The Group 1 Turnbull Stakes headlines racing at HQ, with all nine races on the card at blacktype level! It's set to be an absolute cracker of a meeting so don't miss out on our tips for every race below!
You can also find out race-by-race preview and betting tips for Epsom Handicap Day at Royal Randwick HERE!
Best Bet: Race 2 - (3) Violate
Best Value: Race 2 - (3) Fastnet Tempest
There are basically two types of races at Flemington that I dislike betting in: straight races and two-year-old races with unexposed form. We get both here, with a small field of five set to line up in the Maribyrnong Trial over 1000m. (2) Deep Speed has shown some ability at the jump outs, winning both and looking stylish in both. Will have him on top of (1) Boom Daddy who jumped out alongside Deep Speed and looked good in his own right. (6) Divine Caprice ran the third fastest final 400m of the meeting in defeat here on debut. She should appreciate the extra 100m of today's race and race experience can often make the difference.
Really keen on a couple here in what shapes as a terrific race. Fresh is best for (3) Violate, who has won his past two first up runs in dominant fashion. He sat three deep without cover first up last prep and still proved too strong over the 1400m in G3 company. He's got a good record over this track and distance and based off that effort last prep, I'm not worried about the mile first up. So long as he gets a good run from the wide gate, he should be charging home late. (2) Fastnet Tempest drops out of Group 1 company back to a Listed race which is much more within his reach. He never does anything in his first two runs back from a spell but he fires third up. He has three wins and two placings from five starts when third up. He's won his only start over this track and distance and Damien Oliver is a big jockey change in his favour today. (7) Music Bay ran a big race in defeat first up after sitting three-wide the trip. (1) Debt Collector is a five-time Group 1 winner in Singapore, with 12 wins from 24 starts. He makes his Australian debut today so it will be interesting to see how he lines up.
Good little race. (10) Wayupinthesky won a Listed race over this track and distance last start to mantain her unbeaten start to the campaign. She's now won three of her four starts and looks to be getting better each time she races. She's drawn wide which won't be a problem down the straight and she looks the one to beat. (13) Brooklyn Hustle makes her long awaited return to the races. She was due to resume a while ago but had a setback so they've pushed her reappearance back to today. Her trials this time in have been exceptional and Jason Warren gave her a massive push leading into the race she was meant to run in before being scratched. Interesting to see if she can measure up as a three-year-old. I think two at value to include are (4) Lucifer's Reward and (8) Order Of Fury. Lucifer's Reward won easily first up before bumping into a couple of smart ones last start in Garner and Sartorial Splendour. $26 looks a big price for her. Order Of Fury has had just the two starts and comes into this having beat Meteorite last start. There was a big gap back to the 3rd horse in that race and Meteorite came out and won easily at Moonee Valley last start. Danny O'Brien and Damien Oliver are an in-form combo. I'll be having something on her at the $15.
Another terrific race. (5) Pohutakawa is going to need some serious luck but she looks a big price at $9.00. She was good first up at Newcastle when running 4th to Sweet Deal in Group 3 company and she'll be much better off for that run. She's won two of her three starts when second up, and the one she didn't win was last prep when she was held up the entire straight in the G1 Surround Stakes. She's won her only start at this track and distance; she'll just need a good ride and some luck from barrier 3. (6) Angelic Ruler is also a great chance here. She was super first up over 1200m without much luck. She's undefeated second up and we've already seen the Perth form measure up in the past few weeks; this stable actually had a winner in Melbourne last weekend. This is her pet distance and Damien Oliver is booked for the ride today so she should be given every chance from barrier 6. Pretty confident she fights out the finish. It will also be interesting to see how (3) Celebrity Dream measures up on debut for the Waller stable. (8) Fidelia put the writing on the wall last start but will need luck again. Great race with several winning chances! Happy to back Angelic Ruler and Pohutakawa.
This is an absolute lottery. (9) Long Jack started favourite at Caulfield last start but only managed a midfield finish. He pulled up with EIPH which is an internal bleed, so perhaps his performance against market expectations can be forgiven. Damian Lane sticks with him here and I suspect the big Flemington straight will also benefit him. He's a decent each way price at $10 given he started $3.40 last start. (5) Adelaide Ace did a relly good job on his Melbourne debut last start, winning the Derby trial over this track and distance. He found the front a long way from home and just kept finding to the line. I'm not sure about the move to stick to 1800m but if he can be saved up a bit longer than last start, he'll finish the race off strongly. (4) The Lifeline looks your leader and the Waterhouse runners often are very competitive in races like these when they lead at their own leisure. Chances don't end there.
Might end up with egg on my face but I'll be happy to take on (1) Santa Ana Lane first up with 60kg on his back here. I think this will be to blow out the cobwebs ahead of his run in The Everest in two weeks' time. (7) Sunlight goes on top. She's third up from a spell now and she's undefeated from three previous third up runs. She's also undefeated at this track and distance. She closed off well in the Moir last Friday night to only be beaten 0.4L by Nature Strip and the step up to 1200m is the big key today. Comes here on the eight-day back up and looks hard to beat on her best form with the race fitness on her side. (4) Zoutori was impressive winning first up and despite the rise in weight is sure to be very competitive once again. (5) Tyzone has a great first up record, wuhile (6) Vital Silver makes its Melbourne debut having previously done all its racing in WA. (9) I Am Excited is an outside chance after a fairly luckless first up run.
What a contest this is set to be. I have to side with The People's Horse (3) Mr Quickie after a phenomenal first up run in the Makybe Diva Stakes. He was held up until about the 200m mark but charged through the line to be beaten 1.5L by Gatting and Mystic Journey. In doing so, he ran the fastest final 600m, 400m and 200m of the entire meeting, easily breaking 11 seconds for his final furlong (the only horse in the race to do so). Second up last prep he bolted in to win the Mornington Guineas and there's absolutely zero doubt he will eat up the 2000m. They'll ride him dead quiet from the gate and let him wind up into the race. He will certainly give the mare something to think about! (4) Mystic Journey was brave in defeat behind Gatting, albeit a touch disappointing. Gatting didn't necessarily frank that form with just a fair performance last start in the Underwood and there of course remains the slight query over the 2000m, which she tackles for the first time in her career. With that said, she looks to have taken significant improvement from each run this preparation based on her physical look. It wouldn't shock anyone to see her come out and redeem herself with a dominant performance here, but just at the prices I'm leaning towards my man Mr Quickie. (5) Rostropovich is undefeated second up from a spell, including a dominant performance at Chester in Listed company over 2075m last preparation. He was good enough at his first Australian run and can improve. (6) Finche comes off a good win in Sydney and would want to measure up here if he's to justify favouritism for the Melbourne Cup, while (12) Vow And Declare has really been thrown in the deep end first up over 2000m here, but he showed last prep he is one of the most exciting stayers in the country.
Excited to see what (3) Surprise Baby can do here. He goes against everything I look for in these staying races given he's 1600m up to 2500m second up, but this stable will have him spot on to win this in order to guarantee entry into the Cup. He was terrific first up behind Homesman at Moonee Valley in the Feehan Stakes, that form has been franked and he is infinitely better suited up in trip on a track like Flemington. (2) Dal Harraild could be one at big odds to throw in your numbers. He was good first up over 1700m here. He's got a good second up record, the blinkers go back on today and his record at the distance is also good. Trainer Ciaron Maher gave this horse a really good push as one to follow throughout the Spring so at $19 he's worth a small bet. (9) King Of Leogrance should have won last start so will be around the mark, while I'll be interested to see what (11) Supernova can do over this trip.
The favourite goes on top here in (7) Miami Bound. She's returned in fantastic order this prep and her last-start victory was all too easy at Bendigo. She settled last in the small field, came wide in the straight and cruised home over the top of them with plenty left under the bonnet. She'll need a good ride from barrier 2 but Ollie is on and with even luck she'll be very hard to beat. (11) Subpoenaed drops back in class after racing against the likes of Funstar, Probabeel and Libertini last start, which is Group 1 form. She'll be ridden cold from the wide gate and saved up for one last go at them. I thinkt he horse that's way over the odds is (14) Fascino. She was dominant first up at Ballarat despite sitting wide without cover all race. Last start I backed her and she was held up until the 100m mark at Caulfield and then had no room in the concluding stages either. She was only beaten 1.2L so she arguably could have won that with any luck at all. That was a Listed race so I'm sure she will measure up here and Mark Zahra takes the ride replacing Michael Dee. Drawn softly and the $18 looks crazy. (17) Affair To Remember was a similar hard-luck tale out of that same race. She needs one scratching to gain a run here but if she does she can also be competitive.
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