Fri, Dec 20, 6:12pm by Daryl Curnow
Where: Flemington, Melbourne.
When: Saturday, December 21. First race starts at 12:50pm
Wager with: IASbet.com and get a free $100 bonus bet
Gracious Prospect stays in the same grade as his last start but this field is considerably easier. The Tale Of The Cat colt fought strongly for second behind Countersnip and that form will be good for this. He’s trained on the track by David Hayes and he’s a consistent type with two wins and seven placings from 15 starts. He opened at $3.80 but has drifted to $4.40.
Star Beauty has come in two points to $4.50 from an opening quote of $6.50 which means a good run is expected. The Matt Laurie-trained filly won on debut at Mornington and then took on a tough $100,000 field at Ballarat where she finished fourth. Her next run for fourth at Caulfield had merit, finishing only a length from the winner and she will only have to carry 53kg thanks to Jye McNeil’s claim.
Peter Snowden usually isn’t far away from an early win and he saddles up Adirondack who has won his last two race day appearances. The Lonhro gelding was only fair on debut but was well backed at his next start which he won narrowly. He followed that up with another win at Kilmore by 1.75 lengths, however he has to carry 60kg for this.
Recommended bet: Gracious Prospect to win ($4.40) at IASbet.com
Rescue Mission has gone off the boil after being a top prospect early in his career, but he’s still a good chance to win here. The Anthony Freedman-trained gelding is trained on the track in which he hasn’t placed in two starts. The son of Darci Brahma last ran in the Doveton Stakes where he finished sixth and that form will hold him in good stead for this.
The favourite is Esprit De Bullet who last ran in Adelaide when coming fifth in a listed race. The 11-time race winner has had three starts this preparation for one win and he meets an average field here. He’s now eight years old which is a concern but he is in good form and he shouldn’t be discounted.
Lady Of Harrods has an awful form line but her last four runs have come in top company and this is a massive step down in class. The Russell Cameron-trained mare is getting better this campaign and she’s about ready to show her best. She would be better suited over more ground but she has a chance to place here.
Recommended bet: Rescue Mission to win ($5.50) at IASbet.com
Blazing Dragon was a good thing beat last time out at Moonee Valley when the five-year-old was held up at a vital stage and only got clear running late. The B & J Cummings-trained mare is a consistent galloper and the Cummings family knows how to train stayers. This race sets up perfectly for him and he’s been bet in to a $3.80 favourite.
He’snotthemessiah has been well backed in his last four starts which have resulted in two wins and a placing. The Michael Kent-trained gelding has run well in the Victorian provincial meetings and makes a decent step up in class here. He has been steady in the market at $4.40 so expect a good run.
Instrumentalist makes the trip over from Sydney and receives the hefty weight of 60kg. Damien Oliver rides which is a positive and the five-year-old is always around the mark. The Waller-trained runner ran a close third last time out at Randwick and won well the start before. He has drifted out from his opening quote but is still a great chance.
Recommended bet: Blazing Dragon to win ($3.80) at IASbet.com
We think there is value for the top weighted Pillar Of Creation as the outside draw is favoured down the Flemington straight. The four-year-old is having his second run this campaign and he’s had a win and two placings in a fresh state. He opened at $10 but has moved in to $8.50 already and we expect more money to come for him.
Oltre Finito has won three from four and his last start second came only by a nose margin. The Iffraaj gelding looked to have that race won but the inside horse fought back on the line so deny his unbeaten run. The Mark Kavanagh-trained runner has plenty of potential, enough to warrant a start in what is a tough Saturday field.
Spending is a speedy mare from the Danny O’Brien stable that is fresh up after being spelled since June. Her last run was unlucky after receiving multiple checks throughout the run and it will pay to forgive that effort. Her previous two efforts for second behind She Can Skate are better guides and she should resume well here.
Recommended bet: Pillar Of Creation each way ($8.50/$2.50) at IASbet.com
Sistine Demon is proving to be a very good horse to follow as the Excites gelding has now won his last three races. The four-year-old is now making the step up in distance and his previous efforts suggests that won’t be a problem. The Andrew Noblet-trained runner has won at Flemington and has drawn the ace barrier of 1. He opened at $3 but has since been bet into $2.50.
Chile Express has drawn wide but receives a 3kg claim from Jye McNeil and he ran super for second last time out on this track. The Thorn Park gelding also won at Flemington two starts backs in a higher graded race. He has shown nothing to say he won’t be a winning chance here and $5.50 is a good price.
Defiant Angel is a lightly raced four-year-old who has won twice but both wins came in lower grades. He fought on well for second last time out at Caulfield and he’s down in weight from that run by 3kg.
Recommended bet: Sistine Demon to win ($2.50) at IASbet.com
Anlon opened at $4.20 and has been steadily backed into $3.70. The Darren Weir-trained gelding put the writing on the wall last time out when flying home for third at Caulfield. He has drawn well and is carrying 3kg less than in his last start so he looks a good chance.
Mister John arrives in Melbourne via Tasmania and the six-race winner has a decent record when he travels. The Strada gelding came over and had two starts in Victoria; the first at Flemington when finishing a handy seventh in a listed event, followed by a fourth at Caulfield in which Pillar Of Creation won. He won back in Hobart last time out and looks set for this.
Recommended bet: Anlon/Mister John quinella.
Index Linked travels from Sydney for Chris Waller and the big Flemington straight should play right in to his hands. The reason the Dansili gelding doesn’t win more often is because the tighter Sydney tracks don’t suit but he’ll get plenty of room to move here.
Angelology is a good former New Zealand gelding for the Patrick Payne stable and he’ll be ready to strike after a fresh up second placing. He’s won twice second-up and once over the distance. He’s at a nice each way quote of $8.50.
Recommended bet: Index Linked to win ($2.90) at IASbet.com
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