Caulfield Race 7, 4.05pm
Group 1 Ladbrokes CF Orr Stakes (1400m)
The lay of the land
The track will be alright. The rail is back in the true after being out 9m last week.
A light wind is forecast, but it’s a southerly so will be coming up behind them and will suit those on the pace.
The speed story
Looks to be plenty of genuine pace here. I expect Turn Me Loose to lead with the trip out to 1400m, and Arod, Ecuador and Miss Rose De Lago to be next in line. Malaguerra will also go forward from out wide, and I think Black Heart Bart will do the same, although his path is a little less clear. Divine Prophet will be midfield, and Awesome Rock and Lucky Hussler behind on the fence. Palentino, He’s Our Rokkii and Jameka will be back and across.
In the mix
The 1200m Australia Stakes at the Valley didn’t suit Black Heart Bart (Weir / Rawiller), with the 1400m trip here more his go. He’s actually had ten runs at 1400m for six wins and four seconds, two of which were beaten an inch. So very much his pet distance, the only concern here being the wide barrier and where Rawiller takes him.
Similar for Turn Me Loose (Baker & Forsman / McEvoy): this is more his trip. He’s won six times at 1400m and 1600m, and ran fourth in this last year, so he’ll enjoy being here.
Lucky Hussler (Weir / Lane) will improve off the Gold Coast where he was starved for luck. Also won this race last year, so can’t be discounted.
Malaguerra (Gelagotis / Melham) is simply a bloody good horse and is the one to beat here. He’s improved with every run he’s had for the Gelagotis team and there’s no reason to believe that won’t continue and he’ll step up again.
Divine Prophet (Hawkes / Dunn) is the Guineas winner and a good solid horse who’s won first up his last two preps. My only reservation is the form from the Guineas hasn’t been on display yet so we’re not totally across it, but nonetheless I’ve rated him at his top.
Arod (Waller / Williams) was down here for Oaks Day and ran second behind Rageese, and I’ve rated him to that. He’s had a couple of trials and the last one looked very poor, but I’m not hugely concerned by that.
Palentino (Weir / Zahra) returned at the Valley and was another who was unsuited. He’ll improve here but his best form is usually third-up at the mile.
Ecuador (Waterhouse & Bott / Hyeronimus) is definitely worth consideration. It’s been a very good prep with plenty of weight carried and fast times recorded, and he’ll be up on the pace here.
He’s Our Rokkii (Hayes & Dabernig / R Bayliss) has improved and I’ve rated him to his best, however the wide draw here is a real issue.
Jameka (Maher / Nolen) ran well first-up last prep, getting back and hitting the line. She’ll do likewise here, but I don’t think she can give this lot the head start. She’ll be better at 2000m.
Miss Rose De Lago (O’Brien / Oliver) won first-up in her last prep over this course, but i think that might have busted her and she didn’t look good after that. The only thing is that being a Group 1 1400m, I think O’Brien will have her wound right up here, so I can’t totally dismiss her.
Awesome Rock (Corstens / Baster) gets back on the map here and is first-up. He generally takes a run to get going.
Strong field here but again, just can’t go past Malaguerra.
Trevor Lawson is a full-time professional punter with a highly successful record over 15 years. His Melbourne Ratings package gives you access to his early bets, assessed prices, speed map comments and betting strategies for all metro Melbourne meetings.