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Caulfield – February 4 – Preview and Bets Bets

Sat, Feb 4, 9:36am by Senior Writer

As the autumn approaches, we are starting to see some of the better horses return to the track.  Melbourne’s Saturday meeting is at Caulfield and presents us with a challenge of sorting the current form from the new form.

We are in that transition zone from strong off-season summer racing, to the peak autumn period, so it can be a tricky time to find winners because we have the established form of those who have been running around clashing with the new form of those returning to the track.

WATCH: Our Preview of Saturday at Caulfield

There is a general rule I use at this time of year, stick with established form and fitness.

So my two best selections for this week fort that mould.

My Best comes up in Race 3, No.2, Chance To Dance. Chance To Dance is a quality galloper owned by Lloyd Williams who has been really consistent in his three runs this campaign. He’s been beaten narrowly his past couple and is building towards a win.

Interesting that he steps up to 2400m here. He ran fifth in a Group 1 race in Sydney over this distance 18 months ago and this race is clearly nowhere near as strong. I’d expect him to settle close from his inside barrier and prove very hard for his rivals to run down.

In terms of odds, he’s around $3 here which is good value for a horse which has such a clear class edge on his rivals.

My best value was going to be Race 7 No.7 Gratwick but he has been scratched on race morning. So we;ve gone for Race 8. No.3 Miss Promiscuity. She was a little flat last campaign but backing her to bounce back here at her preferred track, where she has a great record. This look a very winnable race for her and she’s around $8.


Here’s my detailed preview for the rest of the meeting.

Race 1 Ian Miller Hcp – 1600m  

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 2. Zasorceress ($2.50)

2nd: 1. Miss It And A Bit ($8)

3rd: 4. Hot Ruby ($5)

4th: 5. My Obsession ($6.50)

Summary: A fairly even mares race, but think Zasorceress is going places, which can’t be said for many of her rivals. She was brilliant second-up at the Valley and should improve here, despite staying at the same distance. The Tasmanian mare, Miss It And A Bit, was unlucky last start and was good over the final 200m when eventually clear. She has fitness on her side. Hot Ruby drops back in distance, but was very good last time in similar company. My Obsession was beaten home by Zasorceress last time.

Betting Confidence: Very confident that Zasorceress is the best horse in the race, but also confident that Miss It And A Bit is the good value.

Race 2 Robert Hunter Hcp – 2000m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 2. Dodging Bullets ($4.80)

2nd: 3. Hursley ($2.50)

3rd: 4. Jileks Spur ($67)

4th: 1. Cadillac Mountain ($11)

Summary: Two clear top picks in this in my opinion. Dodging Bullets gets the nod because he finally broke through last time after a run of placings. He could now put a few wins together and has a fitness edge on his main rival Hursley, who has had two runs back and was excellent last time at Moonee Valley. He does like Caulfield this guy and is in for a big campaign. Jileks Spur is ludicrous odds for a horse who is a four-time winner over 2000m. Is with a new stable and can show up second-up. Cadillac Mountain can win this on his day, but it’s hard to know what form he is in. He was unlucky two back, but flat last time. Worth including in multiples.

Betting Confidence: This is a race in two, but confident that Dodging Bullets is the best value.

Race 3 Mal Seccull Hcp  – 2400m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 2. Chance To Dance ($3)

2nd: 1. Big Memory ($7)

3rd: 3. Lord Van Percy ($5)

4th: 7. Hardern ($7.50)

Summary: As mentioned earlier, Chance To Dance appeals greatly here. He has a class edge on these and should be getting to peak fitness. Big Memory is the other class runner in this race, but he hasn’t won in a long time. Has run four placings from eight starts second up. Lord Van Percy is a two-time 2400m winner who can improve here off a freshen-up, while if you ignore Harden’s last run in Sydney, he looks a threat.

Betting Confidence: Extremely confident that Chance To Dance settles close to the speed and wins here. Bet of the Day.

Race 4 Inglis Premier – 1200m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 1. Jukebox ($2.30)

2nd: 2. Perast ($3.70)

3rd: 10. Alice Island ($10)

4th: 9. Falling Waters ($34)

Summary: Intriguing two-year-old event, but feel Jukebox can make it two wins from as many starts after an impressive win at Geelong last time. With natural improvement, he’ll take stopping here. Perast won by a big margin up north last time and his trainer Paul Perry has a reputation for bringing horses to Victoria to win city races. Alice Island looked professional when runner-up in a recent jumpout and debuts here for a good two-year-old stable. Falling Waters is nice odds having had a couple of reasonable runs this time in.

Betting Confidence: Jukebox only needs to improve on his first-up win to take this one out.

Race 5 Ladbrokes Chaiman’s Stakes – 1000m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. Spoils ($5)

2nd: 5. Formality ($2.90)

3rd: 1. Aspect ($5)

4th: 6. Pageantry ($15)

Summary: A few speedy two-year-olds here and it’s worth keeping an eye on the market. Spoils ran well last time and arguably went too soon, only to be swamped late. Change of jockey is interesting, and it wouldn’t surprise to see him press forward. Formality destroyed them first-up at Werribee, but the drop back from 1100m is a concern for me. Aspect was an excellent winner in a Spring feature two-year-old race, but may find a couple of these a bit slick first-up while Pageantry is a nice filly coming off a good debut provincial win.

Betting Confidence: Not a great deal of confidence in this race. Think Spoils is the best value however.

Race 6 John Moule Hcp – 1100m  

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. Danuki ($4.60)

2nd: 2. Glenrowan Prince ($17)

3rd: 1. Kievann ($13)

4th: 5. Chiavari ($12)

Summary: Tough race here but Danuki should lead them up from barrier two and prove hard for these to catch. He was just gunned down last time and this race looks entirely suitable.  Glenrowan Prince has covered more ground than the man he is named after Ned Kelly this campaign and was just tipped out at Gawler last time. Is a two-time winner over the 1100m and is nice odds. Kievann never runs a bad race and will be thereabouts again, while Chiavari is similarly consistence.

Betting Confidence: Not overly confident in betting on this one, but there is value among the second, third and fourth selections.

Race 7 Ladbrokes Manfred Stakes – 1200m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 6. Derryn ($4.80)

2nd: 1. Morton’s Fork ($5.50)

3rd: 2. Hey Doc ($6)

4th: 11. Into Orbit ($6)

Summary:  Derryn‘s got a heap of talent and has won and been placed third in his two Caulfield runs. Morton’s Fork has ability and is one to watch first-up, as is Hey Doc, but both may need it longer than 1200m. Into Orbit is unbeaten in two starts and clearly has a big future.

Betting Confidence: With Gratwick out, I’m happy to be with Derryn.

Race 8  WJ Adams Stakes – 1000m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. Miss Promiscuity ($8)

2nd: 6. Beau Rada ($9)

3rd: 8. Lady Esprit ($4.60)

4th: 1. Faatinah ($2.70)

Summary: Plenty of speedy types here but have opted for Miss Promiscuity. She was a little bit disappointing last campaign but is back at her favourite course, where she has won four from 11. She is always competitive fresh and is nice odds in this. Beau Rada is a 1000m specialist who will appreciate an inside barrier and getting around Caulfield for just the third time in his career. He is always better around a bend. Lady Esprit is an in-form mare who steps up to this class off two good Moonee Valley wins. Can measure-up to these as can Faatinah, who ran an excellent second in a strong 1000m G2 at this track in October. Has never been beaten first-up,

Betting Confidence: These sprints can be tough races to bet in, with tempo crucial, But Miss Promiscuity is good value and will be coming over the top of them late.

Race 9 Darren Gauci Farewell Hcp – 1400m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 5. Duke of Brunswick ($2.60)

2nd: 4. Smart Dart ($7)

3rd: 1. Charlie Boy ($9)

4th: 3. Longeron ($11)

Summary: Good race to finish off and have plenty of belief that Duke Of Brunswick can top the day off as a winner. His first two runs this campaign have been very good and he will improve significantly into this off a shorter back-up. He is two from four third-up and never runs a bad race at Caulfield. He is the class in the race. There is nothing wrong with Smart Dart’s form, with the only concern being his first trip over the 1400m. Looks as though it shouldn’t be too much of a worry. Charlie Boy’s run on the Gold Coast was reasonable and he can improve greatly second-up for his new stable. The fairytale would see Darren Gauci win his final race as a jockey on Longeron. There will be a point in the straight where Gauch will have him leading them, but it’s hard to see them holding out these horses first-up. Longeron will be competitive however.

Betting Confidence: Big fan of Duke of Brunswick here. He should have too much class for these.

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