Night racing in Launceston commences this Wednesday night for the new racing season and the 8 race program has attracted some big fields with plenty of depth. The rail starts in the 6m position which can often advantage those near the fence but this may be negated by the amount of rain the track has received in the lead up to the meeting. Expect to work with a genuine soft track and any further rain nearer to race time may even see it end up in the heavy range, so monitoring the track conditions will be vital in the quest to find a winner.
Race 1 6:25pm Tradies & Ladies 19th October Class 1 Handicap (1200m)
Genuine speed here with Greensborough, Galeocerdo, Chelsarli and Almost Art all capable of running to the lead. A Choice Scotch and Tuscan Classic can be there from good draws, while Danzqui and Kirribilli Kid can push on from wide barriers. Enough pressure to give them all their chance here.
4. A Choice Scotch: Was unsuited when resuming in Hobart on heavy ground from an inside barrier. Managed to run a reasonable 4th there behind Turtles Nest but looks better suited here with a bit of weight relief and up to 1200m. Drawn to get a gun run near the lead and ran well at her only start here. Nice mare who looks well placed and will take some beating.
1. Greensborough: Has his first run on the turf here after three good runs on the Tapeta surface in Devonport. Showed increasingly good early speed in those runs so expect him to hold the lead from his inside draw. Unknown on wet ground and yet to prove himself up to the 1200m but gets good claim for Clark and is a leading chance.
13. Danzqui: Is racing in good form with placings at her past two runs on rain affected ground in Hobart. This doesn’t seem any harder and she stays down in the weights. Hard to assess the wide draw – with enough rain it may prove to be an advantage. Won her maiden here by a space on wet ground so has a bit going for her and she should run well again.
3. Tuscan Classic: Has done all his racing in Tasmania on the Tapeta surface also and has rarely been too far away at the finish. 4th at Ararat early in his career on soft ground should dispel any concerns about getting onto the turf and the middle draw could be perfect if the track is considerably rain-affected. Claim for Maskiell helps and his form is good enough to be a good hope in this.
9. Phantasmagoria: Resumes from a spell of over a year after having operations on both fetlocks. Her runs at this track have been good, winning her maiden over this course as well as running 2nd behind Qui Samer in this grade on a wet track. First-up in a wet 1200m will be a test but has a trial under her belt and has placed fresh last time in. Keep an eye on the market and respect any significant moves.
Next best Marbel Duke (resumes after two trials, won maiden over this course on soft ground, not hopeless fresh).
As many as five strong chances to kick off the night. Happy to forgive A Choice Scotch for her first-up run on wet ground and think she can improve sharply here.
BACK (E/W) A Choice Scotch for 3 units
Race 2 7:05pm goracingtasmania.com.au Maiden Plate (1200m)
Kaoru and Under Milkwood look the leaders here without much obvious pressure behind them. Christopher Mac may push forward from his good draw while Turbogoesbananas, White Hawk and the newcomer Lemilkey may land in the first half of the field. No disadvantage to be on speed in this.
12. White Hawk: Is a very promising 3yo coming off a very good run second-up in Hobart when narrowly beaten by Kepta. Finished strongly in arguably the worst going there in what reads as a stronger race than what he contests here. Drawn out probably suits him to stay out of trouble and wet conditions are no issue. Clear top pick.
3. Impulsive Lager: Made good improvement last prep to record a couple of placings, including a very close 2nd here over 1400m behind What An Option. First-up 4th behind Marbel Duke over this course is a reasonable pointer to a good run here although he is unknown on genuinely wet ground. Gets back so will need luck but if horses can run on he appeals as the main danger.
13. Kaoru: Wasn’t bad over 1000m at his first run for Trinder when forced to race wide throughout before leading them up last time before faltering behind runaway winner Ty Dash. Gets right down in the weights here with Graham’s 4kg claim and is drawn to lead from the inside gate. Failed on heavy ground on debut in Victoria which concerns if the track gets too wet but he can give a sight in a race without depth.
1. Christopher Mac: Resumes after a reasonable first prep which resulted in a placing over this course before failing when stepped up to 1400m. Has the early speed to take advantage of a good draw and both runs at this track have been ok. Well bred gelding who may well have matured over his break and can show up here in a shallow race.
11. Lemilkey: Is a nicely bred 3yo who makes his debut here with two reasonable trials under his belt at Devonport. Wide draw may be tricky unless the track is wet enough for it to be an advantage so pay close attention to the conditions. Looks the best performed of the newcomers from the trials so watch the market and respect any positive moves.
Next best Under Milkwood (speedy customer who struggles to finish off his races but drawn out suits and recent trial was good).
White Hawk is a highly promising 3yo who can prove too strong for his rivals here.
BACK (WIN) White Hawk for 10 units
Race 3 7:45pm Luxbet Maiden Plate (1200m)
Not much speed on paper here. Farewell Angelina won’t be far away from the good draw while All About Elouise should push forward from her wide draw. Angel Of The Abyss may settle a bit closer with race experience under her belt and La Sylphide may settle closest of the debutants. Whoever ends up on speed looks advantaged.
4. Farewell Angelina: A consistent mare coming here off two narrow defeats at Hobart at the hands of Hushama and Kuusela, who both look to be above average. Inside draw should be fine with a lack of speed engaged, as Pires should have the option to stay on the fence or work away from it while racing near the lead. Should be spot on at her third run after a short break and only has to maintain her form to be breaking through.
9. Angel Of The Abyss: Ran a nice race first-up in Hobart, somewhat showing why there was market support for her in her first preparation. Last start may prove to be a handy form race, with the fourth-placed Scuttlebutt winning since and the second-placed White Hawk fancied in the previous race. Drawn out might be alright on wet ground and a slower tempo would help her race closer to the lead. Genuine danger.
8. All About Elouise: Was fancied on debut over 900m when sent out $2.60 but had to settle for 3rd after racing wide. Did enough there to suggest she has ability and tuned up for this with a narrow 2nd at the trials in respectable time. First up over 1200m may prove an ask if the rain continues and the track is particularly testing but Maskiell’s claim to bring her in on the minimum will help as will a potentially comfortable run on speed. Watch the market but suggest she’s in the mix.
11. La Sylphide: A very nicely bred filly by High Chaparral who has done enough in two trials to suggest she has a bit of a future. Siggy Carr takes the ride and the outside draw may be suitable if the track is chopping up early. Probably better in time but keep an eye on the market and she can at least figure in the place money if supported.
Next best Aggie (well bred filly who wasn’t hopeless at two runs at Devonport, may be better getting onto the turf and can show up at longer odds).
Scott Brunton holds a strong hand here again. Happy to stay with Farewell Angelina who has run into a couple of handy horses and now gets her chance to break through.
BACK (WIN) Farewell Angelina for 6 units
Race 4 8:25pm Field Family 3yo Handicap (1100m)
Chillout and I Love This Bar look the leaders from inside draws, while Gee Gee Spitfire can work across to be handy to the speed. The rest all look to race off speed, although Tremotino is unknown with no public appearances.
1. Chillout: Resumes here after a successful 2yo campaign which saw him win at his first two starts convincingly before coming undone out to 1200m on heavy ground at the final run of his prep. Won his debut convincingly over this course and isn’t badly in with Clark’s claim. Inside draw may be a concern if the fence is going off and very heavy conditions might test him but he’s a smart horse in the making who deserves to be a very warm favourite in this.
3. Gee Gee Spitfire: Resumed in nice style at Devonport when he ran home for 2nd behind a handy mare in Fill Ya Boots. Only run here was a well beaten 6th in the Gold Sovereign behind Hot Dipped but he wasn’t disgraced. From a wide draw he can come across to sit near the speed and he may be advantaged if the inside is going off. Genuine winning chance.
2. Jupiter’s Moon: A very nice horse in the making who comes back to 1100m after an impressive victory against older horses over 1350m at Devonport. 2yo form on turf was quite good for a horse who was always going to be improved at 3 but he is yet to strike a wet track so that will be a query. Gets back in his races and may find a couple of these a bit sharp over this trip but if the swoopers are featuring he comes right into the mix.
7. I Love This Bar: A speedy filly who ran a handy 2nd here first up last prep on heavy ground before breaking her maiden with a game win at Devonport. Trialled well enough leading into this and should be right in the firing line in the run, being drawn directly to Chillout’s outside. Honest type who hasn’t done a whole lot wrong but might just lack the class of the first few hopes.
5. Tremotino: Makes his debut here for Scott Brunton but has picked a pretty tough spot to kick off in. Nicely bred gelding but hasn’t been seen at the public trials so trying to predict how he will go is pretty difficult. Market should be the best guide but he would want to be very smart to be beating a field like this on debut.
Next best Canam (this looks a big jump in grade on his recent efforts in Devonport maidens and went awful here at only wet track run).
Gate 1 and a lot of rain would make it dangerous to take short odds about the resuming class horse Chillout (1) here but all things being equal he should be able to return with a win here. Jupiter’s Moon (2) will provide stiff opposition if the swoopers are featuring.
BACK (WIN) Chillout for 4 units
Race 5 9:00pm Northern Hunt Club Class 3 Handicap (1400m)
Big field but only a standard tempo on paper. Expect Ariconte to push forward from his wide draw with Miss Choosey and Steel Brom to his outside. The emergency Before All will go forward if she gets a run, while Secrets She Has is capable of going forward at this trip if desired. Hushama and Speedhump can be thereabouts in the run also.
10. Ariconte: Continues to race well out of his grade, having placed at all three runs this prep at Devonport. Racing up in grade again keeps him down in the weights and he gets to 1400m now where he has placed at both tries at this track. No doubt he is up to this grade on his recent efforts as well has his game efforts in good 3yo company last season and he should get a good run near the lead. His main issue may be the wet ground as he failed on it here as a 2yo. Hard to beat but probably doesn’t want it too wet.
3. Speedhump: Was given a big task first-up in Hobart when resuming over 1400m with 59kg on very heavy ground. No surprise he didn’t finish off there but he should strip much fitter with that run under his belt. Broke his maiden over this course last season and then proved his worth with a close-up 5th in the Tasmanian Guineas. Wet ground would be some query again but better equipped to handle it this time and he can get a good run from a middle draw. Will take some beating if he produces his best.
5. Sphero: Has put together a couple of good runs in Hobart on wet ground but looks ready now after a game 3rd last time. Loves this track with a win and three 2nds from 6 tries here including a close 2nd in his only try over this course when he beat home Ariconte. Wet ground is no issue and outside draw might prove perfect by this stage of the night. Definitely a winning hope.
8. Hushama: Disappointed on Sunday at Devonport but raced wide in the run and can be excused that effort. Gets back onto wet ground here which may have been the key to her two impressive wins in Hobart to start this campaign. First go up to 1400m but gets in light for Wong and races like it should suit. May not take her place on the quick back-up but if she does she commands plenty of respect.
11. Secrets She Has: Has finally fared a bit better at the barriers after coming up with the outside draw at both runs this time in at Devonport. Drawing the middle should give Baker plenty of options depending how the track is racing and she is also capable of racing closer to the lead over this longer trip. Her 1400m form is generally solid and she has placed on heavy ground. Could show up here at longer odds.
Next best Miss Choosey (getting fitter, loves this track, not bad last time and can roll forward, in with a hope).
Very even race with many chances. Ariconte (10) and Speedhump (3) have a bit of class about them but also a query on genuinely wet ground. Happy to go with Sphero (5) who is working to his peak and likes the conditions of this race.
BACK (WIN) Sphero 2 units
Race 6 9:30pm Neil Buckby Motors Benchmark 82 Handicap (1200m)
Many on-pacers engaged here but Issawi looks set to find the lead as he likes again. Gee Gees Jet will likely push on from his wide draw to be near the lead, while Gee Gees Style and Snippetee Bee can go quick when they are in the mood. Steel Moon, Spirit Of Nia and Vigilante can also look to box seat in what should be a genuinely run race.
1. Issawi: Is racing in super form, having won his past four starts and six of his last seven. Wet conditions appear to be no issue, having won here on heavy ground and bolting in last time at Hobart on a soft track. Should find the lead here again and is fast enough to get wider on the track if necessary before the others get to him. In well enough at the weights with Barr’s claim and no reason he won’t win again.
5. Gee Gees Jet: Resumed in Hobart with a query over his ability to handle a wet track but he proved himself on the heavy ground with a comfortable win carrying 59kg. Goes up in grade here but raced well in BM72 grade as a 3yo as well as competing with the best sprinters of his age. Nice weight drop here and outside draw may be suitable by this time of the night. Looks one of the major dangers.
7. Spirit Of Nia: Loves wet conditions and resumed in decent fashion in Hobart when a well beaten 3rd behind Issawi. Races really well at this track, having won 5 races, but although she has placed 4 of 5 goes over this course she is yet to win and usually wants a tad further. Should get a good run from a middle draw from Pires and has strong place claims again.
8. Vigilante: Stuck on well two starts back in Hobart when he tried to test Issawi in the middle stages but that horse was just too good for him. Can forgive his last run over 1400m in very heavy conditions and he is much better suited back to 1200m here. Wide draw may prove a bonus but a concern that he hasn’t placed here in 7 tries. That said, none of those attempts have been on his preferred soft ground so consider him a genuine place chance at least.
Next best Private Currency (put together two good wins on heavy ground in Hobart but this is harder and not sure back to 1200m is ideal at this stage of his prep) and Snippetee Bee (may have seen better days but getting down in weights and loves wet ground).
How can you go past Issawi? He’s a winner, the handicapper still hasn’t quite got him and he finds a pretty suitable race again.
BACK (WIN) Issawi for 8 units
Race 7 10:00pm Cascade Brewery Benchmark 72 Handicap (2100m)
Shouldn’t be too much pressure for the front here. Electric Crimson likes to roll forward while Charcol and Welcome Invader can go forward as they have done recently in Hobart. These three should get every chance in the run, with Big Pegg and Holy Cat most likely of the rest to push forward to take up a position just behind the leaders.
2. Electric Crimson: Has been very good at both runs back from a spell at Devonport, racing well over shorter trips but being picked off late on both occasions. Gets up to his preferred trip here and in three runs over this course he has won twice and placed 2nd on the other occasion. Gets a good run on speed and Clark’s claim doesn’t hurt but some concern he failed twice on wet ground at the end of his last prep. Looks a leading chance in an open race, especially if the track is drying out.
3. Accounted Four: Was most impressive last time in Hobart when winning on heavy ground over this trip after jumping from 1400m. Up in grade but comes up against many of his rivals that he defeated so comfortably there. Arguably should have beaten Bitter Dan over this course this time last year so this track doesn’t hold too many fears but does need luck with his get back racing style, especially in a race without a lot of obvious pressure. One of the better hopes.
4. Gwemrae: Has her first run for Scott Brunton here and is crying out for this trip after five runs over shorter trips at Devonport. Last four runs have all been good in pretty decent company and last season she showed herself to be a stayer with a future with a win here in this grade beating Smoke ‘N’ Whisky over 2150m. Races well at this track and has genuine winning claims.
5. Big Pegg: Was disappointing last time when favourite over this trip in Hobart but doubt she was suited racing in the pack on heavy ground. Won well the start prior in similar conditions when able to race on speed and she would be advantaged if she could do likewise here. Jumps in grade but capable on this track, on wet ground and over this trip so expect her to be in the mix again.
6. Charcol: Did a pretty good job last time over 2100m in Hobart but was no match for Accounted Four over the concluding stages. Should be fitter for that run and has form around a number of the major chances in this. Gets right down in the weights and can go forward and make his own luck. Only the winner of two races and may find one or two of these a bit good for him but he has strong place claims at least.
Next best Holy Cat (much better last time behind Zigold, hasn’t missed a place over this course in five goes, can figure on his best).
Tricky race with Scott Brunton having four genuine winning chances. Going with the recent addition Gwemrae (4) who has been racing well without luck at Devonport and is ready for the 2100m trip now, but there are as many as 6 solid winning hopes.
BACK (E/W) Gwemrae for 2 units
Race 8 10:30pm Jansz Benchmark 62 Handicap (1600m)
Big field here but not many of these are natural on-pacers. Himation can take up the running on the quick back-up ahead of Ronaldo’s Goal and Diamond Cutter going forward from the outside gate. The rest of these like to settle off the speed so if rated well these on-pacers look advantaged.
3. King Manu: Has run very well in two starts back from a break in Hobart, placing on both occasions over 1400m behind Private Currency on wet ground. Will appreciate the rise in trip and big drop in grade, while Wong’s claim goes some way to offset the weight rise. Both runs at this track have been good over longer but the mile should be ideal at this stage of his prep. Only has to run up to his past couple of efforts to be top pick here.
5. Storm Gust: Was very good last start at Devonport when coming from last to win his C1 in dominant fashion over the mile. Kept on the fresh side to stay at the mile here but should appreciate getting onto the turf and the wet conditions. Won here in July in heavy conditions but this is his first attempt in benchmark company. Looks capable of making the jump and has strong claims if horses can make ground from back in the field by this stage of the night.
4. Ronaldo’s Goal: Was a different horse second-up for Scott Brunton at Devonport, winning an admittedly weak C1 but doing it in very impressive style. Showed a much better turn of foot there off a very slow tempo which should help him coming back to the mile. Placed four runs back at Bairnsdale on heavy ground so wet conditions shouldn’t be an issue and he can roll forward from a wider draw to get a good run on speed. Definite chance.
6. Diamond Cutter: Did the job off the back of a gun ride two starts back at Devonport and his last start 5th over this trip was very respectable in harder grade than this. Also has the ability to go forward which may be an advantage here and who better to have on to do so than Clark. Capable up to 2000m in Victoria so should be fine at the end of a tough mile. Fresh on this scene but should be very competitive.
2. Himation: On the quick back-up from a plain effort on Sunday at Devonport but getting onto wet ground on the turf looks like his go. Has been consistent racing on Tapeta through the winter but his run here on heavy ground over this trip behind Cheryl’s Horse was very good in BM82 grade. Beat home the likes of Vandemeer and Clan Mcleod there which reads as super form for this. Hasn’t won for a long time and testing the patience of his backers but the wet ground may be just what he is looking for.
Next best Quirribilly Lodge (good over this course three back on heavy ground so while this is quite strong this is his go) and Princess Atilla (maybe better suited at this trip after racing over 2100m and wet ground no issue).
King Manu ticks all the boxes here – in good form, likes wet ground, capable at this track and an ideal step up to 1600m – so he is going to take a lot of beating. That said, there are plenty here with some chance for those looking for a result in the last leg of their quaddie.
BACK (WIN) King Manu for 4 units