Length of Home Straight: 205m
There IS a sprint lane.
R7 Queen of the Pacific Group 1 2760m Mobile Start
2015 – Steam Washed
2014 – Gumdrops
2013 – Our Sixpence
2012 – Make Mine Cullen
2011 – Life Inthefastlane
Last week’s prelude (the Angelique Club Cup over 2240m) was run at a ridiculous pace but over the longer journey and I don’t see this event being as frantic. Imagine Cyclone Kate will lead early with Nike Franco to the chair as they wait for champion mare Frith to surge forward.
It will then be a question for John McCarthy as to whether or not to hand up to her or not. Milly Perez with champion reinsman Chris Alford will meanwhile be “smoking her pipe” behind Cyclone Kate. An intriguing battle awaits us!
1. Cyclone Kate: Ran the unbeaten Our Waikiki Beach to 1.1m last week at Menangle when second to it however had its chance to run past it as the winner was attacked left right and centre. John McCarthy will have to make a decision at some stage whether to hold the lead or hand up – and this horse seems to go better with Todd driving it. Looks huge unders for mine.
4. Nike Franco: Burned early last week before securing the one-one – hit the lead on the top straight but was left a sitting shot for Gumdrops. Broke the track record at Warragul in March beating the open horses (Stunning Grin second). Looks a good each-way chance but I think will struggle to win.
7. Gumdrops: Crowd favourite due to her lack of size, she has won three in a row since being transferred to the Emma Stewart barn. Was the main beneficiary of the hot pace last week when Mark Pitt drove a patient race, waited and went whoosh on the home turn. She’s a sit sprinter who needs luck and from this awful barrier she will be sent back to last and driven for luck.
8. Miley Perez: Underrated mare who ran Gumdrops to a short half-head last time over a mile at Melton in 1.53.1. She isn’t a champion but will benefit greatly by doing no work here with the inside second row draw following Cyclone Kate. Chris Alford takes back the reins here and worth noting last time she won was with the Puppet on board. Look for her late.
10. Frith: Champion mare who has won 39/57 and 7/11 at the track. Key driver here is Todd McCarthy and you can look for him to take off early and look for the lead. Was wide without cover when they broke the sound barrier at Menangle last time (24.8 1st ¼) and no surprise to see her drop out in what was her worst effort all year. Prior to that sat outside Ameretto at Menangle and won comfortably in 1.50.1 (home in 54.3) after beating another strong Group 3 field there two weeks before. The class of the field and top pick.
12. My Willow: Disappointing last week when she led (as $1.50 favourite) and was run down albeit only beaten 2m behind Gumdrops. Gets a second line draw this week but worth noting she is 3-1-0-1 over the longer journey. Racked up four wins in a row prior to last weeks fourth beating the likes of Milly Perez at Melton and Popfromthebeach (subsequent winner) at Menangle. If you took $1.50 last week you have to back up this week at what will be double figure odds.
13. Ameretto: Brilliant mare who has won 15/35 including her last two at Menangle and Bathurst. Will need luck from the draw but she’s such a good horse that you couldn’t let her go around at > 20/1 without having something small on her.