Ascot Race 7 | WA Champion Fillies Stakes | 1600m Open SW G3 | 8.12pm

The Track

The track is currently a Good 4 with a 70% chance of 5 to 15mm of rain between Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. The track condition will depend on whether that rain arrives and how much? It would seem most likely that the track will be on the worse side of Good 4, potentially a Soft 5.

Expect the track to race evenly and give all horses a chance. If there is a pattern that develops it may be a little ‘off fence’ as the day progresses.

Speed and Tactics

This looks likely to be a genuinely run 1600m race with Sophia’s Secret (13) pressing forward along with Lucy Mae (7) and Art Series (5).

Early Pace Rating: Genuine to Above Average

Late Pace Rating: Moderate to Below Average

Best Suited: Lead to 4 lengths off.

WFA Performance Ratings - Winning Benchmark

Based on the lead up form of contenders, a rating of at least 91-92 at the weights will be needed to win.

While all of these Fillies are lightly raced and open to improvement, there is quite a long tail with half of the field yet to rate within two lengths of the winning mark at any stage in their career.

Race Assessment

4. Mikimoto: Forecast 92 - 95. Assessed $1.80

She’s three wins from three starts so far and was very impressive winning the main lead up race over 1400m here on Melbourne Cup Day. Her final 400m rating was especially strong and she gives every indication that she’ll be even more effective at 1600m. Barrier 3 gives William Pike the chance to stay in touch early and by this stage of the day they’re likely to spreading out a little in the straight, which will give him the chance to pick his run through the field. It’s impossible not to have Mikimoto as a dominant top pick and odds-on chance in this race.

2. Art Series: Forecast 91 - 93. Assessed $4.40

She was no match for Mikimoto last start, enjoying an ideal run in the box seat before being claimed at the 100m to be beaten 0.8 lengths. However, I thought she was good through the line after sitting handy to a strong speed and the step up to 1600m appeals as suitable. With the benefit of another ideal run up near the lead, she’ll be the one Mikimoto has to run down again and represents a genuine danger.

5. Sophias Secret: Forecast 88 - 90.5 Assessed $18.00

She jumped from a wide draw, raced on a solid speed and was only grabbed in the last 50m by Mikimoto and Art Series last start. The problem is that she looks likely to face a similar scenario again, but this time over 200m further.

7. Private Dancer: Forecast 87 - 89 Assessed $31.00

She did a good job to win a midweek race over 1400m last start, but this is much harder and the wide draw is likely to see her settle even further back in the field than last start.

11. Love Always: Forecast 85 - 89. Assessed $34.00

She only won a Bunbury Maiden last start but there was a bit to like in her sectionals there, especially from the perspective of stepping up to 1600m. She’s a longshot chance that could sneak into third.

9. Necklet: 83 - 89. Assessed $34.00

Started in the market (6/1) but was beaten 6.3L behind Mikimoto last start, without any obvious excuse. Her prior ratings suggest she can be competitive, but it’s difficult to be confident that she can bounce back.

8. Massagi: Forecast 87 - 88. Assessed $41.00

She was sound behind Private Dancer last start (beaten 1L) but this is much harder.

6. Showcase: Forecast 86 - 90. Assessed $41.00

Started 20/1 and was beaten 5L by Mikimoto last start. Can’t see any case to say she can turn the tables.

1. Lucy Mae: Forecast 83 - 85 Assessed $41.00

Goes 1200m to 1600m here off a last start run that rates well below this standard, without any strong indicators to say 1600m will be suitable.

10. Special Alert: Forecast 81 - 85 Assessed $101.00

Was a dominant Maiden winner at this track over 1500m last start, but the figures were a long way below the standard needed here.

3. Kiss Bang Love: Forecast 80 - 83 Assessed $201.00

Three runs this prep have been poor. Looks outclassed.

12. Racy Ava: Forecast 80 - 82 Assessed $401.00

Hasn’t been able to win a Provincial Maiden in three starts so far.

13. Frequenter: Forecast 75 - 79 Assessed $1,001.00

Has been well beaten at long prices in Provincial Maiden races leading up to this.

14. Rossana: Forecast 74 - 78 Assessed $1,001.00

Would need to improve at least eight lengths on her two starts so far and Barrier 14 is likely to see her settle near last.

Betting Strategy

Our assessment is very close to the current market at the moment, so it’s hard to find a compelling betting angle.

The best advice at this stage is to monitor the Exchange prices for the top two chances in the lead up to the race. It’s unlikely that Mikimoto will drift to the $1.90+ that would make betting marginally worthwhile and if she drifted beyond $2.00 then I’d be somewhat concerned.

Art Series however may get to $6.00+ which would be appealing to gamble with a small bet, banking on Mikimoto striking some traffic or having an off day.

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