Welcome to our preview and horse racing betting tips for racing at Doomben on Saturday, May 18th.
The Group 1 Doomben Cup headlines the meeting, with the track rated a Soft 5 at the time of writing and the rail out 2m.
We've got tips and comments for every race on the card below!
Best Bet: Race 2 - (16) Guise
Best Value Bet: Race 8 - (12) Kenedna
Plenty of out-of-form horses here, so I'll side with a horse that's fresh on the scene and bringing a different form line altogether, which is (11) Sacred Day. He's a Kiwi and is first up for 11 weeks here. His past two first up runs have bred a win and a 2nd and he's placed in four of his five starts on Soft ground so he appears well placed. Drawn well in barrier 4 and finds a relatively weak race, despite the decent number of runners. (10) Akage looks the clear value for mine at $15. She probably isn't best suited to Doomben given her racing pattern, and she's previously struggled here, but her first up run at Eagle Farm was a beauty and she's got a good second up record. (13) Red Colour will be right in this if the track stays in the Soft range. She's won four of her five starts on Soft ground, but is yet to win from 23 starts on Good tracks. (2) Benfica Princess is a blowout chance. She put two wins together earlier this prep but has failed badly in her past two starts. Finds an easier race today though.
Happy to back a couple of the Waller runners here. He's got four in the race but the best of them looks to be (16) Guise, who is undefeated from three starts to date. The three-year-old filly just continues to improve, with a dominant victory last start when stepping up to the 1800m. Up to 2000m today which looks no issues based on that win, drawn well in barrier 6 and Kerrin McEvoy takes the ride. The slight query is if the track gets upgraded to Good, given her three wins have all been on wet ground. Stablemate (4) Tunero looks the value at double figure odds. James McDonald takes the ride on him today which is obviously a major plus. Tunero ran well first up over the mile at Eagle Farm before failing on the heavy 9 last start. He's won third up before and hopefully the track stays in the soft range, as all three career wins have come on soft ground. He's well-drawn too and looks a major player based on his first run this prep. (18) Duchess Of Lennox is another Waller runner with claims, while (1) The Candy Man has won his past five starts but draws barrier 19 with 62kg today.
Tough race with 16 two-year-olds lining up over 1200m. Sticking with JMac again as he rides (9) California Zimbol for the Snowden stable. This filly trialled well on three occasions leading into her debut and backed it up with a solid win at Canterbury. She will have to do some work from barrier 17 if they choose to ride her forward again but that's why they've got the best jockey on board. (2) Gem Of Scotland is undefeated from four starts and was mightily impressive last start on the heavy 9, winning by 6.5L. He won't get such heavy ground today and he's got barrier 16 to contend with, but he obviously looks pretty smart nonetheless. (1) Miss Cavallo has been in great form this prep and can be competitive again. Chances don't end there!
A great little match-race between (1) Zoustyle and (3) Plague Stone. Zoutstyle resumes off a 22-week break and is undefeated from five career starts to date, four of which have been here at Doomben and two at the distance. Doesn't matter whether the track is good or soft for him, he handles both well. I think he's perhaps a bit more reliable than Plague Stone and will have a headstart on the Godolphin horse on the turn. From barrier 2 he's likely to lead, so Plague Stone mighty find it tough to run him down at Doomben. Plague Stone was hugely impressive first up on the Heavy 10, winning by 3.75L. Both career wins have been when he's first up and he's yet to reproduce it later in his preps, so that's one little query (even though he was butchered second up last prep). He also won't get a heavy 10 here. He'll be coming from off the pace and if he's giving Zoustyle a few lengths headstart, I think it will be tough to run him down. Not underestimating the abilty of the horse or the stable (who have dominated two-year-old races all season) but I've got to pick one over the other.
(1) Quilista was huge at the Gold Coast last start, caught four-wide without cover the entire race with 59.5kg and was still only beaten half-a-length. Prior to that she was just 1.8L off White Moss in a Group 2 at Randwick. She carries weight again today but is drawn much better in barrier 3 and she should be able to lead. She'll take plenty of running down. (7) Stella Victoria was well held first up behind I Am Excited and Redzel but that is obviously a significantly stronger race than this one. She's never finished out of the money when second up so she'll be in the finish. (2) Sexy Eyes has two wins from three starts when third up, while (5) Epidemic hasn't won in a long time but has won two of her three starts when second up. She could be the blowout.
This looks a pretty simple betting race. Happy to side with (7) Isaurian on top, who is undefeated from three starts when first up from a spell. He was beaten less than a length at his only start at this track and distance, and I think we'll see a much better horse fresh up today.James McDonald goes on and he should be very hard to beat from the good draw. I'll be saving on (14) Meet Mr Taylor, who has won six of his seven career starts and won by 6L last start, which was his first start back from a let-up. That was on a heavy 9 and while he won't get the same surface today, he was dominant on good ground prior to his only loss, so it won't matter. He's drawn the carpark in barrier 15 but might still be good enough to overcome it. (1) Mr Marbellouz has never finished out of the top two from seven starts at the track, so he should be around the mark. Backing Isaurian, saving on Meet Mr Taylor.
Terrific betting race. (10) Chapter And Verse is the favourite after a dominant win first up from a spell, where he exploded away to win by 3L at Eagle Farm. He's won two of his three starts when second up so he should be right in the race, but he's yet to win at Doomben. I don't have any real knocks on him but there's a couple others at bigger odds I want to back so I'll take him on. I'll definitely be having something on (5) Niccanova at $26. He's won three of his four starts when first up from a spell and has won three from four at the track and distance too. He had legitimate excuses in that one defeat too, when caught three-wide without cover all race as a $4.80 chance. He's drawn awkwardly in barrier 10 but looks a huge price. (6) Tyzone was a complete horror show for punters in Sydney last start. He was beaten 2L but never got clear in the straight and looked to have plenty to offer. He was also well-backed to win that race, which was won by Trekking. It looks a very good form reference so $8.50 is a very acceptable price. (12) Passage Of Time has returned a new horse as a gelding this preparation. He should have won first up and then he did win second up, quite easily too. This is a big step up in grade but he's flying. Happy to have something on all three.
Wide-open race with any number of chances. The two I'm most interested in backing are (11) Shillelagh and (12) Kenedna. They probably bring the best 2000m form to the race. Shillelagh is already a dual Group 1 winner and although she's yet to win at the distance, she did get beaten a nose in the Australian Cup in March. She had no luck whatsoever in the Mackinnon, and her other two runs at the distance were behind Avilius and Winx. Drawn well, James McDonald on board, she should be hard to beat in a race like this. Kenedna won a Group 1 over the mile in Sydney two starts ago but failed last start in the heavy ground. Back onto firmer footing today will see her get back to her best. She's also a Group 1 winner and she's never finished out of the top two from three starts at the distance. Her only previous start at this track and distance was a win. Double figure odds seems wrong. (2) Life Less Ordinary seems primed after a solid last-start win. If he's ever going to win a Group 1 this is it. (13) Youngstar is well placed third up from a spell. Her last start at the track was a win in the QLD Oaks as a three-year-old. The query is that was her last win, which was 12 months ago. (10 Fierce Impact isn't hopeless, while the emergency (17) Sixties Groove gets a run and is some chance. Backing Shillelagh ($9.00) and Kenedna ($13).
If (1) Scarlet Dream brings her best form she will win this race. She was last seen running 2nd to Verry Elleegant in the Oaks in Sydney and drops back to the 2000m today after a five week break. She's trialled in between to keep her ticking over, and the big field should give her the chance to find a position and run on. Her best would win this. (2) Aliferous has also been running in strong races in Sydney. She won two starts back and then ran 4th to Verry Elleegant in the Oaks. Drawn well and looks the value at double figure odds. (9) Belle Roc, (14) Etana and (15) On The White Turf are all chances.
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