Belmont Saturday Perth Racing Preview BY JOSH RODDER Track is a Dead (4) as of Friday lunchtime with a penetrometer of 6.7 (Perth measurements are different from those in the Eastern States, because of a different sand based track); 29.5 mls of rain has fallen for the week. The rail moves back in to the three-metre position. It was at nine metres last Saturday, and 15 metres with a cutaway rail midweek. According to track manager Geoff Murphy, an upgrade is expected by race time on Saturday. Belmont is a fantastic track that gives every horse its chance. FORECAST: SATURDAY MIN 4 MAX 17
Race 1 – Westspeed 2YO Plate [Open] 1000m 2:10pm [EST] Plenty of speed and high pressure is expected. Hard Candy (8) has the speed to hold the lead, with Classic Smile (7) and Master Tenby (2) to be prominent early. Look for horses with cover just behind the leaders; they will really run along at the end. There is not a lot between New Image (6) and Frenchman (1) who clashed on May 27 at this track/distance. There was a twolength difference on the line and the 1kg weight turnaround favours Frenchman. New Image box-seated, got out at the right time and pulled away for a soft win. Meanwhile Frenchman was doing it tough, three wide without cover, then outside the leaders; he never gave up the chase. Both horses get the charmed run behind the leaders and they will fight out the finish. I believe New Image may have just a touch more upside at this stage of her career and campaign. She is a superbly bred More Than Ready filly, out of a W.A. Oaks winner and nothing went right in her debut 1200m defeat. Leviathan breeders/owners Bob and Sandra Peters have had a wonderful start to the Belmont season, with Broadway Belle, Star Encounter, Golden Act, Strait Laced and New Image all winning impressively. They
bred New Image as well. Their strong winning run can continue. Frenchman was impressive first-up with blinkers and game last time in defeat. He will look the winner at some stage. I was really taken by the Lark Hill trial win of Classic Smile and her debut sixth of 14 up the Pinjarra straight 1000m on March 15 was not bad, behind the promising winner Thorn Dancer. Expecting a cheeky first-up run. I was keen on Hard Candy before she was scratched due to her bad behaviour pre-race and behind the barriers. She was subsequently sent back to trials and I was not as impressed as I was with her early trials, although she did win the trial. Has she gone over the top? Whatever, she is a high speed filly and will make her presence felt. Klasy Spy (4) and Freexaar (3) will be suited by the fast speed and I expect them to be working to the line well.
THE VERDICT Back (6) New Image and save on (1) Frenchman for a profitable start to the day – the quinella bet looks enticing. (7) Classic Smile is the value fresh. (8) Hard Candy has the ability, while (4) Klasy Spy and (3) Freexaar can sneak a place at odds.
Race 2 – Westspeed 3YO Hcp [3YO] [61+] 1000m 2:49pm [EST] They will really scoot along here, with very few of these going to be able to compete with the early speed of Most Secretive (3). Moonlight Drive (2) and Gi ft Of Fury (6) are sure to be prominent from wide gates. Majestic Ruby (11), Windmills (12) and Biscay Lass (8) can be handy. Two very promising three-year-olds clash here and both are vastly different types. Most Secretive and Golden Heart (1) are quality young sprinters with scope to keep improving throughout this campaign. Most Secretive will lead and give Golden Heart something to catch. I’m expecting Golden Heart to settle midfield/back with cover and come with a rush late. Over 1000 metres I’m going to lean slightly to Most Secretive, who will have a nice break on Golden Heart in running – the question is can Golden Heart run a fast enough final sectional to reel her in? Most Secretive’s speed was used to advantage first-up by Paul King, who
allowed her to use her exceptional speed. She seemed to relax and enjoy the experience. She led, ran along and zipped home in a sub-33 seconds final 600m. A repeat of that will see her as the horse they all have to catch. Golden Heart looks a natural talent and still a work in progress for gun young horseman Adam Durrant. He was massive winning at Ascot on April 22, before sitting back and exploding past his rivals in midweek grade at Belmont on June 3. He has an awkward draw (12), but with the speed expected, the field should string out and Alan Kennedy should be able to find some cover. He is the horse to hold out. Moonlight Drive has produced two excellent efforts since resuming. Although drawn awkwardly (10), he should take up a position just off Most Secretive. Hard to see him turning the tables on Most Secretive, but he is a genuine place hope. Windmills rises from a strong all-the-way Northam 1000m maiden win on May 28. From a nice gate and with no weight she will get a charmed run.
THE VERDICT Once again a race in two. Back (3) Most Secretive and save on (1) Golden Heart, with the quinella a nice bet. (2) Moonlight Drive is a clear third pick, with (12) Windmills the value for multiples. Place claims for wider exotic bets: (4) Golden Act, (11) Majestic Ruby, (7) Mineours Luck, (8) Biscay Lass and (9) Classiboy.
Race 3 – Westspeed Stayers' Bonus Hcp, [3YO+] [74-86] 2200m 3:24pm [EST] Tempo will be steady, with very little exposed pressure. This race could be dominated from the front. Bet Ahead (7) can lead Archie Junior (1), with Sunrange (12) and Beyond Repute (5) handy. Ex-Victorian stayer Archie Junior was always a horse to appreciate the Belmont track during winter. There has been some rainfall this week, and he will really appreciate the fire out of ground. Going back through his Victorian replays, I saw him working overtime on the speed – over 2040m at Moonee Valley in 2007 – and careering away on the swing for home to win by four lengths, with handy
stayer Grand Destiny left in his wake. In the same campaign he had a lovely run and was nailed late by quality stayer and former stablemate Ballack in a tight finish. Both those runs were with the sting out of ground. He has some quality about him and gets everything in his favour here. He was ridden aggressively by Clint Harvey when able to break Perth maiden status in April and subsequent form stayer Mythical Man was a part of the beaten brigade. If he is ridden the same way in this race, I believe he will be simply too good and will be a horse to follow in the winter staying features. Striken (3) has run 11 seconds from 32 starts, so always races well, but rarely wins. He is in good form and will be zooming to the line. Beyond Repute was given a beautiful ride by Paul Harvey to score last time and is another in good form. He gets a lovely run in the box seat and will look the winner at some stage. Savage Wolf (11) is looking for the 2200m and secures a lovely trail midfield, one off the fence. He has some really good stats at this track, over a journey and with the sting out. My Empire (2), if ridden for luck and saved up for one late burst, could figure. Sunrange is one of the most honest horses in the state but is a query at a strong 2200m. Cezanne (4) is a quality stayer on his day, but was disappointing last time.
THE VERDICT Keen to back (1) Archie Junior each-way all day. (3) Striken will be closing hard. (5) Beyond Repute gets the right run and is a winning hope and (11) Savage Wolf has found the right race and conditions. Place claims for (2) My Empire, (12) Sunrange and (4) Cezanne.
Race 4 – www.perthracing.com.au Hcp [3YO+] [68-80] 1400m 4pm [EST] The speed will be strong and pressure high. Dante's Banquet (1) and Werd (4) are the likely leaders. Euclassy Thing (2) and Strait Laced (11) get the sweet runs behind the leaders. I am steering away from the obvious in this race and going to gamble that Rich Ken (5) is ready to run his best race first-up. He hails from the state’s leading stable (Neville Parnham) and he resumes at 1400m without a trial. He has some tremendous stats at the track, distance, surface and fresh, and is drawn to get a cushy run three back the fence, trailing his stablemate Euclassy Thing and likely race favourite Strait Laced. This will allow Steven Parnham to save his grey charge for one late burst at the leaders. I believe he has
found the right race and will get the right run. The value bet. Former New Zealand mare Strait Laced has been impressive since landing on our shores. She has the ability to take a spot on the leaders’ back, travel strongly and then finish with a nice turn of foot. She stays down on the minimum weight after breaking her Perth maiden status here late last month in authoritative style. She is the mare they all have to beat. Round Tuit (7) is flying! Big win in the Sky Channel final, then found the leader Casanova Jack too fast last time, but I liked the way he zoomed to the line. He is a onedimensional horse who has to be ridden quietly, so he needs luck. He probably follows Rich Ken into the race and will be charging. Not much between many of these horses so I’m loath to ignore: Mighty Ronnie (9), who will be fitter for recent racing; Werd, racing with the winkers off and blinkers on, who will make own luck on speed; Euclassy Thing (2), who comes back a grade and is very honest; Kanturk (3), who was excellent, closing late first-up; and Insurgency (10), who has had two trials and is ideally suited to Belmont.
THE VERDICT I believe (5) Rich Ken is a good each-way gamble. (11) Strait Laced is the horse to beat and is the saver bet. (7) Round Tuit is the blowout. If going wider for winning chances include (9) Mighty Ronnie, (4) Werd, (2) Euclassy Thing, (3) Kanturk and (10) Insurgency. Any could surprise.
QUADDIE FIRST LEG
Race 5 – Belmont Guineas [Listed] [3YO] [Open] 1600m (Set Weights) 4:35pm [EST] What a fantastic winter season Guineas this is. Some potential topliners lock horns in this race and it should be a wonderful spectacle. Speed strong and the pressure is high. Mega Steel (4) and Hawkeye Mort (2) are the natural front-runners; either can lead or hand up to the other. Russell Road (3) box seats and Lead Rope (9) gets all the favours from a nice draw (3). I am expecting Grand Nirvana (1) to be next in the running line. I love this young Scenic colt who has the racing world at his feet. He has been absolutely fantastic defeating the older, open class, Stakes grade horses in fighting style at his two runs back from a spell. He broke a hoodoo for three-year-olds when winning the weight-for-age Roma Cup
(1200m, May 30) last time and you would expect there is further improvement to come. This is his grand final, stepping up to 1600 metres third up. He is pitch-forked in at the set weights against his own age and his rider Daniel Staeck is riding at the peak of his powers. Staeck is at his best when aggressive and reading races to perfection. He is doing that at the moment and will ride this horse once again like the best horse in the race. Grand Nirvana’s two unplaced runs at 1600m were still wow quality! He went back to last in a field of 16 in the WA Guineas, circled the field and made up unbelievable ground on the quality filly Moccasin Bend in a 1.33.75 mile (Nov 15). Subsequently he sat three deep without cover in the $1 million Group 1 Railway against older horses and was only beaten 2.25 lengths (8 th ) by Gilded Venom, Sniper's Bullet, Niconero and the like on Nov 22. There is still more improvement to come in future campaigns and that is scary for his rivals. He is a budding star and is becoming a very valuable future stallion prospect. Mega Steel is very good and also has enormous potential. The classy son of Helenus has had three runs for astute horseman Colin Webster, and all runs have been enormous. Slashing run first-up at Pinjarra last month, before all the way wins here at Belmont. He is an imposing 17hands youngster who will get a lovely run from his barrier, whether Link Robertson chooses to sit or allow him to bowl along. His great asset is his high cruising speed and the ability to let down into another gear. Clearly, they are the best two horses in the race. Gifted filly Lead Rope is in good form, but still has to be a query at running out a strong 1600m. She will get a cosy run from her gate and will give her all. I doubt whether that is good enough. She had every possible chance when she tried in vain to reel in Mega Steel over 1400m here on May 30. There is a good weight turnaround, but not enough to turn the tables. The best roughie for multiples bet types is the improving Oaks style filly Street Value (13). By quality stallion Street Cry, with whom Michael Grant has had a lot of luck (Delta Gee and Admiring), she has been racing well at Kalgoorlie and looks suited as the distances get longer. With the speed on and the wide open spaces of Belmont, she will be hitting the line strongly. She is out of the former Grant trained Marwina mare Marscara and there is definite scope there for a race like the Belmont Oaks later this month. Hawkeye Mort does not know when to lie down and will make the running. His class is the query. Russell Road is an improver
back against his own age. Raced in the worst part of the track last time and from the rails draw will get all the favours.
THE VERDICT Back (1) Grand Nirvana confidently. (4) Mega Steel is the horse to get past and goes in the quaddie. (9) Lead Rope, (13) Street Value, (2) Hawkeye Mort and (3) Russell Road go in the multiples. (7) Raging and (12) Tsarinsky go in wider exotic bet types.
THE VERDICT Wide race, but I’m happy to bet (3) Like A Vain on a 1 x 2 unit basis. (11) Purple Haze is the best get-back horse and is the saving bet. (8) Master Marlon and (6) Interange are also winning hopes. Include (1) Legend Express, (7) King Kool Kat, (4) Midtime, (12) Revy Jay and (5) Eucaballo. Quaddie – skinny: 3,11,8,6. Wide: 3,11,8,6,1,7,4,12,5
QUADDIE SECOND LEG Race 6 – Winter Championship Heat Seven, [74-86] [3yo+] 1600m 5:11pm [EST] The speed looks strong, with high pressure likely. Legend Express (1), Interange (6) and Like A Vain (3) are natural frontrunners. This trio will dictate the speed and pressure. King Kool Kat (7), Revy Jay (12) and Amici (2) will race handy. The two runs of Like A Vain this time in have been excellent, although vastly different. He settled back in the field and made up good ground behind quality galloper Geyser Peak first up (4 th, 1400m, May 9), then was a touch sluggish to begin and had to work overtime from a wide barrier to lead second-up. He was brave to fight back late and hold third behind Titcherman over 1600m on May 30. With added fitness and that 1600m run under his belt, he is set to peak third up. He can lead or may choose to take a sit outside either Legend Express or Interange. His three wins last time in work rate highly, and he just does not know how to run a bad race. Purple Haze (11) is the best of the swoopers, and if they do overcook it in front, he is the blowout. He is a former Victorian who was very good early in his campaigns and showed he would measure up to this sort of grade with a closing second at Belmont over 1400m last month at his WA debut. Up to 1600m and second-up, with a fast speed expected, he will be hitting the line late. Master Marlon (8) is another who will be suited by the strong tempo and is racing well. Interange is as game as they come and digs deep in a finish. He is in terrific form. Veteran Legend Express, King Kool Kat, who was enormous last start, Midtime (4), a hot and cold galloper, Revy Jay, who is honest, and Eucaballo (5) can all play a part.
produced his best since a failed Singapore visit in May last year. His trials have been good, but he needs to find his best to play a part. Guyno (1) is very good fresh and Tarzi (2) on his best form would be very competitive. Tarzi had every possible chance when 5 th in the Roma Cup over 1200m. Will be suited up to 1400m. Harvard (11) has finally drawn a gate and looks one of the best roughies. This is an outstanding contest.
QUADDIE THIRD LEG Race 7 – Belmont Sprint [Group 3] [3YO+] [Open] 1400m, 5:50pm [EST] Speed even, nothing ridiculous, with a query on the pressure that will be placed on the leaders. Sheenasaidgrey (14) has no option but to push forward and lead again, as he did when third in the Roma Cup when he was left alone. Universal Ruler (5), Tarzi (2) and Kens Double (13) can lob in handy positions. The first-up performance of Kens Double was exceptional. They did not go hard for that quality of race, failing to break 37 seconds for the first 600 metres. He sat three wide, without cover, slid into the event mid-race, loomed wide out on the swing and fought hard to just miss Grand Nirvana by a short neck. Back to a handicap he drops from 58.5kg to 53kg, is drawn to get cover, which is important, and if he repeats his first-up effort, he is the horse to beat. Second-up stats read well. Roman Time (17) won the Karrakatta Plate as a two-year-old in 2007 and has been stalled by injury. Was runner-up on this day last year in the Belmont Guineas and his two runs back this time in suggest he is cherry ripe for this race. Did it tough first-up and nearly bloused Geyser Peak late (head), then went back from a wide gate and zoomed to the line when second behind Reverend Lovejoy on May 23. Drawn to get a cosy run (9) and with the minimum weight he is a big player. Sheenasaidgrey produced a big win first-up, then dug deep to go down narrowly in the Roma Cup after a soft lead. He will cross easily from 16, lead and get his own way. He will take some running down with added fitness. I was quite taken with the first-up run for a new stable of Doyoudare (8), running on strongly against the tempo when sixth to Grand Nirvana in the Roma. Idyllic Prince (3) is spot on, but is drawn terribly (18) and will need luck. Universal Ruler (5) is a ripper on his day, but has not
Back (13) Kens Double and save on (17) Roman Time. Best roughies in the race are (8) Doyoudare and (11) Harvard. The quality horses (14) Sheenasadigrey, (3) Idyllic Prince, (5) Universal Ruler, (1) Guyno and (2) Tarzi would not surprise. Quaddie skinny: 13,17,14,8,11 Wide: 13,17,14,8,11,3,5,1,2
QUADDIE FOURTH LEG Race 8 – Good Morgan Hcp [62-74] [3YO+] 1200m 6:25pm [EST] Speed strong with high pressure. Siamese Cat (13), Punk'd (9) and Freetime (11) will be the most prominent. If Governor Arnold (18) gets a start, he can box seat, with Decryptor (5) ridden more prominently. I am relying on Governor Arnold gaining a start; if so, I believe he is the horse to beat. Resumes in a new yard – the all-conquering Adam Durrant stable – and his recent Lark Hill trial was terrific. He looked fluent in his action and won with his ears pricked. There were no blinkers in the trial, however they go on for race day. He is drawn to box seat and he has always shown that Saturday grade is well within his reach. On an eachway basis, he looks the nice gamble to finish off the day. Siamese Cat was impressive leading throughout and scoring a narrow victory over 1200m at Belmont on May 27. Paul Harvey asked the progressive three-year-old to do it at both ends and the win was full of merit. He has the natural toe to offset a wide draw (14) and will prove hard to get past. Kim Star (17) has trialled well in preparation for his first-up assignment and this lightly-raced Redoute's Choice entire has oodles of natural ability. A big-striding galloper who will appreciate the room he is going to get from a wide draw and in a genuine run race, he will be closing fast! Decryptor was very good first up and then raced without luck last time. Senior rider Daniel Staeck goes on board and Decryptor can be a big improver. Midweek Belmont winners Freetime (11) (June 3,
1000m) and Flying Warrior (14) (May 13, 1200m) are well up to this race and can play a part with the right runs. Watch any betting moves for Proud Falcon (8), who resumes without a trial. He is from the astute Trevor Andrews yard and Paul Harvey will ride.
THE VERDICT Back (18) Governor Arnold each-way (if he gains a start). Have something on (13) Siamese Cat and (17) Kim Star to finish the day on a winning note. (5) Decryptor is the best roughie. (11) Freetime and (14) Flying Warrior are genuine winning chances and must go in quaddies. Place claims (and quaddie inclusions also) for (8) Proud Falcon and (7) Captain Zero. Quaddie 18,13,17,5,11,14,8,7
Best Bet R5 – No. 1 Grand Nirvana
Value Bets R3 – No. 1 Archie Junior (e/w) R4 – No. 5 Rich Ken (e/w) R8 – No. 18 Gov. Arnold (e/w) Tune in to all the racing action from the west with the Pr.com Get access to all Western Australia's metropolitan and country race and trial replays, Perth Racing preview show, trial reports and much more. Log on to www.perthracing.com.au for more details. Good luck and happy punting!