Ellerslie, Saturday 26 December 2015
Weather forecast – www.metservice.com
Friday 25th – Max 22, showers
Saturday 26th – Max 26, mostly sunny
R7 Eight Carat Classic
- 3 of past 5 winners had previous run in 1000 Guineas
- 3 of past 5 winners had SP > $15
- 1 of past 5 winners had won their previous start
Previous Race Winners & Lead-Up Result
2014 – Saavoya – SP$32.90 56.5kg BR7 – 4th up, 2 weeks, 5th open handicap 1600m Te Rapa
2013 – Hera – SP$16.90 56.6kg BR2 – 4th up, 4 weeks, 2nd Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial 1500m Ellerslie
2012 – Fix – SP$3.40 56.5kg BR8 – 5th up, 5 weeks, 3rd Group 1 1000 Guineas 1600m Riccarton
2011 – Planet Rock – SP$4.80 56.5kg BR7 – 5th up, 6 weeks, 1st Group 1 1000 Guineas 1600m Riccarton
2010 – Smoulder – SP$24.20 56kg BR16 – 5th up, 6 weeks, 3rd Group 1 1000 Guineas 1600m Riccarton
- Strada Cavallo: Comes in to this race off a six week freshen following a very strong second in the Group 1 1600m 1000 Guineas, a race that has produced three of the past five winners of this race. She was only a length behind Risque in the fillies classic after missing the start and being blocked for a run in the straight. Drawn perfect and certainly a major winning hope.
- Coldplay: Hard not to be impressed with her win a fortnight ago in the Group 3 1600m Eulogy Stakes at Awapuni, where she raced close to the speed and cleared out in the straight to defeat Bella Court by three lengths. She has recorded two wins from four career starts and had excuses in her two defeats. Strong combination of Opie Bosson and Murray Baker must be respected.
- Alamer: Cruised to the lead last start and kept rolling to score a nice win in Listed 1500m Trevor Eagle Memorial a month ago at Ellerslie, a race that Hera finished second in before winning this race in 2013. Goes to 1600m for the first time but should be suited to a return to fillies grade after defeating the boys last start.
- Sofia Rosa: Returned to New Zealand after a Sydney spring campaign to record fast-finishing win in set weights and penalties 1300m race at Ellerslie last start. She was only three lengths off Pearls and Honesta in the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes before finishing the same margin from Speak Fondly in the Group 1 Flight Stakes at Royal Randwick. Her Australian campaign shows how highly connections think of her and she will be hard to hold out here.
- Capella: Appreciated the drop back in grade last start when scoring dominant win in BM65 at Matamata last start. Previous run wasn’t disgraced against top filly Serena Miss when beaten only two and a half lengths in the Group 2 1400m J&M Sarten Memorial. Expect her to show no speed in the early stages and steaming to the line late at decent odds.
- Valley Girl: Impressive maiden winner on debut over 1400m at Avondale before charging from the rear of the field to finish fourth behind Alamer in the Listed 1500m Trevor Eagle Memorial a month ago. Lightly raced filly who looks suited to a step up to 1600m and may surprise at big odds.
R9 Zabeel Classic G1 2000m
- 5 of past 5 winners had previous run at 1600m
- 2 of past 5 winners were SP favourite
- zero of past 5 winners won their previous start
Previous Race Winners & Lead-Up Result
2014 – Soriano – SP$11.40 57kg BR8 – 8th up, 2 weeks, 3rd Group 2 Isuzu Stakes 1600m Te Rapa
2013 – Historian – SP$17.50 59kg BR3 – 4th up, 4 weeks, 5th Group 3 Eagle Technology Stakes 1600m Ellerslie
2012 – Veyron – SP$3.40 59kg BR1 – 4th up, 3 weeks, 5th Group 1 Captain Cook Stakes 1600m Trentham
2011 – Shez Sinsational – SP$3.70 56.5kg BR2 – 5th up, 2 weeks, 2nd Group 2 Isuzu Stakes 1600m Te Rapa
2010 – Booming – SP$13.70 59kg BR8 – 3rd up, 3 weeks, 11th Group 1 Captain Cook Stakes 1600m Trentham
- Addictive Habit – Last two efforts have been very promising with big weights under handicap conditions so a return to weight-for-age is a positive. Win two starts ago in the Group 2 Coupland’s Mile with 59.5kg when placegetters carried 55kg, 53kg and 56kg respectively proves he will be competitive here. May have to use a little petrol from wide barrier in the early stages but definitely going good enough to figure in the finish.
- Kawi – Bounced back to winning form last start in 1400m Group 2 Challenge Stakes after disappointing as short price favourite in Group 1 Captain Cook Stakes previously. Stepping up to 2000m for the first time of his career. Being on a seven day back-up could be a positive as he is a horse who can race quite keen and this may allow him to settle and run out a strong 10 furlongs. No doubt he has the ability, just his manners could let him down if the tempo doesn’t suit. Prepared to take on at $3.80 in early betting. More like a $6 chance.
- Soriano – Not suited by the slow tempo last start and still managed to find the line strongly and run third to Julinsky Prince in the Group 1 Captain Cook Stakes, finishing ahead of Kawi. This mare races in the back half of the field and likes to wind up late, therefore a rise to 2000m (15:3-2-5) should suit. Won this race last year and her recent form suggests she is clearly capable of going back-to-back. I’ve marked her favourite at $3.
- Stolen Dance – Just knows how to win and continues to rise through the grades in impressive style. This race is clearly her toughest task to date and only the second time of her career that she has been stretched to 2000m. Is very versatile and in last two starts has won controlling the race from the front and then rounding up her rivals from midfield. It is hard to assess whether she can take the next step therefore appears a good lay at $4 in early betting. Could not back at any price under $6.