Race 1 - 6:30pm
WM Waste Management Plate (1200m)
Sunset Watch recorded two impressive wins at Ballarat and Caulfield as a two-year-old before he failed to fire in the Redoute’s Choice Stakes. He looks the perfect horse for The Valley as he makes his own luck right on the speed and should be able to find the line comfortably in a race that doesn’t have a huge amount of speed. This really doesn’t look to be the strongest field and if he brings his best form he will prove tough to beat.
The x-factor in this field is Still Invincible. He is yet to make his racing debut, but he has trialled extremely well ahead of the start of this preparation. The wide barrier draw isn’t ideal, but he does look to have early speed and it would not surprise if he ran a forward race.
3 Units Sunset Watch
1 Unit Still Invincible
Race 2 - 7:00pm
Group 2 Stocks Stakes (1600m)
I Am A Star does look the good thing of the night at The Valley. She returned to winning form with a narrow win over Sheezdashing in the Let’s Elope Stakes and she is a mare that generally improves the further that she gets into her campaign. She won this race in impressive fashion 12 months ago and she record at The Valley is excellent. There is no reason that she can’t make it five wins on the trot.
5 Units I Am A Star
Race 3 - 7:30pm
Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m)
Trap For Fools has been nothing short of enormous since he was transferred to the care of Jarrod Mclean and there is no reason he can’t make it two wins on the trot. He has run his rivals off their feet in his past two starts over this track and distance and there is no fitter horse in this field. Brad Rawiller will take him straight to the front in the early stages of this contest and he will prove very tough to run down.
3.5 Units Trap For Fools
Race 4 - 8:00pm
Ladbrokes 55 Second Challenge Heat 1 (955m)
You’ve Been Had is very well-placed in the Ladbrokes 55 Second Challenge Series. He has recorded five wins from his eight race starts and he finished his most recent campaign with a dominant win at The Valley. 1000 metres is definitely his go, he has recorded five wins from his six race starts at that trip, and he has trialled nicely ahead of his return to the races. He does have tactical versatility and the wide barrier draw will give Ben Melham options in the early stages of the race.
4 Units You’ve Been Had
Race 5 - 8:30pm
Group 2 Stutt Stakes (1600m)
Leonardo Da Hinci was only narrowly denied by Brutal in the Antler Luggage Plate at Flemington last start and there is no horse of that quality in this field. The step-up to 1600 metres will suit and his previous experience at the Valley is an advantage. He really does look to have a clear edge over the rest of this field and he makes his own luck right on the speed. The Hinchinbrook colt ticks all the boxes and will prove very tough to beat.
4 Units Leonardo Da Hinci
Race 6 - 9:00pm
Group 3 Scarborough Stakes (1200m)
Sweet Rockette beat Multaja to win at The Valley two starts ago and she is great value to win again in the Scarborough Stakes. She missed the placings in the Cap D’antibes Stakes at Flemington, but her run was enormous. Michelle Payne settled her at the tail of the field and she savaged the line in the concluding stages. Payne can settle her closer to the speed in this contest and, if she does that, she can be a factor in what is an open race.
1 Unit Sweet Rockette
Race 7 - 9:30pm
Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m)
This is an outstanding edition of the Moir Stakes and it is set to be one of the most exciting races of the Spring Racing Carnival. This is the chance for Nature Strip to prove just how good he is and he may never have a better chance to record a maiden Group 1 win. He has recorded four wins on the trot and he has scored five wins from his six race starts over 1000 metres. There wasn’t much between him and Houtzen in the McEwen Stakes, but they did run serious time. He will need to be at his very best as there is a huge amount of speed in this race, but I’m hopeful that Damian Lane just lets him rip and he runs the rest of the field off their feet.
The clear danger is Viddora. She has stamped herself as one of the best sprinters in the country over the past 12 months and she continues to be underrated. The daughter of I Am Invincible should have won this race last year when she finished second behind She Will Reign, she was held up at the worst possible time, and her record over 1000 metres is excellent. Her trial ahead of her return to the races was excellent and the $9.50 currently available is well and truly over the odds.
4 Units Nature Strip
1 Unit Viddora
Race 8 - 10:00pm
Mypunter.com Handicap (1200m)
So Far Sokool won the Bendigo Guineas and wasn’t beaten far in the Carr Stakes in the Autumn. That is definitely good enough form to win a race of this quality and she is a mare that has raced well at The Valley before.
Choisborder has recorded three wins on the trot and he is a proven winner. This is a step-up in class, but there is no doubt that he is a progressive galloper and the $9 that is currently available is well and truly over the odds.
1 Unit So Far Sokool
1 Unit Choisborder