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Caulfield Saturday – Easter Cup Meeting Preview and Best Bets

Fri, Apr 14, 9:08am by Senior Writer

Easter is one of the busiest times of the racing season, and this weekend it’s even busier than ever before.

We’ve got Group 1 racing at Randwick in Sydney, a big Easter Cup meeting at Caulfield, the famous Oakbank carnival in SA and for the first time in Australia, Good Friday racing, with Ascot in Perth hosting a historic meeting.

I’ll stick with the Caulfield meeting, with our Sydney man having already previewed the big Randwick meeting.

Our best on a busy day is Race 10. No.3 French Emotion. Yep. I’m making you wait until Race 10.

French Emotion was beaten in a Group 2 race last time out and comes back significantly in class to this open mile race. Looking at her best form, and remembering that she was runner up in the Group 1 Myer Classic in November last year, she should be winning this one.

She’s around the $3.80 mark and I think that’s a good price for a mare of her considerable class.

Our best value comes up in Race 5 No.2 Selenia.

This filly is as tough as they come and never, ever runs a bad race. Two back, she ran an extraordinary race when third in a group race at Moonee Valley, sitting three or four deep, yet still finishing third beaten less than half a length. She gets a wide barrier here, which is why she’s such a good price at $11. But this is a very suitable race. Her class of race to win and I think she can do that at double figure odds.

For what it’s worth, in terms of Sydney’s Group 1s, the Champagne Stakes is a race in two in my opinion. The odds-on favourite Invader was very good winning The Sires, but I’m going for Whispered Secret here at odds of around $4.80. Whispered Secret won the Fernhill last week and looks ready for this.
WATCH: Our Preview of this weekend’s racing

In the All Aged, I’m kind of torn between the top two in the market. Le Romain was brilliant until a below par run in the Doncaster last time, while English was run down by Chautauqua in that extraordinary TJ Smith and won this race last year of a similarly good run. I’ll stick with Le Romain, because he is such a good horse, and you can forgive good horses one bad run. He’s at around the $3.80 mark.

Here’s our race by race preview of Caulfield

Race 1 Jack Elliott Hcp – 1600m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. Lady Selkirk ($7)

2nd: 8. Quilate ($5.50)

3rd: 5. Ma Jones ($4.80)

4th: 2. Catch A Fire ($9)

Summary: Fairly even fillies and mares race, but think Lady Selkirk will appreciate a drop in class back to this benchmark race. She talented and progressive and has the measure of most of these. Quilate was a good winner two back and looked last time like the step up to 1600m would help. Ma Jones had a soft win last time and you get the feeling she may get on a bit of a roll as these Weir horses often do. Catch a Fire gets barrier one for the fourth consecutive start. Think she’ll like getting back to Caulfield.

Race 2 Bill Collins Hcp  – 1100m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 9. Redcore ($9)

2nd: 7. Under Oath ($6.50)

3rd: 6. Premio Momento ($8)

4th: 8. John’s Revenge ($41)

Summary: A lot of unknowns about this race. Of the raced brigade, Redcore‘s form reads pretty strong. He’s been in races against quality horses and he doesn’t face anything like that quality of opposition here. Always wary of Smerdon first starters and they have given Under Oath three trials, so he’ll be ready for the track. Premio Momento cost himself with bad manners and bad luck in his first start. You’d fancy him to take improvement into this. John’s Revenge was just behind him that day and can figure here at big odds.

Race 3 Bert Bryant Hcp – 1100m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 11. Star Stealer ($8.50)

2nd: 4. Secret Blend ($16)

3rd: 15. Grey Street ($11)

4th: 13. Sir Mask ($19)

Summary: This race is a dead set raffle. Huge field over 1100m, it’s hard to know exactly how it will play out. Star Stealer is building towards a win and was very good late on at Bendigo last time. Is drawn wide, but that may suit his get back style. Secret Blend was excellent first-up and has a strong second up record having won once and been placed four times. Grey Street is a good mare who has been freshened up for this. That should see her produce a good run here. 

Race 4 Spicer Thoroughbreds Hcp – 1400m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 1. Throssell ($6)

2nd: 2. Another Coldie ($4.20)

3rd: 11. Tenappy Ladies ($11)

4th: 5. So Poysed ($9)

Summary: Another difficult race. Throssell got a confidence boosting win coming back off a Group 1 race last time and should be up to winning this given his best form. Another Coldie is shooting for a hat-trick after a pair of wins in Adelaide and looks a good fit for this type of race. Tenappy Ladies broke through for a win two back and fought on well last time after a tough run. He’s in good form and can figure here. So Poysed is aslo in great form at the moment and is another at nice odds.

Race 5 Geoff Murphy Hcp – 1100m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 2. Selenia ($11)

2nd: 8. Overstep ($8)

3rd: 7. Moonlover ($9)

4th: 3. Merriest ($10)

Summary: Even fillies race, but Selenia stands out because she thoroughly deserves a win in this type of race. She always runs well and I’m not sure that the wide barrier will worry her. Overstep has some good form around her and has been really consistent. If she takes improvement from her good third last time, she’s right up to winning this. Moonlover smashed them first-up and looks set for a big campaign. Merriest is another consistent filly who will be in the finish again you’d think.

Race 6 Robert Taranto Handicap – 2425m  

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. Hans Holbein ($1.90)

2nd: 1. Boom Time ($5.50)

3rd: 8. Try Four ($13)

4th: 5. De Little Engine ($12)

Summary: Hans Holbein was our best last week but the weather put paid to our chances of seeing him. He heads to this race instead and looks well placed off his ultra impressive Bendigo win. Boom Time drops back in class and is the obvious threat. Try Four gets out to 2400m, a distance which he has won and been placed at in two previous starts. De Little Engine has had a good campaign without winning and will be not far away from them in this.

Race 7 Dillon Constructions Hcp – 1200m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 12. Lake Como ($6)

2nd: 3. Sebring Sun ($6)

3rd: 11. Miss Gunpowder ($4)

4th: 7. Rock ‘n’ Gold ($14)

Summary: Another really tough race, but you couldn’t help but be impressed by the nature of Lake Como’s first-up win. She’s never won second-up, but looks to have come back in terrific order. Sebring Sun won well at Bendigo and can again in this race over her favourite distance of 1200m. Miss Gunpowder returns for a new stable and given her best form is better than most of these must be respected. Rock ‘n’ Gold’s had a great campaign and can figure in the fight at really nice odds.

Race 8 Victoria Hcp – 1400m

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 7. Hellova Street ($3)

2nd: 6. Charmed Harmony ($19)

3rd: 3. Hooked ($6.50)

4th: 8. Entirely Platinum ($15)

Summary: Bloody hard race again, but Hellova Street just keeps on winning and can’t see why he won’t do it again from the front. He’ll likely have company up there from Charmed Harmony who loves the Caulfield 1400m and looks terrific value at $19. Hooked comes off a Group 1 run into this and based on his first-up effort before that, can figure here. Kaniana may be silly odds when you consider that she’s won third-up before and won a Group 3 race in the spring.

Race 9 – Easter Cup – 2000m   

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 16. O’Lonera ($17)

2nd: 8. Dark Eyes ($10)

3rd: 3. Extra Zero ($31)

4th: 13. Tarquin ($9)

Summary: Yep, you guessed it, tough race.  But think I’ve found one here in O’Lonera. Is fourth-up here after some decent lead-in runs and his record when fourth-up or later in his campaign reads seven starts for three wins, including one over the 2000m here at this track. He’s ready to improve on the limit weight. Dark Eyes drops back to the 2000m here, having won the Canberra Cup over that distance two back. That’s pretty good form for this. Zasorceress has been consistent and was narrowly beaten twice before her failure in Sydney. She can bounce back, Extra Zero may be 10, but gee he’s racing well and is never far away around here. Let’s not forget he was second in an Australian Cup over this distance,

Race 10 Bravo Greg Miles Hcp – 1600m  

Tips: (Odds: Sportsbet)

1st: 3. French Emotion ($3.80)

2nd: 1. Great Esteem ($8.50)

3rd: 7. Lord Durante ($21)

4th: 16. Plot The Course ($11)

Summary: It’s hard when your best of the day comes up in the last race of a 10-race card. But it’ll be worth the wait when French Emotion salutes here. She is very well placed into this race and is such a high quality mare, you can’t help but have confidence that she will win this. Great Esteem will give her something to chase and gets to his favourite course and distance. Lord Durante’s run at Bendigo was pretty good and think he’s not far away from figuring in a race like this. Plot The Course has great third-up stats and won a similar race to this six months ago over the Caulfield 1600m.

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