Another ten-race program beckons at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday and the Listed Winter Challenge is the feature race.
The rail will be set out 8 metres 1400m-W/Post and 5 metres around the remainder, while at publish the track is rated in the Soft (6) range.
Race 1 - 11:15am
Elite Sand & Soil Handicap (1200m)
I’m going to give Baby Wong another chance in the first on Winter Challenge Day.
The Press Statement colt didn’t manage to break he maiden during his debut prep, but he found form around some quality gallopers and performed well at stakes grade.
He won the two-year-olds feature race at Tamworth when resuming in April, and while he didn’t quite measure up at his next two starts, he ran home well to fill the minors at Randwick last time, and looks to be at peak fitness for this contest.
3 Units Baby Wong
Race 2 - 11:50am
Highway Class 3 Plate (1500m)
Tags can record the biggest win of his career to date in this week’s Highway race.
The Sidestep gelding has won three of six starts since debuting, and he has raced home well to fill the minors at his last two, including a similar contest over 1400m at Randwick last time.
He looks ready to peak in form and with even luck, he’ll prove tough to beat.
3 Units Tags
Race 3 - 12:25pm
Bowermans Commercial Furniture Handicap (1500m)
Bazooka is ready to win when he steps out at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
He needed the run when he failed to quicken and finished sixth in BM72 company here when resuming, but flashed late to only just miss beaten a fit Tycoonist second-up.
Having since filled the minors in another similar race over 1300m last time, he looks ready for the 1500m and is beautifully placed.
4 Units Bazooka
Race 4 - 1pm
Hyland Race Colours July Sprint (1100m)
A talented field of eight has accepted for the July Sprint, but I think that Trumbull will take a power of beating.
Trumbull has been the stable star for Wyong-based Kim Waugh for several seasons now, and he returned in October to win the lucrative Group 3 Sydney Stakes.
Given that Waugh has announced her Everest hopes for the Darci Brahma gelding this week, you’d have to think he’ll be pretty wound up to strike in something like this fresh, and he is subsequently my best bet on the program.
6 Units Trumbull
Race 5 - 1:35pm
Schweppes Handicap (2400m)
I’m confident that No Compromise can and will bounce back into the winner’s stall at Rosehill on Saturday.
He has been nothing short of outstanding since arriving in Australia and Chris Waller’s care, and the Pins gelding recorded consecutive wins in Saturday BM78 company before finishing a close second behind Spencer here last time.
He meets that horse better at the weights this week and he is rock-hard fit.
5 Units No Compromise
Race 6 - 2:10pm
City Tattersalls Club Handicap (1200m)
I’m eager to have something on Hellenism in the sixth on Winter Classic Day.
She has fast become one of my favourite mares, and the Coffs Harbour-trained five-year-old has returned from a long break in excellent form this time; unlucky not to win a similar race to this one when resuming and winning a Highway Handicap most notably.
She takes her place in this field off the back of a credible sixth placing off a short back-up in the Ramornie Handicap, and with even luck from the outside draw, I think she’ll take plenty of beating again.
3 Units E/W Hellenism
Race 7 - 2:45pm
Listed Winter Challenge (1500m)
Cisco Bay looms as a key winning chance in this year’s Winter Challenge.
He beat home a decent Saturday grade field at Randwick when resuming last month and overcome a tough run to fill the minors behind a couple of good ones at this track and trip last time.
Fitter third-up and under the conditions of this race, I can’t really find a reason why he won’t be in the finish.
4 Units Cisco Bay
Race 8 - 3:25pm
Midway Handicap (1500m)
He has been charged with carrying topweight, but French import Ashim has improved for two competitive starts since debuting for Matt Smith and he can win on Winter Challenge Day.
The Stormy Atlantic gelding kept his best work for late when fourth behind Papal Warrior first-up, and he was last seen finishing second behind the talented Zorocat over 1300m at Randwick.
Fitter third-up and further out in trip, he will take beating.
4 Units Ashim
Race 9 - 4:05pm
The Agency Real Estate Handicap (1200m)
Lancaster Bomber can win the penultimate race in Sydney on Saturday.
The Denman gelding stuck on for third behind the in-form Malkovich at his first run back from a spell, and beat a couple of good ones to the line when second in a BM78 contest last time.
He gets some relief in the weights under Tom Sherry and with even luck, this looks the perfect race for him.
3 Units E/W Lancaster Bomber
Race 10 - 4:45pm
Quayclean Handicap (1300m)
Frosty Rocks can make a winning return in the last on Winter Challenge Day.
He has been a great horse for the Bjorn Baker yard since making his debut, and he was a typically consistent performer last time in.
His invariably pulls out a big performance when fresh and he should be given every opportunity by Josh Parr from his inside draw.
3 Units Frosty Rocks