Flemington Review by Ray Hickson

Race 1: Murray Cox Handcap (1400m)

1st Bengal Cat – Craig Williams
2nd El Greco – Luke Nolen
3rd Irada – Craig Newitt

Him Name Jim broke the line first and settled in front of Ayers Rock and Alamonteel landed in a good spot. Triple Effort didn’t jump the best but improved to be behind that bunch with Bengal Cat and Oxbow on her outside. El Greco moved into a three wide trail and Brass In My Pocket had to ease a bit. Ayers Rock ran to the lead in the middle stages as Him Name Jim took the box seat. Alamonteel and Oxbow challenged Ayers Rock shortly after straightening and El Greco came off their backs to join in past the 400m. Bengal Cat was being held up behind that group and Him Name Jim also had trouble. El Greco hit the lead coming to the 200m and did look to have their measure but wasn’t getting away from them. Bengal Cat got into the clear soon after and started to charge at him with Irada making ground further out. Bengal Cat’s finish was a bit too strong for El Greco and she arrived in time to score. Irada wasn’t far away as well and they put a gap on the rest of the field. Handy run behind the placings from Ma Raison on debut getting home, Oxbow battled on and the other one making some ground was Automatic Choice, though well beaten.

Follow: Ma Raison’s debut was more than acceptable.

Race 2: Creswick Series Heat (1100m)

1st Rough Justice – Katelyn Mallyon
2nd Lord Esprit – Michael Dee
3rd Star Stealer – Harry Coffey

Racing about six horses off the inside Star Stealer probably had a narrow lead with Face Forward on his outside. Stingray tucked in behind them with Cashed handy and Rough Justice close by. Illustrious Lad was closest to the inside but not a huge distance between first and last. Star Stealer was put under pressure near the 400m as Rough Justice started his run and Face Forward sticking on, as was Illustrious Lad on the inside. Lord Esprit worked into the clear behind them and started to hit the line. Rough Justice took a narrow lead inside the 200m and managed to stave them off for a solid win. Lord Esprit made it a little interesting late and Star Stealer certainly wasn’t disgraced holding on for third. Illustrious Lad and Face Forward had their chances and Cashed also boxed on without looking a threat. Stingray was disappointing and of the others Iron Jake picked up a bit of ground in the closing stages.

Follow: none.

Race 3: Jeune Handicap (1610m)

1st Clemo – Craig Newitt
2nd Refulgent – Jye McNeil
3rd Burning Front – Damien Oliver

A charge for the early lead and Relentless took it up over Red Spyder a couple clear of Seattleite around Northern Jet. Churchill’s Witseemed to over race next and Burning Front, who probably jumped best, eased out of the battle. Abbasso and Refulgent were the next pair around midfield. Coming to the turn the field bunched considerably behind Relentless and Churchill’s Wit had pulled his way up three wide but dropped out pretty quickly in the straight. Red Spyder challenged Relentless a fair way out and while that was happening Refulgent was checked looking for a run as Northern Jet came out in front of him and Seattleite just battling. Burning Front was getting into the clear and Abbasso running on. Clemo got right up behind the leaders from last and was actually in front of Refulgent by the 300m. Clemo got the split soon after to hit the lead and dashed away. Refulgent was still trying to get clear but the bird had flown and Clemo scored easily. There was a line up for the placings with Refulgent just grabbing second over Burning Front and running on out wider Lilly Dazzler. Northern Jet, Red Spyder and Abbasso were all in that bunch. Winner had all the luck but take nothing away from him. Refulgent again found trouble and may well have won had he not.

Follow: stay with Refulgent, luck will surely go with him soon.

Race 4: Brian Beattie Handicap (1610m)

1st Dodging Bullets – Mark Zahra
2nd Azeema – Craig Newitt
3rd Manageress – Chris Parnham

Got You Double was eased to last from the wide gate. Zahspeed showed his usual pace to lead them over Dodging Bullets withExplosive One on the fence. Making Mayhem moved up next and Kaizaen found a nice spot. Mr Pago rushed up caught three wide around Sneferu and Angry Gee not far off them and Recalculate between them. Mr Pago kept his wide run going to join Zahspeed and Dodging Bullets coming around the turn. Kaizaen was heeled along waiting for a run behind them with Explosive One on the fence. Making Mayhem pulled out to run on and Sneferu got a rails run to join in. Radical made ground on the inside as well and got past Got You Double who ran into traffic and Recalculate. Manageress and Azeema were coming right down the outside but Dodging Bullets sailed away past the 200m. That break was big enough for him to hold off the fast-finishing Azeema and Manageress out wide and just inside them Liberty Island and Recalculate sticking on. Got You Double was another length or so away and a bit unlucky not to get a bit closer, Radical was also a bit unfortunate.

Follow: the winner looks promising and give Got You Double another chance.

Race 5: Takeover Target Tribute (1100m)

1st Lonrockstar – Craig Williams
2nd Nadeem Lass – Katelyn Mallyon
3rd Hard Romp – Michael Dee

The field split soon after the start with Sandhill Flash leading the outside division from Hard Romp clear of Salute To Jude and Written Up. To the inside Bishops Castle hugged the rail with Play Master and Tom Raks outside him. General Truce and Desert Jeuney had trails and the last pair on that side were Nadeem Lass outside Lonrockstar who crossed from an outside alley to be with that bunch. The inside group looked to be in front past the 400m and Bishops Castle was challenged by Play Master and Desert Jeuney looming up. Nadeem Lass made it to the centre of the track and she made her dash while out wide Hard Romp took a while to get to Sandhill Flash. Nadeem Lass saw the winning post and started to get nervous and Lonrockstar produced his big finish to swamp her on the inside late. Hard Romp did well to grab third out wide just ahead of a plucky Desert Jeuney first-up (though he did have that gallop a week earlier when declared a non-runner at Moonee Valley). Play Master also stuck on. No excuses for any horse.

Follow: none.

Race 6: Banjo Paterson Heat (2500m)

1st Crafty Cruiser – Boris Thornton
2nd Cooldini – Mark Zahra
3rd Cadillac Mountain – Luke Nolen

Stable Star wanted the front and got there pretty easily over Lucciola and Prizum up handy. Black Jag couldn’t get near the lead this time and was next with Timikar improving wider out. Crafty Cruiser had a cheap run on the fence behind those with Cadillac Mountain.De Little Engine was eased out to second last from the wide alley. Stable Star looked to roll along strongly in the lead and Timikar eventually moved alongside about the half way mark. Lucciola continued to track them and Prizum and Black Jag were a couple of lengths back as the field strung out. Not a lot of change past the 800m until Black Jag came out four wide to put some pressure on the leaders. Timikar was the first to crack and Lucciola soon after. Stable Star had a bit of a kick and saw off Black Jag’s challenge. Cadillac Mountain started his run with Crafty Cruiser on his inside and Cooldini running on out wide. De Little Engine was making ground a couple of lengths off those. Stable Star only gave in about 100m out and Crafty Cruiser hit the lead, holding on from a much more determined Cooldini and Cadillac Mountain between them. Only about a length to De Little Engine closing and Prizum was close up. Promises to be a very interesting final in two weeks.

Follow: if he draws a decent gate in the Final, De Little Engine is ready to win.

Race 7: Provincial Plate (1610m)

1st Majestic Duke – Dean Yendall
2nd Baron Archer – Craig Williams
3rd Rock ‘N’ Gold – Damien Thornton

Majestic Duke sprung out from the inside alley and had no trouble leading from Excitement. Lord Durante improved quickly up to second. A bunch of them were next including King’s Dance, Rock ‘N’ Gold and Cisco Delago. Orientaped worked into a good spot from his wide alley ahead of Baron Archer and No Excuses Bec punching up on the fence. Majestic Duke kept them going at a good gallop and while he was being heeled along nearing the turn he looked comfortable. Lord Durante was poised to challenge. King’s Dance followed them into the straight and Rock ‘N’ Gold cut back towards the inside as the leader drifted off the fence. Baron Archer got to the outside to start to wind up. Lord Durante was gone at the 200m while Majestic Duke was still striding out strongly. Rock ‘N’ Gold tried hard on the inside and while Baron Archer was chiming in he wasn’t charging and Majestic Duke had too big a break. Rock ‘N’ Gold stayed on okay for third, not sure he’s a genuine miler, while Orientaped also held his ground. Self Sense finished off okay late after getting way out of his ground.

Follow: none.

Race 8: Winter Championship Heat (1400m)

1st Amovatio – Damien Oliver
2nd Decircles – Ben Melham
3rd Venture On -Jarrod Fry

Decircles jumped best and rolled forward. Out the back Lord Of Brazil was a shade slow and Mr Utopia eased from the outside gate.Bon Rocket sat up in second ahead of Le Remas looking for a spot and Venture On in a group with Castlzeberg, Pin Your Hopes andSir Andrew. Amovatio and Clanga’s Glory were also thereabouts. Decircles had an easy lead and had them stacked up pretty well clear of Bon Rocket, Le Remas and striding up wider Academy Jack. Amovatio was tracking through between horses while Sir Andrew had drifted back. Venture On waited behind the speed and he got an inside run to join Decircles at the 400m. Bon Rocket and Academy Jack couldn’t go with them but Amovatio produced a good sprint to loom up. Sir Andrew and Mr Utopia were too far back but were starting to run on down the outside. Decircles managed to get the better of Venture On but he couldn’t hold out Amovatio who finished over the top to score a strong win. Sir Andrew again found the 1400m too short but ran on with Clanga’s Glory a much improved effort and Mr Utopia right on their heels. Winner had the right run and proved too good.

Follow: both Sir Andrew and Mr Utopia are desperate for a mile and a better barrier.

Race 9: Leilani Series Heat (1400m)

1st Jessy Belle – Craig Williams
2nd Miss Rose De Lago – Michael Dee
3rd Iteration – Dwayne Dunn

Nautical was slow as she often can be and she improved past a few quickly. Oh So Assertive was one of the best out and headed byJudicial Rock who ran clear. Miss Rose De Lago cruised over from a wide gate into second and they broke a few lengths clear of Sino Eagle and Forgeress. The import Iteration was next on the fence in a handy spot. Whistle Baby and Moulin were the next pair. Judicial Rock really put the foot down past the 800m and established a few lengths over Miss Rose De Lago without cover around Oh So Assertive and a bigger gap to the main pack. They started to reel in Judicial Rock and Miss Rose De Lago got to her at the 300m, Oh So Assertive was gassed and they were still a couple clear of Sino Eagle and Nautical weaving through, Whistle Baby wider out and Jessy Belle and Iteration making their runs on the inside. Miss Rose De Lago was a sitting shot inside the 200m and Jessy Belle sprinted hard along the inside and with the easier run posted an overdue win. Miss Rose De Lago was huge in second place, doing all the chasing and she still held the rest at bay. Imported mare Iteration battled on well for third first-up and Sino Eagle and Nautical weren’t far off. The rest were well beaten and likely run off their legs with the tempo.

Follow: Miss Rose De Lago was outstanding here, like another look at Iteration.

Specials from the meeting: Ma Raison, De Little Engine, Miss Rosse De Lago.

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Rosehill Review by Tood Burmester

Race 1

1st Intrepid Way – Winona Costin
2nd Electric Tribute – Tye Angland
3rd Over The Air – Glyn Schofield

The two-year-olds again got the day under way, with Turbo Miss showing any amount of pace from the outside to lead up clearly from Over The Air and Alert By Sea. Electric Tribute got a nice run back on the fence.Lieder which was well backed was around midfield and Libidosun who was easy in the market was back behind it. As they spun the corner and raced for home, Turbo Miss had a bit of a kick as Electric Tribute found plenty of room away from the fence and chased hard. Lieder and Libidosun were both out very wide looking to make ground, but had the job ahead. Electric Tribute looked to have the race won inside the furlong as the two down the outside were not making enough ground, but all of a sudden Intrepid Way from a clear last put in a booming run and got there in the shadows for what was a pretty impressive win.

Follow: Intrepid Way

Race 2

1st Maurus – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd Loophole – Glyn Schofield
3rd Der Meister – Thomas Huet

1900m for race two and Maurus found the front pretty quickly from Bankster’s Bonus. This gave the favouriteMissvonn a good run behind the speed along with Der Meister. Mid race there was no change in the order and McEvoy really had them stacked up in front. At about the 700m mark he started to up the anti and that flushed out Der Meister to try and get closer. Missvonn was quickly off the bit prior to the turn. Into the straight, McEvoy came away from the fence and started to ride hard. De Meister was chasing as hard as it could and Loopholewas trying to mount a challenge down the outside, but it was a well judged ride in front that ultimately meant Maurus got the money. Missvonn was pretty disappointing.

Follow: None to follow

Race 3

1st Kiseki Dane – Koby Jennings
2nd It’s About You – Blake Shinn
3rd Skyline Blush – Brenton Avdulla

Our Catch was straight on the lure in race three and led from Serious Spy with Skyline Blush and Stradazzlesettling third and fourth. The short priced favourite It’s About You settled midfield back on the fence with the pace not looking too bad. No change through the middle stages, and then when they reached the 600m mark, Serious Spy was moving closer to Our Catch to basically share the lead, and Skyline Blush was looking poised to strike behind them as It’s About You came away from the fence to trail into it before the turn and then took an inside run to challenge for the lead early in the straight. It’s About you had the front inside the furlong, but wasn’t really getting away form them and Kiseki Dane came with big bounds down the outside to spoil the party close to the line. It’s About You was a bit wayward in the straight. Ginali finished it’s race off pretty well.

Follow: Ginali

Race 4

1st Kapour – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd Bonfire – Danny Beasley
3rd Danchai – Hugh Bowman

2400m for The Winter Cup was the fourth event and there didn’t look to be anyone really keen to lead, untilKapour worked across and ran clear at the post the firs time from Bonfire. Danchai settled third from Goshand the field strung out a bit. In what was a fairly uneventful race, Our Voodoo Prince attempted to get things moving from back in the field at about the 600m mark with a three wide run, but it was a run that was pretty short lived. Early in the straight it looked fairly competitive with Kapour, Bonfire and Danchai all appearing to have a winning chance. In the run to the line however they would ultimately finish in that order, which is the order they settled in out of the gates. The winner was another nicely judged ride by McEvoy and came away to win by a good margin. It would be hard to follow anything out of this.

Follow: None to follow

Race 5

1st Queen Of Kariba – Winona Costin
2nd Dupe ‘Em – Glyn Schofield
3rd Aerobar – Kerrin McEvoy

Queen Of Kariba was sent out favourite in the fifth and went straight back to last. Aerobar and Echo Gal took it up in front, with Well Hardley Ever getting a nice run in third. Dupe ‘Em and Lockroy were not too far away. As they turned into the straight, Echo Gal looked to be bolting up outside of Aerobar, but when asked for the effort, she didn’t really find a great deal. Whilst that was going on, Queen Of Kariba had pinched inside runs from back in the field and hit the front at the 100m mark and came away for a nice win from Dupe ‘Em who finished off ok after a good run in transit. The winner was simply too good for this lot and you can’t say much about the beaten brigade.

Follow: Queen Of Kariba

Race 6

1st Beauty’s Beast – Ms Winona Costin
2nd Mirage Glyn – Schofield
3rd You’ll Never – Blake Shinn

Mirage came out of the gates nicely in race six but Beauty’s Beast wanted the front and found it from Mirage and Sinjoren. In the middle stages, Beauty’s Beast was let stride in front but ultimately had it all it’s own way. Up towards the 600m mark, Good Value was taken away from the fence to think about moving closer and Mirage was moving up with it but pushed along a bit to do so. Around the turn, Beauty’s Beast was taken to the middle of the track and kicked away. Mirage was chasing along with Rugged Cross who had made up ground as had You’ll Never. Inside the furlong, Beauty’s Beast was still going pretty well. Mirage didn’t give up and did make some ground late, but was never going to pick up the winner and the rest of them basically died on their runs. Another leader salutes over the 1500m at Rosehill.

Follow: None to follow

Race 7

1st Berry Delicious – Tye Angland
2nd Vergara – Blake Shinn
3rd Berrimilla – Hugh Bowman

Vergara had a look for the early lead but Transfers kicked up inside of it and put up a two length break with another couple of lengths back to Sensualism in third. The eventual winner, Berry Delicious went back to last. Mid way through the race Transfers had about a four length break and that lead was still there as they swung for home and Vergara was doing the chasing. Inside the 300m mark it was obvious how much ground Berry Delicious had picked up and soon after she was running to the front together with Vergara. Sensualism was also trying to make ground down the outside and Berrimilla was making some ground and then had to change course. In the final bit, Berry Delicious was running about a bit but ran away from Vergara on the line for a good win. All credit to the winner, Berrimilla might have finished a bit closer with clearer running in the final part.

Follow: Berry Delicious, Berrimilla

Race 8

1st Two Blue – Paul King
2nd Kristy Lee – Tye Angland
3rd Foreign Prince – Jess Taylor

When they settled down in the last, Two Blue had the front over Snitzky on its outside and Foreign Princeback over on the fence. Idance was out wide and Alias was back in the middle not far off the pace. As they turned for home, Two Blue put a bit of a break on them and looked to travel ok. There was a cavalry chasing which included Foreign Prince and Wonderbolt. In the last 100m though, Two Blue for “The Duck” just kept finding and held off all challengers and it was another leader home. Kristy Lee down the outside and Cradle Me back closer to the inside were the two best closers late. The run of Coolring was pretty good as it made a long sustained wide run from before the turn and wasn’t beaten all that far in the end.

Follow: Coolring, Cradle Me

Specials from the meeting: Intrepid Way