The Newmarket Handicap preview

By guest reviewer Todd Burmester

For any racing enthusiast, The Newmarket Handicap on Saturday certainly is a must see. Sure, there is no Black Caviar but dare I say it, that actually adds to the interest of this race. Even with a big weight she probably would have still beaten them pointlessly, such is her class but this event now gives one of these other high class sprinters the chance at glory.The obvious pick to a lot would have to be Hay List. He’s proven himself as the second best sprinter to Black Caviar on numerous occasions and many say without having raced in the same era as her, he would have by now been crowned a champion. That’s fair credentials for this – but 58.5kgs is certainly a champions weight in this event. I’m prepared to look for value elsewhere and cop it on the chin if he wins. The Sydney “champion”, Rain Affair and I use that word loosely in this sense, as he is yet to go anywhere those qualities, faces his toughest test to date. You cannot doubt his record with 10 wins from 11 starts. How will he cope with a pressure test up the straight against the best though?  Again, I am not sure. The up and comer Foxwedge is going very well by all accounts and gets in with a postage stamp on his back here, could he be the one? Bel Sprinter also fits into the up and comer category and has to be rated a chance. Peter Moody, even minus Black Caviar in this race, still has quality representation in the shape of King’s Rose. And then there is the Oakleigh Plate form in the shape of Woorim and Facile Tigre. Temple Of Boom has a love affair with the straight. Waratah’s Secret throws in a West Australian flavour and Chris Waller seems to have improved Albert The Fat. I’ve deliberately named close to half the field to show what a wide open event this is, as I truly believe all those named have a chance and I still may have missed the winner! You can’t tip them all, so in this case, I am going to go for a bit of value and suggest the two from the Oakleigh Plate, Woorim and Facile Tigre may be the leading chances in the race – I lean to Facile Tigre as I prefer Woorim around a corner rather than up the straight. The cream may just rise to the top though and Hay List, weight and all may get the job done. One way or another, this is as good a sprint race as you will see anywhere in the world