Almanac Racing – If you’re intending to play this Spring, pay attention.

This Saturday’s racing is absolutely top notch – the old Craiglee/George Main Stakes’ for Flemington and Randwick respectively with some outstanding support races to accompany the traditional G1 miles.

Most focus, quite rightly, will be up in Sydney, where the champs, Winx and Chautauqua, both strut their stuff.

She should just win (SR6, 3.15pm). No stars in this field. $1.06 (check uBet place quote at the jump – it somehow paid $1.20 last outing and minced some of us who’d laid best tote place!).

The Shorts (SR7, 1100m, SWP) is a quality warm-up for the Everest and they get this field for just 2% of that stake. By extension this isn’t the GF for most of them but Chautauqua’s form right-handed has to keep him in the main chances. They’ll fly in this. Redzel is the early spruik, but if English is nearly fully fit it’s the one.

There’s plenty of other black-type across the card, to be run on an uncharacteristically hard surface, and I’ll keenly monitor the Tea Rose (SR5, 1400m, 3yoF, SW) and back Tulip if there’s any $5 offered.

Flemington’s magnificent Hill Stand will protect me from the forecast cold on Saturday and, despite all of the rain, the track should be OK (certainly to begin with). VRC promos might not have the two great showstoppers that headline up north, but there’s arguably more depth across this outstanding programme and you’ll need to (as the AFL used to hype) “arrive early”.

Guineas fav Royal Symphony goes around in R2 and, although some opponents are well credentialed/promising, he’d want to win this to remain at the head of feature markets for Caulfield.

Chocolate Holic runs in the 3rd and is at the crossroads for this campaign. Again, no betting proposition but this will either propel him to chase serious purses or instigate a reappraisal of his ambitions for Spring.

The Newmarket winner resumes in the time-honoured Bobbie Lewis (MR4, 1200m, Q). As well as Redkirk Warrior, there’s Voodoo Lad, Japonisme, So Si Bon, Scales of Justice – a ripper edition of the grand old race. Firm track = fav, otherwise it opens up.

Before we even reach the Quaddy legs (who sets up this rubbish?) there’s the Danehill Stakes (MR5, 1200m, 3yo, SWP), arguably the most interesting contest of the day at HQ. A serious betting race – 5 and 10 look way overs but it’s a cracking field.

The Let’s Elope kicks off the Quadrella and I’m surprised that I Am A Star isn’t a very short priced fav. Best horse wins.

Hartnell deserves to be “in the red” for the G1 but he’s got to beat some good opposition – and he should do so! Won’t be taking the 6/4on but not tempted to find one to beat him. Plenty of interest in the others for the black book and maybe for some exotics. Hey Doc goes in all of them.

To be honest, if I wasn’t working I’d go home after the 7th. The penultimate race has plenty of scope to realize a winner for Spring – especially now that Cup weights are released – but, CrocRock and Yogi aside, this mob don’t interest me yet. Robert Hickmott (Lloyd Williams) has 6 in this – a racecaster’s nightmare and a must watch for antepost punters.

The last’s a Country Cup. Not a bad one but very tough for punters. I’m a Tiamo Grace fan. Last chance.

Really looking forward to this weekend. It always heralded the start of the “silk department”. This year’s instalment is a throwback to better days. If you’re intending to play this Spring, pay attention.

Good luck!


  1. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Any early thoughts on the Melb Cup changes re Caulfield Cup penalties Crio?

  2. Yeah, Swish, I’ve been to busy to take much notice but, on face value, it seemed right to somehow bolster a declining Caulfield Cup. I note that Pat Bartley, a better mind than me, has strong views and predicts some major fallout. What’s your thoughts?(

  3. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Thanks Crio, I’m not sufficiently across all of this, but Bartley’s last two pars seem to say a bit.

  4. Don’t leave the top weight out of your Danehill bets. He is top notch and nominated in everything. They know a good horse when they see one.

  5. There’s a good thing running in the last at Newcastle today: Invincible Gem

  6. I notice the meeting scheduled for Albury today, is moved to Corowa.

    If i had a chance to get a bet on i’d focus on the local Marchello in the mile race, though he’s carrying 60 KG’s.

    it’s academic for me: i’m @ work !


  7. Well I didn’t get to the TAB in time to invest in Marchello, who saluted. But I got to Epping RSL where I had a bundle of bets on R6, with collects on all my bets.

    No complaints from me.

    Saturday, Flemington R 9, No 3, that’s my tip. Listening to David Gately.


  8. Tough day. I guess Harnell works outside the lead again but Le Romain will get a really soft run 3rd or 4th and maybe a hope.. Happy to be on Jennifer Lynn EW in the Let’s Elope but probably still must have at least a saver on Risque.
    Good roughie in Adelaide,Race 5 Ample on Offa, maybe soft track isn’t perfect but will get a perfect run probably just behind Ozi Choice. Has won 4 of 10 races on the inside track, and 5 at 1400 plus one at Flemington, currently 20/1 and worth a throw at the stumps

  9. Thanks Jock. Getting to Melbourne for any of the Carnival?
    Plenty of rain overnight but track apparently ok. Monitor. Don’t like the WA gallopers if it gets soft

  10. I’m loving these firm tracks in Melb and Syd the past month or so. Horses running true to form, with the fastest horses winning!

    Robbie Waterhouse’s perspective on the Caul Cup penalty changes . Makes some very good points!

  11. I know that Robbie’s rarely flavour-of-the-month, but his racing thoughts are always worth consideration.

Leave a Comment