Caulfield review by Ray Hickson

Race 1: Yellowglen Plate (1400m)

1st Andrioli – Craig Williams 2nd Italy – James McDonald 3rd Silent Sedition – Luke Currie

Andrioli was ridden with purpose to find the lead and crossed to the fence easily. Italy also went forward and wound up outside the leader, who was taken hold of when finding the fence, and Timely Girl settled with Purrpussful. Stablemates Air Apparent and Hell Or Highwater were midfield with Silent Sedition behind them and trying to stay off the inside. Andrioli travelled easily to the turn and Italy was being niggled to stay with her. Purrpussful eased around the pair into the centre to run on and Hell Or Highwater railed through into her spot. Wider out Young Amazon and Silent Sedition faced a task as the leader kicked away. Andrioli was a couple clear at the 200m and had more than enough in hand to hold off Italy while Silent Sedition only got warm late and ran into third. Air Apparent ran on well without threatening while Timely Girl and Hell Or Highwater battled on. Mihalic wasn’t a bad effort from well back and may be looking for further. Follow: there’s a win in Silent Sedition.

Race 2: Gothic Stakes (1400m)

1st Mahuta – Mark Zahra 2nd Holler – James McDonald 3rd Flying Light – Damian Lane

Metallic Crown bounced at the start and was a clear last while Santa Ana Lane eased back from a wide gate. Mahutawas straight on the lead as Holler let him go. Takedown moved to second while Flying Light took a trail behind him. Metallic Crown improved to be three back on the fence. Takedown was already being niggled as they passed the 600m and couldn’t match Mahuta as the leader slipped away around the turn. Holler was also being pumped along and Flying Light peeled out. Santa Ana Lane was back near last on the fence and in a tricky spot. Mahuta went for home at the 300m and held more than a length over Holler who was the only challenger. They fought it out to the line but Mahuta held about a head or so’s advantage over Holler, who had his chance. Flying Light prevailed narrowly for third from Santa Ana Lane. The latter was never in it. Metallic Crown and Takedown weren’t far away but both disappointed. On pace dominated race and the winner was coming off a (quite impressive it must be said) maiden win. Santa Ana Lane might be worth another look. Follow: none in particular.

Race 3: Caulfield Sprint (1000m)

1st Lumosty – Dwayne Dunn & Eclair Choice – Dominic Tourneur 3rd Ball Of Muscle – Glyn Schofield

Ball Of Muscle found his way to the lead pretty easily though Headwater tried to keep him off the fence and that played against him as he turned his head when easing. Rain Affair jumped well and was up outside the leader. Eclair Choice and Kinglike did the stalking while Kuro settled back with Lumosty, who jumped from the outside but found the fence. Last Day saw them all. Ball Of Muscle was held together into the straight and Rain Affair couldn’t match him. Headwater was gone and Eclair Choice made his run. Further back Kinglike had made a dash nearing the turn out wide but was battling to run on. Lumosty ran up behind Eclair Choice and was momentarily held up as Kuro tried to keep her in. Eclair Choice got to Ball Of Muscle about 100m out but Lumosty had worked clear and was charging late. They got away and Lumosty put in a dive to snatch a dead heat with Eclair Choice. Ball Of Muscle had his chance but stuck on as he always does. Lumosty should have won the race outright, there was a protest but Eclair Choice wasn’t the reason she was beaten. The fact that Rain Affair and Last Day, with due respect, were next behind the placings doesn’t bode well for those behind them. How Kuro managed to be a firmer for the Darley Classic on his run is mistifying. Follow: stick with Lumosty but she’ll be taking on better horses next time.

Race 4: Ethereal Stakes (2000m)

1st Dawnie Perfect – Jim Cassidy 2nd Honesta – Craig Williams 3rd Ambience – James McDonald

Bannatyne sprung out and led clearly and Jezzabba moved to second while Honesta parked in the box seat early. A bunch of them were next with Street Spun, The Grey Flash, Ambience and Born Magic all handy, the latter three wide. Princess Aria and Dawn Of Hope were around midfield. Bannatyne really had them running up the hill and the roughie Street Spun moved closer, giving Honesta a one-one trail around Jezzabba. Ambience was a couple of lengths back past the 800m. Honesta was being pushed along a very long way out and she moved up three wide trying to close on them by the 600m. Under the whip on the turn she looked to be struggling to get to Bannatyne who shook off Street Spun. Ambience made her move three out and behind them the only others making any ground were Princess Aria and Dawnie Perfect winding up out wider. Bannatyne was all out at the 100m and just as Honesta picked her up Dawnie Perfect, with the soft run, sprinted past her and was far too strong. Good battling effort from Honesta but she did have her chance, as did Ambience who had Honesta’s back for much of the race. Bannatyne’s run was huge and if she can learn to settle after that sort of run she might go on. Follow: from an Oaks perspective the winner should have that field covered.

Race 5: Caulfield Classic (2000m)

1st Sacred Eye – Damian Lane 2nd Lizard Island – Tommy Berry 3rd Etymology – James McDonald

No big surprises as Ayers Rock rolled to the lead. Sacred Eye was right up there early then allowed Alkaashef to go past and took a trail. Tivaci was on the fence and Lizard Island found himself three wide and having to work up the hill to be outside the lead. Eytmology and Ragnaar paired off just on midfield. Ayers Rock must have hit the rail out of the back straight as he skewed sharply but regained composure and Lizard Island stuck a length off him. They edged away in the middle stages from Tivaci and Alkaashef. Etymology improved along the rail to join Sacred Eye past the 800m. Ayers Rock seemed to travel okay on the turn but was gone in a stride at the 300m and Lizard Island grabbed up. Tivaci ran up behind them and inside Alkaashef while Sacred Eye made her move. Etymology was held up a little as she started her run while Ragnaar couldn’t go with them. Lizard Island was a sitting shot by the 100m and Sacred Eye went straight past him and was strong on the line. Very game run from Lizard Island after doing early work and Etymology was very nice here too. From the back Get The Picture worked home very strongly after hitting a flat spot and going very wide on the turn. The filly was too good and is a worthy Oaks favourite at this point. Follow: Lizard Island and Etymology were nice Derby trials.

Race 6: David Jones Cup (2000m)

1st Stratum Star – Mark Zahra 2nd Awesome Rock – Stephen Baster 3rd Leebaz – Dwayne Dunn

Nobody was desperate to lead and Leebaz eventually ran to the front from Fenway and Stratum Star landing in the box seat. Awesome Rock enjoyed a nice trail from Thunder Lady and Sadler’s Lake just off midfield. Dibayani went back to a clear last. Leebaz strode along at his own leisure a couple clear of Fenway and there wasn’t a lot of change in the front half. You could see out the back Dibayani racing with his mouth open and he took off four wide well before the 600m. Just past that 600m mark Fenway was under hard riding and dropped out sharply leaving Leebaz clear. Awesome Rock slipped up and tried to pocket Stratum Star, who was getting off the leader’s back while Fenway gave ground. Sadler’s Lake moved up further out and Dibayani ran right off the track having locked his jaw. Stratum Star took the run and hit the lead at the 300m with Awesome Rock breathing down his neck. They got the better of Leebaz who was sticking on well and nothing else was coming. Stratum Star began to assert his authority late and was too good for Awesome Rock. Leebaz just fell into third ahead of Sadler’s Lake. Everything else had their chance, obviously Fenway wasn’t herself and Dibayani had excuses but is going to be spelled. Follow: keep backing Stratum Star!

Race 7: Moonga Stakes (1400m)

1st Vashka – James McDonald 2nd Under The Louvre – Mark Zahra 3rd Coronation Shallan – Daniel Stackhouse

Vashka was straight on the lead with Worthy Cause outside and Coronation Shallan and Sterling City right behind. That quartet quickly held a couple of lengths on the field headed by Famous Seamus three wide around Setinum andRock Sturdy. Chivalry was in the clear while Under The Louvre, who jumped from the outside, was dragged back and got up on the fence to be second last settling. Vashka backed it off in the middle stages but not so much that Worthy Cause could get comfortable. Sterling City waited behind them while Coronation Shallan was also off the bit. Back in the field Under The Louvre pinched some ground on the inside before swinging right out to the centre on the turn. Vashka was going better than Worthy Cause and Sterling City into the straight and broke away from them. Coronation Shallan was sticking on while Rock Sturdy wasn’t picking up. Further out Under The Louvre was starting to wind up but was giving away six lengths. Vashka was stopping a bit late and Under The Louvre ran him to half a length. Should he have won? Debatable, as a backmarker you always need luck. Coronation Shallan did a very good job to battle back for third ahead of Worthy Cause and Rock Sturdy. Can’t knock Vashka, he’s a winner. Follow: none in particular.

Race 8: Tristarc Stakes (1400m)

1st La Passe – Michelle Payne 2nd Solicit – Brenton Avdulla 3rd Jessy Belle – Damian Lane

Even start and Gregers found the front from Solicit up outside her. Hazard lobbed into third on the fence fromTycoon Tara. La Passe and Catkins were a couple back. Amicus was stuck three deep outside Scarlet Billows andSlightly Sweet. Sabatini was back in the second half as well. Solicit was serving it up to Gregers coming to the turn with Hazard waiting for a run. Tycoon Tara was hard at it and Catkins also looked to be under severe pressure. La Passe ran up behind Hazard coming to the turn and after being shut out of a run switched back to the fence. Solicit took over at the 200m as Gregers tried to battle back. Hazard was climbing all over them trying to get out and La Passe was diving along the fence. Catkins couldn’t reach them. Solicit looked to be holding on while behind her Hazard still wasn’t able to get clear but when room opened up she threw in the towel. La Passe drove along the rails late to snatch it over Solicit on the line for another upset win. Jessy Belle gained a late split and charged through into her usual placing at this level and there was a wall next including Slightly Sweet following the winner and Scarlet Billows out wide. Sabatini didn’t do anything, Amicus similar though she raced wide and Catkins disappointed after having every chance. Be happy to sack that trio plus Hazard on these performances. Follow: Solicit was first-up and will improve off her excellent effort.

Race 9: Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m)

1st Mongolian Khan – Opie Bosson 2nd Trip To Paris – Tommy Berry 3rd Our Ivanhowe – Ben Melham

Set Square was sent straight to the lead and crossed pretty easily. Magnapal and Royal Descent followed her across with the latter being stranded wide out of the straight. Snow Sky landed in the box seat with Gust Of Wind right on the pace. Rising Romance settled three back on the fence with Mongolian Khan in a perfect spot. Our Ivanhowetracked him around Volkstok’n’barrell. Trip To Paris settled midfield on the fence with Fame Game behind him andHokko Brave caught wide. Set Square ran along a bit in the lead and opened up by a couple of lengths up the back straight. Not a lot of change with Royal Descent still posted deep. They started to bunch up a bit at the 800m with the first to move Our Ivanhowe and he flushed Mongolian Khan out. Right around them came Protectionist. Set Square was under siege before the turn and Magnapal was struggling, which caused problems for Snow Sky who looked to be going okay behind them. Interestingly Fame Game had drifted back to last by the turn. Mongolian Khan swept up to the lead with Our Ivanhowe on the bend. Gust Of Wind was right behind them, Protectionist started to battle and Snow Sky was badly held up behind the tiring leaders. He went for a run outside Magnapal who shifted out and gave Trip To Paris a saloon run through at the 300m. Mongolian Khan defied the challenge of Our Ivanhowe while Trip To Paris was warming up on his inside clear of Gust Of Wind and Snow Sky. Mongolian Khan staved Trip To Paris off as well and aided by a gun ride was too strong. Considering he’s a 4000m winner Trip To Paris was an excellent Melbourne Cup trial and Our Ivanhowe ran well for third. Behind them, Gust Of Wind an even run, Snow Sky missed the boat, Fame Game couldn’t be missed getting through when it was all over. Out wider Who Shot Thebarman and not far from them were Hauraki and Lucia Valentina who weren’t ever really in the call. Follow: on that evidence alone, Fame Game wins the Melbourne Cup. But a nice trial from Trip To Paris.

Race 10: Alinghi Stakes (1100m)

1st Vezalay – James McDonald 2nd Miss Promiscuity – Dwayne Dunn 3rd Tuscan Sling – Michelle Payne

Miss Promiscuity and The Messina Nymph were away well with Tuscan Sling and Fontiton up there. Vezalay drove through along the inside into third. Sweet Emily was caught deep and Pittsburgh Flyer looked to be pulling three out around Brook Road and Afleet Esprit. The Messina Nymph didn’t cross to the fence and Vezalay punched up inside her on the turn. Miss Promiscuity was being held together and Tuscan Sling also wide but travelling okay. Vezalay took advantage of the rails to kick away around the turn and The Messina Nymph couldn’t match her. Afleet Esprit followed the leader through and Fonititon had her chance. Brook Road was squeezed out behind them but didn’t look to be going well. Vezalay kept going and while tiring a bit late she was too good, the blinkers probably doing the trick. Miss Promiscuity, Tuscan Sling and I Love It finishing on strongly from well back when it was all over. A couple of lengths to Afleet Esprit, Fontiton and Pittsburgh Flyer who all looked to have their chance. Follow: I Love It was only second-up and is under-rated.

Specials from the meeting: Solicit, Fame Game, I Love It.

Randwick review by Todd Burmester

Race 1

1st Miss Amajardan Thomas Huet 2nd Morton’s Fork Time Clark 3rd Pyx Chamber Sam Clipperton

The first at Randwick was for the two-year-olds, and the eventual winner Miss Amajardan jumped well and took up a share of the early lead with Isthmian out wide and Morton’s Fork in the middle basically making a line of three. Miss Amajardan held the fence and kept Isthmian wide as Morton’s Fork eased for a trail. Before the turn, Isthmian had its foot flat to the floor and went clear and looked to travel ok up the rise. Miss Amajardan was being asked for the effort and was producing it. She soon went to Isthmian, with Morton’s Fork also trying to run on but not making much headway. In the run to the line, Miss Amajardan held Morton’s Fork by about a length in what was a pretty professional display. Pyx Chamber finished its race off pretty well to grab third from the tiring Isthmian. The rest were beaten a long way.

Follow: Pyx Chamber

Race 2

1st Montauk Rory Hutchings 2nd Gone To Paris Thomas Huet 3rd Lieder Sam Clipperton

Feast For Eyes was best to begin in the second and went straight to the front and then slowed the pace a bit to lead by about a length over Gone To Paris. Montauk settled in third spot outside of Schopenhauer. Lieder was back past mid field and was up on the steel a bit. Up around the bend, Montauk was taken three wide to come with its run and Lieder was looking to get onto its back. Up the rise, Gone To Paris hit the front but Montauk was coming with a strong run. Gone To Paris gave a pretty god kick at the furlong, but Montauk dug in thereafter and came away by over a length when they hit the line. Lieder found its way into third, but I didn’t think much of its effort. Encosta Line finished off ok from last to run fourth.

Follow: Montauk

Race 3

1st Good Project Sam Clipperton 2nd Foreign Prince Regan Bayliss 3rd Lady Le Fay Winona Costin

Good Project was sent out favourite in race three. Foreign Prince jumped straight on the lure and had an easy enough lead early with Diametric up outside if it and Good Project initially three deep before eventually working up outside the leader, giving Diametric cover back in third outside of Testashadow. This was really quite a “simple” race in the sense that Sam Clipperton put good project into a controlling position outside the pace and when they came into the straight, he was doing it well within himself as he tackled for the lead at the top of the rise. Once he was asked for the effort at the furlong he put the issue beyond doubt without really sprinting clear, but you were never worried if you had a ticket with its name on it. Foreign Prince held second from Lady Le Fay who made ground into third.

Follow: Lady Le Fay

Race 4

1st Grand Proposal Winona Costin 2nd Invienna Mitchell Bell 3rd Onemoregypsy Sam Clipperton

They sprinted over 1200m in race four and all basically came out as one when the starter said go. There were a few that initially looked for the front, but it was One Son that took it up from Madam Fran. Dashing De Luxe took a trail on the fence in third, with Onemoregypsy in the one out and one back trail. Around the bend, One Son still had the front but Onemoregypsy was challenging strongly up the rise along with Invienna and Nagging. At the furlong they were spread across the track with Grand Proposal being the fresh horse on the secene. He went to Onemoregypsy in the last 100m and got home by about a half a length. It was a bunched finish, which often casts a question mark over the form to come out of the race, although the winner did finish off fairly nicely.

Follow: None to follow

Race 5

1st Moral Victory Christian Reith 2nd Wild ‘n’ Famous Winona Costin 3rd Telepathic Rory Hutchings

Race five was over the 1400m and Telepathic was well supported in betting before an average get away. Wild’n’Famous was best to begin with Moral Victory coming across from the deep and heading it off for the lead. Tarangower settled in third on the outside with Perfect Weapon getting the trail on the fence behind the leader. Back in midfield, Pythagorean was pulling its head off outside of Telepathic. Just before the home turn Tarangower was pulled three wide on the track to get into a challenging position as they straightened. Up the rise, Wild’n’Famous was taking on Moral Victory for the front, with Perfect Weapon getting an inside run, but the run was going faster than it was. At the furlong, Wild’n’Famous appeared to have Moral Victory done, and Telepathic was coming with a run but it didn’t look to be coming quickly enough. The race didn’t pan out that way in the last 100m, with Moral Victory fighting hard and holding off Wild’n’Famous, and Telepathic ended up getting terribly close to both of them, but finished in third spot. They put a gap on Tarangower who didn’t really finish its race off after being asked to go before the turn.

Follow: Telepathic

Race 6

1st Counterattack Jason Collett 2nd Spill The Beans Josh Parrr 3rd Hellbent Tye Angland

The Brian Crowley Stakes was race six, and Hellbent was sent out a short priced favourite but didn’t begin all that well and was well back early before mustering into fourth position. Spill The Beans ran to the front over Sooboog who was outside of Secret Saga. Hellbent ended up in a pretty good position in fourth but did have to do some work to get there. Alart was caught wide in fifth and was looking to work forward but was actually going nowhere. Around the turn, Spill The Beans was still traveling well, and back in the field Hellbent wasn’t finding much room and was pushed along a bit. He eventually went back towards the fence but still didn’t find much room there. Whilst that was going on, Counterattack built up its momentum down the outside and went to Spill The Beans and put the issue beyond doubt inside the final 100m. Spill The Beans easily held second, and once Hellbent was into the clear, he didn’t really finish off all that impressively, but managed to run third.

Follow: None to follow

Race 7

1st Dothraki Tye Angland 2nd That’s A Good Idea Josh Parr 3rd Artlee Mitchell Bell

The sprinters went over the 1100m in The Lightning which was race seven. That’s A Good Idea and Craftiness had speed to burn and shared the front when they settled into stride. Dothraki got a nice trail on the fence in third, with Skip Course outside of it. Into the straight, That’s A Good Idea slipped away a bit and Craftiness looked in a bit of froth and bubble as Dothraki pushed into the clear to come after the leader. Right down the outside, Atmospherical was trying to come with a run. Dothraki and That’s A Good Idea went stride for stride for the last 300m of the race, with Dothraki eventually getting the upper hand in the final 50m to gain the day. Plenty of them charged to the line for third spot, but none finished more impressively than Artlee who had a massive flashing light on its run and I won’t be the only person to suggest to follow it. In another 50m, it would have gone straight past the first two, and is a horse with very good ability as we have previously seen.

Follow: Artlee

Race 8

1st Ruling Dynasty Tim Clark 2nd Junoob Josh Parr 3rd Prince Cheri Jay Ford

To the last which was The Tattersalls Club Cup over the mile and a half and Sasenkile came out of the gates and did a 180 degree turn before getting rid of Serg Lisnny. Tremec took it up at a fairly leisurely gallop with Prince Cheri on its outside and Ruling Dynasty back third on the fence and Junoob a length away in fourth. Beaten Up was sent out favourite and got back to last. There was nothing happening in this race other than the riderless Sasenkile flying around the field mid race, but luckily it did not cause any interference in doing so and went well clear of the field in front. At the 800m mark Prince Cheri put it to Tremec and ran to the front. Junoob was now being pushed along to come after it, and The Offer was chiming in three wide. Prince Cheri looked to be holding them at the furlong, and Beaten Up appeared to be too far back despite trying to wind up. In the final part of the race, Prince Cheri got very tired and it was Ruling Dynasty that came through along the inside that would claim victory. Junoob didn’t give up and ran into second ahead of the tiring Prince Cheri. Beaten Up was disappointing on face value, but given it was a slowly run affair and he was back last, I don’t think you can be too critical.

Follow: None to follow

Race 9

1st Nayeli Josh Parr 2nd Peace Force Tye Angland 3rd Miss Cover Girl Glen Colless

To the last over 1200m and Fine Mist wide out was one of the early leaders along with Miss Cover Girl but then it was Frill Seeking that kicked through along the fence to clearly take up the front. They were at the home bend before you knew it here and it was still Frill Seeking in front with Fine Mist going up to challenge. Up the rise, Miss Cover Girl was taking an inside run and Peace Force was coming on down the outer. It was anyone’s race with a furlong to go, with those four runners all basically in a line and Nayeli was chiming in wider out. Miss Cover Girl was in front in the shadows, Peace Force dived at it and Nayeli claimed the pair to get the judge’s decision in a very tight finish. From back in the field, Thinking Of You put in a sustained finish and Unequivocal also finished its race off well.

Follow: Thinking Of You

Specials from the meeting: Montauk, Artlee