Fri, Sep 21, 9:18am by Staff Writer
Melbourne racing is at Caulfield this Saturday where the rail is out nine-metres and the track set to be in the good range.
The Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) is the feature race of the day with a capacity field of 15 plus the four emergencies accepted for the race.
The Godolphin team have a strong hand in the race, two under James Cummings and one under Charlie Appleby. Home of the Brave ($4.50) and Osborne Bulls ($6) – under Cummings – are both off a last start win although Osborne Bulls is off a minor setback having been scratched a fortnight ago. Before that he was good when beating Land of Plenty ($6) in the Listed Regal Roller (1200m) here at Caulfield with eight wins from 11 starts overall. Home of the Brave has had the two starts in Australia for a close second to Voodoo Lad down the Flemington straight before a strong win in the G3 Theo Marks (1300m) at Rosehill beating D’Argento and Trapeze Artist. Jungle Cat ($10) has his first run in Australia for the UK-based Appleby and the seven-year-old is off three straight wins over in the UAE.
Land of Plenty has won since his second to Osborne Bulls and in doing so, beat stable mate Peaceful State ($10) who was also an eye-catcher flashing home late.
Mr Sneaky ($16) was runner-up in this race last year and he’s third-up after a last start fourth to Land of Plenty and Peaceful State only beaten a length at Moonee Valley.
Oregon’s Day ($15) has been fifth at both her runs this prep but only beaten 1.8L and 0.7L, and trainer Mick Price was upbeat about her chances in a tough race.
Showtime ($14) has had the two runs this prep and both have been over the 1400m at Caulfield. First-up resulted in a G1 PB Lawrence win before finishing last – beaten 4.4L – in the G1 Memsie after that.
Dollar for Dollar ($18) was a G3 Spring Stakes (1200m) winner in SA when fresh and he’s fourth-up here but drawn awkwardly in barrier 16. Team Hayes/Dabernig line up with Fastnet Tempest ($23) who was a listed winner over this track and distance in the autumn, and Sovereign Nation ($27) who’s first-up and went into a break off a second to Land of Plenty, while Miss Gunpowder ($35) is the third of the Hayes/Dabernig three.
The G3 Naturalism (2000m) sees another full field line up after as much as 31 nominated for the race, in what’s an exemption for the winner into the G1 Caulfield Cup (2400m).
Darren Weir has three in the final field – and the first two emergencies – Night’s Watch ($3.50) opening as favourite. He’s two for two at Caulfield including one over this distance back in January. Megablast ($27) is having his first start in Victoria after a successful winter campaign which saw him take out the Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) on a heavy-8 while Red Cardinal ($46) is a lightly raced 7YO who’s yet to fire in his three Australian starts. Yogi ($13) – who has had some support at odds for the Melbourne Cup – is second emergency while Sopressa ($17) is the first emergency.
Folkswood ($6) is back in Melbourne for Charlie Appleby after a successful spring last year. Divine Unicorn ($14) has won five of his ten career starts but drawn the widest alley here. Hiyaam ($18) was a G1 Vinery winner over this distance – beating Unforgotten – in 3YO fillies grade so she should appreciate the step up in distance while trainer Mick Price thinks stable mate Mighty Boss ($34) is also looking for the longer trip.
Our Venice Beach ($7.50) is having his second start in Australia, his first was at Moonee Valley when beaten by Trap for Fools over 2040m. Rising Red ($15) is a consistent horse with three wins and eight minors from 15 career starts. Sir Charles Road ($13) was a G3 winner in the Sydney autumn before a third in the G1 Sydney Cup (3200m) after that. Odeon ($10) is racing well but his last win was back in November last year.
Suggested Bet: From a speed map point of view Shoko ($6, race 4, number 14) looks hard to hold out. With the rail out nine-metres and if there’s a favouring to leaders, the five-year-old can go it at her own pace and hopefully stick on. Tulip is the clear class runner but she needs a win, so happy to go with Shoko who looks to get plenty of favours on the map.
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