Race 1 (6:10pm local/9:10pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
Challenging should lead from barrier one with Just Bet On Black landing the breeze first. He may hand up to Estocada or Questionable Gesture to get an ideal trail.
Questionable Gesture looked a sit-sprinter early days but may be a better enforcer after winning from the breeze last start. He sat outside Star Armbro and proved too strong in 1:58.4 with a final half of 56.8 seconds.
Challenging may be a touch better than Star Armbro but they look fairly similar and Questionable Gesture should have options in the run.
Just Bet On Black, The Storm Chief and Estocada are the other players in the race with Borntobeanartist the knockout chance if they went crazy.
Rated Price: $3.50
Race 2 (6:40pm local/9:40pm AEDT) – WESTBRED MS PACE – 2130m
Tanaka Eagle should lead with Soho Wall Street on his back. New World Order is the probable breeze horse but I don’t particularly like him in that position, especially not at an odds-on quote; best horse yes, but not classes above them and can be beaten.
Machrihanish looks the main danger in the race as this horse can run a very good final 800m. His recent form stacks up in this company and he shouldn’t be too far away from them.
Tempo will dictate his chances though as he will be giving them a bit of a headstart.
Soho Wall Street should appreciate being saved for one run and can be dangerous from behind Tanaka Eagle while that horse won well during the week and should run a big race in front.
Rated Price: $4.20
Race 3 (7:10pm local/10:10pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2536m
I can’t believe the price about Red Hot Major! That is what I would be saying if the horse was fully wound-up. Based on talent alone, he is the best horse in the race by a fair way, excluding for Sky Art, and he may still prove too strong despite looking to run out of puff at his first run back.
That was on January 24 and he should be a fair bit fitter now. Despite running sixth, Red Hot Major still got home in 55.2 seconds and he still rates as the horse to beat.
If you look at his four-year-old season, he was 2.3m off Run Oneover and 12.1m off Beaudiene Boaz in a Group 1 contest.
Sky Art looks the main danger while Bettor Not Knowing is racing well and the distance is in his favour.
Shes Turbo Charged and Shes Artful should also run well from good draws.
Rated Price: $1.90
Race 4 (7:40pm local/10:40pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
Argyle Red leads and will run a big race. Bounty Eyre races on his back, Gaz Wannabet makes a move for the breeze and El Hombre races handy to the speed.
There is no doubting he is racing well but Argyle Red looks poison odds against this company. If he were $1.25 to place I would be happy laying him because he has been known to give it away.
Gaz Wannabet looks a strong contender in the event after back-to-back wins. Both victories have come racing outside of the leader and he should give Argyle Red something to think about.
Bounty Eyre will appreciate the soft draw and if he gets clear running then watch out.
El Hombre shouldn’t be double-figure odds from the good draw and I expect a much better showing from barrier two as he may settle 1 out 1 back or 1 out 2 back. I will be backing him at double figures also.
Rated Price: $3
Race 6 (8:40pm local/11:40pm AEDT) – RWWA CUP – 2536m
This is a very average RWWA Cup and you wouldn’t believe it is a Group 2 contest!
Our Jimmy Johnstone and Im Full Of Excuses are true free-for-all horses while Shardons Rocket, Lisharry, Courage Tells and Bronze Seeker are second-string free-for-all horses when you compare them to the likes of WA’s top pacers such as Chicago Bull, Soho Tribeca, Beaudiene Boaz, Bettors Fire and co.
Our Jimmy Johnstone gets the barrier draw advantage over Im Full Of Excuses and that looks crucial here as he will be in front of Im Full Of Excuses. Most of the runners are hand-up horses and even Shardons Rocket may consider that tactic if Our Jimmy Johnstone approaches with some venom.
The alternative option is to control the race from the breeze position and if Our Jimmy Johnstone replicates his third-placing in the Group 2 Village Kid (2130m) won by Beaudiene Boaz on December 30, then he will be victorious.
Im Full Of Excuses and Bronze Seeker are the main dangers in the race.
Rated Price: $1.80
Race 8 (9:40pm local/12:40am AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
Greg and Skye Bond dominate the race with Our Regal Ideal, Vanquished, Bungalow Bill and Condrieu making up the nine-horse field.
Twoandahalf Tigers looks the only threat to the Bond stable who should produce the winner and could land the Quinella and Trifecta.
Our Regal Ideal should lead and I’m hoping they hold that position with him and not hand up during the run to stablemate Vanquished or Bungalow Bill because this horse can run a very strong race.
He ran through the line strongly for second behind American Boy and that’s a good formline for this race. Prior to that he was placed at Pinjarra behind Lisharry who is flying and Three Bears who is a talented type.
Say It Now has place claims at odds in this field as he drops to the pegs and can follow speed.
Rated Price: $3
Race 9 (10:15pm local/1:15am AEDT) – MS PACE – 1730m
Bebrave should cross Brilliant Sunshine at the start which makes that horse risky as he may not find a run late in the race. Khun Ratha and Scoobys Delight should be handy to the pace.
I think Scoobys Delight can land the breeze and over the short-course he should be very competitive as he is one of the better horses in the race.
Bebrave should run an improved race leading and Khun Ratha will appreciate this company.
Brilliant Sunshine will need some luck but isn’t out of it either and Letztorqueaboutyou was an eye-catcher at his return effort.
Rated Price: $3.50
Race 1 (5:50pm local/8:50pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 1730m
Competitive race to kick off the program with Jilliby Courage leading, Argyle Red likely to face the breeze, McClinchie behind the leader and The Storm Chief or Responder 1 out 1 back. Responder generally drops to the pegs and could restrain to land behind McClinchie in the run.
Jilliby Courage was disappointing at Wagin back in December and I cannot have any faith in him here. That could impact McClinchie who needs some luck and that’s why I have put The Storm Chief on top.
The Storm Chief is extremely consistent and if he gets the run 1 out 1 back then he may be too quick over the concluding stages. Chris Lewis takes the drive which also boosts confidence.
It’s unlikely the winner will come from a horse that hasn’t been mentioned above.
Rated Price: $3.20
Race 2 (6:24pm local/9:24pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
Looks a race in three with Irockmyworld, James Galleon and Gaz Wannabet drawn barriers one, two and three respectively. Irockmyworld is moderate out but should hold them which leaves James Galleon to take one-one cover and Gaz Wannabet in the breeze (or vice-versa if Gaz Wannabet restrains to trail James Galleon).
Irockmyworld was a good winner five starts ago when leading throughout in a C5+ event over 2536m. He defeated Three Blind Mice, Borntobeanartist and Atlastalone.
This is a touch stronger and the race is only over the 2130m but Irockmyworld still looks the horse to beat. His latest effort was pretty good when runner up behind Soho Chelsea.
Bethany Aitch has place claims as she could land behind the leader.
We may get better than $2.50 about Irockmyworld so happy to wait and see if we can get around the $3 mark before investing.
Rated Price: $2.35
Race 3 (6:54pm local/9:54pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
I really wanted to tip Hez The Artisan but I think Little Astro Boy is better value if he can hold his back throughout.
Trained and driven by Nathan Turvey, Little Astro Boy ($7.50/$2.15) was placed twice in December before a seventh and fifth in January. I thought the fifth-placing was pretty good as the last half was very quick for this class of horse and he was hitting the line well.
Hez The Artisan will be the hardest to beat and it’s a fairly even field where barrier draws have determined the leading contenders.
Rated Price: $4.60
Race 6 (8:30pm local/11:30pm AEDT) – MS PACE – 2130m
Red Salute has the speed to hold up if he wants, otherwise he will relinquish the lead to Condrieu who returns to the west after a stint in NSW.
El Machine ($31/$5) is an ambush artist and he gets those conditions here as he will race behind the leader or three back on the pegs. His last two runs have been full of merit and he represents value on an each-way basis.
Major Reality is the lone mare engaged and also the class horse after an excellent win last time when running home in 54.5 seconds. She will have to do some work here or give them a headstart but can be in the finish.
Erskine Range should be handy to the speed while Lisharry and Bronze Seeker will run home strongly.
Rated Price: $10
Race 7 (9:00pm local/12:00am AEDT) – DAINTYS DAUGHTER CLASSIC – 2130m
Lady Luca will hold up and gets her chance at more feature race glory after capturing the Group 1 Diamond Classic (1730m) as a two-year-old.
She has been building nicely this preparation and her last-start effort put the writing on the wall that she is ready to win. Her start prior made the same statement and she will look to use her barrier advantage over rivals to lead them from start to stop.
Sarah Goody gets a lovely trail and can be dangerous late if she gets clear running.
Maczaffair has the horror draw but is the most versatile of the fillies and can win from a number of positions.
I’d prefer to watch Soho Angel at her first start at the track but she must be respected for trainer Michael Stanley.
Im Stylish has each-way claims along with Hit It Rich while Betshes Precious is a place knockout and I will be having something on her (very small each-way) at the $101 and $21 with UBET.
Rated Price: $2.20
Persistent Threat has good gate speed but Auctioneers Elsu and Mister Versace are very quick and have some chance of crossing if they fully commit to the cause.
For that reason I cannot take an odds-on quote about Persistent Threat who is racing in excellent form and will be hard to run down if he can hold up.
Auctioneers Elsu generally races as a sit-sprinter and I can see them not having a dip for the lead and dropping straight behind Persistent Threat.
Six starts ago the Debbie Padberg-trained seven-year-old gelding was runner up behind Kurious when beating home The Revolution in this grade.
He is ticking along well from poor draws and driver Shannon Suvaljko should make the most of an ideal barrier draw as this horse tries to break through in an M0.
Soho Chelsea can improve dropping back to 1730m. He was narrowly beaten by King Lebron when facing the breeze two starts ago and didn’t handle the same position over 2130m last time.
Suzies Gem can be placed but has transferred to trainer Peter Lodding and I’m not familiar with him so can’t comment if the transfer will affect the mare’s performance (for better or worse).
Irockmyworld has each-way claims from barrier two and shouldn’t be too far away in the run.
Placed at three of his past four starts, with the latest a fourth-placing, Im Lisart has been beaten an average of 4.75m. He has hit the line well on each occasion and will appreciate setting the pace once again.
Brilliant Sunshine, Ohoka Kentucky and Bounty Eyre are all capable of racing outside the leader while Max Meridius will be behind the leader and Lord Lombo three back on the pegs.
Voak will know that he can’t let Max Meridius out and should keep him in a pocket to prevent him from giving chase in the home straight until it’s too late.
The M2-M4 looks a great race and I can’t wait to see what unfolds in this race with Bronze Seeker showing gate speed from one, Mon Lillies from three and possibly Twoandahalf Tigers and Kiwi Legend from barriers five and six respectively.
Going back seven runs, Bronze Seeker led in an M0-M3 race and was grabbed right near the line by Rub Of The Green who would be fancied in this event. The first half was 58.8 seconds and anything slower may have seen a different result in favour of Bronze Seeker.
He is still racing in great form and may look to try the same tactic here – I’d like to see Michael Grantham holding the lead.
Commander Chapel has each-way prospects from his trailing draw while class runners Kiwi Legend and Bettor Offer have strong winning claims in the event with Twoandahalf Tigers also in the mix.
Her past two victories have been in C1 and C2 company at Pinjarra over 2692m and 2185m. She returns to headquarters where she was victorious in a C0-C1 in slow time followed by a third place in a C1 in 1:59.6 with a last half run in 56.9 seconds.
I think she can go on with it against the M0-class mares and there doesn’t look to be too much pressure in the race.
Shes Artful is a danger racing on her back along with Giuliana Rancic, Our Gamma Lady and Bethany Aitch. Place claims to Stunin Eyes Only who should land three pegs.
Three starts back he led and won in 1:57.9 at Northam over 2190m. He beat Rich Yankee on that occasion and has drawn poorly at his past two starts.
Both efforts have been good and he looks the horse to beat if he does indeed hold up. Hot Fraternity has heaps of gate speed and would run a big race if he crossed but Star Armbro is more likely to lead.
Questionable Gesture and The Storm Chief look the main dangers.