Crio’s Racing: Derby Day begins 2012 Cup week (Get on board)

Backing up from Bendigo – I haven’t yet chosen my outfit nor the spray tan/can! – so there’s been little time to study the form for another wonderful Derby Day. Group Racing fills the programme and, with a fine day forecast, the throngs will flock in their finery to Flemington’s carparks, marquees, lawns, bars… maybe even the betting ring. I’ll be there, “fresh” from the very average Valley card on Friday night, but keen to call some sizeable wagers and hopefully fill the bag for the boss.
Here’s the 9 races and their status with some early observations and queries.

1- CARBINE CLUB STAKES (G3, 1600m, 2y0)
Snowden’s hold the key – Tatra (1) and Proverb (3). Bart will be looking through those bushy grey eyebrows to kick off his Carnival with Lunar Rise (5). 5,1,3

2- LEXUS/HOTHAM (G3, 2500m)
Gatewood (1) goes around again! An uncustomary prep. Hard track a minus but a very good horse. Excluded (6) is going well but “Almamapedia” has a knock on Lloyd’s! Could Dare To Dream (12) be an old fashioned Data Tan/ J.B.?

3- WAKEFUL (G2, 2000m, 3yo fillies)
Time-honoured Oaks prelude. Dear Demi (1) and Zydeco (4) might offer the “each of 2” option for bookies, but where are the result chances?

4- COOLMORE/Ascot Vale (G1, 1200m, 3yo)
Punters will rally to the very good fillies here and, though I’m a big fan of Snitzerland (9), this is a race to explore value. To be continued…

Has the W.S.Cox Plate King pulled up OK? If so, here’s another G1. At $1.50, I reckon this is a sandwich and coffee time.

6- DERBY (G1, 2500m, 3yo)
I’m forgiving It’s a Dundeel (1), which looked short of a run, all at sea on the circuit and was not knocked around at MV last week.

7- MYER CLASSIC (G1, 1600m, 3yo+up fillies and mares)
Always a highlight of the day. 1 from 10 and 2.

8- YELLOWGLEN/Craven “A”/Salinger… (G2, 1200m)
Howmuchdoyouloveme (6) – I’m committed!!
Golden Archer – the “barometer” as the E/W value.

9- Stakes (G3, 1400m)
I never tip Fawkner (4), usually to my detriment. Mcclintock (8) E/W.


Huge days ahead. Looking forward to some tips and observations.
Also, see Harmsy’s posts re the “lucrative” tipping comp and, of course, the terrific preview lunch at the All Nations on Cup Eve Monday.
Enjoy Australia’s best week….and Good Luck!


  1. Jock,
    One of my clearest recollections of Derby Day was when we backed Brewery Boy in 81. Sitting in the stand as they passed the post the first time, we both lit up cigars and just enjoyed the ride for the next lap. Never in doubt!

    Oasis Bloom is in the Myer Classic this week. I’m a bit concerned that she might be looking for further now (Matriarch Stakes 2000m next week) but Star Of Giselle has again franked her form. Let me be the first to tip her for 2013 Caulfield Cup!

  2. One of my fondest Derby Day recollections was sitting in the stand as the field passed the post for the first time in the Derby. Both Jock and I were on Brewery Boy and cigars were lit at that time as we sat back and enjoyed the ride for the next lap. Never in doubt!

    The flip-side was 84 when I was $400 down coming to the last (The Dalgety) and backed Centra Briseis to get out (might have had 500/40). Got beaten by an absolute lip by Chagemar. Probably best thing that could have happened- would have thought that you could always get out. I know better now!!

    Oasis Bloom is in the Myer Classic this week. Just concerned whether she needs further now (Matriarch Stakes 2000m next week?). She certainly is up to it as Star Of Giselle and Spirit Song have franked her form in recent weeks. Let me be the first to tip her for 2013 Caulfield Cup!

  3. Crio – was I right in thinking you would be at 7 meetings in 10 days (if so you would be as fit as some of the horses going around or like the tired runners in the Cup after this marathon

  4. Peter Flynn says


    Not bad on the race names.

    Race 7 is the VRC Empire Rose Stakes.


    Pe Dent

  5. Crio, those frequent punting points must be mounting up, the only bloke to cover more ground in the last week for the sake of racing was Mikel Delzangels who flew out from Paris for the day to watch Dunaden have a trot and canter at Werribee.
    Wonder if anyone has ever done the Paris to Werribee trip by choice before?
    Also on the Werribee quarantine centre theme, saw Francesa Cumani taking one of her old mans horses out for a bit of light work, and thought even with my shocking strike rate, i’d take the 50’s on Francesca in the Miss Werribee competition!
    I’m with you on Tatra in the first, had an absolute gut buster last start, and providing he’s come through it in fair nick,looks a moral in the first.

  6. Ah, the Paris end of Werribee.
    Not many miles for me this week now with MV tonight, 4x Flemington and maybe Kyneton.
    You used to rack up the kms and meetings in your day!

  7. I know that it is a very Melbourne response to concede that I don’t feel any great loss at news of the passing of Tie The Knot. Guy Walter’s gelding won over $6m in stakes and racked up enough feature placings in Victoria to comfortably fill the pool room – yet, for many of us, he was a Sydney champ. Soft kills in Sydney Cups, Tancreds, Chipping Nortons etc are more the legacy that his withering finishes includind a brave Cox Plate second to Sunline. When he and Shogun Lodge filled the placings in Sky Heights’ Caulfield Stakes, VATC bookies grinned wryly at these boom northerners.

    Maybe it was the name…promised so much but, despite some great moments, not quite fulfilling the hype!

  8. Budge- any E/W specials this weekend (you were on fire at MV with the 2 you gave me – Ironstein and the Wangaratta one)
    Mine for the record are Exceptionally and Oasis Bloom and Dennis Oleary from here hasnt made the trip with Outlandish Lad (and Boss riding) without some e/w hope at big odds

  9. The each way special of the Spring Carnival will be revealed later this evening!!

  10. Budge,

    What is your clearest and fondest Derby memory?

  11. Flynny,
    You are correct re registered name of the Myer Classic being Empire Rose Stakes. Has never actually been raced under that name.

    1988 onwards held over 1,600m
    1988–1994 was a Listed Race
    1995–1996 was a Group 3
    1997–2003 was a Group 2
    2004 onwards Group 1

    1988 the race was known as ‘The Honda Legend’
    1989–1992 the race was known as the ‘Honda Legend’
    1993 the race was known as the ‘Hong Kong Bank Stakes’
    1994–2001 the race was known as the ‘Hardy Brothers Classic’
    2002–2004 the race was known as the ‘Nestle Peters Classic’
    2005 onwards the race has been called the ‘Myer Classic’.

  12. Good work Elvis. Wondered how long before you picked up on that! There were some technical issues that caused me to have multiples entries but I’m sure you agree that there is no such thing as too many Budge entries!
    Fondness won an SA Oaks you know? And I believe Clearness was from the same stable. Related to Clear Prince a Derby winner who placed in 1970 Melbourne Cup. Talk about topical !!!

  13. Budge,

    You have inadvertently stumbled on some omens. Fantastic. On to tomorrow though, and I reallly hope Peter can crackit for a Group One win with Oasis Bloom. Great race the Myer. I will be following up on Full Of Spirit. As with a number of the panel’s selections, Flemington will suit better than the Heath.

    The sprint is a tough one also, making for a Quaddie with a 9.7 degree of difficulty. oges might be on to something with Outlandish Lad.

    Haven’t analysed it yet, but the Qld visitor Bold Glance in the last deserves some scrutiny me thinks.

    Haven’t had a drink yet, so it’s all a bit blurry.

    Will chime in again when sobriety is not clouding my judgement.

  14. Elvis – you are a legend but as the senior member of the forum (and no one can be as old as me – ask Crio Budge and DD and they will vouch for that) I have had at least one glass of SA shiraz so far

  15. Come one Oges. Keep us up to date with the tally of glasses. What is “at least” one glass? 2 or 6 ? Big difference. Either way, Elvis will reel you in!

  16. Budge = when DD gives me pocket money for tomorrow with his tips I may….
    Anyway why havent you had a “red” yet?

  17. Budge,

    I’ve kicked the “pea souper” of sobriety away with a Chivas. Daylight saving down south now, so I need to microwave the clarity process.

    The certainties will shortly begin to appear.

  18. Oges,
    Shared a bottle of Wolf Blass Cab Sav with my wife for lunch along with a few cleansers. Good things will be declared at 8pm after thrashing my son at darts!

  19. Excellent judges of good SA red . Wolf in full flight at the KI races was a sight to see
    It appears “dehydration” is not a problem among the forum members

  20. Budge,

    Just read your email re your 2013 C Cup selection. In response to point 2, would he run her in a prestigious Group 1 as a lead up to a Group 2 (I think)?

    I reckon he’s thrown her in the deep end while she is firing and will spell with a view to your prediction.

    Hope you can beat Matty at darts, cause’ you sure as shite can’t beat me.

  21. Elvis,
    Come down here and say that!

    Got on Bart’s shortener at MV, Falconer, so the bank is building for tomorrow’s special!

  22. Budge,

    Clearly remember Brewery Boy, I think we both had $100 at the 3’s and then prepared the stogies to light up 1st time past the post. Probably my biggest bet at that time and never in doubt.
    I did improve on derby day though. Let’s go back to ’87 and Omnicorp. Still my best ever day at the races backing the first 6 winners and had money in every pocket and many other places on leaving the track and then behaved like Elvis after a big win at the casino and remember nothing more.
    Currently concentrating on laying a few shorties for the place tonight and it’s going OK.
    I’m going to have something on Subiaso in the derby due to it’s run at the valley and hope for the best and will get some Saturday form happening after dealing with what’s on offer tonight.

  23. Jock,

    If anyone I have ever known could back the first 6 (any 6) winners on a card at Flemington it would be you, and that other bloke with an annoying post win giggle.

    A word of warning though.Your Derby selection is trained by Robbie Laing. Good trainer and seemingly a great bloke, but a Victoria Derby?

    Whilst I still blindingly focussed enough to butter up, the same applied to Ethopia in the Cox Plate. Rhys McLeod was the “how” factor. Same with R Laing in a VRC Derby in my humble opinion.

  24. The Each Way Special of the Spring (so far) is GOLDEN ARCHER.

    He’s just off the absolute top class as evidenced by seconds to Buffering and Sepoy so if Howmuchdoyouloveme is not the real deal or struggles to handle the straight, he will be the one. In any event, hard to see him missing a place.
    Really believe he should be $6 instead of $16. Seen plenty of great sprinters around the turn at Caulfield front up to the Flemington straight at short odds and go over.
    Don’t forget, while Howmuchdoyouloveme was ultra impressive last start, it only beat Canali (and getting a kg from it as well). Latin News was 3rd.


  25. Skip of Skipton says

    Crio, I was at the Derby in ’97 and backed Second Coming. He led all the way to beat Tie the Knot. Betting 25/1 with a bookie instead of getting the $31 the tote ended up paying was a bummer, but I still went home with alot more coin than I came with.

    Tie the Knot came second in a Cox Plate and Caulfield Cup also. He was a Sydney champ, but couldn’t be categorised as a flop in Melbourne, he just kept finding one better.

    I have driven up to the Sapphire Coast today for a holiday and have hardly looked at the form, so I need to pull my finger out.

  26. Budge,

    You make a great case for Golden Archer and I will heed your expert advice. I hope however that he is better at finding the Bulls Eye, or even a Double Three, than you are.

  27. Skip,
    Did you know Tie The Knot died last week? A great Sydney horse- always unders here and performed below his Sydney form but a top horse all the same.

  28. Skip of Skipton.

    I totally agree with your sentiments regarding Tie The Knot. I thought Crio was a bit harsh. He was a great racehorse who gave his utmost for his owners and put $6 mill in the bank. Melb / Syd rivalry aside, he was a very, very good galloper and it is sad to hear of his passing.

  29. Come one Skip, Crio, Oges, Jock, Elvis. Put your tips where your mouth is. Refer the Spring Carnival Punting Competition.

  30. Showing my age but. In 1972 Sobar had won the caulfield cup easily, fronted up as a very short priced fav in the derby.. and lost. to Dayana. Not one of H Whites better rides. Pretty unusual for a 3yo to contest the Caulfield let alone win it.

  31. Crio,

    I’ve had a thought.

    What do you think of an annual, purely Thoroughbred quiz night. Who won what and when, what were they by and out of, who trained and rode them, who ran second, who broke records.

    Too many trivia nights just don’t contain enough racing questions.

    I’m assuming a lot, if not most of the Almanac contributors are in the Melbourne region, if not, I reckon it would be worth the trip.

    Entry, as in a rock show “access all areas” would be a laminated yesteryear bookies ticket.

    Just a thought. Open to panning or planning.

  32. Mate we’d all be running for second but if you want to organise it I’ll be in.

  33. Now forget about the past and find us all a winner for [email protected]

  34. Budge- you have been too busy stirring Elvis all night to notice my tips are already posted (ages ago)
    Thanks for the e/w special- have written out the ticket already
    Elvis i reckon a Crios Racing Day at the track sometime next year would be a better go – and with Budge used to lunch in style he could show us all how its done
    Skip- I am taking the “Management Committee ” to the S/Coast in 2 weeks. Let me know what its like

  35. Budge,

    Just typed a heap of tips and reasons why only to Chivas Regal the wrong key. Lost it all.

    Can’t go to those lengths again so in summary,

    Derby: Malabar Man. Take fav out and he’s one who will stay.

    Myer: Oasis Bloom straight out, with a healthy bet on Full Of Spirit each way.

    The last: Bold Chance and and Dusty Star.

    The Sprint is a toughie, but i will follow your Archer advice.

  36. David Downer says

    Alrighty then…

    Race 2 Hotham Hcp
    Just back GATEWOOD. Yes the European stayers aren’t used to a sequence of runs in this time-span, but his first two go’s here could hardly be termed taxing. The Geelong Cup form is being potted for the upside-down race it was – but with that sort of moderate pace, all you can do is sit and sprint. There was really no opportunity to show what he can do, but Flemington should provide that. The query is, unlike most of the Euro’s, he is stepping out to this trip for the first time.

    Race 3 The Wakeful
    Betting shows a two act affair between Dear Demi and Zydeco, but I’m looking for value from a different formline. So if a decent price is on, heading in the direction of TYANNA. Comes out of the lesser grades, but her Bendigo win the jock barely moved, even had a peek at the screen. The run suggested plenty in the tank for a step-up in trip, and can race on the pace. Drawn to get a sweet run. May lead, may get the box. A slow Geelong-Cup style tempo would assist her zipping off them.

    Race 4 Ascot Vale Stakes
    This is a ripping little race. Will have to stick with SNITZERLAND. Should get at least $4. Hoping she’s not over the top now as has put in some big runs this campaign – but she’s a little street-fighter, and if it becomes a duelling bob of heads down the straight when it gets real tough, I wanna be on her team! Just hope she hasn’t punctured just yet.

    Race 5 McKinnon
    Another new friend of the almanac, OCEAN PARK, is panels above these. Slight risk given he’s run his Grand Final, but he’d still be too good for these. I will probably look on however, $1.55 doesn’t interest me.

    Race 6 VRC Derby
    First backed this bloke at Caulfield on September 22, and after his win I did declare “there’s my Derby horse”. So I won’t be jumping off HVASSTAN now. Strong, bullocking type (broken record alert), if he gets held up, particularly after a slow pace and they get stacked, he just bustles his way out, and just keeps finding to the line. Done zero wrong thus far.

    It’s a Dundeel is obviously the question mark after it’s run last week. He is a slight little horse, has he had enough this campaign? If not, and he returns to the Champion Stks form, he may just blitz it in. Trainer isn’t sure if he’s over the top. At least, that’s what he’s saying #cunningkiwis

    From that Vase race, IAD actually wasn’t making ground on SUPER COOL late, who could now be the one with more upside than these with the step-up in trip again. His run prior was full of merit also after being shuffled back. They’re starting to find him at the price now.

    ELECTRIC FUSION is the x-factor. Wary of R.Smerdon here, he can certainly target these staying events.

    So I’ll be backing HVASSTAN, SUPER COOL and saving on ELECTRIC FUSION for various outlays. And an “outsider blouser” from the Geelong formline wouldn’t surprise either might I add!

    Race 7 Empire Rose Stakes
    Another super race for the ladies. Is it almost blasphemous to not back OASIS BLOOM on this forum?? She’s really stepping up in class here, but let’s hope it’s her breakout performance. Back to Flemington should suit the big lass. She could keep things more honest for Streama who had it her own way up front at Caulfield last time. OB should have won at Caulfield last start after travelling via the cape – Star of Giselle who beat her then won easy at MV last week – and would be right in this.

    In the Autumn Sydney equivalent, the Coolmore, a number of these went around. SECRET ADMIRER was nosed out and beat all of today’s opponents. Last Spring she was unlucky in the Emirates here, and ran 5th in a Cox Plate. Caulfield Cup was never her go last week. Back in trip a concern, and long time out of the winner’s circle, but has drawn well here, and if she finds a nice price, I’ll have a burl.

    Wouldn’t surprise me if Soft Sand, finally drawing a wide gate, flashes home for a place.

    Race 8 & 9 …ehhhh, getting there!

  37. oges,

    I appreciate what you think about a Crio Racing Day, but I’m talking Gala Event. Race days can, will, and do, turn into rabble. That’s not a bad thing, I would just like to put the Almanac Racing Passionates on the World Stage (or Carlton’s at least)

  38. Budge,

    Horses form aside, if you like something and Nick Hall is astride, double your bet.

  39. Thanks DD – now I must take it all in before the bets go on
    Good punting tomorrow

  40. Leaving the Valley now.
    Dare to Dream.

    and good luck to Fef with his Derby bolter, Costa Nova.

  41. David Downer says

    Cheers Oges,

    I really don’t know about tomorrow to be honest ..feels like it might just be one of those days pulling the wrong rein!

    But a long week ahead!

    May dame fortune attend…

  42. This is heavily influenced by a six pack but I’ve narrowed it down as follows:
    Best of the day is Sizzling, loved its first up run and should be in a good spot to get the last crack.
    Not sure about Gatewood as it gave Chateau Margeaux 1 1/2 kg only at Geelong and now has 58, so I may slip into everyone’s fav, Exceptionally.
    I’ll be laying Ocean Park as this will be a slow run through the first mile but don’t really know what can beat it.
    For those who don’t like R Laing as a potential Derby winning trainer, I prefer to look at who the jockey is, go the chicken.
    My enthusiasm now starts to run low and I’m backing Invest in the Myer at 100’s.
    The Budge may be right in the next but I generally only like Golden Archer in his first few runs so I could potentially have something on Curtana as it likes the straight and I won’t take evens the fav.
    I’m ignoring the last but if anyone likes a bet in Adelaide I thing that You Dee Cee is a great chance in the last at a very good odds as it was on the outside fence most of the way last time.

    Glad to see DD still calls the 4th the Ascot Vale, I’m calling the 8th the Craven A, not the Salinger or the Yellowglen just because I’m about to go outside for a durrie. I’m still pretty attached to some of those old race names. Maybe that would be a good trivia theme, pick the old race names.

  43. Whilst punching out the tickets at the Vaqlley tonight I reckon i heard a “crims on rims” commentator calling Toulouse Lautrec getting to the front! Stayer, jumper, pacer!!

  44. I rate Golden Archer as “overs” and a top second tier horse, but reckon the fav might be an absolute star.

  45. Whilst punching out the tickets at the Vaqlley tonight I reckon i heard a “crims on rims” commentator calling Toulouse Lautrec getting to the front! Stayer, jumper, pacer!!

  46. I rate Golden Archer as a gun second tier horse and good value, but I reckon the fav is an absolute star.

  47. Skip of Skipton says

    Cox Plate winners buttering up in the McKinnon are bad news. Alcopop into Budge’s hot tip for the Gadsden. Elvis’ tip in the Geelong Derby Trial went well (I wasn’t sure if he was joking at the time), so I might do an all-up of those three.

    Yes, crio a tad harsh on Tie the Knot. He was an honest beast with no connection to Gai/Singo, and I mourn his passing. The last good Nassipour sired horse too.

  48. Always take a Quaddie on Derby Day, got 3 legs of it last year and still missed out despite going about 8 wide in the last leg! Anyway I’ve gone 1-3-5-9/2-9-10/2-3-7/3-4-6-7, I usually go for a $20 max spend….

  49. Sounds like we all pretty much crashed and burned. Still 3 more days of Flemington Carnival to go!!

  50. I’m off at sparrow’s in the morning to be Manager of my son’s junior golf pennant team so if anyone else wants to put up a review of today’s races that would be good!!

  51. Skip of Skipton says

    Kudos to Glass Harmonium, Jimando, and McClintock for putting on some decent pace. There was some real racing today. GH almost pulled it off, but brilliant to see Alcopop get a win and his first Group 1 also.

  52. Peter Flynn says

    The rides of Williams and Oliver in the LKS Mackinnon were absolute peaches.

    Shocking day on the punt.

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