Moonee Valley Review – October 22nd 2016

Ray Hickson reviews Saturday's Moonee Valley meeting and highlights some horses to follow.

Race 1: Inglis Banner (1000m)

1st Azazel – Luke Currie
2nd Can’t Remember – Patrick Moloney
3rd Ephesian – Tye Angland

Luiza showed blistering speed to get across from a wide gate though was made to work and had to be pushed to find the fence. A bunch of them gathered behind her with Pure EmotionLuqyaa and Red Zephyr wider out. Feng Chu settled next betweenBed Talk and Telloff driving through on the fence. Azazel was at the back of that group wide with cover. Moves were coming before the turn and Luiza had to be dug up with Pure Emotion getting closer, Luqyaa was under pressure to pick up as Red Zephyr moved four wide and Azazel picked up the bit and travelled strongly off the trac. A couple to Can’t Remember andEphesian starting to make ground while Feng Chu ran up behind the leader. Luiza found about a length but was under the whip and Azazel emerged down the outside. Pure Emotion couldn’t go on and Can’t Remember, racing very greenly, started to close. Azazel took over and, just as he was in his trial, was very strong to the line winning well. Can’t Remember did a good job to run second and Ephesian ran into third without threatening. Luiza did a bit too much work but battled on okay.

Follow: Azazel looks a smart one, Can’t Remember didn’t help himself but ran well.

Race 2: City Jeep Handicap (955m)

1st O’Malley – Craig Newitt
2nd Jungle Edge – Darren Gauci
3rd Gun Case – Mark Zahra

Jungle Edge and Gun Case jumped well from wide out though nobody seemed to want the early lead. General Truceeventually worked through on the inside to take it up and Diamond Oasis was in that group leaving Gun Case caught wide.Felines settled three back on the fence and Bullpit moved into the three wide line around Trevinder. Behind them getting a nice run was O’Malley. Jungle Edge was serving it up to General Truce nearing the turn and Gun Case was still there three out. Diamond Oasis was under riding and Felines didn’t seem to be doing a lot. Bullpit took off four deep and O’Malley was following him. Jungle Edge got the better of General Truce, who did kick, and was still in front at the 100m before O’Malley unleashed down the outside and arrived in time to win. A couple to Gun Case who fought on well after punching the breeze and not much between Bullpit, Trevinder and General Truce. Felines proved a bit disappointing and pulled up with a slow recovery rate. The race was run to suit the winner.

Follow: none in particular.

Race 3: Crockett Stakes (1200m)

1st Sweet Sherry – Steven Arnold
2nd Prompt Response – Kerrin McEvoy
3rd Overstep – Ben Melham

Overstep began only fairly but ran through to lead with Blowing Kisses up handy and Prompt Response caught three out.Angharad settled in the box seat from the inside gate and had Moonlover outside her, Brûlée three deep and Rosa Carolinafour wide. Gretna was next on the fence and Selenia and Sweet Sherry kept her company. Overstep started to creep off the fence and Prompt Response went with her coming to the turn. Angharad stayed closer to the rail and Blowing Kisses started to struggle. Rosa Carolina was creeping into the race around Brûlée and Sweet Sherry had a good cart behind them. Overstep turned about five horses off the fence and Prompt Response was still trying to get past. Rosa Carolina and Sweet Sherry were running on out wide while Angharad seemed to bog down on the inside, same for Gretna closer to the fence. Just as Prompt Response got past Overtsep, Sweet Sherry launched late and finished the better. Overstep was game between them and Rosa Carolina was just touched out for a place. Big run that filly. They broke away from Jeanneau who made good ground from last just ahead of Angharad.

Follow: Rosa Carolina was a huge effort.

Race 4: Telstra Phonewords Stakes (1200m)

1st Archives – James McDonald
2nd Crafted – Vlad Duric
3rd Big John Cannon – Michael Walker

Strange tactics in the early part with a line of four up front. The Veal Thing had the inside from Dam ReadyPalladian andArchives seemingly happy to stay four off the fence. About four lengths or so to Big John Cannon and Crafted at the tail. Archives probably shaded those on the inside midrace as the pace slackened a bit and Crafted ran up behind the quartet in front. Palladian was the first to crack of the leading group and Archives looked to be under pressure as Crafted swept up on his outside near the turn. Dam Ready and The Veal Thing were still battling away while Big John Cannon had made a bit of ground. Dam Ready might have headed Archives and Crafted at the 200m as he swung well off the fence but it was short lived and Archives and Crafted fought his challenge off down to the 100m. From there they were head and head and Archives was able to kick back and post a narrow win. Crafted was game though did have a perfect run and Big John Cannon got up for third from the back. The win of Archives was probably a bit better than it looked despite the close call.

Follow: you’d think Crafted won’t be a maiden much longer.

Race 5: Garage Door Openers (1600m)

1st Kaniana – Damian Lane
2nd Rocket Commander – Ben Melham
3rd Alaskan Rose – Patrick Moloney

A bit of competition for the early lead as Rocket Commander came across to head Antelucan with Coronation Shallan between them. St Swithuns landed in a good spot in the clear. Lady Le Fay was next on the inside of Kaniana with Metaphoricaltrapped wide. Alaskan Rose had good cover behind that trio. Rocket Commander stayed off the fence and Antelucan took over past the 800m. Coronation Shallan had a nice run and Lady Le Fay crept along the inside to join her with St Swithuns further out. Metaphorical took off around them and Kaniana had to wait for a run. Whirlpool had improved along the fence at the expense of Alaskan Rose who was spat out to second last. Rocket Commander again moved alongside Antelucan on the turn and they were well off the fence. Lady Le Fay stayed hard up against the inside and she hit the lead as they cornered. Kaniana got a split inside St Swithuns as they were tracking wider and Alaskan Rose made it to the extreme outside. They’d reeled in Lady Le Fay before the 100m and it was left to Rocket Commander and Kaniana to fight the race out. Alaskan Rose was running on ahead of Metaphorical and Dulverton. Lady Le Fay was bogged down on the fence and Kaniana finished beat to win.Rocket Commander was game and Alaskan Rose far from disgraced in third. Forgive Lady Le Fay who was in the wrong spot from the start.

Follow: none but forgive Lady Le Fay.

Race 6: Fillies Classic (1600m)

1st Nurse Kitchen – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd Sezanne – Hugh Bowman
3rd I Am A Star – Steven King

Alaskan Sun rolled to the lead ahead of Classic Diva while I Am A Star held the inside behind them. La Luna Rossa was on her outside with Mitali Assa Vedo trapped three deep. The next line included Exocet inside Stop Making Sense and Kamili.Nurse Kitchen settled behind them while Sezanne was taken back to last. A few runs came midrace with Mitali Assa Vedo striding forward outside the leaders and Kamili pulling around her. I Am A Star stayed to the inside from La Luna Rossa while Exocet also made ground underneath them. Nurse Kitchen started to weave through the pack while coming to the turn Sezanne was still last and being held together. Alaskan Sun was the first beaten and I Am A Star assumed the lead on the inside and immediately came a couple off the fence. Exocet followed her through while Classic Diva and La Luna Rossa couldn’t do any better and Nurse Kitchen emerged in the centre of the track. Sezanne was on the extreme outside a couple of lengths astern. I Am A Star went for home from Exocet on her inside, Sezanne was starting to charge and just as she was looking like swamping them Nurse Kitchen went with her and finished off a little the better. Sezanne probably left it a bit late but ran well and I Am A Star and Exocet were honest. They were well clear of the rest.

Follow: long term Nurse Kitchen might develop into a nice horse.

Race 7: Crystal Mile (1600m)

1st The United States – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd Lidari – John Allen
3rd Ulmann – Damian Lane

He Or She jumped well and went forward early on from Ulmann on the fence while Lidari pushed on towards the lead. Royal Rapture and Federal weren’t far away and The United States watched it all unfold. Lidari eventually assumed control from Federal moving up on his outside leaving He Or She back to fourth around Ulmann. Royal Rapture wasn’t as handy as usual and The United States crept up on his inside. Lidari tried to stack them up and the six of them did pack up to an extent at the 600m. Federal was still there and He Or She came three out. The United States worked away from inside Royal Rapture and made quick ground to chime in and really had them covered well before the turn. Ulmann stayed behind the leader and Royal Rapture was losing touch with them. The United States swept past Lidari at the 200m and did it quite easily in the run to the line. Lidari stuck on pretty well in a much improved effort and Ulmann got going late to run into third ahead of Federal, who probably didn’t run out the trip. He Or She disappointed and Royal Rapture ran arguably the worst race of his career.

Follow: The United States is the only one out of this race, though the Mackinnon (Emirates) is his next run.

Race 8: Moonee Valley Cup (2500m)

1st Grand Marshal – Ben Melham
2nd Who Shot Thebarman – Hugh Bowman
3rd Pentathlon – Luke Nolen

Gallante wanted the lead and was able to find it ahead of Authoritarian and White Dollar Sign between them early before easing. Who Shot Thebarman landed in a good spot next from Master Zephyr along the inside and Excess Knowledge.Second Wave was caught wide around Grand Marshal and Pentathlon a length or so behind him. Gallante was left alone for a while but some pressure came as Second Wave pushed on wide out and Authoritarian had to hold his ground between them and kicked up so Second Wave slotted into a trail outside White Dollar Sign. Who Shot Thebarman continued to enjoy a nice run from Master Zephyr and Excess Knowledge. About halfway home Authoritarian started to serve it right up to Gallante and the pace went on. Second Wave and White Dollar Sign were a couple of lengths away all of a sudden but Who Shot Thebarman still travelled well and made his move past the 800m coming four out while Excess Knowledge swung wider. Grand Marshal got onto their backs. Authoritarian dropped out and Second Wave momentarily hit the lead from Gallante but both felt the pinch quickly. Who Shot Thebarman strode up to take over from them with Excess Knowledge just inside. Grand Marshal got to the extreme outside and Pentathlon was following him home. Who Shot Thebarman turned in front with Grand Marshal breathing down his neck and Excess Knowledge battling, a couple to Pentathlon still running on. Grand Marshal surged a bit better late and with the easier last 800m managed to break through. Who Shot Thebarman was gallant and Pentathlon finished over the top of Excess Knowledge. Gallante disappointed though he was softened right up and Second Wave had a torrid run.

Follow: none, the Melbourne Cup winner wasn’t here.

Race 9: Group 1 WS Cox Plate (2040m)

1st Winx – Hugh Bowman
2nd Hartnell – James McDonald
3rd Yankee Rose – Dean Yendall

Vadamos was slow to move and took a while to get going. Black Heart Bart was sent forward with Awesome Rock andHartnell up on their outside. Yankee Rose had the fence and Winx let them go and stayed off the inside. Happy Clapperdropped in behind them from Hauraki with a couple to Lucia Valentina and Happy Trails was at the back. Black Heart Bart stayed off the inside and Vadamos started to fire up on the rails and ran to the lead. Hartnell tucked in behind Black Heart Bart with Awesome Rock on the inside and Winx right on the back of Hartnell. Yankee Rose was midfield on the fence out the back straight. Vadamos opened up a four length lead past the 800m on Black Heart Bart with Hartnell and Winx creeping closer. Awesome Rock was still there and Yankee Rose had worked off the inside and was trying to follow Winx. Vadamos seemed to drop off quickly, or take a breather, and Hartnell rushed up with Winx to take the lead from Black Heart Bart just inside the 600m. Vadamos started to find something while Awesome Rock was under pressure. Yankee Rose was running on wide out. Winx went straight past Hartnell before the turn and just sprinted away from him. Vadamos was battling back into third and Yankee Rose continued to make ground. But it was a one horse race in the straight as Winx put a record margin on them romping away by eight from Hartnell with Yankee Rose getting within half a length of him in third. Vadamos was game in a strange run from Awesome Rock and nothing from the back made any impact.

Follow: what can you say, an amazing performance from a champion. Yankee Rose did her Oaks chances no harm here.

Race 10: The Vase (2040m)

1st Sacred Elixir – Damian Lane
2nd Morvada- Steven Arnold
3rd So Si Bon – Michael Dee

Morvada showed speed and held the inside and the lead from Sayonaramosa and Sacred Elixir taking a sit.  Veladero was up there handy from Prized IconSo Si Bon got away from the inside pushing Wimborne wider out of the straight. Morvada ran them along and stayed on the rail while the rest of the field were happy to sit two or three off. Sayonaramosa led that line from Sacred Elixir who was joined by Veladero up the back. So Si Bon and Prized Icon were waiting and Silvera had made it past Wimborne. They packed right up past the 600m with Morvada moving off the rail. Sayonaramosa, Veladero and So Si Bon made a line of four and Silvera was trying to join them further out while Sacred Elixir was happy to sit behind the leader. Veladero tried to get the better of Morvada on the turn but ran around a bit, causing trouble for Sacred Elixir to had to switch between them as Sayonaramosa weakened. So Si Bon was still there wider out and they got away from Prized Icon getting going after being shuffled back. Sacred Elixir balanced up tag the 100m and was able to finish off too strongly for Morvada who ran a huge race and So Si Bon a solid enough third.

Follow: as far as the Derby goes Sacred Elixir is hard to go past on this race.

Specials from the meeting: Azazel, Rosa Carolina, Crafted.