Crio’s Racing: ANZAC punt


ANZAC Day and racing/gambling have long been associated and, though no top class fields are featured on Friday, there are meetings scattered across the country where folk will gather, commemorate, play some two-up and continue the tradition. As a kid in Adelaide the public holiday had clearly defined choices – the march would finish in the city and some would wander north to Adelaide Oval for the Grand Final rematch (seemingly always Port and Sturt in my younger days) whilst the rest would turn East to enjoy a punt at Victoria Park.

Nowadays the City meetings have lost their status and the trains rolling in to Flemington will no longer be full of ex-servicemen “fresh” from Y+’Js. In Melbourne the AFL juggernaut has bulldozed the sporting landscape but country meetings continue to flourish….Avoca is one I attended in recent times.


Remarkably, despite the glut of Group races in the now completed “Championships”, Randwick again saddles up for a top drawer program on Saturday, with excellent prizemoney and acceptors for lots of G3s and even a couple of Group Ones – the Champagne Stakes (SR5, 1600m, 2yo, SW) and the All-Aged Stakes (SR6, 1400m, WFA). The Champagne may be a softish G1 but that won’t matter to Brent Stanley as he sends Olly up to ride equal fav Veuvelicious (8). 6 and 3 are the logical dangers. Rebel Dane (1) will probably be the punters’ elect in the All Aged but there are a stack of chances in a really good race.

There’s also another ripper meeting at Morphettville in what seems a rather disjointed Autumn Carnival. The highlights are the Australasian Oaks (AR6, 2000m, 3yoF, SW, G1) and the old Robert Sangster (AR7, 1200m, F+M, WFA, G1). Darren Weir has a super strong hand with May’s Dream, despite the wide gate, in the Oaks and defending champ Platelet in the Sprint likely to carry public hopes. I’d prefer AR6 No6 and AR7 Nos 11 and 4. Give the SA formguide a good look – there’s a lot of deep races and it finishes with the old D.C. McKay Stakes – a cracking event when I was growing up….King’s Helmet (74), Ducatoon (80), Penny Edition (83).

Here in Melbourne there’s humdrum days at Flemington for Friday and out at Sandown on Saturday – the only real excitement will be in the oft asked…”Going to the ‘Bool?”.

Happily my response will be “Yep. Can’t wait.”

If you can help me build a bank please respond.

Good luck!




  1. In Melbourne for ANZAC Day but a change of plans has seen me unable to go to the races after the March.
    Excitate is the form runner from “the beach” for the meeting at Gawler on Friday but I pass on Adelaide Saturday in what can only be described as a “darn good meeting with lots of chances and good horses and riders attending from Interstate”
    I suppose Glen will give us a run down on Avoca – maybe Skip has it on his list too
    For me the highlight of Easter was a trip to the Stawell Gift – no wonder Dips keeps going back and Ive found another way to lose without backing horses
    Lets see how Captain Crio pulls up after the Bool?

  2. G’day Crio, G’day Oges, yep we’re off to Avoca on Anzac day. It’s a six race card, with the first being run @ 13-20. A race review will be prepared for The Almanac. Watch this space !

    Happy Punting,


  3. Peter Flynn says

    I am Booling.

    J Dunne verb.


  4. Oges – shame we didn’t bump into each other at Stawell. Cracking race.

    I backed Carty-Cowling in the final. That makes me a mug punter.

  5. Dips- Stawell was always on my bucket list but now Ive been I want to go again.
    What a great atmosphere. The” Management committee” said she had never been up close to so many good bodies in her life
    Glen- I see Yendall has a full book of rides and he will be one to watch tomorrow

  6. major oversight on my behalf not to mention the ripper G2 WFA 1200m BR7 at Eagle Farm. An elite field with Snitzerland @ evens.

    At Randwick the omen and sentimental tip must be Veuvelicious in the Champagne! Great story.

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