There are four huge Group 1s on the card, with the Australian Oaks, Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Sydney Cup and Coolmoore Legacy Stakes. THe day also features Winx in her final race before retirement.
The track is currently a Soft 5 and with fine weather it's possible we'll get an upgrade. The rail is in the 3m position.
Check out our selections for every race below!
Best Bet: Race 3 Archemedus
Next Best Bet: Race 8 Dubhe
Best Value Bet: Race 10 Invincibella / Resin
Godolphin have dominated the season's two-year-old races and so Amercement goes on top here after running 4th in the Magic Night Stakes over 1200m last start. Kiamichi won that race and went on to win the Golden Slipper, so that appears to be the formline to follow for this race. Amercement steps up from 1200m to 1600m, which is never ideal, but she's trialled since her last run and I'm confident trainer James Cummings will have her right up to the mark. Significance wasn't far off Bullet Fly on debut at Newcastle and has since lit up the trials. He gets the blinkers on for the first time today and looks a live chance stepping up to the mile. Vinco and Power Scheme come through the Mornington Sires' in Melbourne. Hard to line up the form.
Cracking race. There's three I want to back, with one of those as a saver. Wild Planet was great first up when 2nd to Krone over 1200m on a Heavy track. Classique Legend was back in 3rd. He should come on plenty from that run fitness-wise and he looks very well suited second up at 1400m on a slightly firmer surface here. He's got an awkward draw but if he can slot in, he'll be right in the finish. Green Aeon backed up a dominant debut with another dominant performance over 1400m last start. He looks the leader here and with 53kg he could prove pretty tricky to run down. Fasika is the the one I'll be saving on. Like Green Aeon, she backed up a dominant debut with another impressive win last start. She now steps up to 1400m after two runs at the 1200m. Green Aeon ran a quicker final 600m on the day compared to Fasika but Fasika went to the line with more to offer. She's got a tricky draw as well but she can come from off the speed so it's less of an issue. No surprise to see her win. Backing Wild Planet ($5.00) and Green Aeon ($4.80) and saving on Fasika ($6.00).
Two or three I'm keen on in the Provincial Championships Final. Archemedus brings a similar profile to the race as Noble Boy did to last week's Country Championships Final. He's a winner of five of his seven career starts; those five wins have been his last five races. Two starts ago he beat Star Of The Seas, who has since gone on to win its next two starts, and last start he sat three-wide on speed and still proved too strong. Drawn well and incredibly hard to beat here. Bobbing could be the danger and the value at $7.50. He's finished in the top two in eight of his nine career starts. He ran in the Wyong qualifier and was beaten a head after coming from last in the run. Has a great record at the distance and should be hitting the line hard. Chalmers was absolutely luckless first up in its qualifier and James McDonald takes over from Robert Thompson today. Could be a blowout chance at $26.
Going to back two of the Godolphin fillies here in Kiamichi and Flit. Kiamichi is obviously the Golden Slipper winner and followed that with an admirable effort over 1400m last start in the Sires' Produce Stakes. She was in front for a long way before being overrun late so the step back to 1200m probably suits her. She'll bowl along in front and prove tough to run down. She gives away weight to every other horse today which is the little query. Flit is a really progressive filly and is still largely unexposed having only raced twice. She was an absolute trainwreck on debut but proved her class with a dead-heat win at Flemington last start. James Cummings said after that race that she was a filly to follow and I reckon she'll measure up here. She's the value in the race at $8.00 and James McDonald is a good lead. Notably, Damian Lane jumps off Kiamichi to ride Cheer Leader, who was a dominant winner at Moonee Valley last start.
Three I'll be backing here, with one being a saver in what is a fantastic race. Classique Legend was huge in defeat last start, covering more ground than the early settlers in the Darby Munro Stakes. He sat four-wide on speed and was still only beaten half-a-length. He was clearly the best horse in that race and Kerrin McEvoy simply got it all wrong. If he gets an easier run in transit today, he can bounce back to winning ways. He's a serious horse, but this is also his biggest test. Trope is another serious horse and I'll be backing him too. He won on debut at Kensington before hitting the line strongly for 2nd behind Prophet's Thumb last start. That was a terrific run and the step up to 1200m today is well in his favour. Avantage proved too good at her first Australian start and every indication pre-race was that she would improve significantly from that run to today. She's a winner of seven of her eight career starts, including one at Group 1 level. Draws well and she will definitely be right in the finish. Saving on her and backing the other two.
Verry Elleegant has gone to the next level this preparation and was a dominant winner of the Vinery last start over 2000m. She steps up to 2400m now and even though she's still not learnt to settle, it hasn't mattered so far this prep and it won't matter here. If she can slot in anywhere, she'll be running home over the top of them. She's simply too classy for the rest of them. Aristia should continue to improve with the step up to 2400m. She was the winner of the Oaks in Melbourne in the Spring and will run a good race again today. Frankley Awesome was huge in defeat behing Verry Elleegant last start and dodged the Derby to run here instead. She'll run well but I can't see any of them turning the tables on Verry Elleegant.
Winx. If you're interested in backing something for the place, Hartnell at $2.25 or He's Eminent at $2.10 appeal.
When Charlie Appleby brings a horse to Australia, they generally win. We've seen these types of Godolphin horses dominate the staying races in Australia, as they did in last year's Sydney and Melbourne Cups. Dubhe is the horse he brings solely for this year's Sydney Cup. He's won three of his seven career starts, the latest of which was a 4L win at Meydan over the 3200m. There was an 8.5L gap back to the third horse. The European stayers are simply better than ours and when they carry 52.5kg, they are very hard to beat. I think he'll be winning this. Similarly, when Lloyd WIlliams sends a horse to Sydney, they generally go close. We saw that with Midterm last start when he won easily over 2400m on Heavy ground. The stable have had success in this race with horses like this and he's another with 52.5kg that should be running well. Big Duke has been ticking over nicely for this race. He ran 3rd in this race last year and 4th in the Melbourne Cup. He'll go well again. Rondinella next best.
Tough race! Dixie Blossoms is going really well ahead of what could be her final career start today. She won the Coolmoore Classic two starts ago and ran really well in the Doncaster last weekend. Comes into this on the quick back-up and she's got a good record at this track and distance. She's drawn a bit ordinary here in barrier 11 but she's going well enough to win this. If Alizee can rediscover her best form, she'll probably win this, but she was pretty plain last weekend in the Doncaster. Much better suited back to her own sex here and she does have two wins from three starts at the track and distance. Kenedna improved sharply second up with teh blinkers going on. Looks suits third up into this - she's on the way up and meets a few mares that are deep into their preparation. Amphitrite will appreciate the soft ground and can run a good race.
Four main chances in the last. Really keen to back Invincibella at $10. She's first up here and has three wins from seven starts when fresh. She's never finsihed outside the top two from five starts on soft ground, has two wins at the track and draws well in barrier 2. She's a great each way price. Spright and Winter Bride met each other five weeks ago, with Winter Bride getting the upper hand. Spright then went to the William Reid Stakes and ran as she typically does - very well without a lot of luck. She's crying out for another win and she gets her chance on the big Randwick track. Winter Bride also gets her chance with the inside gate and she's been kept fresh for this. She just knows how to win. Resin was knocked off by Avantage last start after sitting wide without cover throughout. She's undefeated third up from a spell and with an easier run in transit, she should go very close here. We'll get a good gauge on the form from that race with Avantage going around in Race 5 earlier in the day. I'll be backing Invincibella and Resin, with a saver on Spright.
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