Rail – True
Track – Good 4
Forecast – Max 33 degrees, mostly sunny
Race 1 – Crown Perth Plate – 1000m – 12:24pm
Storm Whisper won at his maiden race after coming off some really good trials (a win and a second). He definitely looks to have ability given that he won that race by six lengths. His barrier and weight are all in his favour and he should find the front easily, though, with so many maiden horses, it is hard to tell whether he’ll be challenged for this position. I’m not surprised to see him as the favourite! Policiere is coming off a win at only her second start. She’s third up here so she will be starting to get the hang of race day. Pike retains the ride, with his experience needed from that wide barrier. She goes up 2kg due to last start’s win, but 57kg isn’t too much to ask. She should go well. Vranyo is having her first start here but is coming off some very good trials (a win and a second). Visiting jockey Jye McNeil takes the ride, so I’m interested as to whether he’ll adapt quickly to the WA racing scene (which won’t be the case now due to the Victorian hard border being reintroduced). However, she’s got a good barrier so she should find a lovely spot. She’s good value and will only improve off this run. Sneaky Chance was a bit disappointing at her first start behind Policiere. She’s definitely had a few excuses, though I’m hoping this hasn’t knocked her confidence too much. Her trials leading into that race were good and she should settle in an ideal position behind Storm Whisper. Look for her to bounce back here at incredible value!
2 – Storm Whisper
1 – Policiere
11 – Vranyo
6 – Sneaky Chance
Race 2 – TABtouch – Better Your Bet Handicap – 1100m – 1:04pm
Keep Your Feet has form behind some great horses last preparation, including Clairvoyance and Mystical View. He did better than expected first up given his trial leading into that race. His second up record (2:1-0-0) and track record (2:0-1-1), suggest that he can put in a repeat performance here. He’s drawn wide but has proven previously that he can get back midfield and run on. I’m hoping class sees him winning this. Bourbon Beau is coming off a win leading into this race and is actually in career best form this preparation, recording a win and a second (4:1-1-0). These races were in weaker company and he only drops 0.5kg here. He should easily find the front from barrier one and looks to be a threat to my top tip. All Day Session looked to be simply outclassed in the group 2 WA Guineas and listed Lee-Steere, as he bounced back with a third to Keep Your Feet’s second last start. He too has drawn wide but seems to do his best work when leading, so that barrier could actually be an advantage. Just may find my top tip too good once again. Our Danni is also coming off a win, though the form surrounding her last two races haven’t been particularly strong. She isn’t penalised in the weights for that run, though has drawn wide, which has been her undoing lately. Her track/distance record is her biggest advantage (4:1-1-1), but I think she’ll find one better here.
3 – Keep Your Feet
7 – Bourbon Beau
1 – All Day Session
4 – Our Danni
Race 3 – Seppelt “The Drives” Handicap – 1600m – 1:44pm
Dark Mission did well to finish as close as she did seeing she got back and stuck in a bit of traffic. She’s third up here so should be spot on fitness wise. However, she does seem to do her best work when she’s fresh, though she has won third up before (2:1-0-0). She’s also won from out wide before so that isn’t too much of a concern here, plus she’s won at this track/distance (2:1-0-0). I’m hoping to see her bounce back to her consistent self that we saw this time last year. Ration Aly has had excuses all preparation, including simply getting too far back last start. She did run the fastest last 600m in that race though. With that in mind and the fact that she has a much better barrier here and therefore should get a better position in running, it should help improve her chances. She steps up to 1600m for the first time, but given her previous races, she may be looking for this extra distance. My only concern is that she’s yet to place at Ascot (3:0-0-0). Other than that, there’s no reason for her to run a bad race. The Fugazi is a very consistent horse, having not placed outside of the top four this preparation and last. His race two starts ago was good where he finished second behind Lorentinio, but I think he’s crying out for a soft track as that is where he does his best work. A few red flags for me are that he’s yet to win at Ascot (8:0-2-1) or place at this distance (8:0-2-1), which makes me think that 1400m is his maximum distance. He’s also drawn wide. Interestingly though he gets the blinkers on for the first time so perhaps we might see a new and improved horse here. Kia Ora Star seems to have gotten too far back last start, so just put a line through that run. She is a bit of a hit and miss horse which is the biggest reason she’s this far down my list, though she has placed second up before (5:0-2-0). The biggest thing I like about her here is her track/distance record (3:0-1-2) and she has a decent barrier. Huge value tip!
4 – Dark Mission
3 – Ration Aly
2 – The Fugazi
5 – Kia Ora Star
Race 4 – Ascend Sales Trophies Handicap – 1000m – 2:24pm
Leica Jaguar is just on fire at the moment, winning three races prior to this one. His turn of foot is the main reason I’ve got him on top, plus he has a great track/distance record (6:3-2-0). He’s drawn the inside barrier, so there is the slight concern that he’ll get stuck on the rail. Look for him to make it four wins in a row. Giant Leap is a cerise and white horse that is hard to ignore. He’s only placed outside the top three once in his career (7:2-2-2) and looks to be on track for another good preparation after winning a trial leading into this race. He’s drawn wide and is yet to win first up (3:0-1-2) or on a good track (3:0-0-2). He’ll only improve as he steps up in distance, but ability could see him winning here. Amelia Bedelia jumps up in class here and as a result, drops 3kg on last start’s run. She’s consistently placed in the top three this preparation, including a third behind my horse Weaponson, but her form isn’t the strongest. She’s got a good distance record (8:1-2-3) and a good barrier but may just be slightly outclassed. Spending Comet gets into my top four due to the scratching of Condor Heroes. This horse was racing well at the end of last preparation but has failed to fire this preparation. Dropping down in distance may benefit and at least he only had to carry 58.5kg with Beaux’s claim. It’s hard to see him beating my top three though.
5 – Leica Jaguar
6 – Giant Leap
7 – Amelia Bedelia
3 – Spending Comet
Race 5 – Amelia Park Handicap – 1200m – 3:00pm
Tycoon Storm comes out of listed company where she by no means disgraced herself. She drops down in class here and does have to carry 60kg as a result, but last time she carried this weight she won, so it isn’t too much of a concern. I argue that she probably goes better over 1400m, but she has placed at this track/distance before (1:0-0-1). Besides the weight she looks to be very well placed here. Platinum Bullet has been improving with each run this preparation, recording a second and then a first. Both of these races were behind Resortman which is very good form in my opinion. She has a lot going in her favour including her turn of foot, barrier, Pike and her track/distance record (4:1-1-1). I wouldn’t be surprised at all if she won. Weaponson won’t know himself with just 53.5kg on his back due to Kristy claim. How he won first up even has me baffled, given that he did so much wrong. He has a great third up record (2:1-1-0) and is unbeaten over this distance (1:1-0-0). He just always seems to find one better and is often his own worst enemy. The barrier isn’t going to help us here, but I’d be surprised if he wasn’t in the finish. Don’t rule him out. Power Of St George just showed a fantastic turn of foot last start where he won. That race was over 1600m back in June. He comes into this race without a trial, though does have a good first up record (2:1-1-0). I thought 1200m might be too short for him, but he actually has a great distance record (4:2-1-0). If he can use that turn of foot he can surprise.
2 – Tycoon Storm
6 – Platinum Bullet
10 – Weaponson
7 – Power Of St George
Race 6 – Mrs Mac’s – La Trice Classic – 1800m – 3:35pm
Chantrea hasn’t had much luck this preparation, though there haven’t been any excuses in the stewards’ reports. Interestingly she steps up in class to a group 3 but doesn’t get any weight relief on Dance Music who she finished fourth to last start. Her biggest advantage is the step up to 1800m and she’ll only get better when she steps out over 2000m. She’s unbeaten third up (1:1-0-0) and has only placed outside the top three once in her career (8:6-0-1). Hoping she can bounce back to her winning ways here. Dance Music has never been tested beyond 1600m but given how well she’s been racing over that distance, I don’t think the step up here will cause her too many problems. She’s drawn wide which may mean she has to use a bit of energy early on to get a forward position. As previously mentioned, she doesn’t have to give the other horses any weight despite beating them last start. She loves Ascot (14:6-3-2) and if she handles conditions, she can make it back-to-back wins. She’s Alight is another horse that hasn’t raced at 1800m before. I’ve previously talked about her turn of foot, but she seems to have really appreciated settling in the first few at her past two starts. With that good barrier, I suspect she’ll take up a similar spot here. If she brings that turn of foot from there she could surprise. Naughty By Nature also comes out of the listed Starstruck, which looks to be the race to follow form wise. She’s really come into herself since racing at 1600m this preparation and she’s actually proven at this track/distance (1:0-0-1). She showed a really good turn of foot three starts ago and has a good barrier here. She rounds out an even race.
2 – Chantrea
1 – Dance Music
3 – She’s Alight
9 – Aberdeen Queen
Race 7 – Furphy – Summer Scorcher – 1000m – 4:15pm
Indian Pacific was simply outclassed in the Winterbottom and given that it was his first time outside of the top three, I’m willing to forgive that run. His form is some of the best in this race and he has a fantastic track/distance record (4:3-0-1). From that barrier, he should be able to settle one back behind Mervyn and Carocapo. Connections would be disappointed if he didn’t finish in the first few. There’s no reason why he shouldn’t win. Essential Spice brings similar form lines to this race as Indian Pacific, including where she got too far back in the Winterbottom. She’s drawn wide here so does map to get back, but she can run on. Dropping down in distance at Ascot looks to benefit (5:1-1-2) and having Pike jump on board is always a positive. I heard the Pearce team are looking to take some horses east this year, so she’ll need to put in a good performance here for them to consider taking her. Misty Metal underwent surgery after last preparation’s poor performance. She’s had two very good trials leading into this race, so it suggests that she’s back on track. I guess we don’t know truly if she’s ready for race day pressure till she faces it though. Statistically, her records are great, including her track/distance record (4:1-1-1) and first up record (5:1-2-1). However, her last win was nearly two years ago. She has ability but it’s a bit of a watch and see here. Carocapo has won two races leading into this one, so I’m surprised to see him open at $11. The form surrounding those wins is probably the thing letting him down the most. He also goes better over 1200m, having never placed at this distance before (1:0-0-0). Given that, this time of year seems to be his favourite and there is just something that draws me towards him. I’d be surprised if he could beat my top tip.
6 – Indian Pacific
5 – Essential Spice
3 – Misty Metal
4 – Carocapo
Race 8 – TABtouch – Perth Cup – 2400m – 4:50pm
Truly Great has only lost once this preparation (6 starts), where he finished seventh in the Railway Stakes. The barrier seems to have gotten the better of him there, which is a slight concern given that he’s drawn wide here. He also has to give some of these horses weight since they last met, with 60kg being no easy feat. This is probably his toughest race to date, but ability should see him winning this. A cerise and white horse must always be respected in these feature races too. Neufbosc is very well weighted here and has really flourished since stepping up to 2200m. These results suggest that 2400m should be right up his alley. He’s also got a good barrier, so should settle into a lovely position. The only concern for me is that he is on the one-week backup, though a few other horses follow in his footsteps. Surprisingly he actually gets better in the weights than the horses he beat. If he’s ready to go and pulled up well from last week, he can win this. He’s a big threat. Midnight Blue has an impressive turn of foot for a staying horse. He’s been racing really well this preparation, including winning one and placing in two over this distance at his last three starts. He has raced over this distance before in the WA Derby and while he didn’t place, I think he’s a better horse this time in. He drops 7.5kg off last start’s run and has a good barrier. He could be the forgotten cerise and white. Trap For Fools was luckless in the Kingston Town after getting way too far back. We saw him return to his best when he was able to lead at his last two starts. He should be leading here once again, with no other obvious challengers for this position. He’ll need to jump well and use a bit of energy early on to get to that position from his wide barrier. He loves to run for Brad (7:3-2-0) and he can win this without surprising.
1 – Truly Great
4 – Neufbosc
13 – Midnight Blue
2 – Trap For Fools
Race 9 – Mumm Champagne Handicap – 2200m – 5:26pm
Treasured Crown has won two in a row leading into this race, include one last start which was at this track and distance. The form surrounding his races isn’t as strong as some of these other horses, but you can’t knock winning form. He’s had eight weeks since last start, so there is a slight question mark over why he’s had that break and where he’s now at fitness wise. The wide barrier is a bit of a concern too. At least he only has to carry 56kg with Laqdar’s claim. If he’s right fitness wise he’ll be right in the finish. Mr Delegator has great career statistics, never placing worse than fifth (8:3-2-1). He got run down late last start over 2200m, after leading all the way. He does prefer to be in the first few though and from the wide barrier, I can’t see a reason why they won’t take up a similar spot. Connections would be more confident if he was racing on a soft track, but he’s a threat to my top tip. Showaddywaddy has been racing really consistently lately, though be it in a lower class. As a result, she does get some weight relief here, dropping 3.5kg on last start. She’s the first one in my top four to have drawn a decent barrier, plus I really like her track/distance record (3:0-1-2). With the blinkers on for the first time, we could see her surprise here. Our D’amour just seems to love these long distances. She’s unbeaten at this distance (2:2-0-0) and track/distance (1:1-0-0). She also drops 3.5kg off last start’s run and has a decent barrier. The form surrounding her races is the only thing that has me nervous. With her career statistics though (9:2-1-3), I think she can make an impact here and may even be Perth Cup bound next year. Great value tip!
3 – Treasured Crown
4 – Mr Delegator
14 – Showaddywaddy
9 – Our D’amour
Race 7 – Indian Pacific
My confidence rating isn’t high to start the year off. I think the majority of my top tips should at least place, but there are a few good head-to-head races like race 1, 3 and 4. Races 2, 6, 8 and 9 looks to be very open too. Hoping to start the year off with a profit!
Wins: 151 (33.63%)
Placed: 286 (63.70%)
Outlay: $996 ($1ew on top tip and $2ew on bb)
Return: $867.56 (-$128.44)