Race reviews: Caulfield, August 19th
Blackbookers: Race 8 – Brave Smash. He was having his first start in Australia after racing moderately in Japan, he got back and ran on hard along the inside on a day when the back markers where little to no chance. D K Weir looks to have another star in the making here.
Race 1: Pegasus Leisure Group Plate 1600m.
In what looked an open race on paper, was run at a genuine tempo and the honest HELL OR HIGHWATER (1st) prevailed after sitting outside the leader. She didn’t settle very well and was challenged early in the straight, but was lifted and actually ran through the line well late. With her racing pattern she will always be competitive in these types of races
Notes: SEA THE SPARKLE (2nd) loomed up to win after a soft run at the top of the straight, just peaked at the 75 and had every possible chance. DULVERTON (3rd) was well supported in the betting, found herself in an awkward position approaching the straight, still gave them 6 lengths at the furlong but really found the line well. Wait for her back at Flemington or Sandown.
Race 2: Legacy 2017 Badge Appeal Handicap 1100m
Notes: Not sure this race will hold-up as a form reference, SULLIVAN BAY (1st) has been consistent, sat up on the speed and was too good. She is no star but like the first winner will always be competitive with her racing pattern. First two races look to favour the on-pacers? LYUBA (2nd) was well supported pre-post for the Weir camp, slightly easy on race-day getting out near the price that they bet earlier in the week. Had the perfect sit on her rivals, was entitled to continue her perfect record when racing fresh, although she didn’t settle all that well. Wouldn’t be sacking OREGON’S DAY (8th), she was well backed resuming here and is clearly looking for longer. Ran through the line well enough, keep her in mind for longer trips later in the Spring, she has some class.
Race 3: Beverage Williams Plate 1100m
DUSTY JACK (4th) was good resuming here. Once again the back markers failed to get into the race but the 6yo gelding showed that he has a big Spring ahead. He looked to be labouring like most of hose back in the field at the top of the straight but accelerated nicely over the last furlong showing that he should be good out to the mile this prep.
Notes: QUILISTA (1st) showed a stack of speed fresh for the Weir yard and he looks to have another top liner in the making. Will need to see her again as the track may have favoured her today but with the speed she showed and the master at the helm, she is sure to win more races in the Spring.
Race 4: Ramlegh Springs on Clyde Hcp 1600m
Once again the on pacers looked to dominate. A beautiful ride by B Stockdale saw RHYTHM TO SPARE (1st) go back to back. Ridden for luck, all the runs presented at the top of the straight and he was the only one that made any ground. The leaders looked to roll along but again the back markers failed to get into it. Don’t think you can take much else out of the race?
Race 5: Winslow Group Quezette Stakes 1100m
Blue Diamond winner CATCHY (2nd) was resuming here and lost no admirers. She looks set for a stellar 3yo season, she was there to win but just ran into a rock hard fit and in form CROWN WITNESS (1st). Take nothing away from the winner but the way the track seemed to play she was always going to be hard to beat when she was able to settle outside the lead. The map always looked to pan out that way and the way the track was, it was no surprise to see her heavily supported in the betting. Stick with the Hayes/Dabernig runner going forward, she is a star.
Race 6: KS Environmental Vain Stakes 1100m
KOBAYASHI (5th) on paper was beaten on its merits, but the speed he showed early was impressive, he didn’t settle at all in the lead and wanted to over race. He was beaten off early in the straight but he will take benefit off that run, will prove hard to catch later in the prep if able to conditions to suit.
Notes: JUKEBOX (1st) looks a star in the making. He kept his undefeated record in tact today, had a perfect run in transit but loved the way he knuckled down over the last furlong. Look forward to seeing him again out beyond this trip.
Race 7: Change of The Light Horse P.B. Lawrence Stakes 1400m
Notes: HARTNELL (1st) was the beneficiary of a combination of a brilliant C Williams ride and a track that seemed to favour those on the speed. He won for the first time in his career fresh, we should have known that Williams would be positive and once he landed that spot was always going to be hard to run down. BLACK HEART BART (3rd) was good resuming, seemingly had every chance but it just showed how hard it was to make ground here today. When CHARMED HARMONY (2nd) is holding them off after running them along in this grade only proves that point.
Race 8: Lister regal Roller Stakes 1200m
Clearly the horse to follow here is the Japanese import for team Weir BRAVE SMASH (2nd). The 5yo was resuming after having 6 months off, his form in Japan was only moderate but the money for him was relentless form the beginning of betting on Wednesday. He made ground on a day when nothing from the back was a chance. Take nothing away from the winner VEGA MAGIC (1st) but he was in the right spot up on the speed. Although he was wide throughout, he kicked at the top of the straight and still found plenty on the line. These two brained the rest of the field, I would be shocked if they both didn’t win soon. Clearly the two horses to follow out of the race.
Race 9: Thebigscreencompany.com.au Plate 1400m
Notes: Blanket finish with 5 of them across the track. HERE TO THERE (1st) took all the short cuts and never went around a horse, was all out on the line but did enough up along the rails in the straight. Not sure there will be much to take out of this race, after they found their positions they went hard for a furlong enabling those mid-field to be a chance. I don’t expect there to be many winners out of this race in the near future. WAYANKA (4th) was racing for the third Saturday in a row, was held-up early in the straight but appeared to have every chance the last furlong. May need a few weeks off now but he is racing well.