Group 1 action for the second week running in Brisbane with the running of the 2016 Doomben Cup over 2000m which I will preview in my latest racing betting tips article. The track will be rated in the Good range with the temperature set to hit 27 degrees, and despite only having 10 runners in the field there looks to be a decent enough tempo on paper. Let's go through the runners...
VOLKSTOK'N'BARRELL: Ran a good race in the Hollindale Stakes at the Gold Coast last start, finishing 2.5L behind Leebaz. The step up to 2000m is a big plus - he's a dual Group 1 winner over the distance - and the barrier draw should mean he won't get as far back today. This race is no harder than last start and he has a few things in his favour so he rates highly.
HAURAKI: Had the Hollindale Stakes at his mercy last start but just didn't finish it off. He's a Group 2 winner at this distance so the step up to 2000m should also be a plus for him, and once again his form around Winx and The United States from earlier this preparation is very strong. Blinkers on for the first time today, no excuses.
OUR IVANHOWE: Had a hoof abscess leading up to The BMW but was passed fit to run. Drifted horribly in the market and ran accordingly - dead last. Freshened up for this with 8 weeks off and a trial win in between. Blinkers back on and expecting him to be competitive.
LEEBAZ: Winner of the Hollindale Stakes last start which came as a big surprise to me. Ran 2nd in this race two years ago and off the back of last start you'd have to say he rates a decent chance once again. The 2000m might test him out late against this field but he draws to get all the favours.
IT'S SOMEWHAT: Caught three wide in the Hollindale so can make excuses for him but he would need to be improving to win this. From barrier 9 of 10 I'd expect him to roll forward to try and slot in near the pace. Won a Group 3 over this distance three starts ago but I prefer others here.
MESSENE: Finally broke through for another win in the mighty Wagga Gold Cup last start after what had been a long time between drinks. He'll look to lead from barrier 4 and try to slip away again but this is significantly harder than what he faced lat start and I'm looking elsewhere.
MAURUS: Bolted in as the short priced favourite here last start on a heavy track, which may aided him. Drops back to 2000m from 2200m which isn't much of an issue but it's a big step up in grade and despite the conviction of his win last start I'd be looking at others as better winning chances.
SPIRITJIM: French import for the Waller stable that finished midfield (beaten 4 lengths) on his Australian debut in the Hollindale Stakes. He gets a handy jockey called Hugh Bowman on for the ride but I'd say he's still looking for further yet and there's probably improvement to come given it's only his second run back from a fairly long spell.
NOBLE PROTECTOR: Interesting runner here. Dumped the rider first up before finishing runner up in a Group 2 over 1600m at Moonee Valley two starts back. Ran a good race when 3rd behind Azkadellia in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf last start and now steps up to 2000m where she's finished in the top two at both her previous starts. Good each way chance.
LADY LE FAY: Finished 4th behind Azkadellia in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf three starts back before a win and a 2nd over this distance at her last two starts. She might just be better suited on wet ground and despite being trained by Chris Waller this might just be a bit beyond her at this stage.
Settling with Volkstok'n'barrell at the prices given his record at the distance and his performance in the Hollindale. The step up to 2000m suits him the best of any and with a better barrier draw here he won't be as far back as he was last start. Hauraki will never get a better chance to win a Group 1 race. He's been costly for punters but with the blinkers applied for the first time today he certainly is one to keep very safe. Noble Protector isn't one to be dismissed stepping up to 2000m, while Leebaz deserves a shot after his win in the Hollindale.
2nd NOBLE PROTECTOR
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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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