At the time of publishing the track is rated a Good 4 with the rail in the True. With rain forecast both Thursday/Friday and some Saturday we could see a potential downgrade to a Soft 5 or 6.
AUSTRALASIAN OAKS HISTORY
The Australasian Oaks is a set weights 2000m race for 3 year old fillies. The race started as a Group 3 event in 1982 but was soon upgraded to Group 1 status a year later and remained that ever since. The race this year has a prize pool for 502k. Hall of fame trainers Lee Freedman and Bart Cummings share the most success in the race with 4 wins each while champion jockey Damien Oliver is the premier jockey in the race with 4 win also. Probably the most famous horse to win the race was 1991 winner Mannerism who went on to win 5 group ones including the 1992 Caulfield Cup. The favourite generally has a good record in the race winning the race 17 times in the races 40 year history.
RUNNING ON TIME looks to be the leader here with Craig Williams needing to make a decision on SHE’S FIT whether he crosses outside the lead or tries to take a sit. ARUGAMAMA should be handy while JENILALA with the soft draw should be able to settle much closer today. Backmarkers in the market ARTS, AFFAIRE A SUIVRE and AS TIME GOES BY will be looking for some genuine speed on to figure in the finish.
AUSTRALASIAN OAKS | KEY RUNNERS
1. SHE’S FIT
11. PARTY PRINCESS
ARTS was a powerful 4.2L winner in the 2000m G3 Adrian Knox at Randwick two starts ago then contested the Group 1 2400m ATC Oaks when railed along the fence and potentially got to the front too soon and was only fair late for 7.3L 5th. The horse also potentially didn’t see out a strong 2400m race so the step back to the 2000m looks ideal. Has good soft/heavy track form so with the showers forecast that stat could come into play.
JENILALA proved too strong in the traditional S.A lead up race when swept around the field from well back to come away with a dominant victory over the 1800m trip. Gives every indication that the extra furlong will be advantageous. Has drawn for quite a soft run here from gate 2 and is 1/1 at the track.
SHE’S FIT bring good form lines across from WA with two wins this prep including the W.A Oaks where she led from start to finish and was very strong to tough it out. Didn’t disgrace herself in the Group 2 2400m W.A Guineas when 3rd. I think like her name suggests, she’s rock hard fit for this and Craig Williams is a master when it comes from riding from a bad barrier. Likely to zoom across to lead or sit somewhere on the speed. Will kick and look the winner in the straight.
WHAKAMANA was rolled as a $2.60 favourite at Pakenham when grabbed on the line by MY BROTHER’S KEEPER. The horse just copped a slight check on the bend which cost precious momentum but didn’t shirk the task and was gallant for 2nd. They cleared out from the rest of the pack which is always a good sign. The Busuttin-Young combo must always be respected in races like these.
PARTY PRINCESS is the interesting runner here. Ran a massive eye-catcher over the 1600m race last start but then was scratched race-morning in the all-important lead up race the 1800m AURARIA STAKES when favourite in the betting due to a foot abscess. By SO YOU THINK the 2000m will certainly be in her favour. Has an exceptional turn-of-foot. If that missed run has done her no harm then she must come into calculations.
AUSTRALASIAN OAKS | BETTING STRATEGY
BACK (WIN): #2 ARTS for 1.5 units
BACK (WIN): #3 JENILALA for 1.5 units
BACK (WIN): #1 SHE’S FIT for 1 unit
BACK (WIN): #14 WHAKAMANA for 0.5 units