R4 Home & Family FFA (Mobile) G3 | 2600m | 11:41am
I’m not ‘potting’ Dream About Me – in fact I’m one of her biggest fans, however a 4yo mare against two very smart males in Field Marsahll and Locharburn is a big ask and at the current quote of around flip of the coin odds she looks big unders to me. The top two in betting are horses that wouldn’t be out of grade in the Cup later so they must go on top.
|7. Field Marshall||$2.55|
|9. Dream About Me||$4.70|
|4. Pulp Fiction||$40.00|
|5. Piccadilly Princess||$40.00|
|3. Expressive Victor||$55.00|
|2. Little Rascal||$260.00|
R6 Granite Benchtop Company NZ Trotting FFA (Mobile) G1 | 1950m | 12:50pm
Great clash of New Zealand’s (and an Australian) best trotters. Monbet is the benchmark trotter with 21 wins from 32 starts including the last six in a row. Group 1 victories in that time have been in the 4yo Ruby Trot on Jewels Day, the Rowe Cup, the Anzac Cup and the NZ Trotting Championship. What else can you say other than he is a superstar. Second up today from an awkward back row draw over the “sprint” journey of 1950m may be the only real danger to him.
Marcoola is possibly the heir apparent (nine wins from 15 starts), he found Monbet too good last time, however this week the draws are reversed. Habibti is a freak that has the “X-Factor” about her. Got it all wrong on resumption when out the back but has trialled well since. From the draw she will make things interesting. She did win in January in Australia but worryingly her last win in NZ came two years ago. Sheemon has been classy throughout his career and from the two draw will be in with a shot. Slightly off the boil lately he was only six lengths from Monbet last time. Le Reveur was a good 2nd in the Kaikoura Cup last week in an easier race – each way from the draw. Kyvalley Blur is a handy enough Australian but may be slightly out of its depth here. One Over Da Moon needs a front row draw.
|4. Le Reveur||$24.00|
|7. Kyvalley Blur||$50.00|
|11. One Over Da Moon||$50.00|
|9. Alley Way||$120.00|
|3. Quite A Moment||$250.00|
R7 NRM Sires Stakes Series No.33 Final (Mobile) G1 | 1950m | 1:23pm
New Zealand’s best 3yo’s compete here for Group 1 glory. As per usual, the All-Star Team of Purdon/Rasmussen hold the key with three main hopes but a smart Northerner produced by the Reid/McMullen stable might spoil the party. Ultimate Machete was awesome last time winning from a wide gate after doing work and being parked – had the audacity to win under a hold in 1.56.3. Couldn’t beat stablemate More The Better at previous four starts however looks to have improvement in him. More The Better has been there and done that having won 7/12 and over $350k in prize money, he has been just about the benchmark throughout his career. Slightly disappointing when only fourth across the line last time but under the relegation rule was elevated to 2nd placing. Prior to that he had won 6 from his last 7 including the Emerald on Jewels Day, Sires Stakes Final No.33 as a 2yo, the $195k 2yo Yearling Sales Final and the Cardigan Bay. Whatever beats him should win.
Star Galleria is an interesting visitor from the North, effortless win from the chair at Auckland last start. Yet to compete in this grade but looks smart. 3rd stringer for the All Stars is You Gotta Have Faith who may yet beat them all. Good win from awkward alley last time at Ashburton showed he is up to this. The winner should come from these four with place chances to the well drawn Mongolian Hero, Jacks Legend and the unlucky but badly drawn Tiger Thompson.
|5. More The Better||$4.30|
|4. Star Galleria||$4.60|
|8. Ultimate Machete||$4.60|
|6. You Gotta Have Faith||$7.20|
|12. Mongolian Storm||$22.00|
|1. Mongolian Hero||$35.00|
|9. Tiger Thompson||$45.00|
|10. . Jacks Legend||$65.00|
|14. King Solomon||$65.00|
|3. On The Rantan||$80.00|
|2. Billy Badger||$100.00|
R10 Christchurch Casino NZ Trotting Cup (SS) G1 | 3200m | 3:17pm
New Zealand’s premier harness race has attracted yet again the best of the best. Over the gruelling 3200m it has produced champion after champion and expect it to do so again here. Lazarus is the real deal – 17/20 wins and nearly $1m in prizemoney. This 4yo has such a long career ahead of him but could be notching up a NZ cup here. Easy winner of the crucial lead up (Flying Stakes) last time beating all the usual suspects. That followed victories in the Canterbury Classic, NZ Derby and Northern Derby to name just a few of the Group 1’s he has amassed. This horse is amazing – sit back and cheer him home.
The champ Smolda has done it all – the winner of over $1.5m prizemoney he has been the benchmark for NZ pacers for the past few years. Had his colours lowered at Kaikoura last time but has drawn well here and will no doubt bring the grandstand down if he can salute. Messini is such a little trier – gets a perfect draw here and has run well in this race before. Have Faith In Me is the X Factor – I am his biggest fan and he showed why winning a Miracle Mile in a record 1.47.5. The major concern here is the standing start. If Natalie and Mark can somehow get this guy to get away from the tapes, there is no doubt he can win.
Christen Me is the forgotten horse – last year’s champion is on the injury comeback and although not winning has run good races recently. At his best he would win this. Franco Nelson is a brilliant standing start horse, as shown by his super victory in the Kaikoura Cup last week. Will have to weave traffic early but expect Dunn to be spearing through the pack. Others with First four chances are . Tiger Tara, Titan Banner and Mossdale Conner, however they may all be chasing Lazarus in vain.
|16.Have Faith In Me||$8.80|
|13. Franco Nelson||$24.00|
|11. Christen Me||$30.00|
|12. Titan Banner||$40.00|
|4. Tiger Tara||$120.00|
|15. Mossdale Conner||$260.00|
|14. Mighty Flying Mac||$570.00|
|10. No Doctor Needed||$570.00|
|6. Quick As A Trick||$600.00|
|7. Brilliant Strike||$600.00|
|8. Lewy Risk||$600.00|