Randwick review compiled by Todd Burmester

Race 1

1st            French Gift                          Alex Stokes
2nd          Above All                            Peter Robl
3rd           Piazza San Pietro              Tommy Berry

Studio began well from its outside gate, so although it was advised it would be ridden back, Rawiller went to the front the first time out of the straight from Above All, with Coup Acclaim getting the run on the fence behind the leader. Tunes was trapped three wide and eventually moved up outside Studio. The pace quickened a bit by the time they were at the 800m. By the 600m, those from the back were starting to come into it, which mainly included Saintly Sun and French Gift. Above All struck the front around the turn, with Studio the first horse beaten. After they topped the rise, French Gift was the one finishing off best and went on to beat Above All, with Piazza San Pietro finishing off ok for third. Doubt there is a lot of form to follow here.

Follow: None to follow

Race 2

1st              Everage                                       Nathan Berry
2nd            Little Miss Smiley                   Craig Newitt
3rd             Major Conquest                       Nash Rawiller

Everage began best in race 2, but did not want to lead. Little Miss Smiley took it up from Scrutiny. Everage ended up settling fourth, about 3 wide, by design. Around the home turn, Little Miss Smiley had dropped Scruity off, with Everage looking to launch its run down the outside. She made ground under Nathan Berry as they were coming up the rise, without really being asked, and looked the likely winner. When he gunned her, she went to and went past Little Miss Smiley, but the run of Little Miss Smiley must be noted as a good effort as the margin on the line was only about half a length, when it looked like it would be further. The effort of Major Conquest was good to really hit the line hard.

Follow: Little Miss Smiley, Major Conquest

Race 3

1st           Riocetto                                     Corey Brown
2nd         Fuerza                                         Brenton Avdulla
3rd          Gracious Prospect                 Glyn Schofield

The Fernhill Handicap is often a race that throws up a longer priced result, and that was the case here. Artistic Lass missed the kick and ended up a good 2 lengths behind the field. Hydro led and looked to pull a bit, so the pace seemed very genuine. Diva Dee raced in second and Ideal Guide settled third. Around the turn, Rightoncue was well back and looked in strife, and Fuerza had dropped out to last. Topping the rise, Riocetto sprinted very well and put a gap in them and the race was all over. Fuerza, after looking in trouble on the turn, ran on well into second, as it often does, but will it ever win a race? Gracious Prospect ran ok for third. Rightoncue never came into it. They came in at wide spaces, so a number of them probably didn’t handle the track and or the step up to the 1600m (or a combination of both). Another tough race to find form to follow.

Follow: Riocetto (believe what you saw, it sprinted well in the straight)

Race 4

1st            Platinum Kingdom                 Jason Riddell
2nd          Casual Choice                           Jim Cassidy
3rd           Limes                                          Kerrin McEvoy

Heart Testa led fairly easily here, with Limes moving up out very wide into second. Eximius and Air Striker were inside Limes, keeping it three wide. Maximilian was back near last and appeared to be struggling a long way out. Around the turn, Heart Testa looked the one to gun down as he was well clear and seemed to be traveling on the bit. He was still in front at the 200m, but starting to shorten stride and was quickly gone, with Platinum Kingdom going up inside him to hit the front and Casual Choice putting in a run down the outside. Platinum Kingdom got home easily enough, but did veer out sharply in the final 50m, which gave his supporters a scare.

Follow: Casual Choice

Race 5

1st               Eminent Domain              Tommy Berry
2nd             Upshot                                 Hugh Bowman
3rd              Potions                                Craig Newitt

Hurrara took up its favourite position in front here, from Eucumbene which railed up inside of it and Snitsky which was heavily backed was in third. Potions got a good run in behind the speed, as did Australian Star. Topping the rise, there was a line of 4 or 5, where Upshot looked like it was making the most ground and may be the likely winner. Not long after it worked its way to the front, Eminent Domain came with its sweeping run down the outside from back near last and proved too strong in the run to the line. Potions was encouraging first up from a spell. Australian Start was a bit disappointing in the run to the line after a seemingly good run throughout.

Follow: Upshot, Potions

Race 6

1st            Kelinni                    Nash Rawiller
2nd          Fibrillation            Jason Collett
3rd          Pirate Bay              Chris Reith

2000m for the Japan Racing Association Plate, and nobody really seemed to want to lead, but Maules Creek took it up from Scream Machine which settled further forward than usual, such was the slow pace. Fibrillation and Sindarin rolled up on the outside to get themselves on the pace, although Sindarin was three wide. Hoylonny and Kelinni settled well back in the run. At the 600m, Said Com and Pirate Bay made their moves which meant there was a line of 5 as they came to the home turn. Kelinni was stalking those runners, and getting a nice trail up into the race. As they were coming to the 200m, Kelinni had been asked for its supreme effort and class prevailed, and it came away for a strong win under the 60kg. Fibrillation and Pirate Bay stuck on ok for the minors, and back in the pack Sysmo and to a lesser extent Scream Machine could be seen getting home well. Hoylonny was the big disappointment here, beaten a minute.

Follow: Kelinni a big chance in the Sydney Cup, Sysmo

Race 7

1st            Royal Descent               Nash Rawiller
2nd          Dear Demi                       Jim Cassidy
3rd          Gondokoro                      Rhys McLeod

The Oaks was the seventh race on the card, and on paper they looked a fairly even group of fillies, with a few winning chances. It ended up anything but that in the end. More Than Sacred led Zuccotto and Longport when they settled down. Summerbliss was caught wide, and Habibi and Royal Descent got well back in the run, along with Dear Demi. From about the 700m, Royal Descent started to make ground along the fence, and before the turn, she had joined the leaders and looked to be bolting. Bolting she was, as she went on to put a 10 length margin on them in the straight, from Dear Demi, which ran on once out in clear running. You can’t say a lot about the beaten brigade when they are flogged like this, but before you get too carried away about the winner, please remember, this is three-year-old form, and often that doesn’t translate once they reach the Spring as older horses, and this was also run on a heavy track.

Follow: None to follow

Race 8

1st             Sacred Falls               Tommy Berry
2nd           Pierro                           Nash Rawiller
3rd           Norzita                         Craig Williams

The big one of the day, The Doncaster. Fontelina was the first one to cross over and lead with Norzita outside of it, and Monton moving up outside the pair. Pierro began well, but got back a bit along the fence as others looked for their position. Red Tracer and Shoot Out got a long way back, as did the eventual winner, Sacred Falls. In the straight, plenty of runners came wide, but Rawiller was happy to take inside runs on Pierro, and when Tommy Berry on Sacred falls spotted his back, he was right there to follow him throuh. Norzita hit the front and accelerated at the 200m, with Pierro looking to challenge her. Basically as soon as Pierro got the better of Norzita, Sacred Falls had Pierro’s measure and went on for a good win. Norzita and Streama ran well in third and fourth (in particular I have a huge opinion of Norzita, look out in the Spring). Danleigh ran its ever consistent race, and Shoot Out under his big weight came home well out wide, and Appearance worked home ok without threatening. Lightinthenite was the other one I thought went quite well and will win something easier this campaign. As I often say, its the kind of race you need to watch a few times and form your own opinions.

Follow: Lightinthenite, Norzita, Shoot Out

Race 9

1st           Keith’s Legacy                      Peter Robl
2nd          Under The Sun                    Tommy Berry
3rd           Merlin Mustang                  Glen Boss

Merlin Mustang, Honorable Aussie and Under The Sun all began well here, where as Home On A Wing came out a clear last. Cantonese went forward, but was wide with cover early on. Secessio got into a nice trailing spot. Topping the rise, Merlin Mustang was in front, but Keith’s Legacy did as the last few winners on the day did, he stuck to the inside and claimed the lead soon after. Under The Sun tried to chase him down, but wasn’t able to in the run to the line. Secessio was entitled to do more. Back in the pack, Destiny’s Kiss worked home quite well. Cantonese probably did enough given it was a first up effort on a heavy track and looks set for another successful campaign.

Follow: Under The Sun, Destiny’s Kiss, Cantonese (over further in a couple of runs)

Specials from the meeting: Little Miss Smiley, Major Conquest, Kelinni, Lightinthenite, Norzita