The Group 1 Kingston Town Classic headlines the nine-race card at Ascot on Saturday in what is shaping up to be another huge day of racing out west.
Punters that fancy taking on the short-priced favourite Inspirational Girl won’t be short on value, which could prove a smart strategy considering the rough results we’ve seen from Perth over the last few weeks.
With fine weather forecast ahead of the final Group 1 of the year, you can find our best bets in our 2020 Kingston Town Classic Day Preview below.
Race 1 - 2:19pm AEDT
Tourism WA Trophy (1000m)
Expecting Flying Missile to follow similar tactics to her debut run where she went straight to the front before fading late for third.
There doesn’t appear to be as much speed in this race, so Neville Parnham’s two-year-old should take some catching if she can put a gap between herself and the rest of the field early.
Having said that, I’m with the favourite Astrape. She comes out of the same race where she finished off strongly for second after rounding the heels of the leaders down the straight.
The filly by Snitzel has drawn away from the rails this time around and gets the added services of William Pike in the saddle for the first time.
2 Units Astrape
Race 2 - 2:59pm AEDT
Crown Perth Handicap (1600m)
Bragwell looks to have a class edge over some of these coming off a last start fifth in the Group 2 W.A Guineas in his first look at the mile.
Steven Wolfe’s three-year-old made up a stack of ground in the late stages to hit the line and there was plenty to suggest he’ll appreciate a second crack at this trip.
Shaun McGruddy gets back in the saddle having ridden him to a win first-up over the 1200m and should have plenty to work with having drawn kindly in barrier 3.
With 2.5kg off his back, he should prove too good.
2 Units Bragwell
Race 3 - 3:39pm AEDT
Better Your Bet Handicap (1100m)
You could easily make a case for a few of these, but I’m happy to have Gates Of Babylon on top in his return to the races.
Brett Pope’s five-year-old tends to do his best racing fresh where he’s won and found the money on two occasions.
He was scratched from last week’s program due to a virus, but should prove tough to run down if Mitchell Pateman can establish a spot up forward in the early stages.
1 Unit Gates Of Babylon
Race 4 - 4:19pm AEDT
Amelia Park Handicap (2200m)
Not overly keen to dive into this race with a host of winning chances on offer, but this does look a winnable contest for Come Right Back if Peter Hall can offset the wide gate.
The four-year-old proved costly last start where he was the beaten favourite, but I really don’t think the barrier or the pace suited him that day and I’m willing to forgive him.
He’s actually done some of his better racing from out wide and was also a winner three starts back over the track and distance. Has hardly put a foot wrong this prep finding the top four on all occasions and looks well-deserving of another win.
1 Unit Come Right Back
Race 5 - 4:54pm AEDT
Ascend Sales - Jungle Dawn Classic (1400m)
Tycoon Storm gets conditions to suit and should be able to stalk the pace again just like she did in the Listed Jungle Mist last start where she got clear late for third.
The mare by Written Tycoon probably would have won if she didn’t find traffic along the rail, but with even luck this time around, Brad Parnham should be able to steer her to a fourth win over the 1400m.
2 Units Tycoon Storm
Race 6 - 5:30pm AEDT
Sir Ernest Lee-Steere Classic (1400m)
This might just be the race of the day with numbers 5, 3, 8 and 4 all set to finish strongly.
The lightly-raced Western Empire has been well-backed in the market as Pike looks to make amends for his last start fourth aboard the three-year-old in the Group 2 W.A Guineas.
He found himself way too far back rounding the turn in that race and simply had too much work to do with Watch Me Dance Em Tee Aye racing away. If he settles closer this time around, Western Empire’s huge turn of foot should just do the talking.
Chantorque is shooting for four in a row and looks the obvious danger from the inside.
This is her toughest assignment to date, but she’s absolutely flying this filly and is the obvious value bet with hardly any weight on her back.
2 Units Western Empire
Race 7 - 6:10pm AEDT
Glenroy Chaff - A.J. Scahili Stakes (1400m)
It’s nearly impossible to get away from Celebrity Queen here after her brave effort for second last week in the Winterbottom.
The mare by Redoute’s Choice has never raced on the short backup before, but based on the way she stormed the line last Saturday, she should see out the 1400m in her stride.
William Pike jumps back on board for the first time since the Autumn where he rode her to a pair of victories at this same venue. She absolutely loves Ascot and I can’t find a reason as to why she won’t be winning.
3 Units Celebrity Queen
Race 8 - 6:50pm AEDT
Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m)
This should be a fascinating edition of the time-honoured Kingston Town Classic after the short-priced favourite Inspirational Girl drew wide earlier in the week.
Obviously with her turn of foot she’s more than capable of offsetting the draw, but after Pike struggled to get the most out of Trekking last week in the Winterbottom, I’m happy to take her on.
Dom To Shoot stands out at odds after running on strongly for third last start in the W.A Guineas.
I thought he had excuses in the run from the wide-ish gate and probably deserved to finish even closer after only getting clear in the late stages.
The way he finished off suggests he should see out the extra 200m nicely and the fact he’s also dropping 4.5kg is a huge tick.
Three-year-old’s have an outstanding record in this race, while the Guineas form has typically proven to be winning form in recent times.
2 Units Dom To Shoot
Race 9 - 7:30pm AEDT
Seacorp Handicap (1200m)
Angelic Miss is only lightly raced but if she brings the same form to this contest that saw her win a mid-week last fortnight she should prove tough to hold out.
The four-year-old daughter of Savabeel stormed home carrying 59kg to win comfortably by over a length and now gets in nice and light carrying 3kg less on Saturday.
She’s drawn well with Chris Farnham retaining the ride and should be finishing over the top of some of these late.
2 Units Angelic Miss