Hobart Race 8 | Hobart Cup | 2400m Open G3 Hcp  | 5:08pm AEDT

The Track

The track is currently a Good 4 with the rail out +3m after being in the true position for Friday’s Derby meeting. There’s an 80% chance of 5-10mm rain on Saturday night and if that arrives we will be looking at something like a Soft 6 track.

With wear and tear from Friday’s meeting we are likely to see them get well off the fence rounding the turn and into the home straight.


Speed and Tactics

There are plenty of horses that like to settle handy to the pace, but no established leaders. Pretty Punk (10) has been up on pace from inside draws in her past three starts and from out wide here C Williams will need to press well forward, or settle back.

Early Da Vinci (1), Dee I Cee (2) and Geegees Goldengirl (5) are others that could be ridden positively enough to set the speed.

Jockey intent will play the major role in how they sort themselves out here and once they do, the natural running style of the likely leaders should see the pace slacken in the middle stages, before increasing again somewhere between 800m and 600m from home.

Early Pace Rating: Below Average

Late Pace Rating: Average to Above Average

Best Suited: The pace itself is likely to suit those handy to the lead, but with the ground in the straight likely to be better out wide, that will give those looking to swoop their chance to win.


WFA Performance Ratings - Winning Benchmark

The likely winning standard of this race at the weights to be carried will be at least 96 and potentially higher. There are a number of horses with competitive ratings either within or just below that mark.


Race Assessment

7. Andrea Mantegna: Forecast 96.5-100. Assessed $2.90

A Weir import who has gone to a new level in his last three runs, rating 95.5 and 96.5 in Melbourne, before heading to Adelaide and bolting in over 2250m by 5.3L with a big 102 rating spike at the weights in this race, stamped by very strong measures on the clock. I don’t necessarily expect him to repeat that rating here, with the Weir polish and a top-class rider in D Lane, there’s every reason to expect he’ll run somewhere in his peak range and that puts him clearly on top of this field as the horse to beat.

8. Eastender: Forecast 96 - 97.5. Assessed $5.50

He’s an emerging stayer (just 13 starts) who ran to a good 96.6 rating at his last start over 2100m and has a previous win at 2400m. He’s a genuine threat in this race.

2. Pretty Punk: Forecast 94.5-96. Assessed $8.00

She’s racing in good form with consistent ratings in the 94.5 to 95.5 range and she has a one-off peak of 96.4. That’s very competitive here, but there’s a few that could push the winning mark higher and after 22 starts I have to question if Pretty Punk has a new peak in her. She’s is well proven at this trip and has to be among the chances, but I can’t find her at anywhere near the $4.60 currently on offer in the market.

4. Fastnet Dragon: Forecast 95-96. Assessed $8.00

An ex Singapore galloper who took a good step forward in his ratings last start when he won at WFA over 2200m, giving him a competitive 95 rating with just 54kg in this race. He has the potential to improve further and looks likely to find the best part of the straight in the run home.

6. Brilliant Jet: Forecast 94-96. Assessed $14.00

Brings very competitive ratings from his last two runs at 1600m and 1880m, but 32 days off with a trial seems a less than an ideal set up for your first run over 2400m.

1. Dee I Cee: 93-94. Assessed $15.00

He’s $5.50 in current markets at the moment, but I can’t find him as anything but a longshot chance. He’s racing in good form, but with 59kg here he comes in with a last start rating of just 94 and that’s the best we’ve seen of him in the last two years. That won’t be good enough to win this race, so he needs to improve just to get into the finish and then there’s more than a couple of horses around that mark also in the picture. Add to that the fact that barrier 2 looks a disadvantage with the way the track is likely to play and I can’t like him in this.

3. Geegees Goldengirl: 92-93.5. Assessed $31.00

She’s solid in the 93-94 range over 2200m, but that’s not good enough to win this race and there’s a query if 2400m is just a touch too far.

5. Up Cups: 92-94. Assessed $31.00

He won this race in 2016 and his last start run was OK, but a 93 rating is as good as we’ve seen from him in a long time and that won’t be good enough to win this race.

10. Speed Force: 89-92. Assessed $51.00

Over-raced early and ran below expectations in the Summer Cup over 2200m last start. That’s a poor platform to go to 2400m in this race and run to the clear new peak that will be needed to win.

11. Earl Da Vinci: 87-93. Assessed $61.00

His ratings aren’t competitive here and Barrier 1 is likely to be a disadvantage.

9. Settlers Stone: 87-93. Assessed $61.00

He has a number of ratings from his runs in Melbourne that could be very competitive here, but he’s been poor and well beaten in two runs since arrive in TAS.


Betting Strategy

 BACK  – Andrea Mantegna WIN at >$2.90 – Stake 1.4% of your total bank.


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