Almanac Racing: Summer Nights Finale

It is testament to the allure of a great horse that Black Caviar’s running at the final “Summer Nights” has managed to grab some attention amongst the excitement of a new AFL season and, to a lesser extent, the Cricket World Cup and the GP. Again, poor weather is forecast, hitting hard at the lawn activities and the general novelty of racing under lights, but, if at all possible, I urge you to get along to watch her in the William Reid Stakes, a Group One so strongly associated with a previous generation’s sprinting hero, Manikato.

And there’s a very good support cast and card as well. Fears that she’d scare off all opposition have proved largely unfounded – though, it must be admitted, her trainer Peter Moody has dominated acceptors – and betting on a likely runner-up will be spirited. I’d prefer, though, not to be distracted from the thrill of watching this freak sprinting machine. If you can’t get there, find a TVN screen somewhere.

I’m disappointed that Set For Fame’s not having a go at the Gr2 Sunline Stakes, the best “contest” of the evening, but it is still a quality and very open field. Topweight, Lady Lynette, is a crack Valley mare but she’ll be challenged by a host of others, including Majestic Music, Red Flair and Platinum Passion, which, in a good lead, has been scratched from a good Sydney race for this.

The MVRC must be congratulated on staging such a ripper meeting in this slot, and it reinforces their commitment to a “night niche” – many expect the Cox Plate to be under lights as soon as next year. Importantly, the Club has retained its “8 race at 30 minute intervals” policy, which keeps the evening snappy. Footy, no doubt, will be on screens around the course and in the bars. I’ll be fighting a sore throat to call the bets at Turfbet’s stand.

Saturday afternoon will, for me, be spent on the couch, flicking between the footy and Sydney’s races from Rosehill, where the Guineas meeting always means Autumn Classics have arrrived. It doesn’t look to be a vintage Guineas – Jimmy Choux has been the early market mover, with Flemington hero Shamrocker, as well as Retrieve and the certainty beaten last start (with my dough) Absolutelyawesome as the primary challengers. The support card, as always on this day, is outstanding. Some “shorties” are presented early – Golden Archer in R2 (The Pago Pago) and Brazilian Pulse in the following (R3, 1800m). Their performances will frame features for weeks ahead. The Magic Night (R4) is very open – have to love the name of equal fav, Pane In The Glass!

Confusingly, Brazilian Pulse is also accepted for the slightly more difficult Ajax Stakes (R5, 1500m) in which, if she were to run, Pureness and Under The Eiffel would have supporters to topple her. In the time-honoured N.E.Manion Cup, Once Were Wild must stamp his staying credentials for Randwick by beating what is a good, but not great, field.And it is that sort of day…. in a way it has parralels with the Caulfield Guineas Day where pretenders are culled from the contenders. Lots of form will need to be done on Saturday morning and, of course, any advice will also be taken on board.

Enjoy a great sporting weekend.


  1. This morning’s “Age” has Black Caviar at $1.10. I’d better take a hard hat to wear…I reckon they’ll knock the stand down at those odds.

  2. from 12 Feb

    “His filly Lights of Heaven was the pick of his treble. Look for her in Adelaide and beyond.”

    Payday Sunday at Morphettville in the Oaks. Good meeting there also!

  3. Ripper night in the “Valley of Sins” tonight. Electric atmosphere as the champ careered away. Great to see the horse as the drawcard rather than a band or a gimmick.
    ERRATUM…Morphettville Saturday! Thursday footy has stuffed me!!

  4. Peter Flynn says

    J Choux looks a good 3yo Crio.

  5. Emphatic win. Kiwi’s love the chop out of the ground, but I’d have risked him…what a ripper story re the hoop (ref “Age”).

    Moody’s filly too good in adelaide. I should have backed her all-up Response!

  6. I did manage to follow up on Response after the Oakleigh Plate debacle. Elvis, not surprisingly, has the punting story of the day with a long week to wait for the pay off…
    I’ll wait for him to tell the story.

  7. Did Absolutelyawesome do anything?

  8. Peter Flynn says

    I was on it.


    Over spruiked.

  9. Budge and I backed it lasat start, with Boss having foregone Flemington’s Newmarket meeting to ride him…and sticking with him thereafter rather than Shamrocker. I’m not wiping Absolutelyawesome yet…though it remains one of the worst names I can recall.

    On another note, let’s hope Nifty Neville Wilson can make a recovery from his neck injury sustained Friday and reported in today’s paper.

  10. Absolutelyawesome got stuck on the inside whereas Jimmy was out wide in the better going. I wouldn’t give him away yet!
    He’s No Pie Eater remains the benchmark for shocking names.

  11. No doubt Jimmy got in the best going. Bossy made the same blue last start. Get better odds in the Derby now!

    The Pie Eater, it needs to be said, lacks the hyperbolic toss of AbFabAwesome!

  12. Crio,

    You told me once “All in = heartbreak” Well I didn’t listen. Picked out 2 to back in the Golden Slipper pre post last Wednesday night. Had $10 e/w the unraced Salate at $251 and $10 e/w Altar at $301. They won the Pago Pago and the Magic Night on Saturday and are both in the GS at about $13 and $26 respectively.

    I’m a freak until Saturday arvo.

    Backed Galizani to win the BMW at $126 and she won also.

    Still a big mountain to climb, but in an off pay week. I’ve got a couple of live ones (unlike Our Aqaleem -2010 Aust Cup) going around for me on Saturday.

    Will let you know on Saturday if there is indeed a God or not.

  13. Peter Flynn says

    I’m barracking for ya Elvis.

    Well done even if you don’t collect.


  14. Peter Flynn,

    Thanks Peter. It will most probably be short lived genius, but it will help me get through the working week.

    Appreciate your well wishes.


  15. Elvis,
    I can hear Dad from the stands above screaming “crush, crush..”
    Slug, of course, would now go and lay the fav as well!

  16. Crio,

    Be nice if LB could have a word in an influential ear for me.

  17. Go Elvis you good thing!! We’ve all got an interest now for Saturday.

  18. johnharms says

    A Knacker Providence Fund representative may visit you to take your stake at the current odds, if you want to beat the infidel-bookies.

  19. Unlikely John. He’s a gambler.
    Once the wheel is spun you just wait to see what number it stops on.
    Alternative strategies have been suggested.
    Maybe it is a bit like my advice to a procrastinating punter a few weeks ago…reduced to checking with his girlfriend if he should save E/W or even just a Place, I counselled,
    “If you want to be boring, go and work in an office.
    If you enjoy a risk, have a proper bet!”

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