Rail – 11m
Track – Good 4
Forecast – Max 22 degrees, 50% chance of rain, most likely during the afternoon and evening
Race 1 – Mumm Champagne Maiden – 1200m – 11:13pm
La Vina had just the one start last preparation, where she finished second. Her two trials leading into this race have been good, winning the second one. With the one race under her belt now she should go well. Jaguar Grey showed us that she possesses a great turn of foot last preparation, coming from a wide barrier and last on the corner to finish second. She’s had just the quiet trial leading into this race and looks to have come back good. Mims Win looks to have a lot going in his favour to finally get that win on the board. His run last start was good, though I would be more confident if he was racing on a soft track. He’s drawn well and shouldn’t get too far back in this small field. Kirigami seemed to have found the 1000m too short at her first race. She improved second up on a soft track finishing second. Being third up here, I expect to see some more improvement.
12 – La Vina
10 – Jaguar Grey
1 – Mims Win
11 – Kirigami
Race 2 – Budget Car & Truck Rental Handicap – 2200m – 11:48pm
Superior Smile has been racing very consistently, finishing second in his past two starts at listed level. He does carry significantly more weight here but shouldn’t have to use too much energy to get to the front from the barrier. The distance certainly won’t be an issue. Red Army comes out of the same races as Superior Smile, where he finished fourth. Stewards reports suggest that he did somethings wrong in those races. He’s drawn outside Superior Smile, so I expect him to be tracking him in the race. He’s definitely a threat if he’s on his best behaviour. Western Temple hasn’t really shown much this preparation, after coming off some good trials. Connections make good use of Chris’ claim and the small field will benefit him too. Juicing Carrots has nothing really to complain about. Dropping back in class should definitely help, but I think he may be better suited over the 1800m.
3 – Superior Smile
2 – Red Army
1 – Western Temple
6 – Juicing Carrots
Race 3 – Happy 30th Birthday Tiarnna Robertson Handicap – 1500m – 12:24pm
Last Of The Line is a winner of two in a row and can add to that picket fence again here. He’s got a good barrier and the same weight as his first win (2.5kg on last starts win). The extra 100m shouldn’t be an issue. Deputano beat Mr Kunafa last start which was two months ago. This looks to be pretty good form considering what Mr Kunafa has gone on to do. She rises in class but does seem to possess a turn of foot as long as she doesn’t get stuck in traffic. This doesn’t look to be a problem from that barrier. Kelvin finished third to Last Of The Line last start. He gets 5kg on him here and brings listed form lines. However, he has drawn wide and may need to use too much petrol to get to the front. Divide The Sea comes out of the same races as Kelvin, however, he finished sixth to Last of The Line last start. He gets 2.5kg on him here and they have drawn outside of each other, so they may settle close to each other in the race. He got too far back last start, so I think he’s better than that and can bounce back here.
2 – Last Of The Line
6 – Deputano
1 – Kelvin
3 – Divide The Sea
Race 4 – TabTouch Westspeed Platinum Handicap – 1000m – 1:04pm
Dew West comes into this race without a trial, which looks to be because she doesn’t fit the requirement of those that are allowed to trial (one week short of the 12 weeks since her last race). It’s a bit hard to tell where she’s at because of this and she’s never won first up (2:0-0-0). However, Pike jumps back on board, having ridden this horse at both of her wins. She’s Vital showed a nice turn of foot in her previous two starts. She definitely seems to like the 1000m better than 1100m, so that is a positive here. She gets every chance to be winning here. War Secrets brings great Kalgoorlie results, winning three of his past five races (and placing third in another). He’s had five months off, so fitness does have a question mark over it. The 60kg may be another hurdle to overcome, though he has won with 59kg before. Wakan Tanka is on the one-week backup where he finished second. He rises in class here though connections would have been praying for the rain. Despite having never won on a good track (21:0-4-7), the light weight, good barrier and shorter distance are all in his favour.
8 – Dew West
6 – She’s Vital
2 – War Secrets
10 – Wakan Tanka
Race 5 – Seacorp Handicap – 1000m – 1:44pm
Massimo is a horse with ability, only placing outside of the top two once (7:4-2-0). Trials have been average but that doesn’t worry me as I know some trainers don’t like to push their horses in trials. The 1000m may be a touch too short for him, as he won a listed race over 1200m and then second in another listed race over 1400m. He’s also drawn wide but with Pike in the saddle and a low weight, he should go well. Uni Time is a horse I personally love and I’m excited to see him back at the races. He has a tone of ability, having never placed outside the top three in his career (11:6-3-2). I would have put him on top in a heartbeat, but 63.5kg is a lot of weight to carry. The last time he carried 60kg he finished third, though that was on a soft track. He’ll need all of his fighting power to overcome that. Mervyn won last start with 60.5kg. He looks to be unchallenged for the lead and should be giving them something to run down. Alpha Sky has a fantastic first up record (3:2-1-0). He does have to carry more weight than he’s used to but did finish fourth in a group three last preparation. Having won a trial leading into this race he’s won to watch.
10 – Massimo
1 – Uni Time
5 – Mervyn
4 – Alpha Sky
Race 6 – Mrs Mac’s Handicap – 1600m – 2:24pm
Mr Kunafa missed last week’s race due to a foot abscess. However, I think that it could have been a blessing in disguise. He drops back to 1600m and gets an inside barrier, plus faces some horses he’s beaten before with a better weight. There are definitely horses with their fair share of ability, but he gets every chance to make it three in a row. Utgard Loki finished second to Mr Kunafa last time they met but actually gives him 1.5kg here. He ultra-consistent but always settles further back in his races. He does have a good turn of foot to help him overcome this, but I would love to see him sit a bit further forward. Either way, he’ll give my top tip a run for his money! Ava Express has won two in a row, so brings confidence into this race. However, the form surrounding his races isn’t as good and he does have a wide barrier. Lorentinio is another victim to a wide barrier. He’s also a horse that I tend to underestimate, coming out and winning last start. He looks to be the leader in this race where there isn’t a lot of horses that like to go forward. He also gets a good weight due to Chris’ claim.
3 – Mr Kunafa
11 – Utgard Loki
4 – Ava Express
2 – Lorentinio
Race 7 – Glenroy Chaff Handicap – 1200m – 3:03pm
Lipstick Flickers will need all of her ability to be winning from the wide barrier. However, she has finished second from two wide barriers this preparation. Dropping back to the 1200m is a positive as is the decrease in weight. Black Ducati clearly just had enough last start, with that run being her only one outside the top two (6:3-2-0). She won a trial leading into this race and is undefeated first up (2:2-0-0). There’s not much between my top two picks. Gates Of Babylon should be leading this race and may go all the way as he did two starts ago (which was over this distance too) He won’t know himself with just 54.5kg on his back, with this hopefully offsetting the wide barrier. Megazone could be a cheeky horse in this race with the odds he’s at. His first up record certainly isn’t the best (3:0-0-1), but he first last preparation strongly. With Jade’s claim he also only has to carry 58.5kg.
7 – Lipstick Flickers
10 – Black Ducati
5 – Gates Of Babylon
3 – Megazone
Race 8 – Western Australia Cup – 3200m – 3:45pm
Spiritual Warrior made it seem like he was carrying nothing last start, winning the Pinjarra Cup with 60kg. He has to carry 61kg here, but at least with the inside barrier, he should be able to settle in a nice position. Other than the weight over this increased distance, there’s no reason why he can’t make it three wins in a row. He’s A Parker has finished third to Spiritual Warrior in his past two starts. He gets 1.5kg on him here and a better barrier since they last met. If Spiritual Warrior doesn’t handle the weight and distance than this horse can run him down. Lord Fandango also comes out of the Pinjarra Cup where he finished fifth. He did settle a bit far back in that race and should get a better spot here. It’s his second start in WA so I’d be looking for him to improve. Stafford’s Lad simply gets too far back during his races. The distance doesn’t seem to be a problem as it should only give him more time to catch them if he does get back.
1 – Spiritual Warrior
7 – He’s A Parker
2 – Lord Fandango
11 – Stafford’s Lad
Race 9 – Amelia Park – WA Sires’ Produce Stakes – 1400m – 4:20pm
Watch Me Dance is just a hose that I love to follow, and I felt for her owners with her narrowly finishing second in the Karrakatta. Her turn of foot is deadly but hopefully, she won’t have to use it with an inside barrier. She’s never raced at 1400m before but it’s hard to see her at least not placing. The White Witch had two wonderful winning trials leading into her first race where she finished second. While she’s never raced at this class like most of the horses in this race, I think she’ll improve off that run. She’s a great tip if you like value. Dom To Shoot had been racing well leading into the Karrakatta but then got too far back in the run. Look for him to bounce back here, despite increasing in distance. American Choice just can’t get any luck in the straight. From that barrier, it looks like she’ll get back again and she’ll need Pike to keep him out of trouble.
5 – Watch Me Dance
8 – The White Witch
1 – Dom To Shoot
6 – American Choice
Race 10 – Crown Perth Handicap – 1400m – 5:00pm
Ocean’s Fifteen is very consistent, having never placed outside of the top three (5:2-2-1). He got too far back last start from the wide barrier, which I do worry might happen again here. He also steps up to the 1400m and I’m hoping this will just give him more time to run them down. Indian Chant proved that his country form was just as good, winning at Ascot last start. He steps up in class but should go well. Snippy Miss managed to improve on her third and fourth places, finished second last start behind Last Of The Line. There’s no reason for a similar performance here. It wouldn’t be a top four without this consistent horse! Rum Raker steps up in class and comes to the city for the first time but I think he’s very good value. He won his last two over this distance and showed he has a good turn of foot.
6 – Ocean’s Fifteen
2 – Indian Chant
14 – Snippy Miss
9 – Rum Raker
Race 9 – Watch Me Dance
I’m definitely not going to say I’m confident as I don’t want to jinx myself (plus I normally don’t do well when I’m confident), however, I’m feeling the best I have for a few weeks now leading into this meeting. My tips seemed to just flow, despite there being some evenly matched races. The fact that I’ve got some short-priced favourites on top makes me nervous, but fingers crossed today is the day my luck shifts.