Mon, Jan 28, 11:53am by Kevin Pitstock
We took a look through the seven race program at Mornington on Monday, January 28
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R1: National Jockey Trust T20 Cricket Match Plate (1021m)
A field of maiden gallopers to start the day with only three having been to the races before. We are leaning towards No 3. Quarterflash, the unraced three-year-old Hussonet gelding from the Robert Smerdon stables. Having been readied for his first-up assignment, the gelding has had four barrier trials including a good win last time out. The hardest to beat could come from the “veteran” of the field in No 1. Bouledogue, who is having his fourth start for trainer Robbie Laing. Disappointing in his last two at harder grade, the Bernardini gelding drops back in class and should prove capable at this level. Going with another of the raced brigade in third with No 4. Agent Of Mercy, who finished fourth on debut while putting in No 9. We Own An Angel for the top four based on a debut second place before a spell.
R2: Centrebet Mornington Cup 13 Feb Plate (1532m)
Putting the Tony Noonan-trained No 6. Chit Chat on top here due to his consistency of late and his last start third. The Matthew Cooper-trained No 1. Callaway Kid will be improved from his first up third placing at Pakenham, while putting in the Tony Vasil-trained No 4. Casa Spirit for third here off the back of a last start second place at Cranbourne over 1600m. Rounding out the top four is No 2. Preside from the Eric Musgrove yard who finished a good second last time out at Sale after a break. Ideally is suited to a lot further but after his good first up run good be odds.
R3: Orbit Fitness Handicap (2450m)
The third race on the seven race program sees the Peter Moody-trained No 6. Tambo on top after a last start half length victory over 2400m. By Zabeel, this gelding appreciates a trip and will only be further suited here. Putting in No 3. Safari for second off the back of a win last time out. While only over 1600m, his racing pattern indicates the 2450m will not pose any issues and he was a recent scratching being saved up for this. No 1. Gold Viper from the Adam Bodey yard has been in very good form, winning his last two, albeit in much weaker grade, while No 9. Prinsen, a last start third over 2000m looks capable of improving.
R4: Melbourne International Truck Centre Handicap (1127m)
The John Salanitri-trained No 1. Invincible Jess has been in good recent form, winning two of her three starts since a break and looks a leading chance here again. Putting in the David Brideoake and David Feek-trained pair of No 4. Ominous Quality and No 3. Kasmaher for second and third respectively based on recent form, while No 7. Keltic Delight is another who should be included on recent form, having won two of her last three starts and finishing a narrow runner up in the other.
R5: Browns Sawdust &Shavings Handicap (1532m)
A very open race with many leading chance from top stables, with the Michael Kent-trained No 4. Hula Lua coming out on top. A winner of two from four last campaign, the lightly raced four-year-old Spartacus mare has a great chance first up after competing in Queensland at the end of her last campaign. Putting in the Colin & Cindy Alderson-trained No 5. Sapphire Princess for second as the mare has been racing in harder grade, and while this is an open race, she does have claims, as does No 8. Bonnie Nuit, a consistent mare from the stable of Cranbourne trainer Barry Fox, Putting in No 3. Danyme to round out the top four. This Singspiel mare has a good record at the rack having a win a and a third place from three attempts.
R6: Brett Scott Racing/Mitavite Summer Challenge Heat 6 (1532m)
Going with the sponsor here and selecting No 3. Verification from the Brett Scott yard on top. A last start second at Sale, this gelding has been having some mixed form of late, but should be ready to produce the goods here. No 2. Testaguy a last start winner at Mornington by two-and-three-quarter lengths should be the hardest to beat from the Nathan McPherson yard. Putting in the ex-Darley owned galloper No 1. Tallat here for third at what should be a good price after his disappointing first up run. Is a half-brother to a Derby winner, so will still need further, but should be capable here with the apprentice claim. Putting in No 9. Mariner from the Colin and Cindy Alderson stable who had two reps, but scratched one. A winner first up this campaign over 1527m, the Volksraad gelding does have a win at this track and distance.
R7: Counting House Restaurant Handicap (1270m)
A hard race to end the program, but putting the Michael Kent-trained No 6. Rushworth on top. As the logical race favourite, the four-year-old Churchill Downs gelding has a win and four places from six starts, and after a last start second over 1200m, should be ready for the slightly longer trip here. With Glen Boss booked to ride, No 8. Beneficary from the Robbie Lain stable should be read to run a very good race. A last start fourth off two encouraging wins, the Elvstroem gelding should be a leading contender to topple the race favourite. No 1. Who Stole My Sock from the Robbie Griffiths stable has been in great form this campaign; winning two and finishing second and third in the other two from four starts. Does have an apprentice claim here of 3kg, which makes the Howbaddouwantit gelding have a very winnable weight! Putting in thte Mark Riley-trained No 5. Jolie Blonde to round out the top four. Owned by Gerry Harvey, this lightly raced four-year-old mare has a good record and can easily play a part in the finish.
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