While all eyes will be on Royal Randwick for Day 1 of The Championships, the nine-race card at Caulfield looks a really good betting card with some terrific races. We've picked out our four best bets of the meeting below!
To view our preview and betting tips for every race at Royal Randwick for Day 1 of The Championships, CLICK HERE!
Not sure the speed map will be in his favour but I really liked the first up win of Zabalan at Geelong. He came from the back of the field and charged home over the top of his rivals late and given his best is likely to be over further, it was a big performance fresh. His final 200m was the second fastest of the entire meeting. This is no doubt a much harder task as he comes to the city and finds a pretty deep race, but he's an international import in his second Australian preparation so perhaps we're going to see the best of him this prep. As mentioned, he'll get back and that's not ideal at Caulfield, but he has a big finish on him and the step up in trip will help him. Happy to take $6.50 each way for him.
The People's Horse Mr Quickie goes around again and it's pretty hard to tip against him. They put up $2.10 when markets opened and he's already been backed into $1.75. He's a winner of seven of his nine career starts and is on a path to the SA Derby. He was a surprise winner first up but was absolutely dominant last time when favourite in the Mornington Guineas. The obvious query today is the fact he carrries 6kg more than any other horse in the race, but he deserves the weight and I'm tipping his class will get him over the line. The only horse I think can beat him is Starouz, who he beat by 4.25L last start, but that horse had absolutely no luck and gets a 4kg turnaround in the weights. He draws the inside gate here for a soft run and looks a really good place bet at $2.40 if you're not keen to take red odds about the favourite.
This is a competitive race and there's a few that can win but I'll be sticking with Lady Pluck and Tell Me. Lady Pluck has had five career starts for three wins and two placings. Four of those starts have been in Tasmania and one of her placings was at the end of last prep, when she ran 3rd at Flemington behind Smart Melody. We've seen Tasmanan form stack up in Melbourne in the last few months and this filly looks to have found a winnable race to continue that trend. Expect her to roll forward from barrier 10 and if she gets across without being caught three-wide, I suspect she'll take plenty of beating. Tell Me has won four of her nine starts and comes into this off a first up victory at Moonee Valley. She looked very lost around that track but did a good job to win, so I think she's got a bit of natural improvement left in her. The stable is going really well and she should roll forward from the wide gate too, so similar to Lady Pluck, if she doesn't get caught wide, I expect her to run a big race at $9.00. She looks the value.
This is a cracking race betting race. There's several chances but I'm going in search of a bit of value. Manolo Blahniq is a $7.50 chance and with any luck, I think he'll be really competitive. He contested the Hareeba Stakes first up from an eight-week break last start at Mornington, but only really got warm over the final furlong. He looks much better suited second up and up to 1400m. He's had two starts at this track and distance for a win and a 2nd, should get a nice run from barrier 2 but will need some luck in the straight. If that luck comes, he'll be hitting the line hard late. Sircconi is the other I'll be backing at $26. He went terrible first up at Flemington, but he was well supported before the race. I'm tipping there was a reason for that poor performance and I think he can bounce back today. His second up record is good, his record at the track and distance is terrific and he's drawn well in barrier 3. There does look some speed in the race so he won't get it all his own way up front, but I just think if you ignore that first up run, he looks way over the odds.
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