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Ascot Saturday BY JOSH RODDER The track is a Good (3) as of Friday lunchtime, with a penetrometer of 6.3 (Perth measurements are different to those in the Eastern States, because of a different sand based track). The rail moves to six metres and will go back to true next Saturday, Railway Stakes day. According to track manager Gordon Menzies the track will be watered Friday night. There is a good cushion of grass at the 6m position. FORECAST – SATURDAY MORNING SHOWER. MIN 15, MAX 23.

Race 1 – Western Meat Packers Handicap [3YO] [Open 57+] 1100m 4:05pm [EDST] Scary Movie (6) is an early scratching. It’s a nice three-year-old event to begin proceedings. The majority of the field have natural speed and the pressure will be right on. Classic Smile (5) and Arcaxaar (3) will make the running, with The Entourage (2) in the box seat, and Wizards Point (1) and Trustee Brown (8) handy to the speed. It was hard not to be impressed with the debut win on Melbourne Cup day of the well-bred Sealynx (4). The Stan Batestrained Elvstroem colt was posted three wide outside the leaders with no cover at 1200m, and won in comprehensive fashion. The overall time was only just outside that the older, more seasoned sprinter Kim Trader recorded late in the day. From a nice draw Peter Knuckey will put him in a sweet spot, stalking the leaders, and from there he is clearly the horse to beat. Trustee Brown was very good on debut, racing outside a fast speed and fighting hard, only being nabbed very late by Stars Aligned, who franked the form in this grade last Saturday, along with Scary Movie, a winner midweek. Iron horse Wizards Point had 11 starts in his first season of racing with some terrific results in strong company. He has had a nice

break and resumes without a trial, but you know what you get from the guy. Will get a nice run and will be competitive. Arcaxaar chased a fast speed first-up and got tired. He strips fitter and will give backers a sight on the speed.

VERDICT Back (4) Sealynx with confidence. (8) Trustee Brown is the horse to run down. (1) Wizards Point and (3) Arcaxaar are on the next line. Include (2) The Entourage and (7) Barometric in wider multiple be types.

Race 2 – Margaret River Fresh Handicap [3YO+] [62-74] 1200m 4:45pm [EDST] Big field with various form lines clashing makes this race a little tricky. There looks to be hot speed and pressure, giving all horses their winning chance. Quiz Time (5) is likely to find the lead from a pack including Kim Trader (4), who may elect to take a sit behind the speed – Russell Road (3), blinkers on, Siamese Cat (14), Dane Smile (13) and Gum Nut Guru (10). I’m sticking with Kim Trader, who is a professional racehorse. He begins quickly, has a high cruising speed and then a big kick at the finish. His win on Melbourne Cup day was dominant. From his kind barrier (2) Shaun McGruddy has options. Unbeaten second-up and at the Ascot 1200m. Second-up last time in he took care of the handy sprinter Shock Value here at 1200m. His trainer Malcolm Burnett does not have many runners, but when he saddles one up, they often win. The blow-out if they overcook it in front might be Radiant Prince (6). He has always shown glimpses and last start, off a freshenup, he hit the line with gusto. Expect a big finish. Siamese Cat resumes for new yard – Adam Durrant, who is on fire. He is not big but has a motor and his recent Lark Hill trial second suggests he is up and running. He is a firstup winner and has gate speed to overcome his wide draw. Diminutive filly Dane Smile is shooting for a winning hat-trick and her Pinjarra win

was effortless. She has the right form references to measure up here. I give serious winning claims to Smart Chance (11), a progressive type, Gum Nut Guru (10), who does not know how to run a bad race, Classic Lad (9), who is in better form that what it shows on paper, Russell Road, who has drawn well, and Kingsley Blue (15), a gifted maiden.


VERDICT The safe way to go is to back (4) Kim Trader and save something small on (6) Radiant Prince and (14) Siamese Cat at odds. (13) Dane Smile, (11) Smart Chance, (10) Gum Nut Guru, (9) Classic Lad, (3) Russell Road and (15) Kingsley Blue are on the next line. Include in wide exotics (2) King Risca, (5) Quiz Time and (12) Ace In The Pak.

Race 3 – Jungle Mist Classic [3YO+ Fillies & Mares] [Listed] [78+] 1200m, 5:25pm [EDST] Hot mares’ race with oodles of depth and plenty of speed and pressure engaged. Versarc (15) can lead with Pillow Time (13) keeping her busy. Brooklyn’s Rose (5) is extremely fast. This trio will cross and lead the remainder of their rivals without a problem. The barrier makes it tricky, but Flight Path (11) could not have been any more impressive last time. The Bletchley Park half-sister to local champ Scenic Shot was never going to lose in the run at Ascot on October 24 and really opened up like a quality mare. There appears to be enough speed for Shaun McGruddy to angle in to the running line somewhere just off the pressure, and I find it difficult to see any of her rivals giving her a big start and running past her. She has proven her steel previously, sitting wide and winning, so willing to take a chance. Royal Devotion (14) is bomb proof. She is drawn to get all the favours and will look the winner in the straight. She was brave two starts back, when just beaten by Jeverre (since won), and last start held on well when probably raced like the 1000m was a touch short. Set for this and is a major player.

Jeverre (12) is probably going to be better suited at 1400m next time, but her form has been impeccable. No luck first-up and should be unbeaten this time in work. She has a stakes-grade turn of foot and should get the right run.

up, strips fitter and should get the cushy run three back the fence. From there he could launch late. Moonlight Drive broke the track record last time. Chachi (4) is an interesting runner, having won a Bunbury trial.

Xaar Boom (16) has been zooming to the line at her two runs back from a spell and looks suited to a high pressure 1200m. Her nice barrier gives Knuckey a chance to ride a race on her, midfield the fence. Versarc will give a great sight.


Former handy Sydney mare Very Grand (8) is an interesting runner fresh for a new stable. Forget the run of Sleepwalk (3) last time and returns to her own kind, while Russian Playmate (1) showed in her trial that she had returned to work in good form. The big watch horse is Ballroom Crown (9), who has an impressive record, but she needs to find plenty on her recent Belmont trial.

VERDICT Back (11) Flight Path each-way all day. (14) Royal Devotion and (12) Jeverre are the save bets. There are a host of other winning chances, including (16) Xaar Boom, (15) Versarc, (8) Very Grand, (3) Sleepwalk, (1) Russian Playmate and (9) Ballroom Crown. Include (2) Hifalutin, (6) Rock My Pago and (7) Broadway Belle in multiples.

Race 4 – Perth Meat Exports Handicap [3YO+] [74-86] 1000m 5:05pm [EDST] Fantastic depth to this restricted sprint affair. Speed to burn and pressure aplenty. Three Amigos (6) should lead, with Chopin (8), Lachino (2), Centrum (1) and Moonlight Drive (3) prominent. I like Shock Value (5). Knocked out of the race last start at Belmont in a scary incident and he did a remarkable job to pick himself back up and run to the line strongly. There is no doubt he should have won that race. Drawn to get a beautiful run and he is a real competitor. Iron sprinter Centrum does not know how to run a bad race and has form lines around the best sprinters in the state. He is another who will get all the favours in running and looks well in after the 2kg claim of Chloe Chatfield. He is the main danger. Lightly raced sprinter Speccio (12) got in a bumping duel at a crucial stage first-up and thereafter appeared to lose his action. Fitter, drawn well and ridden just off the speed with a light weight, he has winning claims. Follow The Road (9) tried very hard first-

Back (5) Shock Value and save on (1) Centrum. (12) Speccio is a winning chance. (9) Follow The Road, (3) Moonlight Drive and (4) Chachi are on the next line. Include (7) Formal Attire and (13) Underline in wider exotics.


Race 5 – Colonel Reeves Stakes, [3YO+], [Group 3], [Open 92+], 1100m, 6:45pm [EDST] (8) Kid Choisir is an early scratching. These are the fastest sprinters in WA and it is a mouth-watering clash on paper as we head towards the $500,000 Player Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at WFA on November 28. Watch the clock! The unbeaten (5) Hay List will lead and from there looks the winner. Astute horseman Jim Taylor has been patient with his gifted charge, allowing the imposing son of Statue Of Liberty to work his way through the grades, with this his first Stakes-level start. His past four wins have come without the blinkers; they return to his gear here after blowing rivals away in the first half of his career. He will start a deserved favourite and simply looks too good. Expect a much better performance from Ma Ma Machine (4). He started an odds-on favourite first-up and was the first horse beaten. We know he is much better than that and if he brings his A-game he will be competitive. Dante’s Volonte (2) led and was disappointing first-up at Belmont, but there were excuses. Drawn wide, but does have the speed to cruise across field and position outside the leader and favourite. The horse that will attack the line late is the stablemate of Hay List, Black In Time (6). She was brave last time when running one of the main Railway contenders, Kasabian, to a nose after having a torrid run. Drawn to do nothing in the run and can reel off super sectionals when ridden that way.

VERDICT The more you bet, the more you win with (5) Hay List. Place claims to (4) Ma Ma Machine, (2) Dante’s Volonte, (6) Black In Time (1) Royal Lott and (11) Stratazoa.


Race 6 – R.J. Peters Stakes [3yo C & G] [Group 3] [Open 93+] 1500m, 7:20pm [EDST] A nice spread of horses will contest this feature, which is the final chance for borderline horses to sneak into the Carlton Draught Railway Stakes next week. Genuine speed and pressure are injected into the race by Hawkeye Mort (11), with Universal Ruler (2), Roman Time (4) and Kens Double (12) handy. The addition of blinkers to classy entire Grand Nirvana (3) will ensure a different horse – he has just been having a stroll in the park at his two runs back from a spell without head gear. Loomed last time in the Asian Beau and just lost interest, as he did first-up in the early stages of the Northerly Stakes. It’s the business end of his campaign now and we will see the real Grand Nirvana, a genuine Railway contender. Delta Gee (9) is quality with a capital Q. Have always liked her electric turn of speed and her win was arrogant first-up at 1500m. She is an Eastern States Stakes-grade mare in the making and she is in this race up to her ears. Drawn wide, she will go back and ping home hard. The stablemate of Grand Nirvana, Roman Time, had a pipe-opener last time over the short course and his final sectionals were adequate after being run off his feet. He is drawn to get a super run and he tries his heart out. The big watch is on Star Encounter (1) first-up. I have really liked her two trials this time in at Lark Hill and she is top class. She is BMW Perth Cup bound. Expect a boomer of a run fresh at the 1500m. Elliotto (6) zoomed to the line in the Asian Beau and is a chance if can repeat that. Universal Ruler, Colour Correct (8) and Hawkeye Mort can’t be dismissed in an even RJ Peters Stakes.

VERDICT Back (3) Grand Nirvana and save on (9) Delta Gee at odds. (4) Roman Time and (1) Star Encounter are the next best. Include (6) Elliotto, (2) Universal Ruler, (8) Colour Correct and (11) Hawkeye Mort. (7) Streetfighter and (12) Kens Double must go in wider exotics.


Race 7 – Sky Racing-WA Guineas [Group 2] [3YO] [Open] 1600m 7:57pm [EDST] Very competitive Guineas line-up and they will be cooking with gas in the early stages. All runners will get their chance. For Your Eyes Only (9) must use her natural gift and lead, with Dampier Dayz (5), Romida (14) and Black Nijinsky (3) handy. I am very keen on Thorn Dancer (6), who has always shaped as the ideal type to handle the high pressure 1600m for 3YOs, and the engagement of Paul Harvey seals the deal. The colt was run off his feet first-up in the Belgravia and never found a rhythm. He was still last turning for home in the Fairetha, before rocketing to the line for a slashing fourth behind the state’s best three-year-old, Waratah’s Secret. It was a slashing Guineas trial, running home his final 600m section in 33.01. I have him three wide with cover in the run, which is the ideal position in a big race at Ascot, and from there he will really open up. The obvious danger is another runner out of the Fairetha, The Corporation (2), who has been trained to the minute by form horseman Trevor Andrews. He will get a superb run from his lovely draw and will look the winner at some stage. Moneghetti (7) is the best of the value runners. He is crying out for a high-pressure 1600m and should be tracking The Corporation everywhere he goes. Moneghetti looks the ideal Aquanita and St Leger horse as we continue through the Festival of Perth Racing. He has been very strong to the line in defeat behind Dampier Dayz at his past two starts. The best of the fillies in my mind is the inexperienced Avante (16). Big debut win at Northam, then back and finishing hard in the Burgess Queen. Lots of natural talent, however is still in the early stages of a promising career. Clueless Angel (10) and Dampier Dayz are hard to fault on their form cards.


Race 8 – Jim Power Thankyou Handicap [68-80] [3YO+] 1800m 8:35pm [EDST]

5/1,2,3,4,6,8,9,11/2,5,6,7,10,11,16/4,10,11 ($168) 5/1,3,4,9/2,6/Field ($128)

An even restricted grade race finishes the afternoon’s racing. An even tempo is expected, with the pressure only fair. Hazardous Harmony (1) is best rolling and I’m looking forward to a change of tactics on Can Time (10), with lack of front-end pressure. Beyond Dispute (2) and Field Of Action (15) should be handy with Esroh (13) and Zuytdorp (3).

5/1,2,3,4,6,8,9/2,6/4,10,11 ($42)

Progressive galloper Almohad (11) has the most upside in this race. He is still very much a work in progress for champion trainer Lou Luciani. He competed against the best three-year-olds during the autumn and has returned to racing a more complete package. He toughed it out well first-up when ridden a shade upside down, then was given a superb ride and quickly put paid to his rivals, eased down on the line. Almohad is ideally suited up to 1800m and has the turn of foot to overcome a dawdling speed if that occurs. He’s the best horse in the race and can prove it with another win.

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Le Bon Jeune (4) was back in winning form on Melbourne Cup day and has a big finishing burst when saved for one run. Race tempo will dictate his chances. Can Time has been falling out of the barriers. If she can begin from a wide draw and take a position on top of the speed, she could give backers a great sight at odds. Tenpin (8) just got a bit too far out of his ground in a race dominated from the top. If the speed is on he will be running on strongly.

VERDICT Bet confidently on (11) Almohad. Winning claims to (4) Le Bon Jeune and best value in the race (10) Can Time if ridden forward. Next best (8) Tenpin. Include (6) Dvoryan, (3) Zuytdorp, (9) Biara Rose, (12) Collecting and (14) Exquisite Timing in wide multiple bet types.

VERDICT Back (6) Thorn Dancer with confidence. (2) The Corporation is the biggest threat. (7) Moneghetti and (16) Avante will be strong to the line. Include (10) Clueless Angel, (5) Dampier Dayz and (11) Dawinner in major multiples. If going wider, look at (12) Impressive Jeuney, (13) Premardal, (1) God Has Spoken, (4) Dino Mak and (3) Black Nijinsky.


BEST BETS Race 1 – No. 4 Sealynx Race 5 – No. 5 Hay List

BEST VALUE Race 7 – No. 6 Elliotto

5/1,2,3,4,6,8,9,11/2,6/4,11 ($32)

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