Rail – 11m
Track – Soft 6
Forecast – Max 25 degrees, sunny
Race 1 – Irish Day Plate – 1000m – 12:36pm
1 – Pot Shot
4 – Snowdome
2 – Kosta’s Crown
7 – Cosmopolitan Girl
Comment: Pot Shot won the first two-year-old race of the season. Thanks to that win, she’s unbeaten in her career and at this track/distance (1:0-0-0). She probably got an ideal run in that race, and she rises 2kg off that run, but she should put in another good performance here. Snowdome has won two trials leading into this race. His last trial was particularly good, putting 4.2 lengths on the rest of the field. He’ll make his mark here and is one to watch going forward. Kosta’s Crown finished second to Pot Shot last start and gets 2kg on her here. His run was hard to fault, and he was probably just beaten by a better horse on the day. He’s drawn a touch wide here, but he’ll improve with one run under his belt. Cosmopolitan Girl finished third to Pot Shot, with this looking like good form to follow. She gets 2kg on Pot Shot here and has a better barrier, so she may be able to settle slightly further forward in the field. She’s good value in this open race.
Suggested bet: Pot Shot, Snowdome, Kosta’s Crown and Cosmopolitan Girl – each way
Race 2 – TABtouch Westspeed Platinum Handicap – 1500m – 1:14pm
2 – Call Again
3 – Castillo Del Lago
6 – Al Di La
5 – Beat The Bell
Comment: Call Again was his own worst enemy last start after missing the jump and then needing to use energy early on to get to the front. The 60.5kg may have taken its toll too, which is a bit concerning given that he has to carry 60.5kg here. The distance looks to suit him (4:1-1-0), though I’m not sure that he’s a fan of Ascot (5:0-1-0). His form is good and he’ll give them something to run down, but there is a question mark over whether the 60.5kg will get the better of him. Castillo Del Lago has had about 4 weeks since his last run, but it does do well when his races are spaced. He’s never officially raced over 1500m, but his record at 1400m suggests that the extra 100m shouldn’t be a problem. His runs behind Big Screen look like good form to follow and if the track doesn’t dry out by Saturday, that will only help improve his chances. Al Di La hasn’t been seen since September, so I’m not sure what happened there. He went into this preparation without a trial, and he improved with each run. The form surrounding Ginger Flyer looks like one to follow as she has beaten a few of these other horses in various races, but Al Di La has gone the closest to her. He’s drawn wide but only has to carry 54.5kg due to Laqdar’s claim. He could surprise. Beat The Bell had excuses last start and she just seems to get that touch too far back. From barrier 1, hopefully, she can settle a bit more forward. She only has to carry 54kg due to Beaux’s claim which makes her competitive.
Suggested bet: Call Again and Castillo Del Lago – each way
Race 3 – TABtouch – Better Your Bet Handicap – 1600m – 1:50pm
2 – Pure Devotion
3 – Big Screen
6 – Speed Dream
4 – Olden
Comment: Pure Devotion got blocked in the straight last start, so just put a line through that run. She steps up in distance, which is certainly going to benefit her seeing as she placed second in the group 3 Oaks in the autumn. It’s hard to fault her. Big Screen got pipped on the line last start. Given his racing pattern and the fact that he’s never placed at this distance (2:0-0-0), I am surprised to see him step up in distance here. He is going better this preparation though, so he’ll give them something to run down. Speed Dream was no match for Secret Plan last start, but I do like his close finish to Real Charism three starts ago. He steps up to 1600m for the first time but seeing as he likes to race from the back, this should only give him more time to catch them. He can win without surprising. Olden has been consistent at his past three starts, recording a win and two seconds. The thing I really like about him is his distance record (6:1-3-2) and he’s placed at this track/distance (1:0-0-1). He’s one to watch at good odds.
Suggested bet: Pure Devotion, Big Screen, Speed Dream and Olden – each way
Race 4 – Guinness Handicap – 2150m – 2:30pm
9 – Antique Jewel
2 – Vintage Stock
1 – Axel ‘R’ Eight
5 – There’s A Thought
Comment: Antique Jewel is dramatically up in class and distance here. She has previously raced over 2000m, but she looked to be at the end of her preparation, so I wouldn’t take that as a guide on whether she can handle the distance. She drops 4kg off last start’s run, has drawn perfectly in barrier 4 and she has a good track record (2:1-0-1). She’s one to watch. Vintage Stock has been the bridesmaid at all three starts this preparation. He’s never finished that far off the winner and while his track/distance record could be better (10:1-1-0), he’s a better horse this preparation. He rises 3.5kg off last start and he’ll go back from barrier 10 but watch for him powering home late. Axel ‘R’ Eight was disappointing last start, with no excuses other than over racing. He steps back up in distance here (7:2-0-2) and Mitchell jumps back on board. His track record (7:0-0-0) and the fact that he has to carry 60kg are red flags for me, but he can bounce back here. There’s A Thought beat Antique Jewel last start but has to give her 5kg here. She has been ultra-consistent this preparation and shown that she can win from a wide barrier. She faces some classier horses, but she can give them a run for their money.
Suggested bet: Antique Jewel, Vintage Stock, Axel ‘R’ Eight and There’s A Thought – each way
Race 5 – Crown Perth Handicap – 1200m – 3:14pm
2 – Angelic Miss
3 – Universal Pleasure
11 – Testing Love
13 – Sniparoochy
Comment: Angelic Miss didn’t look to be pushed at her trial leading into this race. She goes well first up though (3:1-1-1) and has a good track/distance record (5:2-2-0). She is down in class, so she’s up in the weights. While she would have preferred a soft track (which she’ll get), I’m hoping her class and turn of foot sees her winning here. Universal Pleasure was a bit off at her last start but looks to have recovered after having a spell. Her first up record is good (3:0-2-0), but her biggest drawcard is that she’s unbeaten over this track/distance (1:1-0-0). She also only has to carry 56.5kg due to Laqdar’s claim. I’m surprised to see her open at $9. Testing Love looked to have lost a bit of confidence after her listed run in February, however, she should have gained it back after winning at Geraldton last start. She showed an impressive turn of foot in that run, and she’s placed at this track/distance (1:0-1-0). She should go close. Sniparoochy won her first two starts, but then failed to fire in the two-year-old Magic Millions. Her trials suggest that she still has the ability and she’s unbeaten at this track/distance (1:1-0-0). She rounds out a very even race.
Suggested bet: Angelic Miss, Universal Pleasure, Testing Love and Sniparoochy – each way
Race 6 – Schweppes Handicap – 1200m – 3:50pm
7 – Secret Plan
4 – Magical Dream
1 – Hot Zed
8 – The Fugazi
Comment: Secret Plan looks to be in for a good preparation after winning first up in a nice fashion. He has a good track/distance record (3:1-0-1) and while he’ll have to go back from barrier 10, he should run a good race. Look for him to continue his winning ways here. Magical Dream will be given her stablemate a run for his money. She has better form surrounding her races, she’s unbeaten first up (3:3-0-0), at this track/distance (2:2-0-0) and on a good track (4:4-0-0). While she doesn’t have a turn of foot like Secret Plan, she should be able to settle in the first few from barrier 2. It was hard to split my top two tips. Hot Zed put in a good performance first up. He steps up in distance to one that he’s unbeaten over at Ascot (2:2-0-0) and he’s placed second up before (1:0-1-0). 60kg from barrier 9 does look like a big ask though. The Fugazi surprised a few people last start, finishing second to Graceful Girl. His second up record isn’t as good as his first, but it’s still good (4:1-1-0). He’s up in class so drops 2.5kg off last start and he’s placed at this track/distance (2:0-1-1). He’s a cheeky chance.
Suggested bet: Secret Plan, Magical Dream, Hot Zed and The Fugazi – each way
Race 7 – Amelia Park Handicap – 1000m – 4:25pm
12 – Bright Diamond
5 – Wilchino
11 – Billy Ray
1 – Vane Tempest
Comment: Bright Diamond had a quiet trial leading into this race. She’s yet to finish outside of the top three in her career (7:3-3-1), she’s proven first up (2:1-1-0) and is unbeaten at this distance (1:1-0-0). She races at Ascot for the first time, but there’s nothing to suggest she’ll run a bad race. Wilchino was disappointing first up last preparation but then recorded three wins in a row. She’s won first up before though (4:1-0-1) and her biggest drawcard is that she’s unbeaten at this track/distance (2:2-0-0). She can absolutely win this without surprising. Billy Ray has had two trials leading into this race, so he should have a touch of fitness on his side. He’s placed first up before (2:0-2-0) and at this track/distance (1:0-1-0). Pike did pick Bright Diamond over Billy Ray, but this horse isn’t without his chances. Vane Tempest is first up here but goes extremely well fresh (3:2-1-0) and was super consistent at the start of her preparation last time. She only has to carry 57kg thanks to Victoria’s claim, which certainly puts her back in the race and hopefully help her overcome the wide barrier. She’s won over 1000m before (3:2-0-0) but she might just find one better.
Suggested bet: Bright Diamond, Wilchino and Billy Ray – each way
Race 8 – Breast Cancer Research Centre Of Wa – Belgravia Stakes – 1200m – 5:00pm
15 – Arcadia Grace
6 – It’sarayday
10 – Searchin’ Roc’s
4 – Liwa
Comment: Arcadia Grace just had a tonne of excuses last start, so put a line through that run. From barrier 2, she should be able to settle further forward, though hopefully, she doesn’t get stuck on the rail. She only has to carry 53kg which makes her super competitive. Look for her to bounce back here. It’sarayday is unbeaten in his career (2:2-0-0), including this distance (1:1-0-0), though neither run has been at Ascot. He’s drawn wider than his previous two races, but he should still be able to get a nice position from barrier 8. He did a bit wrong last start and still won, but if he did something wrong here, it could be game over. Hopefully, his convincing win margins hold up here. Searchin’ Roc’s is looking to make it four wins in a row, though her last run was back in July. She hasn’t had a trial leading into this race, so it’s a bit hard to tell where she’s at fitness wise and last preparation she needed one start to get going. She’s unbeaten at this distance though (1:1-0-0) and while connections will be hoping the track hasn’t dried out, she’ll run a good race. Liwa won first up and showed an impressive turn of foot in the process. She probably has some of the best form in this race including narrowly finishing second in the G2 Karrakatta and finishing third in the G3 WA Sires. Pat Carbery does jump off in favour of It’sarayday and this horse has drawn terribly in barrier 15. She’s good value though and rounds a race where you can make a case for so many horses!
Suggested bet: Arcadia Grace, It’sarayday, Searchin’ Roc’s and Liwa – each way
Race 9 – Platinum Horse Transport Handicap – 1400m – 5:40pm
8 – Karijini Aurora
5 – Staralign
7 – Comfort Me
4 – Charleton Eddie
Comment: Karijini Aurora is on the quick one-week backup. She was simply beaten by a better horse on the day last start, but I wouldn’t take anything away from her. She drops down in distance here, which I think will benefit her (9:4-0-2), though her track/distance record could be slightly better (3:1-0-0). She’ll have to overcome barrier 10 and I hope she doesn’t get too far back. Hopefully, she can return to her winning ways here. Staralign finished third to Karijini Aurora last start, so he’s also on the one-week backup. He gets 3.5kg in her here, but most of that is due to Holly’s 3kg claim. He’s unbeaten at this track/distance (1:1-0-0) and he may be able to use barrier 12 to take up a forward position. He can quite possibly turn the tables on Karijini Aurora here. Lorentinio has had two quiet trials leading into this race. He did the same thing last preparation and won first up, so I’m not too concerned that he hasn’t shown much. He’s got a good first up record (7:2-0-3) and is no stranger to this track/distance (14:3-3-4). He also only has to carry 57.5kg thanks to Beaux’s claim, which puts him back in the race. He can surprise at good odds. Charleton Eddie was extremely disappointing last start, but he did have a few excuses in the stewards’ report. His other two runs in September were good and he’s no stranger to Ascot. He steps up to 1400m for the first time and given he likes to lead, stepping up is always a concern. At least he only has to carry 57kg due to Laqdar’s claim.
Suggested bet: Karijini Aurora and Staralign – each way
Race 3 – Pure Devotion
R6: 1, 4, 7, 8
R7: 1, 4, 5, 11, 12
R8: 1, 4, 6, 9, 10, 15
R9: 1, 4, 5, 7, 8
My confidence isn’t the best this week and I’m hoping that we’ll be racing on a good 4 by Saturday morning. I tossed up for ages between Bright Diamond and Wilchino in race 7 and the Arcadia Grace and It’sarayday in race 8. Race 1 also looks like a nightmare to tip. Have 5 Peters’ runners on top makes me nervous, especially in these open races.
Good luck to Weaponson in race 5 too. He’ll be needed a bit of luck on his side!
Last Week’s Results
Winners in top 4:8/9
Top picks: 3rd, 1st, 3rd, 2nd, 1st, 1st, -, 1st, 1st
Best bet: 1st
Profit: +4.24 ($1ew on top tips & $2ew on bb)