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RANDWICK PREVIEW April 17, 2010 DONCASTER HANDICAP (1600M) Race 6, 3.35pm (Sydney time) In recent years, it is the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (wfa 1500m) at Rosehill that has emerged as the most important lead-up race to the Group 1 Doncaster Handicap (1600m). Last year’s winner Vision And Power completed the double – in fact, Black Piranha also was runner up in both races – Haradasun did it in 2007 and Racing To Win won both races in 2006. Before that it was the great mare Emancipation in 1983. This year’s Ryder winner was Danleigh, who won the race in commanding fashion with a typical fast-finishing burst from the rear. It was his third Group 1 win, and probably his most impressive. This year’s Doncaster is an impressive line up, dominated by the Group 1 stars at the top of the weights, who between them have won 13 Group 1s – Danleigh, Theseo (5 Group 1 wins) and the exceptional mare Typ hoon Tracy (5 Group 1 wins, including her last four starts). There are a lot of comparisons between Typhoon Tracy and the benchmark mare of modern times, the New Zealand powerhouse Sunline, who won Doncasters in 1999 (as a 3YO) and 2002, when she carried 58kg. That Doncaster was her 11th Group 1 victory. It might seem that Typhoon Tracy, weighted on 56.5kg, is highly rated by the handicapper, being within 1.5kg of Sunline’s winning weight, but when Sunline won the limit was 47kg compared to the 51kg this year – so in real terms there is a 5.5kg difference. Even so, Typhoon Tracy is the horse

SPEED MAP Predicted positions on settling

to beat, mainly because of the fact she dominates her races from on the pace – a tough assignment in any Doncaster, but she should be able to slot in behind the likely leaders Recoup de Fortune and Mental ity. I doubt there is a horse good enough in Australia to run down an in-form Typhoon Tracy. Danleigh’s racing style means he will be ridden very quietly, saved for a 250m dash to the line. His recent record suggests that he is at his peak and the 1600m will suit him, despite the fact he hasn’t won beyond 1500m. Palac io de Cr istal has had an ideal build-up, and she is perfectly placed on the limit with 51kg. The chestnut mare possesses a big finish, so the spacious Randwick track will suit her. Her recent form at the highest level at weight-for-age is comparable to Danleigh and Rangirangdoo, but this time she meets them under more suitable conditions. I have a big opinion of the Kiwi galloper Wall S treet after following his career for the last 12 months. I expect him to get a nice run from barrier seven. For me, the value horses are the underrated Road To Ro ck and the Argentinean import Snapy Halo. Road To Rock is going a lot better than his form suggests, while Snapy Halo, a Group 1 winner in his homeland, is well in on the limit. He’s improving with each run. Rang irang doo will run his usual honest race, but his lack of spirit at the end of his races is a concern for me. The tips: Typhoon Tracy to beat Palacio de Cristal, Danleigh, Wall Street, Road To Rock and Snapy Halo

AND ALSO The in-court action this week points to the omen bets of the day tomorrow in the G1 AJC Oaks and the G1 The Galaxy at Randwick. Yes, And Also considers the most appropriately named On ce Were Wil d and Swif t Al lian ce, with Nash Rawiller riding for Gai Waterhouse, too good an opportunity to pass over. Don’t push your luck too much with Once Were Wild ($12) because the Oaks should be what it looks to be – a match race between Faint Perfume ($2+) and Val demoro ($3+). Tony Vasil’s Valdemoro appears to have more improvement in her, but JB Cummings, as usual, will have his runner trained to the minute (2.55pm in this case) and should win his 260th Group 1. Swift Alliance ($6) is one of half a dozen right in the mix in the Galaxy, so it would not surprise if he were to brighten up Gai’s week. The mares Orten sia (about $4) and Ro stova ($12-$13) are definitely ready to win and they might be the stumbling blocks, more so than Defin itely Ready ($4+), who is tackling the Sydney way for the first time. The Doncaster is some race, whatever the result. If Ty phoon Tracy (about $3) wins – as And Also expects her to – she legitimately can be labeled the new Sunline; if she is beaten it could be by any of a dozen good horses. For an interest, why not quinella her with the roughies Allez Wonder ($61), Centenn ial Park ($41) and To bique ($61)? Stephen Howell

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