Welcome to our preview and horse racing betting tips for racing at Caulfield on Saturday, September 21st.
The Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes headlines the meeting and we at Before You Bet are running a FREE competition to win some Betfair merchandise! See the competition tweet below and for more details, click here!
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Best Bet: Race 5 - (4) Pippie
Best Value: Race 8 - (14) Affair To Remember
Only a small field to start with but it's a very competitive one. I'm really keen to have a bet on (5) But It's True at $6.00 here. He's returned in really good form this preparation, after having 55 weeks off the track. First up, he was caught three-wide no cover the trip carrying 59kg and was only beaten a nose. He then went to Sandown and came from back in the field to sweep home over the top of them over 1400m. Last start was a horror show - he was held up from the 400m to the 100m mark at Moonee Valley before hitting the line strongly to be beaten 1.8L. I think he's up to winning this with some luck and the price is good. (2) Shared Ambition might well be the best horse long-term. He's won two from three over in Ireland and he makes his Australian debut today. He only raced nine weeks ago so he's only come here recently and has been put straight into a race. He's been gelded in that time and it wouldn't shock me to see him win this. He'll be better next prep but at $5.50 I won't be losing on him. (6) Firstclass Dreamer looks very short for mine and the $2.75 opening price was crazy. The market has somewhat corrected itself now but he's stepping up to Saturday grade off a couple of midweek runs. He'll run his usual honest race but I don't see him winning this. Notable that his rider Ben Melham has chosen to stick with (4) Heir To The Throne too. Happy to have something small on both But It's True ($6.00) an Shared Ambition ($5.50).
If the rain doesn't arrive, there's a chance we could be playing on a very firm deck at Caulfield, which is likely to suit frontrunners. I suspect we'll see (2) The Lifeline take up the lead, as per most Waterhouse/Bott runners. He led all the way first up at Cranbourne before being outclassed in Listed company two runs back. He bounced back with a steep drop in grade at Sandown last start and once again proved too good from the front. If he can find the front and control the tempo, he'll prove tough to run down. (3) Long Jack is on a Derby path for NZ trainers Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman. He made his Australian debut on the synthetic at Ballarat last start and proved much too strong, despite sitting three-wide the trip. Barrier 10 is a tricky one for him as he'll likely have to go back or risk being caught wide again, which I doubt they'll want to do. I think he's got the ability to win but I'd rather back a rock-hard fit on-pace runner here. (1) Huntly Castle has won his past two and returns after a nine-week break, though he has won a trial since his last run. He'll go close, while the blinkers go back on (7) Leven Lass which could bring about improvement.
Another competitive race. Interested in a couple at each way odds here. (5) Garner comes across from Adelaide after a big win first up from a nine-week let-up. He sat three-wide without cover, came four-wide at the 600m and still pounced on the leaders to record a 2L win. There's a few questions over a couple of horses in this race so I think he'll be able to measure up here and the $8.00 looks a reasonably good price. (6) Meteorite ran 2nd to Order Of Fury on debut at Bendigo. There was a 3.75L gap back to the third horse in that race, which is generally a good indicator that the first two are pretty smart. Craig Williams is booked to ride and there's double figures available which I'm willing to take. (10) Lesage showed ability in her debut prep with a win and a 0.2L 2nd from two starts. Godolphin horses usually fire fresh so she should run well. (4) Sartorial Splendour was very well backed in a couple of races last prep after winning easily on debut at Terang. The stable quite clearly have a good opinion of the horse and it wouldn't shock me to see him run a bold race at double figure odds. (1) I Am Immortal won his first two starts before failing in the Blue Diamond last time we saw him. There's a fair bit of speed here so it will be interesting to see if they try and lead or take a sit. He's the class runner on his juvenile form but I'd rather see him come back and do it as a three-year-old first.
Great little race. (1) Mirette was simply outstanding last prep, with three wins from five starts, as well as a 2nd placing in the Schweppes Oaks and a desperately unlucky run when finishing 4th in the Alexandra Stakes at the Valley. She's first up today over 1400m which is likely to be short of her best trip but she's a very classy mare and she's drawn softly on the inside. Whether she's sharp enough to win fresh against race-fit horses over the shorter trip is the query, but I think she'll run very well. (3) Haut Brion Her has never finished out of the top two from six career starts. She was run down very late by the smart Tofane at the Valley last start and they came right away from the third horse. She carries the full 59.5kg today and might have to sit outside the leader again, but Damian Lane goes on and she's done nothing to suggest she can't go very close once again, especially if the pattern of the day is suiting those on pace. (8) So Taken and (11) Zoubo have the ability to win, while (7) Extreme Bliss ran the best final split behind Tofane and Haut Brion Her last start, after coming from the very back of the field. She's not hopeless at big odds. Haut Brion Her on top but Mirette won't be going around with my money at each way odds. Likely to box all those up in a trifecta.
If she finds the lead without getting pestered, it's very hard to see (4) Pippie getting beat here. And I don't think anything will try and challenge her for the lead because that would be detrimental to their own chances. She's been absolutely dominant in her three starts this preparation and the horse she beat last start then came out and won last weekend, further strengthening her claims. She led all the way to win the G3 Cockram Stakes over this track and distance last start and I think she'll lead all the way to win again today. (2) Divine Quality has a terrific first up record with three wins and a 2nd from five starts. The one time she missed a place fresh was last prep when she ran in WFA Group 1 company. Caulfield probably isn't her track but if they do overdo it up front, she has the finishing burst to run over the top of them. (11) Tofane isn't short of talent and she relished the step up to 1200m when running down Haut Brion Her at Moonee Valley last start, despite sitting three-wide the trip. If Haut Brion Her wins Race 4 then expect some support to come for Tofane. (10) Dawn Dawn has claims.
(11) Super Titus produced a big effort to win despite sitting three-wide the trip last start over 1700m here at Caulfield. He's drawn much better today in barrier 2 and Craig Williams is a notable jockey booking. I would have liked to have seen Captain Cook come out and win last weekend to really frank the form but he ran 2nd. Even so, I think third up and up to 2000m will be beneficial and he'll take some beating. (14) Wolfe will lead. He hated the wet ground in Sydney last start and so has been sent to the firmer tracks in Melbourne. He'll take plenty of running down from the front. (4) Steele Prince draws poorly but he ran a great race first up over an unsuitable distance and will continue to improve as the trips get longer. (5) Sikandarabad looks very well suited third up from a spell. (9) Etymology had no luck whatsoever behind Super Titus last start. He was only beaten 1.25L after being held up til the 100m mark so based on that you'd have to consider him a chance.
What a great race this is. (14) Begood Toya Mother is the favourite at around $3.20, but I don't see him starting that short unless the track is really favouring frontrunners. It was a brave effort from him last start after running them along at suicidal sectionals last start in the Memsie Stakes. He drops 7kg to 52kg today but he's not the only natural leader in the race and there's every chance they'll overdo it again. The other query is whether that run last time completely flattened the horse. I'll be taking him on here because I think there's plenty of value to be found. (15) Age Of Chivalry is the other lightly-raced on-speed galloper in the race. He might also try to lead from the inside gate, or sit right on the back of the leader at the very worst. He should be three from three this preparation so with 52kg he can go well. (3) Despatch is undefeated third up from a spell and does come out of the Memsie Stakes last start. He doesn't get in as well at the weights but he is a Group 1 winner already. (4) Madison County was last seen running 2nd in the Australian Derby over 2400m in Sydney back in the Autumn. He's first up at 1400m today so that's a query, but he's a dual Group 1 winner over the mile so perhaps he's versatile enough to go close. (5) So Si Bon looks very well placed. He's come back in terrific form this prep. First up he won down the straight at Flemington and last start he finished off strongly to run 2nd behind Scales Of Justice over this track and distance in the Memsie last start. His third up record is terrible but his second up record wasn't great leading into last start either. He's an enigma but today might be his Group 1 day. (9) Deprive is one at big odds that is flying under the radar. He beat Trope first up in Sydney and I rate Trope highly; Trope then came out last weekend and ran 2nd to Arcadia Queen, who might well be the best horse in the country. Then, last start, Deprive bumped into The Inevitable, who looks destined for Group 1 success at some point. He drops to 54.5kg today and if they overcook it up front, he has the turn of foot from the back of the field to round them up. The big query is the 1400m, a distance he's never raced at. But at $20 he's worth having something on. (12) Amphitrite was good first up and is undefeated at this distance. She's certainly not out of this.
Full field of 16 here and one of the most open races of the day, which is saying something because the entire card is very competitive. I've narrowed this down to five runners based on sectionals. (1) Kooweerup did enough first up when 3rd behind Sassy Salitage at Moonee Valley. She ran the fastest final 400m split of the race but was outsprinted in the final 200m. She should be better suited at 1400m bu the barrier hurts her. (4) Ginny Ann isn't hopeless at double figure odds. She comes out of a fast-run 1000m race first up at Sandown. The concern for her is the sharp step up from 1000m to 1400m, which is sure to be testing. (11) Beauty Bolt remains undefeated after winning first up at Seymour, having won at Geelong on debut. His sectionals on the day weren't necessarily strong relative to the other races on the day but they are good enough to see him be the one to beat here. He was on soft ground last start so his final 400m and 200m were good considering. Drawn well in barrier 8 and he'll be hitting the line hard. (13) Fascino and (14) Affair To Remember are probably the two best value runners in the race at $10 and $17 respectively. Both won last start and their sectionals measure up, albeit at different tracks and on different surfaces. Affair To Remember in particular should be able to measure up based on her figures. Siding mainly with Beauty Bolt and Affair To Remember but will also box these all up in a trifecta.
Another tough one to finish off the card. (1) Order Of Command has a good fresh record and he resumes from a spell today. He only had three starts last preparation, resulting in two wins and a 2nd. He was a winner in Listed company last time we saw him and he's won his only start at Caulfield so he should be finishing hard. (2) Tato Key is an interesting runner at big odds. He's an Argentinian import who is a dual Group 2 winner. He did his racing last prep in Dubai and makes his Australian debut for Chris Waller today. He's had 12 wins and four placings from 17 starts overall and he's won five of his six first up runs, so on that you'd have to be entertained by the price on offer. It remains to be seen how the form lines up though. (8) Lyre was fair first up without much luck. I reckon the form out of that race is reasonable so if she's improved she should be able to be competitive in this. (11) Williams Thomas has two wins from three starts first up and his unplaced effort last prep was because he wasn't suited with a big weight from a wide gate over 1000m. He went on to win second up over this track and distance. He's down on the minimum weight from a good draw here so expect a forward showing. (13) Vainstream isn't hopeless.
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