Welcome to our preview and horse racing betting tips for racing at Caulfield on Saturday, February 9th.
We’ve got nine races on a Good 4 track with the rail in the True position for Group 1 CF Orr Stakes Day!
Check out our betting tips for every race on the card below!
Best Bet: Race 1 Laure Me In
Next Best Bet: Race 9 Night's Watch
Best Value Bet: Race 8 D’Argento
Fascinating race to kick things off with a couple of very promising horses engaged, one of which has been flying for Darren Weir, which adds an extra layer to an already intriguing affair. Silentz has won his past three on end, two of which were at this track. He’s won eight from 17 overall and is quite clearly a horse with ability, but of course there’s now a huge query over some of those performances. How will his stable transfer to Phillip Stokes affect his performance? Laure Me In is the other horse in terrific form and he can be assessed more reliably than the ex-Weir horse. In any case, we can line them up from their Boxing Day meeting at Caulfield, where Silentz won and Laure Me In ran a luckless 4th, beaten 1.5L. He arguably should have won that race and he gets a 6.5kg weight swing on Silentz today. They’ve both drawn wide but I want to be on Laure Me In here. Cool Chap finds this race at the right stage of his preparation and Prima can go forward and give a sight at big odds.
Tricky little race but the favourite Crack The Code should be tough to beat here having won three of her first four career starts. She won very comfortably first up and was then caught three-wide without cover on speed in a small field last start, so it was a good effort to win despite it being a small margin. The slightly bigger field will help and she draws to get a beautiful run from barrier 4. Well-backed early and should be hard to beat. Mick Price also has another talented filly in the field in the form of Zoubo, who is undefeated in two career starts and has trialled well leading into this. Tropezina looks over the odds given she’s won three out of three this preparation, the last two of which have come at Caulfield and Flemington. She’s drawn awkward here but there’s nothing wrong with that form. $13 for a filly with her record appeals, especially as she has winning form at Caulfield. Futooh can fire fresh and her best form would see her be very competitive, while Waller brings Aperitif across and deserves respect as always.
Competitive little race but two mainly I’m keen on. Teleplay was a last start Listed winner down the Flemington straight and draws barrier 1 here back around a bend at Caulfield. She’s first up for three months after that Flemington win but she won comfortably first up last preparation and Mick Price was pretty bullish about her during the week. I’d be surprised if she wasn’t competitive here. Fuhryk is another that comes into this first up from a spell. She’s gone a bit off the boil in recent preparations but if she was to return to her best form she’d probably win this. I think it’s notable that Craig Williams jumps on her first up here and she also resumes with the blinkers back on. Watch the market – if she’s steady or firm, have something on. Just Hifalutin won well last start and should still have more to come third up after a long break. She’s got a tremendous record at this distance with two wins and five 2nds from seven starts. I Am A Star is obviously the class horse in the field as a Group 1 winner and five-time Group 2 winner. She took a couple of runs to hit her peak last start so perhaps in one or two starts’ time it will be time to get on.
Another interesting equation with two ex-Weir horses at the top of the market but all things being equal, Nature Strip should be winning this. Now in the care of Chris Waller, albeit only very briefly, he returns with eight wins from 12 starts and he should be able to find the lead from barrier 1 here, unless Jungle Edge desperately wants that role. Regardless of where he sits, he should be too classy for this bunch. Voodoo Lad is the other ex-Weir horse who also returns from a spell. He showed plenty of improvement to win the Winterbottom Stakes in WA at his last start, but had obviously been racing in stronger races. He’s got a terrific first up record with four wins and two 2nds from seven starts, as well as five wins from seven at the distance and seven top-two finishes from eight starts at the track. You’d be surprised if they didn’t quinella the race, but in the case that they didn’t, it would make for an interesting discussion!
I Am Immortal justified good market support on debut when leading all the way to win the Blue Diamond Preview by a length. He looked pretty strong on the line so the 100m rise in trip isn’t such a great concern. From barrier 1 he should once again find the lead and prove tough to run down. He deserves favouritism on the back of that win. Brazen Brando ran the fastest final 600m of the entire meeting when finishing 5th behind I Am Immortal on debut. He’s likely to get back once again from barrier 10 but should be charging home late out wide. Aussie comes down to Melbourne for the Snowden camp, after running 2nd to ultra-impressive debut winner Dawn Passage in Sydney. He trialled well leading into his debut run so with even luck he should be pretty competitive here. Groot jumped out well for the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace camp leading into his debut here. Linda Meech is booked and you’d suggest we’ll see him right up on speed here. He looks over the odds at $23. Shotmaker from the Mick Price stable should be kept safe.
There looks to be three standout fillies in the girls’ edition of the Blue Diamond Prelude. Catch Me kept her unbeaten record intact with a solid win first up in the Blue Diamond Preview, defeating Jedastar who is now set to run in the G1 Lightning Stakes next weekend. The Peter and Paul Snowden-trained filly sat midfield from her wide barrier, so from barrier 3 she should be able to find a comfortable position without spending too much petrol at all. She’s been very heavily backed in early markets ($3.10-$2.15). Brooklyn Hustle was nothing short of brilliant in her debut win at the Valley at the start of December. She bombed the start, settled last from barrier 1 and still managed to slice her way through the field before unleashing a barnstorming finish in the final 100m. She won by 2L on that occasion and the horse she beat (Yes Yes Yes) then won his next two. Barrier 11 means she’s probably going to be ridden conservatively with a view to finishing off and having her ready for the Diamond in two weeks, but I think she’s got X-factor and I won’t be letting her go around at $4.40 without something on. Athiri is the third of the lot. She won like a very good horse on debut in Sydney, coming from back in the field before taking a split at the 200m and powering away. I thought that was the sign of a very good horse and she’s since trialled enormously at Rosehill. She’s also ticked the 1100m box. I’m somewhat torn with the market here – the weight of early money for the Snowden runner is alarming but I can’t get her $2.15 against these other two fillies, so I’ll be backing both Brooklyn Hustle ($4.40) and Athiri ($5.00).
A borderline impossible race to bet in. 10 runners and four of them are ex-Darren Weir horses making their stable debuts for four different trainers! I’m going to go down a different route and tip Dealmaker on top here, who this time last preparation ran 2nd in the G2 Stan Fox Stakes over 1500m on Heavy ground, finishing ahead of The Autumn Sun. First up this time in he started the well-backed favourite at Randwick and was completely luckless not to win. He charged home late after encountering trouble in the straight and that at least signalled that he has returned in great order. $5.00 isn’t exactly a huge price to take given the questions over the others in the field but at least we can assess him reliably. Declares War at $8.00 is a horse I’ve really liked and he’s on debut for Matt Cumani’s stable today. Some of his efforts so far in his campaign have been nothing short of freakish, so despite the clouds hanging over this race, he’s a horse that catches my eye. Social Spin is flying, Ringerdingding went for a spell in flying form and Hawkshot could turn into a nice horse along the line. Too many questions for me to bet confidently here but I’ll stick with Dealmaker and Declares War.
The Group 1 CF Orr Stakes. Another high-quality race with a quarter of the field being ex-Darren Weir horses. Makes things tough! There’s primarily three horses I’m interested in here. Kementari has been around the mark in these sorts of races for some time now and he’s due to win one eventually. I’d be very surprised if they didn’t have him wound up for this in an attempt to try and win one early in his campaign. He’s got a good fresh record, a good record at this distance and has placed in all three starts at the track. Drawn well in barrier 2, James McDonald takes the ride and he should be very hard to beat. D’Argento looks the value to my eye. First up last preparation he ran 3rd to Winx and then they fiddled with his preparation and his distances. He resumes over 1400m today which is a positive and he’s had two trials to get him ready. I think we’ll see him forward of midfield from barrier 1 and at double figure odds, I’ll be having something on. Land Of Plenty has a terrific second up record and resumed with a good run behind Whispering Brook at the Valley but he was one horse who improved out of sight for Darren Weir and if he continued in the form he was in for his former trainer, he’d go very close to winning this, but that’s obviously a big query. Material Man at $16 will run an honest race on the speed as he always does.
Three main chances for mine. Avilius set the country alight with his first four runs in Australia before continuing on to eventually contest the Melbourne Cup. I’m not sure 3200m is his go at all but he never really got the chance given he was taken out by a broken down horse after about 200m. He was given a very easy time of things after that and wasn’t run into the ground so there’s the chance he may be able to return fresh enough for 1600m first up, but I always have queries over horses that are returning from races over the likes of 2500m-3200m. Night’s Watch is Ciaron Maher’s best chance of a winner according to him, even though he’s only been in the stable a few days. He’s got a great fresh record and has three wins from five starts at the track. I’ve got him on top due to those queries around Avilius and even though Night’s Watch himself has plenty of queries, he gets conditions to suit. Sikandarabad looks the value to me at double figures. His first up run was sound and the step up to the mile second up should suit. Bring Me Roses ran the third fastest final 200m of the meeting first up so keep her safe.
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