Our latest horse racing tips article takes a look at Flemington this Saturday, July 9 with a focus on two big races - the A.R Creswick Series Final and the VRC-CRV Winter Championship Series Final!
The Listed A.R. Creswick Series Final is one of two blacktype races on the Flemington card on Saturday, and sees a field of 14 three-year-olds competing over 1200m for the $120,000 purse.
The Flemington track is currently rated a Soft 7 but the forecast for Melbourne suggests most of the rain has already fallen, so I doubt the track will be downgraded any further. I'd expect by the start of race day the track will be somewhere near the Soft 5 range.
Let's go through each runner:
ODYSSEY MOON: Going for three in a row here after two tough wins over 1300m and 1100m at his last two starts. That suggests the 1200m will pose no problem at all even though he's failed to win from 7 attempts at the distance (has placed 4 times though). The key could be the moisture in the track - he's only missed a place once from 8 on wet tracks. Every chance to win again.
PRINCE OF BROOKLYN: Looked very promising early in his career with a Group 3 win on debut in Adelaide followed by an impressive Listed win at Swan Hill. Failed in two starts after that and was sent for a spell. Obviously has had his problems as he was off the track for 280 days, but returned with an eye-catching effort at Moonee Valley first up where he went down by a nose. Fitter here and rates well in my opinion.
WE'RE SURE: Interesting runner. The Snowden's wouldn't send a horse to Melbourne if he wasn't a genuine chance so I am wary of that. He was simply too good for his opposition first up at Newcastle; this is a big step up in grade on what he faced there though. Not very well weighted compared to others but he will like a wet track.
SOOBOOG: Impossible horse to catch and I just don't like the look of this race for him, particularly due to the wet surface predicted. He has cost punters a fortune with his inconsistency but on his best form he would probably win this. However, he hasn't performed well on wet tracks so far, and despite winning a trial on Heavy ground pretty convincingly leading into this I am going to side with others.
NAT'S THE BOSS: Has never missed a place at this distance and dropping back to 1200m from 1300m is a good thing as it looked as if he peaked on his run last start. He probably wants a firm track and he was beaten nearly 2 lengths by Odyssey Moon last start. He is 4.5kg worse off at the weights so won't be turning the tables here.
LORD VON COSTA: Incredibly consistent and has never missed a place from 8 starts in his career. Comes into this after a good run behind the talented Speith last start and looks ready to peak at his third run back from a spell. Has four 2nd place finishes on wet tracks so that won't bother him and he looks a good place chance once again.
TANGO ROCK: Didn't appreciate the Heavy 10 surface at Ballarat last start and drops back from 1500m to 1200m here, which is a distance he has performed well at previously. Won two starts back on a Soft 7 so should have no problems so long as it isn't heavy. This is much harder though so prefer others.
CHASE THE HORIZON: Has 5 placings from 6 starts over 1200m but he struggled over 1100m last start so the step up to 1200m in this grade is a query. He gets the blinkers on for the first time and has won previously on both soft and heavy so should handle the track. This will test him.
WELL SIGHTED: Ran okay last start in the same race as Prince of Brooklyn. Was beaten 2.7L by POB and is in at the same weights here so looks tough for him to turn the tables. Pass.
CRYSTAL DREAMER: Started this preparation in really good fashion with a runner up finish followed by consecutive wins in easier grade. He was well backed last start with just 51.5kg but failed miserably up the Flemington straight. May be able to improve with that experience but has much more weight to carry today and would need to improve. If he does he can run well though.
EL DORADO MINE: Won a maiden in convincing style first up at Pakenham as the short priced favourite. Big jump in grade here and gets the blinkers on for the first time. His win was good but it's very difficult to go from a maiden to a Listed race. Prefer others.
I BOOGI: Ran a huge race on debut where he missed the start by 6L and charged home to finish 2nd. Sent for a spell straight after that and comes into this first up which is a very interesting decision given the quality of the race. Not sure barrier 1 will be the place to be but his debut run was massive and it strikes me as very interesting to come to this race first up. Watch.
SOUND WORKS: Good over 1100m but has never placed from 5 attempts over 1200m. Has won on both soft and heavy so should get conditions to suit but this is much tougher than what she's been facing so she is up against it.
LITTLE INDIAN: Mixing her form and didn't see out the 1600m last start so drops back to 1200m here where she has one win and three placings from 6 attempts. Looks up against it in this grade.
I'm really only interested in two runners here: Odyssey Moon and Prince of Brooklyn. They stand out as the only two genuine winning chances. Odyssey Moon is going for three on the bounce, while Prince Of Brooklyn looks to have a stack of ability.
I have concerns over Sooboog's wet track form (and consistency) and while Lord Von Costa is as consistent as it gets, he shapes as more of a place chance than a winning chance in my opinion.
Very keen to keep an eye on I Boogie, while Crystal Dreamer and We're Sure are others to include.
Going to back Prince Of Brooklyn to win with a saver on Odyssey Moon.
1st PRINCE OF BROOKLYN
2nd ODYSSEY MOON
3rd LORD VON COSTA
4th I BOOGIE
The Winter Championship Series Final is Race 7 at Flemington and is one of two Listed events on the card. 14 runners are set to line up over the 1600m to contest the $150,000 prize, on what should be a Soft track come race time.
There looks like there could be a charge for the lead early on which could set a fairly hot tempo. I'd expect those coming from off the pace to be suited best as the leaders could use a bit of fuel finding the front on the wet surface.
I would expect Onpicalo to use barrier 5 to hold the rail and lead, with Rhythm To Spare the likeliest to come across from barrier 12 and join him. He won't be the only one trying to come across from out wide, however, with on-pacers Jacquinot Bay and Kenjorwood drawing barriers 11 and 14 respectively.
Rugged Cross settled up near the speed last start and may do so again from barrier 1. Petrology will look to hold a position in midfield from barrier 6, with Zebrinz and Fast And Free likely to settle worse than midfield.
Chance To Dance should get a great run back in the field from barrier 4, along with Del Prado from barrier 2 and War Story from barrier 8. Iggimacool, Minnie Downs and By The Grace are three possibilities to settle at the back of the field.
I think the race sets up nicely for By The Grace with the expected pace on up front. He will have to come from a long way back but if the tempo is hot he may be able to mow them down with the long straight. His last two runs have put the writing on the wall and the step up to 1600m should really suit him. Handles the wet and gets plenty of weight relief off those at the top so he shapes as a good each way bet in this.
His greatest competition could be from the favourite Chance To Dance who comes into this third up from a spell, which he has won at previously. His run at Moonee Valley last start was eye-catching given the pattern of the day, and he maps to get a beautiful run in midfield.
Kenjorwood and Jacquinot Bay will both have to use a bit of petrol to find a position near the speed from their wide barriers, but both are in good form and can feature in the finish if the tempo isn't as hot as expected. Both horses excel on wet ground and despite having to carry all the weight, they definitely possess winning claims.
Iggimacool is another backmarker to consider on the back of her win in mares grade last start.
Happy to stick with By The Grace in what looks a tough race. Chance To Dance definitely rates well and can win and the market should allow us to cover our losses fairly easily.
1st BY THE GRACE
2nd CHANCE TO DANCE
4th JACQUINOT BAY
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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