A huge day of Australian horse racing comes to us this Saturday with the Golden Rose in Sydney and the Makybe Diva Stakes in Melbourne, the two feature Group 1 races of the day. Our resident horse racing expert Tim is back once again to bring you some more great horse racing betting tips.
Those that have followed Tim's work, either on Twitter or through his subscription service at Tim's Tips, will know that Tim brings excellent form and great experience in the industry. Tim will be providing previews and analysis of feature races, with regular articles each Saturday and throughout the spring racing season.
Makybe Diva Stakes 1600m - WFA Group 1
FAWKNER was ready to go two weeks ago but was scratched out of the Memsie after drawing a wide barrier. That was over 1400m so instead he comes into the 1600m here first up, which shouldn't pose much of a problem given he came into this exact race first up last year and ran 2nd to Dissident by a nose. Has a fantastic record over the mile and has never finished out of the top 2 over 1600m at Caulfield. Draws wide again here but he will be ready to go and is a good winning chance.
HAPPY TRAILS comes into this 3rd up so should be approaching a good enough level of fitness. Didn't get a lot of luck last start in the Memsie so its slightly hard to gauge where he is at, but I think he is looking for 2000m and should find a couple of these too good for him over the mile.
BOBAN resumed with a fantastic win in the Memsie, sneaking up along the rail to get up in the last couple of strides. Should take natural improvement and strip slightly fitter, and the step up to 1600m should suit him, although Chris Waller has a slight concern over the mile which is interesting. Has drawn beautifully in barrier 4 so should enjoy a nice run, and the drier track today will also suit him better. Very hard to beat.
DANDINO has his 2nd start since a 12 month break from racing and finished well back in the field first up. Looking for much further than this and will need quite a few more runs before he is competitive.
SMOKIN' JOEY had pulled up with an internal bleed after finishing at the back of the field last start. Has had four weeks between runs and steps up to the mile here but is probably a class below the top horses in this race.
WEARY looks to be flying to my eye. Stormed home first up to finish 2nd over 1200m and then finished off well to grab 4th in the Memsie after starting slowly and racing deep throughout the race. Draws a shocking gate again here and although the step up to the mile looks like it should suit, he has only placed once from 5 attempts over 1600m. The ground also might be a bit too firm for his liking, but if he has any luck from a wide gate I expect him to be thereabouts at the finish.
PRINCE OF PENZANCE resumed with a outstanding run in the Memsie over a distance that is well short of his best. Does have a good record 2nd up, has won his only two starts over 1600m and has placed in 4 of his 6 runs at Caufield. Draws an awkward gate but expect him to go back and finish off nicely again. He is a cheeky place chance at odds.
ENTIRELY PLATINUM ran terrific as expected first up when finishing 2nd by a nose behind Boban in the Memsie. His 2nd up record is even better and he's placed in 3 of his 4 runs over the mile. His problem is barrier 15 which should make his job of leading slightly tougher. If he gets across and gets an economical run out the front he could stick on to grab a place.
MONGOLIAN KHAN is a horse I am really keen to follow over the Spring. Came to Sydney in the Autumn and took out the Australian Derby over 2400m and has his first today run since that win. His record speaks for itself with 7 wins from 9 starts, which includes a win over 1600m. Runs well on both firm and soft ground, and although he might flourish over further distances he should be ready to run well today.
VOLKSTOK'N'BARRELL is the other Kiwi that people have high hopes of this Spring. Resumed in the Memsie two weeks ago with a nice 7th and the step up to 1600m here will suit him much better. He is undefeated over the mile and also undefeated 2nd up. The wide gate gives him a tough job and I'll be waiting until he strikes a race over 2400m but he is going nicely.
MAGICOOL finished towards the back of the field after missing the kick in the Memsie. Going to find most of these too slick for him over 1600m and is going to need a couple more runs.
HI WORLD was left a bit flat footed first up but chased bravely when finishing 5th behind Boban in the Memsie. Much better suited up to the mile 2nd up but I feel he still need a bit of cut out of the ground which he is unlikely to get today. Draws barrier 17 so won't get as cozy a run as he did first up. Tough race for him.
ALPINE EAGLE is the new kid on the block. Runner up behind Wandjina in the Australian Guineas and had his first run back from a break at Morphettville 3 weeks ago where he hit the line hard to finish 2nd behind Riziz. Sure to have taken plenty of benefit from that run and the step up to 1600m suits him better than most in this race. His problem is two things - the awkward barrier and his tendency to race greenly, which he won't be able to do against the seasoned Group 1 horses he faces here. I expect him to run a big race and is certainly a winning chance but he needs to improve and will need a good ride.
RISING ROMANCE ran a nice race first up in the Memsie, finishing 6th by 1.6L. Generally needs another run so won't be at her best 2nd up here and will certainly relish a little bit further than the 1600m of this race. However, she is a talented mare and she ran well enough first up to suggest she can run in the money here. Draws barrier 1 so gets a good run and David Hayes said she is their best chance of the weekend on an each-way basis. Keep her safe.
GUST OF WIN comes into this 2nd up after finishing 4 lengths off Royal Descent first up. On a path to the Melbourne Cup so she will need the run here.
AWESOME ROCK ran a nice race behind Charmed Harmony first up when he finished 3rd. Certainly talented but this is a very tough ask stepping up to a weight-for-age Group 1 against some of the country's best milers.
Really tough race here with a query over plenty of these horses over the mile and a few key chances drawing wide barriers. Sticking with BOBAN who defeated many of these two weeks ago in the Memsie. Should improve 2nd up stepping up to the mile on a firmer track, and draws an advantageous barrier. He goes on top of FAWKNER who finished 2nd in this race last year in similar circumstances to what he faces today. The wide barrier makes it tough for him but he should finish strongly. RISING ROMANCE draws a great barrier and looks a good each way chance off the back of her performance in the Memsie, while Alpine Eagle is talented enough to feature in the finish. Looking forward to seeing how Mongolian Khan and Prince of Penzance finish off the race.
De Bortoli Golden Rose Stakes 1400m - Group 1
PRESS STATEMENT is the runner I keep coming back to when assessing the form of the race. Ran tremendous first up when runner up to Exosphere but carried top weight there and wasn't completely ready to go. Will turn up in much better shape today and the firm track will suit him much more than the Godolphin horse. Draws an ideal barrier (3) and the step up to 1400m is perfect. He is the one I want to be on.
EXOSPHERE returned with a phenomenal win in the Run To The Rose two weeks ago where he defeated Press Statement by 1.3L. Looked pretty tuned up for that race but the way he finished the race off was nothing short of impressive. Meets the 1400m for the first time but he was very strong to the line two weeks ago so the extra furlong won't hurt. Draws slightly tricky in barrier 2 as he tends to get back a bit, and my major concern with him is the firm track he is going to face. With the temperature set to be around 25 degrees, the track is expected to be a Good 3 and both times he has faced firm tracks he has jarred up and finished last. I'd be backing him on a Soft 5 or worse but the Good 3 makes me side with Press Statement here.
RAGEESE went to Wyong last start for a confidence boosting win and did it comfortably enough. Ran 2nd to Pride Of Dubai in the Autumn which is good enough form to win this race but it is whether he has taken the necessary step. I think he is a fairly big price given we know what he is capable of, but I can't back him off the back of a Wyong maiden that he won by 1.8L.
SHARDS is an interesting runner here and clearly Godolphin's 2nd or 3rd pick to win the race. He won quite handily first up from a couple months off against the likes of Sebring Sun who was race fit and flying. Has the services of Joao Moreira here which will give him every chance and I wouldn't be surprised to see him take it to the big boys.
SEBRING SUN was impressive in winning consecutive races before finishing strongly down the outside last start behind Shards. The step up to 1400m will suit this horse and he gets a 2kg swing in the weights over Shards so might be able to peg back to margin from his defeat last start. He might be able to sneak into a place.
LET'S MAKE IT RAIN finished behind Sebring Sun two starts back before finishing runner up in a benchmark race last start. He probably goes forward from the second widest barrier and might look to sit outside the leader. Looks slightly outclassed but a nice horse going forward.
HOLLER is the least favoured of the Godolphin runners based on the market but isn't completely out of calculations here. Resumed in the same race as Press Statement and Exosphere last start where he finished 3rd after sitting outside the leader. Much worse off at the weights against the top two which certainly makes his job difficult, but with natural improvement 2nd up he could sneak into a place.
SPEAK FONDLY is absolutely flying this prep and gets in 2kg better off at the weights than the rest of the field. Last start she was impressive when winning impressively by nearly 3 lengths in the Furious Stakes. Draws barrier 4 here which means she will either lead or take a sit and track the leader which I expect to be a Godolphin horse. The thing against her is history - only one filly has ever won this race. She will look the winner at some stage but I think she will find one too good.
Really, really keen on PRESS STATEMENT here. Much better suited stepping up to 1400m 2nd up and the firm track will suit him much better than Exosphere who is yet to convince me on this surface. Speak Fondly is certain to run well but I think she will find one too good for her, while Shards and Sebring Sun have a chance of getting into a place. Rageese the blow out.
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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