Weekly Review - February 20 to February 26
CRANBOURNE - 20 February 2023
SOLLOZZO was the pick of the bunch in Heat 12 on Feb 20 though, stalking South Of Houston throughout before showing a super turn of foot over the concluding stages to win. It was a super bit of work and adds onto his work on Feb 6 where he also closed superbly from last to win. This was his third jump out, so he certainly will be right to go first up this preparation where he’s resuming as a gelding, a key gear change that adds to his debut form where he was a $5 SP favourite in a race won by Grand Impact. He has talent and certainly has a maiden win in him, but certainly am mindful that he’ll need all of the 1200m and likely further. In saying that, he should be too classy for the regular mid-week country maidens (if he goes that way).
There is no ‘official’ time on the replay, but HEDGED would’ve clocked around 46s in his win in Heat 3 on Feb 20, a very slick all the way win over the 800m for this 2yo Capitalist colt who was having only his first jump out back this prep. He had a prep of 2x jump outs back in Oct/Nov when 2nd in both of those to Ouroboros (ran 2nd on debut) and Pure Paradise (ran 2nd on debut). He’ll have another jump out, so keep an eye on him.
Another jump out win for Dragon Leap and Illation’s little sister in ILLATIVE, making it four from four at the jump outs for this talented daughter of I Am Invincible. It looked like Jamie Kah was on board here as she did her best work late, extending away in the straight from the rest of the field under minimal pressure and she really can’t do much ahead of her debut. She’s not going to be any special price, but she looks to have some special talent.
Looked like the blinkers were on for STANDUPANDFIGHT and they clearly switched him on, the 3yo gelding winning Heat 8 on Feb 20 quite comfortably as he extended away and put a big gap on 3rd place, clocking the third fastest time of the morning in the process. Only his first jump out back this prep so we’ll follow him into another bit of work.
ALL SASSED UP is the obvious one from Heat 10 on Feb 20. She is race fit though having had the two starts this prep and really should be winning a jump out in this style but still a nice win nonetheless. She will be hard to beat in any maiden next start.
Keeping an eye on AIMING and the recently gelded CLOCK STRIKES from Heat 11 on Feb 20, both of whom were having their first jump outs this prep. UNLIMITED MAGIC was also super in this jump out from the back, finishing 4th.
SOUTH OF HOUSTON was rolled as a $1.50 SP favourite on debut back in June on the Ballarat synthetic tracks, but P Moloney reported her action was uncomfortable and she was immediately spelled, so potentially an issue there. She returned in Heat 12 on Feb 20 in a nice bit of work, finishing 2nd to a fast finishing SOLLOZZO and she’s one to follow into another jump out.
GLOBE won a NZ trial back on Apr 19 by 6L in 59.5s for the 1000m in an impressive bit of work that ended up in him being purchased by Roll The Dice and sent over to Aus. He stepped out over 1000m in his first Aus jump out, finishing 2nd in Heat 13 on Feb 20 around some really nice horses with the first five across the line including Vultan, Ayrton, Illation and Flash Flood. He cruised to the line in this heat too, doing it all under his own steam where he was also really good past the line, going on with it in a super bit of work. Big watch for another jump out from this 4yo gelding.
PAKENHAM - 21 February 2023
Four jump outs for four wins now for WARMOSA, split into two preps. This 3yo gelding put a big space on them in his first jump out on Feb 7 where he led before being put under pressure over the concluding stages to open up a big margin late. His win in Heat 8 on Feb 21 had a similar racing pattern here where he went forward but was given a bit of an easier time late but was still given a few reminders and responding. He can’t really do much more at the jump outs and is certainly worth keeping an eye on for his debut.
BENDIGO - 21 February 2023
FIELDS OF FRANCE is a 6-start maiden that has had four jump outs and three race starts this prep, so she certainly has the benefit of some fitness but with the blinkers on in Heat 2 on Feb 21, she put in quite a nice bit of work as she went forward along the rail to win quite comfortably over the 800m. She’s never placed in those 6x career starts so there isn’t much expectation but hoping we can have a small bet at a big price fourth up with those blinkers going on.
Keeping a close eye on VANBRUGH CASTLE who may be resuming gelded now after a let up. He closed nicely in a Feb 2 jump out into 3rd place and backed that up with a nice win in Heat 7 on Feb 21 over the 1000m. He’s had the five starts this prep and has been solid in all the runs, beaten only 1.4L, 1.8L and 1.2L in his last three. He’s looks like a nice moving gelding that has a maiden win in him over 1400m/1600m, especially if he’s been gelded so that’s the key gear change we’re looking for.
*on a side note, not sure why we can’t see when horses are gelded… it’s pretty ordinary but anyway.
MORNINGTON (BALNARRING) - 22 February 2023
We mentioned FUN WITH FLAGS a few times following several jump outs as a 2yo but she didn’t make it to the races in either of those preps. She returned as a 3yo in an official trial on Feb 6 where she finished 3rd behind Sisterhood (since 2nd MDN) having settled at the rear of the field that saw her close nicely through traffic. There was no traffic in Heat 5 on Feb 22 as she went straight to the front to lead and fought off the late challenge of Muzukashii to win. The time was slow, but this was a nice 1000m bit of work and will top her off nicely for her debut if she does finally get to the track.
KIKO is a maiden but is also Group 3 placed and last start was a 1L 5th in a Group 3 at Flemington behind Ruthless Dame, Nanagui and Mumbai Jewel, which is very good form for a maiden. This 3yo Capitlist filly returned in an official trial on Feb 6 where she was given a very easy time by Craig Williams, sitting out the back along the rail throughout and just cruising to the line. She sat off the speed in Heat 7 on Feb 22 over the 1000m as she took over at the top of the bend before being challenged by a whipped Eye Of The Eagle, and liked how she responded to that challenge and kicked back to win under only some slight urgings. She can go well in a maiden first up.
ANGEL OF BOOM looked good at the jump outs again, winning Heat 10 on Feb 22 over the 750m in the fastest time of the morning and the second fastest time overall, so she was flying here. Thought she was only fair first up for the new Dylan Dunn stable at Pakenham, finishing a distant 7th but the form has certainly stacked up. The winner was Nunthorpe (won a CL1 next start) with Shaime in 2nd (won MDN next start), 3rd and 4th haven’t ran since but Lievore was 5th (since 1st in MDN & BM64) and Reo was 6th (since 1st in MDN & CL1). This was only 750m so would generally y prefer to see another bit of work so we’ll keep an eye on where she pops up next, race or jump out.
STAWELL - 23 February 2023
Super bit of work from ALBANIAN THUNDER in Heat 10 on Feb 23. Unlike her first jump out on Feb 9 where she was ridden with no urgency and just cruised out the back, she was allowed to go forward and find the front where she then kicked away around the bend to open up a huge margin, bolting in over the 800m in the second fastest time of the morning, only slower than English Riviera. She started $21 SP on debut and ran 6th of 6 runners on a Heavy(9) track at Cranbourne, so we might get a nice price this prep as she looks to be in really nice order ahead of her return.
Quite keen on TRUST ACCOUNT second up from a form perspective and think his mid-prep jump out in Heat 12 on Feb 23 was just a tick over to have him really ready to go. We were on Imelda Mayhem at his first up run and admittedly he should’ve won as he went back to a clear and then had to weave his way through the field, powering home in the meetings 6th fastest L400m to just miss - no doubt if he settles closer he wins and knocks us off. Expecting him to be firing second up with this jump out a nice bit of work and think he’ll be hard to beat in most country maidens.
LUNAR MODULE was given the typical Archie Alexander set up, a quiet first jump out being on Feb 9 before a more serious second jump out in Heat 3 on Feb 23 where the 3yo filly where she went forward to lead before being put under pressure late where she responded and held off the challenging Messignadi, a 70-rated 4yo mare. The time was about average for the day but liked her work here.
As you’d expect from a filly of this calibre, XTRAVAGANT STAR bolted in Heat 4 on Feb 23 over the 1000m in the fastest time of the morning and the fourth fastest overall time we have recorded.
ROLLING IN IT has been only fair in her two runs this prep but she was given a 5-week freshen up and a jump out in Heat 6 on Feb 23 with the blinkers going on and they looked to do the job, the 3yo filly leading throughout and bolting in. She looked to be travelling really nicely throughout before being put under pressure in the straight, responding under hands and heels in a slick bit of work. She clocked nice time for the morning with those blinkers on so expecting a much improved performance third up.
SURFY PETE finished 6L last on debut on a Heavy(10) track at Warracknabeal and as a result was given a break and gelded. His return trial on Jan 11 was terrible where he was given another freshen up, so wonder if there was an issue there as his work in Feb 3 (when cruising out the back) and especially his work in Heat 8 on Feb 23 were slick. He drops out to the back, which was no different here as he cruised out the back before getting the gaps in the straight and closing really nicely to finish a close 2nd, making up good ground late. His racing pattern is a bit of a worry, as is that first trial but his work here was nice enough to warrant following first up.
COSMIC ENIGMA doesn’t have a great racing pattern based on his debut run where he went to a clear last and powered home to just miss. He did similar in Heat 13 on Feb 23, settling to the back and powering to the line out wide in a nice bit of work. This mid-prep jump out following a 5-week freshen up will have him ready to go second up.
STRETTO is now with his third stable and his win in Heat 14 on Feb 23 was ridiculous, deadset trotting in. He’s not getting any younger, now a 6yo but out of his 19-starts, only his most recent 4x were as a gelding so it’ll be interesting to see how he goes now. This jump out suggests he’ll go alright…
Keeping a close eye on PAPAL WARS from Heat 15 on Feb 23 who just cruised and was really good past the line. VIVA AMERICANA is a 4-start maiden but also looked okay out wide cruising, but they did clock slow time so need to see another jump out for both of these runners.
FLEMINGTON - 24 February 2023
WATCHLIST Lovely return first jump out for PARIS AFFAIR, winning Heat 10 on Feb 25 comfortably ahead of a race fit horse. He’s still a maiden having run 2nd in all three career starts, so we’ll watch for him into a second jump out.
RANDWICK - 20 February 2023
HAWKESBURY - 21 February 2023
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