Current Track Rating: Dead 4
Weather Forecast: www.metservice.com
Friday 11th – Max 24, scattered showers
Saturday 12th – Max 24, sunny
R9 Auckland Cup G1 3200m
- 2 of past 5 winners were SP favourite
- 2 of past 5 winners had previous run within seven days
- 3 of past 5 winners had previous run in Avondale Gold Cup
- 5 of past 5 winners carried 55kg or less
Previous Winners & Lead Up Result
Rock Diva – SP $4.90 52kg BR16 – 7th up, 3 weeks, 3rd Avondale Gold Cup G2 2400m Ellerslie
Who Shot Thebarman – SP $2.5 52.5kg BR2 – 7th up, 3 weeks, 1st Av Gold Cup G2 2400m Ellerslie
Sangster – SP$2 54.5kg BR1 – 6th up, 3 weeks, 1st Group 2 Avondale Gold Cup 2400m Ellerslie
2012 – Raceway – SP $1.24 54kg BR 3 – Let up, 6 weeks 1st 2YO SW Warwick Farm 1000m
Titch – SP$9.30 54.5kg BR1 – 7th up, 4 days, 2nd Open handicap 2200m Ellerslie
2. Benzini: This horse is clearly the one to beat for those who respect weights. He is on the quick back-up after placing third behind El Pistola over 2200m last weekend, hitting the line with plenty of force. He carried 60kg on that occasion and now drops to 55.5kg while those who finished in front of him remain on 53kg.
His previous run was in the Avondale Gold Cup 2400m, where he was beaten just under two lengths, charging from the tail of the field to finish fifth to Sacred Master. He meets the favourite 6.5kg better for that encounter and has the benefit of another run in between. He finished third in the New Zealand Cup 3200m at the same distance behind Jimmy Mac and Southern Sav and conceded 6kg to both.
3. Decorah: Beaten three lengths in the Avondale Gold Cup, ideally the best form race for this event. He now meets Sacred Master 5kg better and has drawn to get a more favourable run from barrier two. Yet to race at 3200m but has been strong at the finish of 2400m. Must be considered an outside chance but hard to see him turning the tables on Benzini.
4. King Kamada: Finished strongly between horses to run a close second to Sacred Master in the Avondale Cup last start. Meets the favourite 2.5kg better but Benzini 4kg worse from their previous run. He placed second to Rock Diva in this race last year therefore his credentials at 3200m are more than acceptable.
5. Sampson: Unusual preparation for a 3200m given he hasn’t raced in seven weeks and last start was third in Wellington Cup after leading and battling on okay in the concluding stages behind Mister Impatience, who carried 3.5kg less. Could be the surprise at decent odds given the unorthodox style that his trainer has taken.
6. Pentathlon: Only had two runs at 3200m and they were a win in a BM85 and a narrow second in the Wellington Cup. Battled away last week to run fifth to El Pistola last weekend but this looks the race he will peak for. Only concern is that he meets Benzini 4kg worse at weights for finishing behind him at last start.
7. Sacred Master: Lightly raced stayer with huge upside facing his toughest test. Did a great job to win the Avondale Gold Cup last start at his first attempt in stakes grade off a 21 day break. He carried only 52kg but now he jumps to 55kg. It is hard to gauge the improvement left in this four-year-old but he keeps rising to the challenge so it’s no surprise to see him open $3.20 favourite coming from the Tony Pike yard. Expect he drifts but rates a strong winning chance.
8. Guarantor: Winner of his past two starts including Listed Kaimai Stakes at Matamata over 2000m. Form is extremely consistent of late and drawn to get an ideal position from barrier three just tucked in behind the speed. No form at 3200m but did lead throughout earlier in his career to win a race at 2500m.
** Speed Maps courtesy of www.racingandsports.com.au
Good Luck Backing & Laying.
The Betfair Insider