Welcome to our preview and horse racing betting tips for Oaks Day at Flemington on Thursday, November 8th.
The Group 1 Kennedy Oaks is the feature of the day and comes up in Race 8. We saw a stack of rain fall on Cup Day but the track drained very well. It’s currently a Soft 6 but I’d expect that to firm up a touch and be racing around the Good 4-Soft 5 range.
We’ve got betting tips and comments for every race on the card below.
Best Bet: Race 3 Savacool
Best Value Bet: Race 7 Tavidance
A field made up of mostly unraced two-year-olds, so not a big betting race at all. There’s ben huge support for Chicago Bull from the Gelagotis stable. It’s worth noting this horse was very heavily backed at Moonee Valley not long ago, before being scratched out of the race. The money has once again arrived here and where there’s smoke there’s fire. He trialled nicely at Cranbourne, leading all the way and seemingly finding plenty when given a little squeeze. Vinicunca is another that le all the way in a jumpout at Flemington. Gai Waterhouse will no doubt have had this race targeted a long way out and whenever she brings a horse like this to Melbourne you need to take note. I’d prefer to be backing a Gai two-year-old during Cup week over a Gelagotis two-year-old but I’m very wary of the weight of money for Chicago Bull. The value could be the Lindsay Park-trained Fanaar. He went to Adelaide on debut and was heavily supported in a small field of four, but was beaten by stablemate Sebrakate, who then won its next start too. Month between runs, back to Melbourne and Jim Crowley takes the ride. I’ll be having something on at $9.00. I wasn’t so impressed with the jumpout of Art Collection so I’ll take her on.
Tough race with a field of 15 runners. Will be looking for a result at a bit of value here. Double The Magic is a good price at $11. She’s kept improving with every start this preparation and comes off a big win at Morphettville, where she came from a long way back and swung wide on the turn before eventually running them down over the mile. Fifth run this campaign now, should be at peak fitness and ready to run a big race despite the big weight and wide draw. Pure Scot did a very good job to win first up at Ballarat after sitting three-wide the trip. She’s always showed plenty of talent but she’s just struggled to put the wins on the board. Often her racing style costs her but if she can sit a bit closer from barrier 4 then she’s certainly got the talent to win this. Cabierro gets Kerrin McEvoy on board today. She’s another that has just continued to improve with every start this prep and should be ready to fire fourth up today. She finished her race off really nicely at Sale last start and looks a good chance here at $10. Black And Tan is a knockout hope at $17, while Hunboshi is another to include at $16. Palmateer just looks a touch short for mine at $4.40.
Savacool looks primed to win today after four runs back this prep and a nice little barrier trial at Randwick over 2000m last start. They took her back to last from the wide barrier and she ran home well into 2nd with 59.5kg on her back. Drops down to 54kg today, draws better in barrier 4, though she’s still likely to get a fair way back. Kerrin McEvoy goes on and she looks hard to beat. Mahamedeis won nicely at the Valley two starts back before finishing 2.5L off Best Of Days last start. That horse then went on to win a Group 1 at his next start, while Life Less Ordinary also came out of that race and has run well again since. He’s also likely to get a long way back from barrier 9 but he’s certainly capable of winning this. Live And Free just peaked on his run in Sydney last start but will be ready to peak third up today up to the 1800m. Astoria gets the blinkers back on but struggles to put wins on the board.
The greys race. Looks very open and a blowout result wouldn’t shock. Harbour Grey ran 2nd in this race last year and follows basically an identical lead in to the race this year. The difference is, this year he comes off a first up win at Geelong, where he charged home from the back of the field under 61.5kg. Second up today and he has a very good second up record, as well as a good record at this track and distance. Mark Zahra keeps the ride and he looks as if he’ll be very competitive once again. At $5.00/$1.95 he’d be my main play in the race. Stratocaster is a Kiwi horse having his first Australian start and obviously comes across for this race. It’s his first start for a new stable today but does come off a win five weeks ago. Craig Williams is a notable jockey booking. Chalk looks to have been given two preparation runs leading into this up in Sydney. Cape Sounion a blowout result.
Nightmare race with 16 runners and $5.50 the field. The favourite is Superhard who has won three of his five starts since joining the Weir stable. The query for him is it’s his first try at the mile and he’s got 3kg more weight than anything else in the field. His stablemate Egyptian Gold is actually one that interests me at $8.50. She’s deep into her prep but comes off a win at Stawell and gets the blinkers applied for the first time in her career today. Damian Lane takes the ride and when Weir puts the blinkers on they generally have a decent effect. Stealthy Lucas has drawn horribly in barrier 20 but has won his past three starts and should be included. Truly Discreet has solid form lines and comes off a win at Geelong. Drawn well and can be competitive again. Not a big betting race at all, this one.
Another wide-open race. Super Cash looks to have been set for this first up. She’s got a terrific fresh record with five wins from seven starts and went into the Group 1 UBET Classic first up last prep but never got any daylight in the straight. There’s some query over this being her first start at the 1000m distance but she’s got five wins at 1100m so it shouldn’t be much of an issue. Kaepernick was last seen running 2nd to Redzel over 1000m in the Concorde Stakes. Resumes for the first time since then but has trialled nicely on two occasions. Malibu Style resumed with a sound run behind Eduardo and comes into this second up with the concussion plates off, which is a positive. He’s got a good second up record and won twice down the Flemington straight last prep. He’s a value hope. Plenty of other horses you could make a case for in a very open race. Something small on Super Cash, Kaepernick and Malibu Style.
Waka is only very lightly raced, having had just the two career starts, but her maiden win at Sale last start was impressive. She really hit the line hard late over the 1400m and that indicates the step up in trip today will only suit her. Godolphin are absolutely flying at present and it looks a pretty winnable race with several horses out of form. Tavidance was awfully disappointing as the $1.40 favourite last time out but he’s had three weeks between runs and Weir puts the blinkers on him today. Damian Lane takes over for the ride and I’d suggest not giving up on him just yet. We’re getting each way odds today and if he won that last start like the market suggested he should have, he’d probably be close to favourite for this.
The Group 1 Kennedy Oaks. The race was made very interesting after the Thousand Guineas winner Amphitrite was added to the field after having no luck in the Empire Rose Stakes on Derby Day. She started the $4.20 favourite in that race but never saw daylight. Prior to that she had won all four start this preparation for Darren Weir. She’s rated 19 points clear of any other horse in this race and gets in at level weights, so on that alone she will be awfully hard to beat. The obvious query is the step up from 1600m to 2500m in the space of five days. Stablemate Verry Elleegant was a bit of a horror watch in the Wakeful Stakes last time out, restrained back in the field and kept under a grip despite over racing badly. She didn’t have much hope after that with the way the race was run, but it looked a lot like a barrier trial for today’s race. She’ll go back again from barrier 13 but the nose roll is applied today and as we saw with Extra Brut in the Derby, it’s not worth dropping off on the back of one disappointing run. Aristia won the Wakeful and gets a lovely run from barrier 4 again so must be included, while Greysful Glamour gets back to Flemington, where she won easily two starts ago over the 1800m. Collectable could be the one flying under the radar.
Meryl and Humma Humma both come out of a race behind Sunlight at their most recent start, which looks particularly strong form for a race like this given Sunlight has since come out and won the G1 Coolmoore Stud Stakes. Meryl has to carry 59kg here – 4kg more than any other horse – so she might struggle, but Humma Humma is a very good chance. She just keeps finding one better. Schilldora looks big odds at $21. She’s won three straight and beat home Gytrash last start – a horse that had previously run 2nd to Written By in Melbourne. Propelle was good when winning first up at Moonee Valley and should only improve second up here. Damian Lane keeps the ride and $11 is a reasonable price. Voila has had four top-two finishes from six career starts up in Sydney and comes down to Melbourne for the Waller camp having had four weeks since her last-start win. Can’t be dismissed. Final Choice already has a win to her name down the Flemington straight and was only run down late by Propelle last start so she looks over the odds at $26, while Bleu Roche ran 2nd to Final Choice two starts ago before finishing 4th in a pretty strong race against the boys last time out. She’s been well backed to win this. Dartboard job to end the day!
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