The Perth Summer Racing Carnival continues on Saturday with the running of the $1 million Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot.
William Pike is shooting for a Railway Stakes – Winterbottom double aboard short-priced Godolphin sprinter Trekking, while there is also enormous value to be found in each of the other nine races on the card.
Punters that enjoy a roughie have likely enjoyed a fill-up at Ascot in recent weeks, so be sure to read our entire 2020 Winterbottom Stakes Day Preview below to find out who we’re backing!
Race 1 - 2:24pm (AEDT)
Tourism WA Trophy (1000m)
This looks a race in two between Sassy Trader and Madam Torio as the two continue to jostle for favouritism.
I’m not particularly keen to dive in on this race, but Madam Torio does look the one with the experience of Chris Parnham on board.
She should take real improvement out of her last start at Belmont where she worked home for fourth after over-racing in the early stages and I like the fact she’s been freshened between runs.
Looks likely to go forward again, and as we saw during her back-to-back wins during the winter, she has plenty of speed to go all the way.
1 Unit Madam Torio
Race 2 - 3:04pm (AEDT)
Amelia Park Handicap (1400m)
William Pike takes the sit aboard True Attraction for the first time since their win last year in the Listed Aquanita Stakes.
Adam Durrant’s five-year-old returned a bold effort first-up behind Inspirational Girl last month and found no luck in this same class two runs back from the wide draw.
She faded late last start in a Group 3 over further, but should take improvement away in what is a much easier contest.
The rails draw suits and with Pike back on board the pair should prove tough to beat.
2 Units True Attraction
Race 3 - 3:44pm (AEDT)
Mrs Mac's Handicap (1400m)
Island Missile is yet to put a foot wrong this prep and was duly rewarded with a comfortable win last start over the 1200m.
The son of Smart Missile has drawn another perfect gate here in barrier 2 where he can get back and run on and I fully expect he’ll be in the finish based on the way he smoked the line last time out.
He won’t want to give away too big of a start to Peppijack, but with conditions to suit he should prove hard to hold out.
2 Units Island Missile
Race 4 - 4:24pm (AEDT)
Westspeed Platinum Series Final (1400m)
Glamour Packed was a winner three starts back over the mile before she came undone in her next outing finishing 10 of 12.
Collin Webster chose to bring her back to the 1400m last start and I was impressed with the way she finished off for second behind Saturday’s rival Wild Fusion.
That may have just been the hitout she needed in between runs and she looks to have drawn perfectly here under Jordan Turner in barrier 2.
The four-year-old has won and placed twice in four starts over this trip and looks a good value bet to add to that record.
1 Unit Glamour Packed
Race 5 - 4:59pm (AEDT)
Crown Towers Handicap (1200m)
Comes A Time scored by a length in his return to the races last month over the track and distance and hasn’t been far off adding to that record since.
The son of Sessions gave a good sight two runs back finishing third behind In Love With Paris before an equally impressive fourth last start over the 1000m.
Apprentice Lucy Warwick has put her apprentice claim to good effect and she should have a good feel for this horse having ridden him in his previous two runs.
The draw suits, and with fitness on his side, a return to the winner’s stall doesn’t look far away.
2 Units Comes A Time
Race 6 - 5:35pm (AEDT)
Quayclean Handicap (1200m)
Have some time for River Dance stepping back to the 1200m on the short backup.
He was a non-factor in last week’s Listed Carbine Club Stakes (1400m) where he found some traffic down the straight, but if things open up for him on Saturday, he might prove tough to beat in the late stages.
The son of Snitzel is a five-time winner over this trip and rarely runs a bad race over this track and distance.
Jarrad Noske knows him inside and out, so expect some big improvement.
1 Unit River Dance E/W
Race 7 - 6:10pm (AEDT)
Regional Championship Final: The Road to Ascot (1200m)
What About Moses added to his strong first-up record last start winning over a similar trip at Albany ahead of Saturday’s rival Magic Opus.
The son of Playing God has some decent second-up form to his name and does look capable of going on with it if Shaun McGruddy can establish a spot up on the speed.
McGruddy has now won twice aboard the five-year-old as the blinkers come off. From barrier 9, he should have plenty of options.
2 Units What About Moses
Race 8 - 6:50pm (AEDT)
Tattersall's Cup (2100m)
There is no doubt Royal Command is crying out for further coming off a last start third in the Listed Ascot Gold Cup (1800m) behind Too Close The Sun.
Adam Durant’s seven-year-old has raced beyond the 2000m only once previously but he looks more than capable of seeing this out carrying only 53kg under William Pike.
He really should have won fresh when second to Luke’s Gold, but with fitness on his side, this looks a much easier contest for him to add a seventh win.
2 Units Royal Command
Race 9 - 7:30pm (AEDT)
Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m)
Trekking may not have a better opportunity to add another Group 1 to his resume.
The Godolphin sprinter has turned in three huge efforts this time in work, opening with a second to Pippie in the Moir Stakes, a fourth to Classique Legend in The Everest, and a last start second to Hey Doc in the Manikato Stakes.
The son of Street Cry tends to do his best racing off a freshen-up and he’ll be afforded all the favours with William Pike on board on Saturday.
If the Wizard can offset the wide gate, he should be adding a third Winterbottom to his resume.
3 Units Trekking
Race 10 - 8:10pm (AEDT)
Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m)
Money Maher is back in grade and looks to have found a very winnable contest to close out the program.
The six-year-old showed real improvement last week when fifth in the Listed Carbine Club Stakes, and I think the short backup is a nice option for him out to the mile.
He’s won third-up previously in the past and maps to be doing his best work late along the rails under Joseph Azzopardi.
1 Unit Money Maher