by Ray Hickson Race 1: TROA Supports Jockey Trust (1800m) 1st Spinderbella – Glen Boss 2nd Danish Whiskey – Dwayne Dunn 3rd Clear Direction – Holly McKechnie
Reckless Assassin was first out and headed straight to the front. Clear Direction let her go and took the box seat as Aliyanacame across. Danish Whiskey sat up next and Spinderbellawas a couple of lengths away outside Bells Of Troy. Reckless Assassin was kept busy by Aliyana and they tried to back it off midrace as they ran into a strong headwind. Clear Direction and Danish Whiskey enjoyed good runs and Spinderbella was looming coming to the home turn. Aliyana hit the front at the 300m but she and Reckless Assassin had nothing left. Clear Direction was held in a pocket by Danish Whiskey until inside the 200m. Spinderbella unwound with a strong run down the outside and Noble Twostep finished her race off nicely late behind her. Spinderbella held a comfortable length or so margin and did it pretty easily. Danish Whiskey ran a much improved race and tipped out Clear Direction for second. Noble Twostep never really threatened but her run was sound. Be a little forgiving of Aliyana and Reckless Assassin and the other three were never sighted.
Follow: Spinderbella was only second-up so should have more upside. Race 2: Inglis Ready2Race Sale (2000m) 1st Longeron – Dwayne Dunn 2nd Kim Command – Patrick Maloney 3rd Pyrrolic – Luke Nolen
The import Hartaniwas sent forward and led with Longeron parking on his outside. Pyrrolic landed in a perfect trail around Kim Command. Count Encosta was left stranded three and four wide and pressed on forward. Gridhian refused to settle in midfield and was also held wide as Beyond Thankful and Wrotham Heath held their ground. Count Encosta kept working up the hill into third place. Not much changed until just before the 600m when More Than Sacred dashed around them and went to the lead and as that happened Hartani was gone. Count Encosta and Longeron kicked up and Pyrrolic had clear running in front of him. Kim Command got around the tiring Hartani and Wrotham Heath found himself back last on the fence. Longeron hit the lead on the corner and was clearly travelling better than More Than Sacred. Pyrrolic and Kim Command tried to chase and they squeezed up Count Encosta. Shikarpour loomed as a place chance at the 200m but that run was short lived. Longeron dashed away and ran out the 2000m very strongly. Kim Command and Pyrrolic were even efforts as was More Than Sacred who made that midrace move. Count Encosta’s run was enormous. Can’t make excuses for anything else.
Follow: give Count Encosta another chance.
Race 3: Citiopera Plate (1100m) 1st Vain Attraction – Michelle Payne 2nd Chiquada – Laurie Whelan 3rd Miss Steele – Brad Rawiller
Fairly good line out though Quick Lover lacked speed and was a clear last. Minaj bounded out and led as usual with California Storm trying to match her out wider. Awasita came across with her and slotted into a nice spot behind the pair. Shades Of Bella and Choose were handy. Chiquada and Flash Of Doubt were exposed to the wind. Griante and Miss Steele followed them and Red Fez settled about midfield. Minaj beat off California Storm on the turn and Awasita was just stalking the leader. Shades Of Bella presented with a run and Chiquada sprinted quickly to join the lead at the 300m. Miss Steele was angling off her back and Red Fez struggled. Chiquada looked the winner with a furlong to go and had those inside her covered but Miss Steele loomed with Griante out wider and Vain Attraction, who followed Miss Steele, emerged between that duo and burst through to score. Chiquada was game and Miss Steele came back to nose Griante out of third. Fair efforts behind them from Choose and Quick Lover made some ground without threatening. No excuses for others and Red Fez was very disappointing.
Follow: big run from Chiquada and Miss Steele will improve second-up. Race 4: Caulfield RSL Welfare Fund (1700m) 1st Kenjorwood – Regan Bayliss 2nd Commanding Time – Craig Williams 3rd Extra Zero – Michael Walker
Kenjorwood bounced out from his inside gate and held the lead. Commanding Time was up there and First Course pushed on to join the leader. Shoreham and Captain Fancypantz were the next pair then Prince Of Penzance inside Extra Zero and Le Roi trailed them. Passing the 1200m Kenjorwood and First Course took off and established a lead of three or four lengths on Commanding Time with about six or eight to the rest of the field headed by Shoreham. They must have been strung out over 30 lengths in the middle stages. Kenjorwood broke First Course’s heart by the 600m and it was left to Commanding Time to try and run him down. Shoreham was off the bit and Extra Zero got past him on the turn. Prince Of Penzance couldn’t pick up and Le Roi slowly made some ground. Kenjorwood changed stride at the 200m and looked to almost stumble but was well clear and he ran them into the ground. Commanding Time held on for second ahead of Extra Zero. First Course actually managed to run fourth just ahead of Le Roi and nothing else was able to get into a groove. Big win by Kenjorwood and used the 51kg to advantage.
Follow: handy first-up run from Le Roi, note he won second-up last prep.
Race 5: Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) 1st Afleet Esprit – Damien Oliver 2nd Amicus – Jim Cassidy 3rd Go Indy Go – Clare Lindop
Bring Me The Maid was only fair to begin and might have been squeezed slightly but that was pretty much the end of her. Traveston Girl was sent straight to the lead with Aimee coming across to sit second. Novel Dancer eased and Afleet Esprit took the box seat. Amicus was stuck three wide and pressed forward. Bring Me The Maid improved past a few and was with Pickin’ Time in the second half, Sabatini held the fence and Go Indy Go trailed them. Amicus continued her run forward and joined Traveston Girl in the lead midrace. Aimee took a trail and Afleet Esprit held her position. Sabatini improved along the inside to be three back on the fence coming to the turn and Bring Me The Maid was under a heap of pressure and going nowhere. Afleet Esprit took a gap between the leaders inside the 300m and swept to the front. Amicus tried very hard to go with her but Afleet Esprit had the softer run and made it three straight. Go Indy Go charged down the outside from last for third in a nice return to form. Traveston Girl was only fair next then Sabatini who didn’t ever look like winning. Bring Me The Maid gave nothing.
Follow: Go Indy Go’s run was a sign she’s back in business and over a mile and further she’ll be hard to stop. Race 6: Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) 1st Rich Enuff – Michael Rodd 2nd Looks Like The Cat – Damian Browne 3rd Awesome Rock – Damien Oliver
Ghibellines was slow out and probably eased a little as well from the wide alley. Our Vespa jumped well from the inside but had some company with Liberation scooting across. Lucky Tom kept punching up and Armada was handy. Rich Enuff showed his usual speed and he eventually pushed up to second. Soldi Domani slotted in and Looks Like The Cat settled midfield around Moonlight Hussler. Liberation led Rich Enuff at the 600m as they sorted themselves out with Armada and Our Vespa not far behind. Looks Like The Cat started to take off around Soldi Domani and Convincible also tried to get going. Awesome Rock followed Looks Like The Cat. On the turn Rich Enuff made his move and went straight past Liberation, though he was a bit wayward and ran in towards the rail. Our Vespa was tightened up as a result. Armada battled on. Looks Like The Cat seemed to lose the plot around the turn but he picked up and hit the line hard down the outside and Awesome Rock also made ground. From the back Wandjina charged late but Rich Enuff put panels on them in an impressive win. Looks Like The Cat tried hard as did Awesome Rock but they were in another race. Follow: Rich Enuff has the Guineas at his mercy if he can run a mile out.
Race 7: Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Charity Cup (1400m) 1st Trust In A Gust – Damian Lane 2nd Dissident – Ben Melham 3rd Sweet Idea – Tommy Berry
Sweet Idea was first to the fence and the lead until Sistine Demon got rolling and he took over after 200m or so. Trust In A Gust followed him across and landed in a good spot ahead of A Time For Julia and Disssident in the clear. Late Charge and Akavoroun were in midfield. Cluster jumped well but was dragged right back to last and then wound up on the fence. Speediness was caught three wide around Bull Point and Rhythm To Spare. Alma’s Fury had a three wide trail with Gig and Atlante on his inside. Sistine Demon was being stalked by Trust In A Gust coming to the turn. Dissident came out to make his run and shoved Sweet Idea back into a pocket at the 300m. Late Charge made a dash with Bull Point and Akavoroun out wider. Cluster had to work through the field and had a checkered passage. Dissident and Trust In A Gust settled down to battle it out in the last 100m and Trust In A Gust prevailed by the bob of the head with Dissident in front a stride before the post. Big effort Dissident giving the winner 6kg. Bull Point got up for third from Sweet Idea and the luckless Cluster, the barrier cruelled his chances. A protest, somewhat ambitious, by Dissident against Trust In A Gust for interference 1200m out was quickly thrown out.
Follow: none in particular but Dissident didn’t do his Cox Plate chances any harm. Race 8: Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m) 1st Target In Sight – Craig Williams 2nd In Cahoots – Damien Oliver 3rd Turquoise King – Dwayne Dunn
Office Bearer was slow to begin and seemed to get held up when trying to improve. Happy Galaxy pushed on from a wide alley to cross and lead with State Of Wealth. It Is Written, Haussmann and Turquoise King were all handy. In Cahoots was stuck out wide around Pago Rock and Wales. Vain Queen settled in the second half in a bit of traffic. About 500m out About Square was checked out of it back to last. Happy Galaxy was joined by Haussmann and It Is Written on the turn with In Cahoots up four wide and Target In Sight got onto his back and peeled out deeper. Vain Queen was on his back in turn and Turquoise King went looking for runs. In Cahoots hit the lead at the 200m but Target In Sight joined in quickly. Turquoise King got a run inside them and Vain Queen ran to fourth but couldn’t reel them in. Target In Sight just got the better of In Cahoots, who had a tougher run, and Turquoise King battled on well for third. Vain Queen had her chance and of the others a nice first-up run from Watermans Bay.
Follow: keep an eye on Watermans Bay.
Specials from the meeting: Chiquada, Le Roi, Rich Enuff, Watermans Bay.