Race 1 - 12:15pm
MRC Foundation Supports Legacy Handicap (1100m)
Pippie returned to the races with an excellent win at Doomben and she is deserving of her status as favourite, but I can’t get her as short as her current quote. This will be a true test of her quality and she will need to ensure that she jumps cleanly to avoid getting boxed in. The horse that did appeal was Diamond Effort, but barrier 16 does make this a difficult assignment for her, so I am happy to stay out of this race from a betting perspective.
Race 2 - 12:50pm
Black Caviar Tribute Handicap (1700m)
Toryjoy showed plenty of toughness to win at Royal Randwick last start and a repeat of that performance would make her tough to beat in this company. She had to do plenty of work to find the lead last start and she was still strong to the line late. The Street Cry mare has shown that she is capable of carrying big weights without issue and she will be able to settle right on the speed with Kerrin McEvoy in the saddle.
2 Units Toryjoy
Race 3 - 1:25pm
Nitto Denko Handicap (1600m)
Lloyd Williams is set to have three runners in this contest and it is Australian debutant King Of Leogrance that represents excellent value at his current quote. He recorded three wins from his five race starts in Europe and there is no doubt that he is a stayer with a huge amount of promise. The Camelot gelding will take improvement from this run, but I am happy to take a gamble at the current odds.
1 Unit King Of Leogrance
Race 4 - 2:00pm
Blue Star Print Handicap (1400m)
Age Of Chivalry is a dominant favourite for this contest, but Fixed Odds +30% means that $2.60 is available for the talented galloper. He didn’t have a great deal of luck first-up at The Valley and he should take good improvement from that performance. Caulfield is a more suitable track for him and he will prove tough to beat.
3 Units Age Of Chivalry
Race 5 - 2:40pm
Group 3 Ladbrokes Vain Stakes (1100m)
The market suggests that this is a two-horse race between Bivouac and Dubious and I agree with that assessment. Bivouac won the Lonhro Plate in impressive fashion and he showed his quality when he took out the Kindergarten Stakes in dominant fashion. 1100 metres is ideal for him and he has recorded two wins from as many race starts over this distance. I think James Cummings will have him fairly forward for his return to the races and he can make it a winning return in the Vain Stakes 2019.
3 Units Bivouac
Race 6 - 3:20pm
Group 3 Quezette Stakes (1100m)
This is an excellent edition of the Quezette Stakes. Lyre could hardly have been more impressive as a two-year-old. She won the Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Stakes in impressive fashion and she went on to finish a gallant third in the Golden Slipper. I’ve always been of the opinion that she would be even better as a three-year-old and will be a genuine Thousand Guineas contender. She should take good benefit from this run and will be better over further, but I think that her class will take her a long way and the $5.50 currently available is well and truly over the odds.
2 Units Lyre
Race 7 - 4:00pm
Listed Regal Roller Stakes (1200m)
The Regal Roller Stakes is a very interesting betting race. Begood Toya Mother is a progressive galloper and has opened as a clear favourite. There is definitely talent there, but I can’t get him as short as his current quote.
The x-factor in this field might be Long Leaf. He isn’t the most consistent horse in the world, but he is capable of a high-rating performance on his day and has form around some of the best three-year-olds in the country. The Fastnet Rock entire has recorded two wins from three first-up starts and has run well at Caulfield. The $10 currently available is over the odds.
1 Unit Long Leaf
Race 8 - 4:40pm
Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m)
This is the first time that we will get a look at Ladbrokes Cox Plate favourite Mystic Journey this Spring. She showed her quality with her outstanding wins in the Australian Guineas and All-Star Mile in the Autumn and she goes into this race as a deserving favourite in P.B. Lawrence Stakes betting. The question is whether you can get her as short as her current price and I am happy to take her on. She has had a slightly disrupted preparation and traditionally she has improved the further that she has gotten into her campaign.
It is Hartnell that appeals at his current price. His record over 1400 metres at Caulfield is excellent and he has won this race first-up in the past. He didn’t win a race during the Autumn, but he produced a host of high-rating performances that would be good enough to win this contest. If Mystic Journey doesn’t bring her best form to the races, she will have a hard time beating Mystic Journey.
1.5 Units Hartnell
Race 9 - 5:15pm
Ladbrokes Odds Boost Handicap (1100m)
This is an interesting way to finish the day. Crack The Code returned to the races with a promising effort at Flemington and she should take good improvement from that performance. She has recorded two wins from as many race starts at Caulfield and she is also unbeaten over 1100 metres.
The other mare that appeals at her current price is All Over Bosanova. She ran out of steam late first-up, but she is another that should take good improvement from that run. The wide barrier draw isn’t ideal, but she does have good speed and she can take up a forward position. She shouldn’t be double figure odds.
1.5 Units Crack The Code
1 Unit All Over Bosanova