is rock hard fit now and will see out the 1200m far better than she did first up. PARMIE is the smokie of the field, probably not as classy but could go well and run a cheeky race.
Happy to side with XILONG and LYRE here.
RACE 5 - MCCAFE SCHILLACI STAKES
HEY DOC will jump better than he did at The Valley the other night, think he leads or co-leads with SPLINTEX. JUNGLE EDGE (If runs) will settle 2 back the fence and, with luck, DIAMOND EFFORT to his outside. ORDER OF COMMAND will drift back from gate 2 and I expect OCTANE to settle midfield from gate 5. DIRTY WORK is an interesting horse on the map, as he has the propensity to go forward. However, the wide gate and Pike on I’d say he will be worse than midfield. BOLD STAR and WILLIAM THOMAS your obvious backmarkers.
HEY DOC will run them along at a better than even tempo here as I’d say he will have to do a little work to get there and he loves rolling along. Most horses, I’d say, will get their chances.
There are several advantaged horses here. HEY DOC will get the lead as he likes it out front with his free rolling tempo. SPLINTEX gets a lovely run in behind him. The main two I feel are the most advantaged are DIAMOND EFFORT and OCTANE - they would be my map horses. With ALFA ORO out of the race, JUNGLE EDGE gets in a decent spot if the rain comes for him.
ORDER OF COMMAND will be in a world of hurt on the fence in my opinion, and will struggle to get out. I also think BOLD STAR and WILLIAM THOMAS will be too far off them to get close as well. DIRTY WORK is a neutral runner.
This is a very tough race, but my money will be with OCTANE. He jumped with them last start but they didn’t want to go quick and he got bustled back to near last after settling 5th. This time around, with a little more pace on, he can settle midfield and not over-race. To me, and on the figures, he’s got the best turn of foot in this race; first up over 1000m (unsuitable distance) his last 200m was his best sectional of the race, then last start he ran super searching for gaps that never appeared. Kah back on is a huge tick and I think he’s a serious horse who is easily up to these. HEY DOC returned really well and I’d say out to 1100m is more suitable than the 1100, however it is still short of what is probably his best distance range right now and likely peaks for the Manikato. DIAMOND EFFORT is also flying and the track being in the Soft range puts her even more in this than she would be on a dry track. On the chance she doesn’t slot in and ends up 3-wide though, not sure I can be on her. The two from Sydney, SPLINTEX and DIRTY work, come out of the same prep for this where DIRTY WORK has shown SPLINTEX up on both occasions. I think that will happen again, just depends if DIRTY WORK can overrun the other quality horses, from where he is likely going to get to – I’m not sure. Not sure anything else can win.
I think OCTANE at very close to a double figure price is just a bet. Would not talk you out of DIAMOND EFFORT who definitely has every chance. Will also respect HEY DOC and DIRTY WORK who would not shock me winning either.
RACE 7 - SCHWEPPES THOUSAND GUINEAS
VANGELIC and NIGHT RAID from their wide barriers should come across and be the leaders. PERSONAL I can see doing similar from her gate, but will snag back into the box seat. ODEUM likely is just off-pace with THERMOSPHERE. HUNGRY HEART settles midfield with YOSEMITE her inside, AIDENSFIELD and ROCK MY WAND pair off behind them. MOZZIE MONSTER, INSTANT CELEBRITY, AGREEABLE and ECUMENICAL I’d say are the likely backmarkers. ECUMENICAL the only one I’d say who may press forward and be front third of the field.
Given the speed that VANGELIC ran at last start, on the back up, I suggest Prebble will employ similar tactics this time – perhaps not as fast. I predict a reasonably fast run race here (Even - Fast).
There are a few horses who map really with the likely pace here. LOVE SENSATION, ODEUM map super and with a bit of luck so does THERMOSPHERE. Back midfield HUNGRY HEART and AIDENSFIELD get lovely runs when they decide to peel out. Those are the five-map horses to me.
Not sure that NIGHT RAID has the capacity to endure a fast tempo out to 1600m, she’s seems a risk. YOSEMITE and ROCK MY WAND on the inside will need gaps to appear as will INSTANT CELEBRITY and ECUMENICAL – seems a recipe for disaster for them. MOZZIE MONSTER and AGREEABLE giving a fair start as well so I don’t think I can be with them.
As previously mentioned, very tough! ODEUM has every possible from the map and can absorb the fast tempo and kick off it. HUNGRY HEART trails her into the race which probably gives her the best run in the race. On the quick back-up out of a fast run 1600m, there’s a chance she could be a bit flat and at her short quote not sure I can be with her with a heap of confidence. Is the best horse in the race though and would hate to lose on her. If it gets wet enough then I could easily entertain AIDENSFIELD who has show she loves a wet track and flies on them. Has proven to go just as good on drier so definite winning chance. LOVE SENSATION and THERMOSPHERE not hopeless either. Do tend to like the differing form-line of THERMOSPHERE tied in with a couple of good runs in Sydney around HUNGRY HEART. If INSTANT CELEBRITY is just that good, she could weave her way to a victory also.
ODEUM is my main tip, with potential savers around HUNGRY HEART, AIDENSFIELD and THERMOSPHERE. Could potentially save on LOVE SENSATION too. Just speaks to how tough this race is. I won't be betting but I found it interesting to analyse.
RACE 8 - NEDS CAULFIELD GUINEAS
Toughest race of the day. POLAND / CROSS HAVEN / TAGALOA I’d say go forward. AMISH BOY / GRANDSLAM / CAPTAIN CORELLI / LUNAR FOX likely on pace. I don’t think NATIONAL CHOICE will be forward, probably midfield on the fence inside of CAMBOURNE who finds a great spot midfield. They’re followed by the quartet of OLE KIRK / MO’UNGA / AYSAR / MAMARAGAN who will round them up. There’s enough tempo in this early for it to be an even tempo, they won’t go slow. I think once they work their order out it will definitely slow up a little before they wind it up with 600-800m to go.
CROSSHAVEN and TAGALOA get an easy enough lead, tick. POLAND gets a lovely sit. AMISH BOY box seats which will give him great chance. CAPTAIN CORELLI, GRANDSLAM and CAMBOURNE certainly close enough and in the running-line are suited by the map.
LUNAR FOX, NATIONAL CHOICE, OLE KIRK and MAMARAGAN look to be buried on the inside and probably will need a heap of luck to win – probably a disadvantage. AYSAR probably too far back and will be behind MO’UNGA could be a freak and with clear air is every chance.
To me the main winning chance is TAGALOA in the lead. TAGALOA is coming off a solid performance in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke. That form-line easily good enough here. Can kick off an easy enough lead. He’s got CROSSHAVEN covered in my opinion who is also flying but may be a tick off him. POLAND at odds is underrated by the market and has put up solid numbers. Out to 1600m only suits him more and isn’t without an E/W hope. CAMBOURNE is the X-factor and I think from the map will get into the race at the right time. His L600m was phenomenal last start and was making ground late – did so without a lot of luck. If CAMBOURNE is X-factor then MO’UNGA is XXX-factor and could just be a freak. Don’t want to be losing on him.
Main bet on TAGALOA with potential savers around POLAND, MO’UNGA and CAMBOURNE would probably be my play. Not too keen to be playing in it though and will let it go through to the keeper.
OTHER RACE COMMENTS
RACE 1 - MAGIC MILLIONS DEBUTANT STAKES
The boys already did a fantastic preview, check it out here. But here's a couple of comments from me! FAKE LOVE, to me, jumped out the best, and gives off Loving Gaby vibes. TATSURO showed some real promise I thought and could be a rough one at odds. HARDWARE LANE trialled nicely in Sydney and was doing it on raw ability – have to respect Mitch Beer runners in the city, they just run well.
RACE 3 - THE BIG SCREEN COMPANY WEEKEND HUSSLER
WINDSTORM should just win this race. Far better horse than all of these and is racing fantastically at the moment. If he doesn’t get to the suggested betting price (see strategy below) then I could recommend a tiny bet E/W on DUCA VALENTINOIS who brings form around Epsom runner-up FUNSTAR. However, I won’t be playing unless WINDSTORM hits that quote.
RACE 6 - NEDS STAKES
Pretty simple here, I think RUSSIAN CAMELOT only gets better but no point backing him on the nose. HUMIDOR is his main danger. Play some exotics or even chuck him in some multi’s if you must bet on him.
RACE 9 - LEXUS TOORAK HANDICAP
Tough race to crack. BUFFALO RIVER could just go to the front and be far too good. Form around MORISSY is good enough. JUNIPAL is flying as well. Both suited by the wet track and I think the winner comes from one of them. Couldn’t back either with the other in the race and they’re too short to back both in my opinion. Tough race though and could see most horses winning outside of 7/8/9/10/12/14.
RACE 10 - NEDS HERBERT POWER STAKES
ORDEROFTHEGARTER looks like a good thing here. Should lead them up and be hard to run down. ZEBROWSKI though brings A-Grade Sydney form and isn’t without a hope and his best form is on wetter tracks; he’s right in this if we get some rain on the day. If it does stay wet then POLLY GREY comes right into it but probably doesn’t have the class of the other two.
Race 3: WINDSTORM (5 units W – BEST BET) - 1st by 0.75L at a $1.75 / $1.18 Betfair SP.
Race 4: LYRE (3 units W) - 4th by 1.15L at a $5.11 / $1.91 Betfair SP.
Race 4: XILONG (2 units W) - 5th by 3.9L at a $7.68 / $2.66 Betfair SP.
Race 5: OCTANE (3 units W) - 3rd by 0.3L at a $15.69 / $1.82 Betfair SP.
Total Unit Outlay = 13.00 units
Total Units Returned = 8.75 units
Unit Loss at Betfair SP = 4.25 units
Betting Strategy has a max bet of 5 units. 'W' = Win bet, 'P' = Place bet, 'E/W' = Each-Way bet.
Analysis by @Max_Wills_.
Speed Maps provided using Punting Form.