Track Circumference: 1065m
Length of straight: 186m
There IS a sprint lane.
R5 Group 1 Gold Tiara Final – 1730m Mobile Start
2015 – Pixies Parlour
2014 – Makes Every Scents
2013 – Distant Memory
2012 – Frith
2011 – Shake It Mama
Early speed may come from Belligerence who may get to the pegs first and hand up to Flying Moth who has good early speed. Joyces Desire also led in its heat but may not be able to hold out the 7. A mid race move may come from Luke McCarthy who did similar in its heat on Millwood Daisy.
2. Belligerence: Had the right run with cover from a wide gate which allowed it to pull away in the straight after a perfect drive from Luke McCarthy. Loses nothing with Amanda Turnbull on board here, it wouldn’t surprise me to see her ping out and take a trail as she likes to do. Had run three placings from three starts previously but not sure it’s quite up to winning though.
5. Joyces Desire: Probably the horse with the most improvement in it. Was a good third at Menangle on debut then in its heat last week ambled to the lead but veered out on the home turn when Im With Lexy loomed up to it causing it to nearly gallop. Was still green down the straight and held onto the race by protest. What happens early is key here.
7. Flying Moth: Was $1.40 favourite when led in its heat but run down late by Rubies For Tash. Prior to that led at Melton and beat a smart one in Eliza Dushku at big odds. Has good Gate Speed and wouldn’t surprise me to see it lead for a long way.
9. Might And Main: Smart youngster prepared and driven by Bernie Hewitt. Went well first up here then went to Goulburn where as a $1.70 favourite it won comfortably. Led last time in the quickest heat (1.56.1) when run down late by Don’t Think Twice who had the cold sit on it. They beat the rest by over 35m so the heat was strong. Has a bad draw here but if the breaks come she will be finishing off the race hard.
11. Millwood Daisy: Trained by champion Cran Dalgety from New Zealand who wouldn’t bring one all the way over here for nothing. Showed that was the case when an audacious winner of its heat sitting in the chair and careering away for a 7.5m win. The time wasn’t flash but the way it did it suggests improvement to come. Luke McCarthy on board means business.
12. Dont Think Twice: Won its heat in the quickest of the night (1.56.1) after leading then getting a soft run behind Might And Main. No doubt finished off the race well but won’t be behind the leader here. Big unders for mine.
14. Rubies For Tash: Bruce Harpley gets the visitors draw for this girl who finished off the race well beating Flying Moth. Came from well back that night and will have to again here. Needs plenty of luck with a tough draw.
R7 Group 1 Gold Crown Final – 1730m Mobile Start
2015 – Shadow Runner
2014 – Artistic Flite
2013 – All Black Stride
2012 – Ultimate Art
2011 – Soho Valencia
The Amanda Turnbull pair of Wardan Express and Greenngold both have gate speed but expect Astride to be at the pegs first then hand up to Bettor Be Gold. Weona Sizzler led in its heat but I would expect Gavin Fitzpatrick to take a sit here and possibly land the 1×1. Can’t see too many moves from the back here.
1. Wardan Express: Sat behind the leader in its heat and sprintlaned to win going away in 1.57.3 Nathan Jack has his choice between this and stablemate Greenngold but I assume he will be driving this. Has gate speed and can elect to hand up to who it likes. Melbourne form was only OK but went well last week. Place chance late up the sprint lane.
4. Astride: Went awesome last week leading then handing up to Bettor Be Gold and blousing that horse late. They went 1.54.8 which is flying for the 2yo’s. Prior to this had raced well including a second in the G3 Sapling Stakes behind Blue Moon Rising and a fifth in the G2 Rod Fitzpatrick Memorial. Luke McCarthy will be looking for a similar spot again here.
5. Weona Sizzler: Gavin Fitzpatrick finally drove this aggressively and managed to lead on it when he won its heat in 1.56.9. Previously had been driven conservatively when it won at Menangle in 1.55.4 after a good fourth to The Storm Inside at Menangle. Has a good finishing burst and if Gav gets a soft run this is the horse that will be finishing best.
6. Bettor Be Gold: Slowly improving and the John McCarthy stable is firing at present. Took the lead off Astride but couldn’t hold on when a very good second in 1.54.8 which was easily the fastest heat. Did run second to Weona Sizzler prior to that after doing a power of work at Menangle. Can lead again and looks toughest to beat.
11. Persimmon: Won what looked to be an easier heat when got a nice trail into it and saluted at over 20/1 in 1.58.6. Will need things to go its way – very thin end of First 4’s for mine.
12. Awesome Stride: Another heat winner where it led and won comfortably in 1.57.7 after a good second at Newcastle on debut. Another who will need luck from the second row however.
13. Rave On Rabbits: The winner of Heat 4 did well to narrowly beat Sams Express in 1.58.3. Very thin end of exotics from the carpark draw.