Story courtesy of Ray Thomas
from The Daily Telegraph
Federal runs in Sydney tomorrow
THE Daily Telegraph’s racing editor Ray Thomas and Sky Thoroughbred Central’s Ron Dufficy discuss the chances at Rosehill and Doomben on Saturday.
RACE 4: KEN CALLANDER FELLOWSHIP (1200m)
Thomas:Religify didn’t have the best of luck first-up and the 1000m on a wet track didn’t suit so unplaced run can be excused. He’s fitter now, back to his home track and up to 1200m on an improving surface — I’m confident he can bounce back. Religify is a promising horse and he’s my best bet on the program.
Dufficy: I don’t what to do with Private Secretary likely to be saved for Scone. I know Earnest Ernest is a gay deceiver and doesn’t win often but he’s $18 and I liked his trial recently. He has the very promising apprentice Brodie Loy and, with the speed on up front with Alberto Magic and Senta De Noche, he can’t do anything but run on hard. At the odds, I’d rather spec him than trust Religify to find his best form, and also gamble on Alberto Magic, who won a trial by nearly 18 lengths, running a strong 1200m.
RACE 5: WILSON ASSET MANAGEMENT HANDICAP (1100m)
Thomas:Bonete was fast, strong and tough at Canterbury beating Najoom last start. I think Najoom can win the Hawkesbury Guineas so I keep coming back to Bonete in this race. She has drawn wide but does have the speed to get over. Holy Delusionsinevitably runs well at the start of her campaigns, Floral Gold can run a race at odds, and Mineko goes well fresh.
Dufficy: I’m just concerned there was a leader bias on the inside at Canterbury the day Bonete won and it might have flattered her. I want to see her do it again. If this was a dry track I would be all over Mineko. She has had two months off, she is good fresh, and a good record at this distance. There is a big watch on Crooked Stick, Villa Splendido is very well graded, and the Chris Waller duo, Holy Delusions and Sense And Reason. This is a trap race for me so I want to see these mares in the yard prior to the race before I decide on my bet.
RACE 6: ONE SOLUTIONS HANDICAP (1350m)
Thomas: Craftiness has a task here, Ronnie — wide barrier, big weight, rain-affected ground and a stamina test at 1350m. In saying all that, I’ve got Craftiness on top. He can cruise over and sit outside Boomwaa behind the speedy Rain Affairthen assert his authority over the final 300m. Craftiness is very promising and he can confirm he is a genuine Stradbroke Handicap contender by winning here.
Dufficy: This is an intriguing race because it is 1350m and will test Craftiness. I keep coming back to Boomwaa. He only has 50kg on his back, he is a fast horse and will tag Rain Affair, and he will give a big kick. He will be there at the 100m and he is good value. If I was convinced this was a dry track I would have Medcaut a good thing. He obviously should have won last start, there was a big plunge on him so there was stable confidence about him. Medcaut is the danger to Boomwaa. I’m not knocking Craftiness but they will make it hard for him from his wide barrier. Amovatio can run well fresh.
RACE 7: DARLEY CROWN (1300m)
Thomas: I’m really keen on Peron. She has been racing without luck this preparation but after three runs back, she’s ready to win here. She’s drawn well, has Jim Cassidy in the saddle and the improving track surface — she ticks a lot of boxes. My Sabeel is nice and fresh for this race and the “cut” in the ground is ideal for her. Solicit is a top class mare and if she was on her game, she would be the mare to beat.
Dufficy: They are two quality mares, Solicitand Peron, but they both haven’t won for a long time. I expect they are both going to run very well. I’ve got Solicit on top at the odds because I think the sting out of the ground suits her. I’ve been with Peron at her recent runs and I’d hate to jump off her so I’ll have a saver on her. She gets a chance to perform in a race where there is only nine runners now. Belle De Coeur gives Danny Beasley a chance to ride a stakes winner at his first Saturday back in Sydney.
RACE 8: LORD MAYORS CUP (2000m)
Thomas: I was keen on Ecuador last week in the Hawkesbury Cup when he was second-up at 1600m but I don’t have that same level of confidence about him now he is second-up at 2000m. I’m not saying Gai Waterhouse can’t do it but this is not an easy task for Ecuador. I like Silverball as he is rock-hard fit. Silverball is in his first Australian preparation, he’s won twice at 1600m and was unlucky at Flemington last start. He is looking for 2000m now. Arabian Gold is the class horse of the field but she has to equal a weight-carrying record to win this race. Malice is the other big chance.
Dufficy: Silverball is one of the best value bets of the day. His form has been impeccable all preparation. He drew the wrong barrier and could not get to the right part of the track at Flemington last start. I like backing Brenton Avdulla at the moment as he is a rider in the zone so I’m with Silverball, too. Arabian Gold needs the breaks to go her way under the big weight. Bagman is suited here and Sense Of Occasion has returned in really good order.
RACE 9: HAWKESBURY GUINEAS (1400m)
Thomas: I think the Hawkesbury washout was a blessing in disguise for Najoom. She has had an extra week to get over a tough run at Canterbury and with a big drop in weight and soft barrier, she will be very hard to beat. Federal is in great form, Eisenhower won well first-up and Anyaas is an each-way chance.
Dufficy: Najoom has a good record and there is a boom on her but she has won in restricted class, was beaten in a benchmark 75 the other day and I feel some of the others have better form. I’m not potting her but she is too short for me. I’d rather back a horse like Federal as he has had a month between runs since winning the South Pacific Classic. Bachman is coming up nicely for the Queensland Derby and will be hitting the line nicely. Press Report is underrated and Anyaas is also a chance.
RACE 7: DOOMBEN CUP (2000m)
Thomas: Pornichet was ridden out of his comfort zone in the Toowoomba Cup last week but shouldered 60.5kg to a dominant win. He’s on the quick back-up but is fit and racing very well. The blinkers worked with Leebaz in the Hollindale Stakes and he is the danger. Foreteller and I’m Imposingboth ran well behind Leebaz last start.
Dufficy: I agree, Ray, Pornichet is a young horse on the rise. Some say he beat nothing at Toowoomba but I thought he did it pretty well, he was ridden like a good thing, he had a big weight and ran fast time. Leebaz’s win last start will do his confidence the world of good. I’m Imposing and Green Moon are both definite chances.
RACE 8: BTC CUP (1200m)
Thomas: Maybe I’m going with my heart not my head (again) but I am in Our Boy Malachi’s corner. Talk about horses with desire and the will-to-win, he has got it in spades. He is the ultimate professional, makes his own luck in his races, and his record of 17 wins from 19 starts is phenomenal. Srikandi was fantastic first-up at the Gold Goast and can only improve.
Dufficy: I don’t know about your heart ruling your head because you want Our Boy Malachi to win because of his profile, he is the people’s champ, and when you do the form, your head says he will win as well. I’m not underestimating Srikandi, she is a quality mare, but can she reproduce it second-up after such a long time out? Scissor Kick is an unlucky horse and Fontelina is a knockout chance.
DUFF’S SUGGESTED BETS
Doomben — Race 3, No. 11: Traveston Girl
Rosehill — Race 4, No. 2: Earnest Ernest
Rosehill — Race 8, No. 10: Silverball