Flemington review from Ray Hickson

Race 1: Sports 1000 (1000m)

1st Bring Me The Maid – Chad Schofield 2nd Husson Eagle – Michelle Payne 3rd More Radiant – Glen Boss

Husson Eagle was squeezed out at the start when Eloping jumped sideways next to it. Eloping recovered to lead in the centre of the track. She had Bullpit and Hostwin Pegasus to her inside and More Radiant on her outside.Bring Me The Maid tracked More Radiant and Alaska followed the leader. Eloping was under pressure at the 200m but still led. Down the outside came Bring Me The Maid and Husson Eagle while More Radiant was trying to pick up and go with them. That trio got the better of Eloping and hit the line locked together with Bring Me The Maid getting the head down to win narrowly. Husson Eagle, given the bump at the start, may have been unlucky and More Radiant tried very hard. They got right away from Eloping and another big gap to the rest.

Follow: None, like to see the placegetters again.

Race 2: Saintly Handicap (1700m)

1st Saint Or Sinner – Glen Boss 2nd Backstedt – Michael Rodd 3rd Commanding Time – Brad Rawiller

Xavi might have been hampered at the start and dropped back early and Woakwine surprisingly went back. The Big Steel led pretty comfortably from BackstedtSaint Or Sinner had the drop on them around Commanding Time. Not much changed to the turn as Backstedt put some pressure on The Big Steel and took over. Saint Or Sinner was cruising and loomed up and they were well clear of the rest headed by Commanding Time and nothing else was making any impact. Saint Or Sinner looked like he would win by a few lengths at the 200m but just fell in from Backstedt. Nice run from Commanding Time with the 60kg third-up. Woakwine proved most disappointing but he wasn’t put into the race like he had been in Adelaide.

Follow: Commanding Time still has upside this campaign.

Race 3: Roy Higgins Quality (2600m)

1st Cooldini – Glen Boss 2nd Prince Of Penzance – Michelle Payne 3rd Outback Joe – Chad Schofield

Durnford was first out and led clearly from Like A Carousel and they got away a few lengths from Shenzhou Steeds and Cooldini, who crossed into a good spot. Gottino and Outback Joe trailed them. No action really until the 600m where Like A Carousel began to pressure Durnford and the runs were coming from the back. Shenzhou Steeds was the first to peel out and chase and Cooldini stuck with him. Prince Of Penzance crept up behind them and Gottino was under pressure on the fence. Shenzhou Steeds made a short dash but was quickly reeled in by Cooldini. Like A Carousel fought back and Prince Of Penzance emerged to challenge. Outback Joe and Macedonian boxed on behind them. Cooldini outstayed prince Of Penzance in the last 200m and Outback Joe kept coming for third, several lengths away and Macedonian whacked away again.

Follow: Cooldini on big tracks.

Race 4: Mrs Mac’s Beef Pie Sprint (1100m)

1st Angels Beach – Glen Boss 2nd You’re So Good – Damian Lane 3rd Red Fez – Michael Rodd

Fair line away and Elite Elle strode to the lead and seemed to go a little hard in the blinkers. Angels Beach had her back a couple of lengths away. Lady Lakshmi was on her inside and the grey Dance For Cash under pressure on the outside. Royal Bender was down the middle trying to run on. Elite Elle was a spent force inside the 200m and Angels Beach pounced and raced clear. She had plenty in hand at the finish. You’re So Good hit the line well along the inside in a promising return over a trip short of her best. Out wide Red Fez and Miracle To Me charged home from the back to be close up. Elite Elle knocked up and on face value was very disappointing.

Follow: Outside the winner, You’re So Good was excellent first-up, Red Fez also ran an improved race and Miracle To Me has a win in her.

Race 5: Frances Tressady Stakes (1400m)

1st Five All – Michelle Payne 2nd Floria – Luke Nolen 3rd Sino Eagle – Vlad Duric

Seaside and Goldslick were a shade slow and Fuddle Dee Duddle went back to last from the outside gate. Sino Eagle landed in front pretty easily and was joined by her stablemate Floria who kicked up to avoid being trapped wide. Spending and Koonoomoo were next. Seaside improved to be midfield around Five All.Sino Eagle gave them plenty to chase as she rolled along and that didn’t seem to agree with Floria who couldn’t sprint with her. Seaside loomed up out wider and at the 200m Five All got a split a few horses off the fence and started to put the foot down. Floria got to Sino Eagle about 100m out but Five All pounced on her and edged clear. She’s just racing so well at the moment and maybe that hard fitness was her edge. Floria wasn’t disgraced and will improve and Sino Eagle went up a notch with her effort. Seaside had her chance.

Follow: Floria is above average on her day and will be better for the run.

Race 6: TAB Rewards Stakes (1400m)

1st Mouro – Craig Williams 2nd Mourinho – Anthony Darmanin 3rd Fat Al – Luke Nolen

Strawberry Boy was on the back foot at the start and had to be pushed hard to pick up and eventually worked the lead around Flying Hussler and High Esteem. He spent plenty of petrol though. Dany The Fox was also pushed along to get into fourth with cover and Mouro and Fat Al were next. It took Strawberry Boy over 400m to find the fence and he was immediately joined by Flying Hussler to keep him running. Dany The Fox eased to the outside to run on and Mouro got off the fence on the turn and was looming large coming to the 300m. Mouro sprinted to the lead a furlong out from Strawberry Boy who was gone but boxed on. Out wide the outsider Mourinho was running on and looking a bit dangerous but Mouro held him off comfortably. A line of four battled it out for third with Fat Al running a much improved race to grab third – like to see him do it again though – ahead of Our Hand Of Faith, Dany The Fox and Under The Eiffel. Strawberry Boy was less than a length behind them.

Follow: Several nice runs. Mouro, obviously, Dany The Fox gets a pass and Strawberry Boy worth another chance.

Race 7: Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m)

1st Shamus Award – Craig Williams 2nd Criterion – Brad Rawiller 3rd Thunder Fantasy – Mark Zahra

Eurozone was first to break the line and he led early before Shamus Award was sent over and rolled to the front. Surge Ahead held the fence then Prince Harada who was trapped three wide early. Next were a few roughies Artie’s ShoreLate Charge three wide and Bardem on the fence. Criterion settled in the second half with Thunder Fantasy deep and Hucklebuck went well back with only a few behind him. Shamus Award was comfortable in front and he was let rip on the turn and that put Eurozone under pressure to chase him. They got a couple in front of Surge Ahead and Prince Harada who were one paced. At the 200m Shamus Award had Eurozone well and truly beaten and there was a wall chasing them for the minors. Criterion weaved through and emerged with his run and Thunder Fantasy was running on wider out. But they didn’t get near Shamus Award who repeated his all the way Cox Plate win. He’s clearly at his best in front. Nice runs though from Criterion and Thunder Fantasy. Eurozone had every possible chance. Of the others, Teronado again made good ground late and Hucklebuck was never in the race – he simply went too far back.

Follow: from a Derby point of view Criterion and Thunder Fantasy were excellent.

Race 8: ATA/Bob Hoysted Handicap (1000m)

1st Adamantium – Craig Williams 2nd Pago Rock – Stephen Baster 3rd Couldn’t Agreemore – Dominic Tourneur

Halle Rocks and Pago Rock were both checked at the start and forced to settle back. Miracles Of Life jumped cleanly but handed up the lead to Brilliant Bisc then Adamantium and Canali took over out in the centre of the track.African Pulse took a trail and Couldn’t Agreemore was widest. Adamantium broke well clear coming onto the course proper and started to drift towards the rail as he tends to do. Miracles Of Life was struggling as Couldn’t Agreemore worked into second ahead of Petrify. Out wider Pago Rock began to run on and Office Bearer got a split on the inside. Adamantium was walking in the last 50m but clung on to beat a desperately unlucky Pago Rock and Couldn’t Agreemore hung on for third ahead of Office Bearer. Halle Rocks can also lay claim to being unlucky and she ran on well behind them. Miracles Of Life was only beaten a couple of lengths but proved a bit disappointing. Assess her next time.

Follow: Pago Rock (unless it is a Group 1), Office Bearer.

Race 9: VRC 150th Celebration Race (2000m)

1st Akzar – Brad Rawiller 2nd Extra Zero – Craig Newitt 3rd Beneficiary – Vlad Duric

Extra Zero was gifted the lead and he was left alone clear of BeneficiaryTanby settled a lot closer for him first-up in third and Anagold was next. Akzar found himself three back on the fence. Pretty uneventful race with the seven runners staying in order to the 800m or so. Whisper Downs was the first to pull out and attempt to improve but didn’t make any ground. Extra Zero zipped away around the bend with Beneficiary trying to stick on. Akzar was getting held up for a run but a gap came inside the 300m and he set out to chase. In a carbon copy of their clash two weeks earlier, Akzar rounded up Extra Zero and had about three quarters of a length to spare with a huge gap to third. Beneficiary held off Tanby and Anagold for that spot.

Follow: You’d have to stick with Akzar but surely there is a race for Extra Zero.

Specials from the meeting: Mouro, Commanding Time, Thunder Fantasy.

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Rosehill review by Todd Burmester

Race 1

1st           Ecuador                                Tommy Berry 2nd         Almighty Charge               Tim Clark 3rd          Kaypers                                Christian Reith

Almighty Charge jumped straight on the bunny in the first and led clearly with Express Power moving up outside of it, but was caught three wide when Ecuador moved up in the middle, so he eased to get the trail behind them.  Target In Sight who was well supported in betting got back, and Pretty Pins was back there with it caught three wide.  Almighty Charge traveled well up to the bend with Ecuador being asked to pick up the bit.  Around the turn and up to the 300m mark Almighty Charge was kicking on, with Ecuador getting on terms.  They went to the line locked together with Ecuador just getting the nod over a very brave Almighty Charge.  Target In Sight didn’t have the same ping to the line today and just plugged away in fourth.  Express Power was well clear of him in third.

Follow: Almighty Charge continues to race well

Race 2

1st       Territory                        Nash Rawiller 2nd      Haussmann                  Kerrin McEvoy 3rd       Earnest Ernest            Jason Collett

Earnest Ernest missed it a bit as he can tend to do and went back to a clear last.  Greenbow began well and led early with the heavily backed Lonace kicking up inside of it.  Boss Lane had the sit a couple of lengths behind them in third, with another few lengths to Haussman and Territory.  Dream Choice got well back to second last.  Around the turn, Lonace still had it and the jockey was nursing him along.  Territory and Dream Choice were pulled to the outside to make their runs.  Inside the 200m mark, the condition of Lonace gave out, and Territory hit the front.  Dream Choice wasn’t able to sprint today, and it was up to Haussman and Earnest Ernest to try to catch Territory.  In the run to the line they were unable to do so, and Territory got a well earned win.

Follow: Lonace was so well backed (where there’s smoke…)

Race 3

1st       Red Tracer                         Nash Rawiller 2nd      A Time For Julie            Blake Shinn 3rd       Lucky Lago                       Jim Cassidy

Longport used its inside gate to lead as expected in the third, with Lucky Lago going back to a clear last not long after the start.  A Time For Julia sat outside the leader, which gave Red Tracer a lovely sit in third.  Royal Descent who was the main danger in betting to Red Tracer got back to last.  Red Tracer looked the winner on paper, and looked the winner in the run.  Longport and A Time For Julia still had it around the bend, but Red Tracer was ambling into it behind them, with Lucky Lago also making ground by staying on the fence when the others came wide.  Red Tracer was let rip inside the 200m mark and broke away from them.  Royal Descent couldn’t sprint behind her but should improve as the trips get longer.  All credit to the winner here, she is a very good mare.

Follow: A Time For Julia

Race 4

1st        Mossfun                                James McDonald 2nd      Press Report                     Glyn Schofield 3rd       Risen From Doubt           Hugh Bowman

Modoc was slow to begin in the Silver Slipper.  Mossfun came out fast on the outside, and Law kicked up inside of her and they led together, with Press Report and Risen From Doubt in third and fourth.  Unencumbered was in behind them.  In the run you always had the feeling that Mossfun had control of this race, and in the straight when she was let go, she really sprinted well and put about a fourth length gap in them in the run to the line.  She has to be considered a serious Golden Slipper chance on this win.  I wouldn’t be sacking any that finished behind her here though as the wet track may not have been suitable, particularly for Risen From Doubt who is a big long striding horse and didn’t look all that comfortable at times.

Follow: Mossfun, Risen From Doubt

Race 5

1st         Opinion                           Jim Cassidy 2nd       Carlton House            Nash Rawiller 3rd       Junoob                           James McDonald

Opinion wasn’t out all that well, and Permit also went right back to the rear, with Junoob also drifting back.  Carlton House led them up from Winning Glory and the pace looked genuine early as indicated by the field stringing out.  There was no real change in the order mid race, but it was noticeable by the 600m mark that Junoob was pushed along and looked in trouble, and Permit had dropped right out, not handling the ground.  Around the turn and into the straight Carlton House put a break on them.  Junoob was widest but not making enough ground, and Opinion was sneaking up the inside.  Inside the 200m mark, Cassidy on Opinion knew he had Carlton House covered, and had a big look over the shoulder to see whether Junoob was coming, which he wasn’t and Opinion was home.  In the run to the line he held them by about 3 lengths, with Calrton House running second and Junoob warming up a little bit to run third.  It wasn’t really a day where they were making ground from the back so perhaps don’t sack Junoob on this effort.

Follow: Don’t sack Junoob

Race 6

1st       Dissident                         Jim Cassidy 2nd       Atlante                          Glyn Schofield 3rd       Savvy Nature              James McDonald

A number of them began well here, but it was eventually Romantic Touch that strode to the front withDissident on its outside.  Woodbine was caught three wide early so went back in the field.  Atlante andHooked got nice runs behind the speed in third and fourth.  Up to the 600m mark, the two leaders had a good break over Atlante who was pushed along and didn’t seem to be getting through the wet track.  Around the turn, Dissident went up to Romantic Touch, and then Atlante got going along the inside.  Woodbine was too far off them and not making enough ground.  Dissident and Atlante fought it out with Dissident doing best in the run to the line.  Savvy Nature raced nicely into third, and Woodbine did finish off ok in the end to run fourth.

Follow: Atlante, Savvy Nature

Race 7

1st       Cosmin Endeavour              Tommy Berry 2nd      Diamond Oasis                      Hugh Bowman 3rd       Flight Academy                    Kathy O’Hara

They took a little while to sort themselves out here, with Pasadoble eventually crossing to the lead, andCosmic Endeavour came over in turn and parked outside the lead.  Mon Gateau and Maysoon got nice runs in third and fourth.  Around the turn, Cosmic Endeavour moved up easily to Pasdoble and when she sprinted inside the 300m mark nothing was really going to get to her.  Maysoon tried to come with a run, and Diamond Oasis got through in the middle, but it was all to no avail with Cosmic Endeavour going on to win it well in the run to the line.  The debut run of Gun Case who found support throughout the week at long odds in betting was good and he can be followed.

Follow: Gun Case

Race 8

1st         Lucky Liason              Christian Reith 2nd       Diamond Jim              Nathan Berry 3rd        Tamariz                        Tommy Berry

It was absolutely pouring down when they ran the last race, and I wouldn’t take a great deal of notice of the form out of this.  For the record, Dormello led Tamariz, with Black Jag in third, and Lucky Liason in fourth.  Around the turn, the two leaders had set up a break, with Lucky Liason moving itself into a challenging position after a good run throughout.  Empress Elect had also made ground before the turn.  It was a slog up the straight, but Lucky Liason held on to beat Diamond Jim who ran a good race in second, and it was also worth noting the Retorte Curteous sat wide the whole way and wasn’t beaten all that far in fourth.

Follow: None to follow

Specials from the meeting: A Time For Julia, Mossfun, Atlante, Savvy Nature