Racing returns to Hobart this Friday for a twilight fixture featuring the Kevin Sharkie Tasmanian Guineas for the 3yos over the 1600m. The up and coming stayers also get their chance to win ballot free entry into the Hobart Cup in the Brighton Cup which has drawn a capacity field. The track is currently rated Soft 5 but should be upgraded with fine weather forecast, while the rail returns to the True position from the 5.5m position.
Race 1 2:33pm Hobart Cup 8 Feb 3yo Maiden Plate (1000m)
Looks typical speed for a 1000m affair here with The Captain and What An Option looking for the lead ahead of Only Kiss and the first starters Fill Ya Boots and Repeat Fire. Gee Gees Cool Gal may also settle just in behind them while even Mac ‘N’ Muhcu led up over 1200m last time. Won’t be a walk so every horse should get their chance.
The Captain improved sharply at Devonport last prep after failing on heavy ground on debut and ran two good races there before going for a spell. Form out of those runs has been good and he tuned up for this with a trial win in good time. Can find the lead from the draw and should take a lot of catching.
Only Kiss has raced pretty consistently through her short career thus far and can get a cushy run for Moore here drawn 2. Worst run of her career was here at 1000m which is some concern but that was a fast run race which has thrown up a few winners since. Rock hard fit and last couple of efforts have been good enough to suggest she will run a good race here.
Gee Gees Cool Gal has done her better racing over a little further than this but did run a good 3rd here at 1100m 3 starts ago so she may actually enjoy chasing a good tempo over the short trip while fresh. Comes in nicely with Wong’s claim and has form in some reasonable maidens through the spring. Will be running on hard and can feature in the finish with the right run in this.
Fill Ya Boots comes here with blinkers first time for her debut and three good trial efforts under her belt. Well-bred by Magnus, she finds a winnable race to kick off in and the market should be watched closely with this one.
Next best in an open race looks Mac ‘N’ Muhcu (has ability and may prefer chasing at this shorter trip) and What An Option (showed good speed on debut and 1000m may be more suitable), while the first starters Repeat Fire and Union Boss should be respected if there is any market support for them.
Like The Captain here but wary of the debutant Fill Ya Boots. Gee Gees Cool Gal looks the swooper if things get too willing in front.
Race 2 3:08pm Schweppes Maiden Plate (1100m)
No obvious leaders engaged here but a number of these can race on the speed and take up the running if it is available to them. Noblecourt, Ruby’s Faith, Blushing Pink, A Matter Of Time and the newcomer Roitfeld look like being in the front half, with maybe A Choice Scotch having the ability to drive through from the inside draw. Should be enough tempo to give most their chance.
Noblecourt resumes after a promising first preparation where he ran a handy 2nd at this track before failing over this trip when racing in the wrong part of the track. Has the one trial under the belt and looks perfectly drawn in gate 2. Was scratched a fortnight ago so suggest it’s ready to go fresh and looks the top pick here.
You Didn’t continues to race well without really threatening the winners at this trip, running a decent 2nd last time behind a potential smart one in Box Of Frogs. Drawn out in 11 probably isn’t bad and he would like signs of a run-on bias early in the meeting. Has better exposed form than most of these and expect him to be in the finish again.
A Choice Scotch is from a good family having her first race start for Scott Brunton. Has trialled well on 3 occasions leading into this and has the blinkers on ready to go. Gate 1 should be a help for her debut and the market will be vital to watch in a race of little depth.
Roitfeld is another first starter from the Brunton stable and comes here off a 6L trial win last month. Drawn outside but with no obvious leader she may be able to get across in a forward position if she begins well. Market an obvious watch here too and think she has shown enough to be very competitive if fancied.
Berry Wise Fox wasn’t bad on debut when 5th behind Trot On Candy and Box Of Frogs, both who have won since. That race experience should see her further improved here and she has been kept fresh to stay at the 1100m. Might not be up to the best couple of these but expect an honest showing.
Not much else to work with here with the remaining runners having poor exposed form.
Noblecourt and You Didn’t stand out among those who have raced here but both Brunton first-starters are worth considering if they receive market support considering the strength of the race is a bit lower than average.
Race 3 3:46pm Treasury Wine Estates Maiden/Class 1 Plate (1600m)
Plain tempo here with Rangaondarun, Stormy Affair, Tymoshenko, Steven’s Wonder back in trip and Farnor West the ones looking for forward positions, while Crib Point may race closer with the blinkers on. Doubt there will be much pressure however so the on-pacers seemingly get their chance.
Crib Point has had a little freshen since her 8th at Launceston where she had excuses and has blinkers first time here. With Carr on she may settle much closer to the speed than usual and has very good recent form at this track and distance range. Been up for a while which is a concern but if she can run up to her best form this prep she’ll be hard to beat.
Kissed By Fire ran a very strong last 800m to win a fast-run 1400m maiden last time and the 1600m looks more suitable again. Overall time was good there as were her sectionals and the race is throwing up a bit of from since. Finds this harder but gets back to her home track and has more scope than most of these. Big hope.
Prominent Star got a long way back last time in a race the fancied backmarkers didn’t get into the race so he can be forgiven somewhat. Stays at this trip and will be suited by any run on bias. Previous form this prep very good in races which compare favourably to this so he appeals as a major danger here.
Kompressor finally broke through last time in impressive style when finding the fast lane down the outside to win by a space. Not sure he will have the same luxury here with the rail back to the True position but it may give him the confidence to go on. This is harder but McCoull is in good form and he can run into the finish again.
Steven’s Wonder notched up his first win at start 35 last time in Launceston over 2100m and doesn’t look overly suited back to 1600m here after four consecutive runs at the longer trip. Has run some good races at this track and trip previously however and can get a good run near the lead. Hangs in so won’t want the fence to be going off and has plenty of tricks but can give a sight under suitable conditions.
Next best Rangaondarun, who ran ok last time despite being awkwardly away and can give a sight from the front if he begins well from the inside barrier.
6 genuine winning hopes here in a competitive race. The addition of blinkers may be enough to get Crib Point to a long overdue 2nd victory, while Kissed By Fire is the fresh one on the scene without the convictions many of these have.
Race 4 4:26pm Tasracing.com.au Maiden/Class 1 Plate (1600m)
Just a standard tempo here with Miss Choosey likely to take up the running from her outside gate. Off The Grid, Poacher’s Son, She’s Rosie and Ohsotuf can all be handy but none really want to be challenging for the lead on exposed form. Ile Aux Cygnes can be up there if she begins well but her racing style is quite inconsistent.
Zemiro has been racing well in these type of races recently, finishing close up on her last 3 outings but hasn’t been able to break through. Got a long way back last time and ran home well but never really threatened. Tempo should be quite different this time and she has a big finish when she can travel into the race. Has to bring her form to Hobart which is a little query but she hasn’t raced her in the style of form she is in. One of the better chances here.
Miss Choosey gave a bold sight in front last time in maiden company when a tough 3rd over 1400m and looks suited here bowling along at the mile. Both runs have been good this prep but will find this a little tougher than what she has been contesting. Still untapped and improving and she can give a huge sight in this with the right run in front.
Storm Gust was a bit disappointing last time and has the winkers applied for the first time here in a bid to sharpen him up. Maskiell takes the ride and brings him in nicely at the weights with the claim and he has form around most of the major chances in this. Needs to improve on his last run and has his first try at this track but reckon it will suit and his best is good enough to be right in the finish here.
Squire comes back from attempting 2100m for the first time where he was a good 2nd behind Steven’s Wonder. Previous run at a mile was his first try and he wasn’t far behind Zemiro and Storm Gust there. Reckon he’ll be better suited at the mile with the miles in his legs now and can run home well here with genuine winning claims.
She’s Rosie has also been racing well in this grade without winning and has reasonable form here on her home track. Outside gate isn’t ideal at this start but can race forward and that looks an advantage in this. Finished alongside Zemiro a couple of starts back so her form ties in alright and she looks to have at least a good place chance racing on the speed.
Next best Ile Aux Cygnes, who mixes her form but did run 3rd at similar trip here last prep behind Geegees Classicboy.
Competitive race with at least 4 strong winning hopes and hard to split them. With many of them wanting to get back and run on, maybe Miss Choosey racing on speed is a point of difference to go with.
Race 5 5:06pm Derby Day 5 Feb Class 2 Handicap (1400m)
Very competitive race up front here with One Shot Off, D’inzeo, Extended Warranty and Into The Wind all capable of being right on the speed here with Tara’s Gem close up also. Should be a good enough tempo to give the backmarkers their chance if good enough.
Extended Warranty is a mare on the up who got in the wrong spot first up before working home well to run 2nd behind promising galloper Son Of Faith. Placed in a Sandown maiden over this longer trip and it looks very suitable for her as she can hit a flat spot at the shorter trips. Drawn nicely in 4 and should be able to get a good spot on the speed. Won easily at her only start on her home track and she looks a leading chance in this.
Tara’s Gem was scratched on Wednesday to run here and it looks a good spot to try the 1400m for the first time. Drawn 3 for Carr, she should find a good spot just behind the leaders and the extra trip looks fine on her past couple of wins at 1150m. Has to bring her Tapeta form to the turf which is the main query, with her only run on turf in Launceston being the worst of her career. Rates as one of the better hopes here.
One Shot Off is a lightly raced 6yo mare who was only beaten 4.4L by Admiral at WFA two starts back. Led and finished alongside Extended Warranty last time and is better suited up to the 1400m. Should be in the first 2 here in the run but she won’t want the inside to be going off as she can hang back to the fence and would be disadvantaged doing so. Definite chance if conditions suit.
Varian resumes here after 3 runs in the spring but should still have some residual fitness as he didn’t have a long break. Hasn’t won at this track but has run a number of placings, while his 1400m form is good. Maskiell’s claim brings him in well at the weights and he should get a strong tempo to suit his run-on style. Finds it hard to win but would appreciate any run-on pattern and is a genuine winning hope.
Next best in an open race Boart (nice win 2nd up in right part of track in easier race, hasn’t won past 1200m but no reason he shouldn’t be able to run 1400m), Into The Wind (promising mare who has run 2nd at all 5 1400m runs, inexperienced rider) and D’inzeo (good run last time when on worst part of track, suited by step up in trip, would prefer less pressure in front).
Genuine hopes to 7 runners here. Extended Warranty looks the obvious to run well but has some tricks. One Shot Off is capable of running good time out in front and can win if leaders are featuring, while the market is well worth monitoring with Varian.
Race 6 5:46pm Brighton Cup (2100m)
A big field racing for ballot-free entry into the Hobart Cup here but surprisingly not a lot of obvious speed on paper. The Derby winner Geegees Classicboy can roll to the lead without too much obvious pressure in contrast to his recent racing, while Geegees Brightstar and Milson can roll forward into a forward position. Lingo, Hugo, Follow My Dust and Prom King are all capable of racing a bit closer at this trip, while the emergency Steven’s Wonder would put a bit more speed into the race should he gain a start.
Player One has had tongues wagging this prep with a number of good performances before being undone in the Tasmanian Stakes last time by an unsuitably slow tempo at WFA. Back to his home track here where he has won 6 races including a 3rd in the Summer Cup last year and a 5 length win in lesser grade at this trip. Drawn wide but that tends to suit him and he is capable of making a mid-race move if the tempo isn’t to Darmanin’s liking. Looks an obvious winning chance back in grade here.
Hugo is an unlikely runner after racing in the Devonport Cup on Wednesday where he was a very good effort finishing well from the back. Is a stayer with a future and is racing in especially good form so if he does back up he should be very highly regarded as one of the leading chances to win this.
Gladstone has run respectably in two unsuitable races since joining the Scott Brunton stable and finds something much more to his liking here. Has good metropolitan WA form at this distance range and has form around some of the better chances in this race in his efforts over shorter trips. Wide gate shouldn’t be too much of an issue as he will go back but he would like some pressure into the race up front. Expecting a much improved run here.
Geegees Brightstar has beaten some nice horses at his past two runs and comes into this in excellent form. Only try at this trip was a 5th in the Hobart Guineas before being spelled so it is probably ok but still a little query at this stage of his career. Ability to race forward should be a bonus in this and in the form he is in he has to be given a winning chance.
Settler’s Stone was a very good effort here two back over 1400m before running home ok when never really suited in the Longford Cup. Races well at this track and is looking for the 2100m now. Stays down in the weights and does need to improve further up to this grade but his run two back was of an improved galloper and he’s on an upward spiral so definite respect here.
Milson was somewhat unlucky last time in what turned into a very messy race behind Shipspotting here at this trip, successfully protesting to obtain 3rd position after being interfered with in the straight. Gets a nice weight drop to tackle the tougher grade here and may get a gun run on speed. Has run well in everything he has contested this time in and expect him to be right in the mix again.
Next best in an open race Lingo (good in the Longford Cup, drawn inside and can take up a position which should suit in this and has won here at this trip in weaker grade), Follow My Dust (4yo with a touch of class who has been running alright in unsuitable races but is unproven at this trip), Geegees Classicboy (run two starts ago was much better than it reads, can forgive Devonport run and gets a comfortable on speed run here) and Shiralee (going ok, will find this harder but has quality 3yo staying form on his resume and might just be looking for this trip).
Open race but Player One does appeal as the top pick. Just about every runner in the field can run a bit of a race but think Settler’s Stone appeals as one on the up and Geegees Classicboy can give a sight from the front.
Race 7 6:17pm Young Racing Tasmania Fillies & Mares Benchmark 72 Handicap (1400m)
Looks to be good pressure for the lead here with Lady Jane and Skip To The Moon capable of being right there, while Savvy Princess, Secrets She Has, Genuine Art can be at least handy if not pushing towards the lead themselves. Should be enough there to give the swoopers their chance.
Hyperbole has been in excellent form this time in and looks well placed here 4th up to the 1400m. Ran a nose 2nd in this race last year and does like racing on her home track. Drawn wide but she should appreciate a good tempo and drawn out can often be an advantage later in the day at Hobart. Suited and hard to see her not being in the finish.
Downwind is a good mare who doesn’t win overly often but runs a lot of very good races. Hasn’t had the chance to get into the race his past couple but ran on ok last time and should be suited by the tempo in this. Likes her home track and this trip is ok so with the speed on there’s no reason she can’t be running on hard and she looks one of the better chances.
Secrets She Has is a good mare looking for 1400m. Very good at both her runs at that trip last prep and looks ready for it now 3rd up. May decide to go on with it from wide gate but won’t want to cop too much pressure. Up to this on her 3yo form and has a good hope.
Skip To The Moon was very good last time in a fast run race, beating home some smart horses in the process. Will find this easier and gets in well with Thornton’s claim to somewhat offset her inexperience. Doesn’t win out of turn and has had 40 days between runs but this is her type of race and she can win.
Lustica hasn’t really shown up this prep but may be looking for the 1400m now and gets in nicely with Maskiell’s claim. Gate 4 looks just about ideal and she should be able to find a suitable position in-running according to the tempo. Yet to win at Hobart in 4 goes but has run some good races here. Will need to improve on her early runs this prep but certainly talented on her younger form.
Genuine Art is a lightly raced filly racing well out of her grade but is firmly on the up. Did what she had to do last time in maiden grade and kept fresh for the 1400m. Needs to improve again and may find this grade a bit early in her career but she has plenty of ability and has a hope down in the weights from a good draw.
Next best Lady Jane (very talented but just plain first up and haven’t seen the best of her for a while, first go 1400 but good draw) and Finalargee (might find this a bit tough but good enough at Longford and going ok).
Hard to go past Hyperbole here in what looks a very suitable race. Many chances outside of her in a typically even mares race.
Race 8 6:52pm Kevin Sharkie Tasmanian Guineas (1600m)
Not a lot of genuine speed here as most of these 3yos get to the mile for the first time. Ariconte (although with blinkers off they may look for a sit) and The Master Speed showed last time they can race on the speed, as did Jerilderie Letter in the 3yo Trophy and Gee Gees Top Notch can look to box seat at this longer trip. Turtles Nest may also look to go forward at the mile. Wouldn’t expect there to be too much pressure so the on-pacers should be advantaged.
Jerilderie Letter was very impressive last time out when winning the 3yo Trophy over 1400m in Launceston, defeating many of his rivals here. He showed plenty of early speed to negate the wide barrier yet was still strong at the finish, indicating the 1600m shouldn’t be an issue. This race has been his target all prep so suggest he will be cherry ripe. Should get a beautiful run near the lead from gate 6 for Darmanin and looks very hard to beat.
Gee Gees Top Notch is a very classy filly who had her colours lowered in the Trophy by Jerilderie Letter when an odds-on favourite. She enjoyed a lovely run just behind the leaders there for Carr and had no excuses. She is bred to run the trip and races well on her home track but with defeats (albeit narrow) at both her 1400m runs and her brilliant turn of foot there may be a tiny query on the mile. Should get the right run again just behind the speed and should be right in the finish again.
The Master Speed has made a bit of an impression this time in with two good wins in weaker grade and deserves his chance at the top level. Was a few lengths off some of these as a 2yo so there is still a strong class query on him in this but he has the ability to race right on the speed which should suit here and the mile doesn’t look beyond him on his breeding. He’s the one on the up who may challenge the favourites.
Siorca was very disappointing in the Trophy last time but did have the blinkers off there and they go straight back on here. Was well in the market on that occasion and does shape as though the mile will suit him. Needs a big form reversal to beat the top two here but the extra distance and the blinkers will help and he should be considered if the market gives up on him.
Nissky ran a nice race in the Trophy to run 4th and is another who looks suited by the step up to the mile. Draws inside again and showed last time he can take up a midfield position so he should enjoy a good run. Needs to improve again to beat the favourites but looks to get every chance to show what he’s made of.
Outside of the favourites it’s quite an even race, so further minor chances to Speedhump (well beaten in the Trophy but late splits were good and wants the mile) and Ariconte (pushed The Master Speed last time in C1 grade and wasn’t bad in the 3yo Cup), while Claiborne King was a surprisingly good run at big odds in the Trophy and is another who can run on over the mile here.
Hard to go past the two favourites Jerilderie Letter and Gee Gee Top Notch, and see no reason why the boy won’t beat the girl again. The Master Speed brings the different form line, and while Siorca might not have come up this prep he could be the improver at odds with blinkers back on.
Race 9 7:25pm Tasracingclub.com.au Class 1 Handicap (1100m)
Looks a genuine tempo here with Gee Gees Vicki, Box Of Frogs and Sunday Cider all capable of vying for the lead. Aquila Royale, Jacques, Swinging Ali and Morgatoche can all be in the firing line if desired also.
Box Of Frogs has had plenty of market support in his two runs thus far and showed why last time with a dominant victory. His time measured up favourably to others on the day there and his debut run was also good behind subsequent winner Trot On Candy. Drawn well here to take advantage of whatever track pattern may eventuate and he looks a top chance to make it two in a row.
Aquila Reale resumed nicely when 2nd behind Boart over 1200m here 3 weeks ago. Drop back to 1100m isn’t ideal but she has run well over this trip previously. Drawn inside might be tricky late in the day if the inside has gone off but she has some tactical speed to try and overcome that if need be. Promising mare with a good hope here.
Gee Gees Vicki was very good last time when nearly beating I’m Wesley at his own game, sitting outside him and only succumbing over the last 50m. Has been knocking on the door for a while but finding unsuitable races so she looks just about ready to win now. In light with Wong’s claim but like Aquila Reale she is drawn inside and won’t want the ground near the fence to be inferior by this time of the day. If the leaders are still figuring she can be right in the finish.
Swinging Ali drops right back in grade after unsuccessfully contesting the feature 3yo races at his past couple. Impressive maiden winner in decent time before that over this track and distance and this is much more suitable. Wide draw means he is likely to cover ground on speed but feasible that it could be an advantage late in the day and Carr is riding in super form. Looks the big improver here.
Jacques did a good job to win on debut, sitting outside the hot favourite Lotza Luck and beating him on his merits. Time was quite slow there however so the form is a query and he will need to improve going into this much harder race, but being only his second start the scope is there. Also drawn inside so track pattern will be vital but McCoull is riding very well and can find the right part of the track. Want to see him do it again but don’t want to underestimate him.
Next best All Bar Madison who has been thereabouts in some handy races, while Morgatoche can improve on her Devonport run and show up with the right run.
Brunton stable looks to hold the keys here with Box Of Frogs and Aquila Reale looking the hardest to beat, but watch out for Siggy on Swinging Ali should the fence be off by the last race.