Horse Racing,  Tipping

Ascot 29/02/2020

Conditions

Rail – 5m
Track – Soft 6
Forecast – Max 28 degrees, partly cloudy

Race 1 – TabTouch Westspeed Platinum Maiden – 1600m – 12:18pm

Trade Fair Express is literally always up there but is yet to win a race from eight starts (8:0-2-4). He gets every chance here once again. Diamond Trade came third behind Trade Fair Express last start and also looks to have her share of ability. They’ve drawn outside of each other and should be right there together as they battle it down the straight. Peggie’s Joy has never placed better than fourth but gets a new jockey here who has a weight claim so that could help her improve. Redmill has ok country form and seems to run well for Mitchell Pateman but would need to bring his best here to win, especially as he’s on the one-week backup.
1 – Trade Fair Express
6 – Diamond Trade
7 – Peggie’s Joy
2 – Redmill

Race 2 – John Beesley Leapling Birthday Maiden – 1200m – 12:57pm

Perfect Harmony is on the one-week backup but looks to be improving with each run. She gets the same jockey and barrier as last start, with Jade one of the best in the state with Pike riding east today. Lucy Da Grey is the only one of two horses having their first start, but she has trialled nicely twice over 1000m. City Centre was unlucky to not win last start after leading all the way and running a good last 600m time. Nelly Zane comes out of the same race as City Centre, where she got fifth. That was only her second start and first up run, so she should be fitter and more experienced here. I think the extra 100m may also benefit.
6 – Perfect Harmony
10 – Lucy Da Grey
5 – City Centre
9 – Nelly Zane

Race 3 – Seppelt Wines Handicap – 1000m – 1:37pm

Carocapo was absolutely flying in November and December and looks to have come back just as good in a trial after a short break. First up record isn’t the best (3:1-0-0) and he’s never raced over this distance but he has placed on a soft track before (2:0-1-0). Chix Pic will give my top pick a good run for is money, as he is also a horse with lots of ability. He does meet Carocapo 0.5kg worse off than when they met late in December. The 200m less here may make all the difference in turning the tables though. Plutocracy is racing very consistently at the moment, including winning last start. Steps up in class here but deserves a crack at it. Floyd has never placed outside the top three on a soft track (5:0-3-2) and brings listed form, where he got third last start. He rounds out a very even top four for this race.
2 – Carocapo
3 – Chix Pic
7 – Plutocracy
4 – Floyd

Race 4 – Amelia Park Handicap – 1100m – 2:18pm

Devoted Star brings great form with a second behind Flower of War in May last year and then a one start for one win last preparation. She’s won a trial leading into this race and looks to be another champion in the making for Mr Peters. Sherpa Lass has never tasted defeat in her career (2:2-0-0), compared to Devoted Star, plus this horse has won on a soft track before. There’s nothing really between my two top picks. M’Lady was on a winning streak before bombing out in the Country Cup Final. She’s had three months off without a trial and doesn’t have a great soft track record but has the ability to overcome all of this. Round the Point won last start in Albany after coming off some consistent runs. He steps up in class but has placed on a soft track before (3:0-1-1).
7 – Devoted Star
8 – Sherpa Lass
1 – M’Lady
3 – Round the Point

Race 5 – Lex Piper Stakes – 1600m – 2:57pm

Cryptic Wonder is just a horse you’d love to own. He won the three-year-old Magic Millions last start after a lovely ride from Pike but his previous runs also suggest that he’s a serious race horse. The distance has to be a question though. Money Matters is proven over 1400m and also looks to have great ability with a 50% win percentage. He came fifth to Cryptic Wonder last start but does get a 1kg on him here. If they’re winning from the front then watch out for him. Fuhrer looks to be a good choice if you like a bit of value. He hasn’t raced in the city before, but other than that, he has a lot going for him, including having won on a soft track (1:1-0-0), placing second at this distance (and winning at 1690m), plus gets in well at the weights. He should be leading with Money Matters. Kelvin really doesn’t have form you can complain about (8:2-2-2) and looks to have come back well, after placing second in two trials leading into this race.
1 – Cryptic Wonder
2 – Money Matters
7 – Fuhrer
3 – Kelvin

Race 6 – Kirin Megumi Handicap – 1200m – 3:30pm

Catherine Wheel is a horse I consistently tip in my top three at least, for those of you who follow my blog, and today is no different. She got held up in the straight last start, so I’ll forget that run. She hasn’t raced at 1200m for a while but did win at this distance at her second start. Once again, she gets in well with Chris’ weight claim. Some Sort was disappointing last start, with the stewards’ report stating that leading at the fast pace was the reason for the poor performance. However, he has good form (8:3-1-1) so I’ll be looking for him to bounce back here. Regal Counsel drops down in distance here, which may have been a smart decision given the weight he has to carry. He has had four months off with no trial but was racing well last preparation. Dark Choice won the WA Oaks this time last year, before running in the Derby and then not being seen till now. Her trial certainly wasn’t the best but if she brings her Oaks form she has to be respected.
9 – Catherine Wheel
6 – Some Sort
1 – Regal Counsel
5 – Dark Choice

Race 7 – Autumn Ascot Racing Carnival Handicap – 1800m – 4:10pm

Ava Express won last start over this distance which gives me confidence. He’s also been racing well this preparation. He rises in class and has questionable form surrounding his races but should go well. Starorio looks to be hitting her straps this preparation, recording career best results. Her form isn’t the best and neither is her soft track record (5:1-0-0), though her one win on a soft track was two starts ago. She also steps up in distance but looks to be right in this even race. Adornment is another one from the Peters camp that hasn’t been seen since the Derby last year too. She was disappointing last start after she got stuck in traffic, plus she probably needed that run after all of her time off. Willing to give her another chance here. Hyperspace won last start in Narrogin after not showing much in his previous races. However, he did win in a nice fashion and will hopefully bring that performance here for connections. Stepping up in distance should only be a positive.
5 – Ava Express
10 – Starorio
2 – Adornment
12 – Hyperspace

Race 8 – Schweppes – Ascot 1000 Guineas – 1800m – 4:45pm

Tuscan Queen is a horse that is hard to forget after her Champion Fillies run last year, with an amazing turn of foot. She was disappointing last start after getting too far back but would only need to bring her best to win here. Naughty by Nature is one of the two horses who are proven on a soft track (2:1-0-1). She’s been racing well this preparation, including a second in a listed race to Superstorm last start, who runs in Melbourne today. She has the wide barrier to contend with, but as long as she settles not worse than midfield, she should be fine. Dark Mission is a winner of two in a row and has never placed outside the top three (4:2-1-1). She rises significantly in class compared to some of these other horses but should go well. Montelena is a hit and miss horse after running incredibly well in the WA Breeders listed race at Bunbury before doing not so well last start in the listed Challenge race. I’d like to see her jump well, get a good spot in running and then not get stuck in traffic in the straight.
1 – Tuscan Queen
4 – Naughty by Nature
6 – Dark Mission
2 – Montelena

Race 9 – Crown Towers Handicap – 1400m – 5:20pm

Mystery Miss was a force to be reckoned with in the winter and brings that great soft track form (5:2-1-2). Trials leading into this preparation haven’t been other outstanding, but she has the form and ability. Sophie’s Song won last start over this distance and should be fit third up, though this is her third start this month. Festival Miss is a hit and miss horse as well, though when she’s on, she’s brilliant. She’s hasn’t placed outside the top three at this distance (3:1-1-1) and does have good form surrounding her second two starts ago. Spillinova certainly didn’t perform at his best last start but does have a good second up record (4:2-1-0) and a good track/distance record (4:1-1-1). Look for him to be improving.
3 – Mystery Miss
12 – Sophie’s Song
8 – Festival Miss
5 – Spillinova


Best Bet

Race 6 – Catherine Wheel

Confidence rating

It’s not too bad (haha which are usually the days I don’t do so well). I think the soft track and weather does add that unknown element and there are 2 to 3 very evenly matched races.

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