Metropolitan, Randwick
  • Speed and runner comments from pro punter Mark Rhoden
  • Mark likes two chances, both of which offer good value in the betting

Speed

I’ve got Stampede to lead from stablemate Hush Writer, with Come Play With Me not far away from his inside draw. Brimham Rocks and Sir Charles Road look to get good runs in midfield or just off it, as does Scarlet Dream if she jumps cleanly. Wu Gok, Attention Run, Gallic Chieftain and Grey Lion are all drawn wide – they’ll need clever work early from their jockeys to get in, or risk being well back and/or wide.

2019 Metropolitan: the field

SHRAAOH (1) won the Sydney Cup with 51kg in the autumn, and benefitted from a superb ride from Jay Ford that day too. He’s getting fitter and the extra trip suits, but it won’t be easy with the topweight here.

GALLIC CHIEFTAIN (2) gets the blinkers back on. Was no match for Brimham Rocks last start but he’ll be getting fitter. May have to go well back from his gate.

GREY LION (3) kept trying in the Kingston Town last start. Good 2400m horse but another who will probably have to go well back from his wide draw.

French import NEUFBOSC (4) is ticking over nicely. Nash Rawiller is on, which is a plus, but he’ll be riding 1kg over at 56kg which doesn’t help. Neufbosc’s best overseas figures are good enough to win this, however.

STAMPEDE (5) is on a seven day back-up after a dominant win in the Colin Stephen. He was aided by the track pattern in that win, but the fact remains he’s fit, in great form and now proven at 2400 metres. Great chance if he holds his form.

WU GOK (6) has been in great form on both wet and dry tracks. He’s had 29 days off but a quiet tick-over trial since his Wyong Cup win. There’s a bit more depth here and he’s drawn awkwardly as well.

BIG DUKE (7) is a tough old stayer suited up to 2400 metres, but he may need a wet track to win in this class these days.

COME PLAY WITH ME (8) was just fair as favourite in the Kingston Town, and loses James McDonald today. Needs to lift to win, but drawn to get every chance.

PATRICK ERIN (9) won this last year but he’s hardly fired a shot since then.

SIR CHARLES ROAD (11) battled on okay in the Kingston Town, and is getting up to his right trip now. Certainly competitive on his best form and he looks over the odds.

BRIMHAM ROCKS (12) found his best form at Caulfield last start. He was $21 that day but he showed last spring that when he strikes form he’s capable of maintaining it. Well weighted, well drawn, great chance.

HUSH WRITER (13) is in great form on dry tracks. A touch more depth here than in the Newcastle Cup but he’ll give himself every chance on the speed again.

It was a great run from ATTENTION RUN (14) in the Newcastle Cup after a wide trip. Repeating that peak effort off a tough run is the concern here, however

SCARLET DREAM (15) lost her chance at the start last time. She has some chance on the limit weight, but she’s pretty well found in the market.

2019 Metropolitan: Best value bets

This is actually not a bad betting race. If BRIMHAM ROCKS (12) and STAMPEDE (5) run up to their last start figures, I expect one of the two to win. And there’s value in backing both, so there’ll be some betting action here.

Of the other chances, SIR CHARLES ROAD (11) is perhaps the best of the roughies, but I’d be happy backing the top two.

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