Monday sees the running of the Group 2 Adelaide Cup over the 3200m at Morphettville. A field of 17 is set to compete after the huge news that the even money favourite Signoff was scratched with an elevated temperature yesterday, leaving his stablemate Real Love as the raging favourite.
It will certainly be disappointing news for the connections of Signoff after all his problems with positive Ibuprofen tests throughout his campaign, and following his 6 length win in Adelaide last start I had him rated about a $1.50 favourite to win the Adelaide Cup.
Nevertheless, his scratching leaves the field particularly compact in the weights, which is a huge advantage for Real Love who is now top weight with 55.5kg and only gives away 2.5kg to those on the minimum.
The track is set to be in the Good range with 27 degrees predicted for race day. The pace in the race seems fairly moderate on paper. I expect Go Dreaming to work over from barrier 15 in search of the lead and Tunes may also work over from his wide barrier to settle on speed as he has in the past, but other than that I don't see anything else challenging for the lead. Real Love will need a good ride from her slightly awkward draw.
REAL LOVE: Strong win last start over 2600m and was strong through the line which suggests she should stay the 3200m. Two starts back was unlucky 3rd behind Swacadelic and Signoff; drops 2.5kg from that run and with the scratching of Signoff she is very well off at the weights. Needs a good ride but clear top pick.
KUSHADASI: Didn't do much behind Signoff in the Lord Reims last start. Gets plenty of weight relief down to 54.5kg but will need to improve.
GAMBLIN' GURU: Only battled behind Signoff last start but his form was good leading up to that race. Gets in light here and can turn the tables on Jim's Journey and Go Dreaming from previous starts. Drawn well, could go well but 3200m will test.
GO DREAMING: Won with a miraculous form reversal two starts ago at 50/1 but was very poor last start, though he did pull up lame. Looks to be the leader so will have to work from barrier 15. Pass.
LIKE A CAROUSEL: Decent stayer on his day and 3200m will suit him. Tends to improve at his 3rd run back from a spell so he should go well despite a poor showing last start. Wide barrier hurts though.
UP CUPS: Has now won 4 races in a row which include both the Launceston and Hobart Cups. Up to 3200m for the first time which is relatively unknown and faces a much tougher test against this field but he's drawn well and drops to 54kg.
SWACADELIC: Good performance last start to defeat Signoff and Real Love but Real Love was unlucky that day and gets a 2kg weight swing here. The 3200m remains a slight concern based on performance over 2800m three starts ago and he's drawn wide here. Still a leading contender.
JIM'S JOURNEY: Decent performance last start despite being beaten 8 lengths by Signoff. Did place 2nd behind De Little Engine during the Spring over 2800m so 3200m should be okay. Barrier 11 is a query but expecting a good run.
LUCQUES: Ran 4th over 2800m on New Years Day before winning over 2500m three starts back so he gives the impression he could run the distance. His run was reasonable behind Swacadelic and Real Love last start which makes him a place chance here.
TUNES: Ultra consistent lately with most of his runs being between 2400m - 2600m so fitness is no issue. Terrific record at this track and drops to 53kg but the killer is barrier 17. Think he rolls forward so could go well if the tempo is slack.
WALES: Won three starts ago before being galloped on in the Hobart Cup. Had a ncie trial over the jumps but then was average last start behind Real Love. Prefer others.
LAST WISH: Comes into this with back to back wins over 2400m and 2500m. Hit the line well last start which suggests the 3200m should suit him and he gets a big weight drop down to 53kg. Much harder race but he should go well with the good draw.
GALLATIN: Poor behind Signoff here last start and his form isn't goo enough despite drawing barrier 1 and only 53kg on his back.
CELTIC PRINCE: Ran 2nd to Signoff last start in the Lord Reims at 150/1 after winning a trial over the jumps. Three starts back he finished 4th over 3000m at Moonee Valley where he was unlucky. Should get the distance, well drawn, drops in weight, can see him running well again!
DISTILLATION: Has run over 3200m four times for no placings and finished tailed off last behind Signoff last start. Not going well enough at all.
TIDY PROPHET: Should probably have won his last three in a row. Big step up in grade and distance from the 2000m he's been racing at lately but he's well drawn so should get the right run
PURPLE SMILE: Went down narrowly to Last Wish last start over 2500m and drops 5kg from that run but does have the widest barrier in the field to contend with. Not the worst based on last start but others better.
2016 Adelaide Cup Summary
I had Signoff rated around $1.50 so it's a shame he is scratched as the $2.00 about him was quite attractive. Nevertheless his scratching opens the door for Real Love to make it back to back victories and I expect her to do it here despite an awkward barrier. Her form is the strongest in the race and the weights really do favour her here. The 3200m should pose no problem for her unlike some others in the race.
I'm expecting big improvement out of Like A Carousel who ran 4th in the Sandwon Cup in November behind the likes of Almoonqith and The Offer, beaten only 3 lengths. He tends to run well at his third run back from a spell so despite his poor form leading into this I think he'll run well.
Up Cups has dominated the Tasmanian staying races lately and despite this being a big step up in grade he does get plenty of weight relief and a good barrier draw. Swacadelic beat both Signoff and Real Love last start so he has obvious claims, though the 3200m does concern me.
I think both Jim's Journey and Lucques will run well, both only having the 19th start of their careers, while Tunes continues to race consistently and could figure again if he gets across from the wide barrier without doing too much work. Expecting a good run from Last Wish to follow on from his recent wins, while Celtic Prince could go well again following his 2nd to Signoff last start.
1st REAL LOVE
2nd LIKE A CAROUSEL
3rd LAST WISH
4th UP CUPS
Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly. Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!
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