Welcome to our horse racing preview and betting tips for racing at Flemington on Wednesday, September 23rd.
A rare but quality midweek meeting at Flemington leading up to Group 1 racing both Friday and Saturday in Melbourne. The track is rated a Good 4 and the rail is out 4 metres. Trent Crebbin has assessed all eight races at headquarters and highlighted his tips and best bets below!
Best Bet: Race 8 - (8) Cordilla
Best Value: Race 6 - (7) Dubai Centre
Impossible 900m race for the babies. With very little confidence I’ll side with (7) Umgawa. Willo takes the ride on debut and this Shamus Award colt draws barrier 3. I always like first starters drawn nearer the inside down the straight, because they can get lost and the rail can sometimes be a guide. The horse jumped out behind (2) Finance Tycoon and looked to travel okay. At $15 you could certainly do worse for an airborne jockey. (3) General Beau is your early backed favourite and has obvious claims off a nice jump out but leave me out of $2.30 here.
Good little race and one I think the market has about right. (6) La Mexicana was impressive on debut, getting an easy lead but putting the race away comfortably in solid time. She was tipped out and returns here with Kah retaining the ride. The two SA fillies (3) Celestine and (8) Smokin’ Val both have big chances here in my opinion. Celestine is undefeated from two starts and whilst she’s raced quite greenly at both starts, she does have some talent. At the prices however I’m going to be backing Smokin’ Val. She started $21 on debut but completely outperformed that when winning by a widening 4L. She had to wait for a gap to appear but once she built momentum was only getting stronger. She then went to town and started $2.50, but raced quite keenly behind the leaders, eased off heels but had to duck back to the inside. Her work through the line and after the post was very good and I think drawn out here she might get her first real chance to build revs which looks to be her best asset. I love the fact Damien Oliver has been booked to ride and off her SP last start in a very similar race to Celestine’s last start, she looks a good bet. I’m not sure she’ll firm a whole lot either based off her trainer’s stats in Melbourne. I’d love to see double figures on the day because out of the three mentioned I think she could be the value.
Another good race. I was keen to follow (4) The Brumby off his last run where he made a stack of late ground to finish 0.4L off Aysar in the fastest last 400/200m of the meeting. He should love the Flemington 1400m, but he draws the carpark and probably gets back to near last again in a race that doesn’t have much tempo on paper. He did get over the top of (9) Poland late who had an easier run. That horse draws barrier 2 here and can be right on speed as he was on debut. The one I want to be with however is (5) Toyetic who comes here 2nd up off a let up. This horse has always shown talent and has been sent around as favourite in all three career starts. He was 8 weeks between runs at Bendigo and the 1100m was clearly too short. He really attacked the line and ran the fastest last 200m of the meeting ahead of the classy Ocular, who is a big chance later in the day. He draws barrier one here which could be a negative, but I think in a race with little pace Lane really should be able to lob midfield and be very strong up in trip. (3) Embolism next best off a solid debut from (1) Albarado who will improve over further on a Derby path.
The Oaks trial here and it’s very tough. Only two runners have actually won a race before and something would want to put in a good showing to put themselves in contention. I think (10) Salto Angel is the horse to beat here. She’s had two career runs, the most recent a solid 2nd behind Oceanography. She kept going solidly in the fastest last 600/400/200m of the meeting and this Sacred Falls filly will certainly appreciate the 1800m here. (8) Perfect World probably brings the best form with a trio of 2nds in handy races. Not sure she’s an Oaks filly however and whilst she’s been going forward from wide barriers here, she may have to work which could leave her vulnerable at the longer trip. A few of these come through a 1300m race where (7) Pensato ran 2nd after covering ground on speed, albeit on a soft tempo. (12) Star Of Eden was solid there in 3rd but I’m not sure that race is the right form for this stepping 500m up in trip.
(11) Ocular does look hard to beat here again. I was keen on him first up and he absolutely bolted in by 4.25L eased down, still managing to run the fastest last 400m of the day. He hasn’t raced down the straight before but if he brings that performance, he’ll be very hard to beat again. His two 2nd up runs have both been good, the first behind group mare How Womantic and the second he came from near last to miss an all the way winner. Aside from the straight track my only query is staying at 1100m, but those factors are why he’s not in the red. He finished alongside (7) Beehunter over 1600m last prep who was the better run, but of the two does look better suited over further and has a horrible racing pattern. Beehunter does draw wide which may be an advantage but at 1100m I think Ocular is better suited. Outside of them the race is very open. One that could run well is (3) Messerschmitt who pulled up lame first up at Caulfield in a good race behind Express Pass. His only start at the T/D was a decisive win with 59kg over Pinyin and Elite Legacy. He’s another that draws wide so if the outside rail is the place to be, I think he’s the one you could make a result out of aside from Ocular, who does look one of the best winning chances on the day.
The Derby trial is perhaps even more difficult than the Oaks at around $4.80 the field. The horse that interests me the most is (11) Let’s Karaka Deel. This Dundeel colt was very strong through the line on debut, missing by a nose before being backed off the map at Swan Hill to start $1.35 and John Allen rode him like the best horse in the race. Jumping from barrier 12 he pushed on, happy to sit 3 wide no cover before striding up to sit outside the leader. Despite the early work the result was never in doubt, winning by 1.5L with gaps back through the field. The form out of that race isn’t amazing, but from a kinder barrier he should do less work in run and will be strong at 1800m for the Maher/Eustace camp. The other that will eat up 1800m is (16) Wertheimer who comes out of a Moonee Valley race over 1500m. Despite a bunched finish he ran very well, coming from last of 14 in run to finish 7th, beaten less than 2L. He broke his maiden first up in Australia quite well over a subsequent winner and being by Tavistock will love the 1800m at Flemington. Olly sticks with him, which is a positive sign, but he will get a long way back again from the wide barrier which is the knock. (12) Reuber can’t quite get a win on the board but has been solid his last two. I’m not sure that form behind Café Rizu is much good so I’m prepared to risk him at the $5 quote here. The map horse looks to be (7) Dubai Centre for Willo. He sticks with the horse for Danny O’Brien and was good on speed behind Young Werther last start who looks to be quite talented. Drawn in barrier 5 he could lead this field and at the price I have to be on him here. I’ll also be backing Let’s Karaka Deel, and just risking Wertheimer based off his likely position in running but do concede he’s a good chance.
Another very open race at $5 the field. That favourite is currently (7) Chuck A Luck who comes here 3rd up after a much improved showing last start. He settled a long way back at Cranbourne but came home very nicely over 1400m to just miss El Questro. Chuck A Luck is suited here at 1600m 3rd up but does draw wide again here. He’s got blinkers on which Dee suggested after last start. Often a horse can miss the start when wearing blinkers first time, but if they do fire him up a touch, I think there’s a big opportunity to roll forward in a race where a few key chances draw wide also. The horse has settled right on pace before and this looks a good opportunity to do so, however you’re not getting much of a price to find out. (11) Affair To Remember is a good mare but draws the carpark here. She’s guaranteed to go back from the draw and whilst she’s been okay at two runs in, she hasn’t exactly set the world alight. Her run behind Pretty Brazen and Arcadia Queen was solid in the Let’s Elope but she’s always a low percentage play despite having the talent. (15) Impi was poor first up off a long break but nothing went right after a vet check and a difficult run. He was also reported to have a breathing issue and it’s hard to back him off that run here, although he is clearly good enough. One that surely rolls forward from the gate is (3) Gamay. I thought her run first up was quite solid off nearly a year’s break. She jumped well from barrier one but was allowed to drift back along the rails. Affair To Remember did go past her in the straight but I thought Gamay stuck on quite well and was a bit tight for room. She did bolt in when winning her maiden at her only 2nd up start before taking on some good 3yo races and even starting favourite in the VRC Oaks. She should be able to press forward from barrier 9 and sit in the first 4 and could fill a hole at big odds in a race I found very tough.
All about one horse here- (8) Cordilla. I gave it next to no chance last start dropping back to 1200m against How Womantic, but ran one of the best 6th’s you’ll see, never getting clear air and going to the line untested when finishing 1.8L adrift of the winner. The form out of that race is very good with Fabric, Parmie and La Tigeresa running the trifecta at Caulfield on Saturday. Cordilla steps back up to 1400m here, the T/D of her best career win when coming from a long way back to win very well. She won’t need to be worse than midfield from barrier 4 and should be going very close here. They opened up at a crazy price, but even the $2.90 looks fair enough here and I expect her to start closer to $2. She’s clearly my best bet of the day. In terms of dangers, (11) Scottish Dancer comes here first up and isn’t without a chance. Not many horses can say they’ve beaten Russian Camelot home, but this guy did last prep at this T/D. Just think Cordilla will have a fitness advantage on him here which might be the difference. (14) Challiot isn’t hopeless and is 2/2 in her career. She has a win at this T/D too but will be a fair way back. (2) Titan Blinders should appreciate getting back onto turf and if he gets an easy lead, he could be tough to run down. I’ve taken the early price Cordilla but still think she’s incredibly hard to beat here and should be sending us home a winner.
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