Race 1 - 12:30pm
Campolina Stud Handicap (1200m)
So You Too has opened this race as a very short-priced favourite. He was an excellent third in the Euclase Stakes and he does look to have a clear edge over the rest of this field, but it is tough to get a horse that has won just two of his ten starts as short as his current price. I don’t want to bet against him, but I can’t back him at that price.
Race 2 - 1:05pm
Group 3 National Stakes (1200m)
This is one of the strongest editions of the National Stakes in recent memory. Booker made her debut with a stunning victory in the Phar Lap Club Plate and she ran serious time in doing so. She maps to get a lovely run right on the speed with Damian Lane in the saddle and she looks to be a horse with a fair bit of ability. Indian Thunder and Pure Scot are both talented horse, but Booker looks to have a genuine x-factor.
4 Units Booker
Race 3 - 1:45pm
Listed Port Adelaide Cup (2500m)
High Church could hardly have been more impressive in the Warrnambool Cup and a repeat of that performance would definitely make him the horse to beat, but there is often a question mark over how horses bounce back from the Warrnambool Carnival. There is no doubt that was his Grand Final and this is definitely an afterthought. He will win this if he is anywhere near his best, but I am not keen to take that gamble at his current price.
Race 4 - 2:25pm
Group 3 SA Fillies Classic (2500m)
Ana Royale does not have a great winning record, but it is tough to ignore the way that she found the line in the Australasian Oaks and she looks as though she is crying out for the step-up to 2500 metres. She maps to get a long way back, but Mark Zahra should not have any trouble finding clear running at the right time and she will be tough to hold-out late. The main danger looks to be Savvy Dreams. She found the line nicely last week in the South Australian Derby and she does have the benefit of a run over 2500 metres under her belt.
3 Units Ana Royale
1.5 Units Savvy Dreams
Race 5 - 3:05pm
Listed Centaurea Stakes (2019m)
The market has zeroed in on the three main chances here and I am keen to oppose Warrnambool winner Tick Tick Bloom. Have Another Glass and Sort After both come out of the Queen Of The South Stakes and that looks as though it will be a strong form race. Sort After should get an easier run in front than she did last time, while it took legitimate Doomben Cup contender Amelie’s Star to beat Have Another Glass in the Queen Of The South Stakes. I am more than happy to back both horses.
2 Units Sort After
2 Units Have Another Glass
Race 6 - 3:45pm
Group 3 R A Lee Stakes (1600m)
Burning Front is such a gallant horse and I am really don’t like betting against him, but he does look under the odds in the R A Lee Stakes. Hooked is capable of rating at a higher level than Burning Front and he did just that when he returned to winning form in the Victoria Handicap at Caulfield last start. He won a barrier trial at Cranbourne in dominant fashion and I like the fact that Robert Smerdon has freshened him up for this race. He can make it two wins on the trot.
2.5 Units Hooked
Race 7 - 4:20pm
Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m)
This is a strong edition of The Goodwood and the quality really does look to be at the top of this field. Black Heart Bart is the class horse in this field and he is clearly the horse to beat. He had a disrupted Autumn campaign, but he was still able to win the Memsie Stakes and the Futurity Stakes. Black Heart Bart never runs a bad race and he typically rates at a level that will be more than good enough to win this race.
One of the only horses in this field that is capable of going to a level to challenge Black Heart Bart is Malaguerra. He is nowhere near as consistent as Black Heart Bart, but he did beat him in the Australia Stakes first-up at the start of the Autumn and he is a horse that is capable of a high-rating performance on his day.
It is tough to see Karacatis winning this race, but he is a gallant campaigner that rarely runs a bad race and he is a better chance than his current odds suggest.
2.5 Units Black Heart Bart
1 Unit Malaguerra
¼ Unit Karacatis
Race 8 - 4:55pm
Group 3 Proud Miss Stakes (1200m)
Fuhryk was only narrowly denied in the Euclase Stakes first-up and she is sure to have taken a great deal of improvement from that run. She looks set to get a long way back from the wide barrier draw once again and that is a concern with Craig Williams in the saddle, but as long as he gets going coming around the turn he will be very tough to hold-out. Fuhryk is still on the way up this preparation, while a number of the horses in this field have had a lengthy campaign.
2.5 Units Fuhryk