Crio’s Racing: J.J. Liston Stakes Day

It’s a great sign when you look forward to the weekend fields being released on a Wednesday. Sure, they are not yet “silk department”, but form from hereon must be scoured.
Meetings over the next few weeks have 2 distinct components – the looking for a winner “right now” and the “black bookers” for the future and the features. Hopefully we can spot some of each, especially at Caulfield on Saturday.
This is J.J.Liston Stakes Day. We’ve annually lamented the name change away from an important icon of Melbourne’s sporting history (check our Archives) and, whilst the argument remains, there are more positives to pursue here by looking at what is a card full of interest and speculation.
Here’s an early overview:- the weather has been fluky but very windy so the track should be OK.
MR1- (1600m). good opener. Text ‘n Hurley (8) impressive last start at this track. Shares top rating with Moody’s (7). Love For Ransom (2) will certainly be heavily supported. Saturday Affair (3) brings hardened SA form from a strong stable.
MR2- (1600m). Bit keen on Araldo (5). Chasse (1) the watch.
MR3- (2000m). have a cuppa.
MR4- (Vain, 1100m, G3, 3yoCG). Safeguard (1) is 2 from 2. Il Cavallo (5) has a quirky name and the Moody boom. Ripper race. Fast’n’Rocking (2) is the best credentialled maiden young’un going around. Excited to see the latest offspring from the extraordinary Circles Of Gold (Duran, No8) debut, not at Swan Hill as is the progeny’s custom! Some famous colours on view here – Elvis, the Diva…
MR5- (Quezette, 1100m, G3, 3yoF). Metastasio (3), beautifully named and very talented, is testing my resolve. Moody has a brace (7 + 8) of potential guns. Really tough race, including a fascinating Gai/Prebble team for Swing Vote (6).
MR6- (Liston, 1400m, G2, WFA). Puissance de Lune (4) returns. Was it an apparition? If not, he wins and forges onwards. Ajeeb (9) looks to have untapped potential. The Snowden camp is keen for Launay (2). Second Effort (1), a cracking late Autumn/Winter performer, defends. He holds form, as shown by a remarkable May sequence at recent ‘Bools, but it might not be wet enough for him to join Tauto (1971/72) as consecutive Liston winners.
MR7- (1200m, Listed). Don’t like this race. I’m an Amah Rock (7) man but happy to let it go around. Bello (1) is the watch. 9, 4, 3 will have supporters. Despite the draw, Thy (6) is undeniably a class horse that must be rated. Colicchio (12) is the huge blowout.
MR8- (Cockram, 1200m, G3, Mares). Best race of the day. Excited to see the toppy back but waiting for another day. I’m an unabashed Lady Melksham (3) fan but will risk from the paint. Plenty of chances but hoping Octavia (6) @ co string them out as I have a rare Wednesday E/W spesh!! – got obsessed last night at the 25/1 pop Petite Diablesse (15) and it will be the key to my winning chances on Saturday.

Elsewhere around the country punters will, of course, try their hands on meetings of varying quality.
Rosehill hosts the G3 San Domenico (SR6, 1100m) where some of last season’s good juveniles reemerge. Predictably, Snowden’s Slipper runner-up, Sidestep (1), faces a major challenge from Gai’s Whittington (3). Whiskey Allround (6) might be the better Quinella option with the toppy.
Across the continent, I recommend a look at the Broome Cup meeting – and I dare you to remain focused on the horses as the course blends into a magnificent vista of ocean, sky and dirt. No wonder owners and trainers are keen to get there. Some of the stakes are worthwhile also – the sprint is worth $40,000 and it a $100,000 Cup! (Budge – Great Wall Of China is engaged!)
It’s time to set up a spring Blackbook and hunt for winners. Look for trainers in form. Follow horses on preferred tracks. I reckon Greg Eurell and Michael Moroney may be ones to consider in the next fortnight – horses at good odds and looking fit and maybe not likely to figure in the megariches.
Try to find Mrs Hadlee on a non- Heavy please! And wait for Nadhima at a provincial.
Most importantly, share your thought, tips and views with us here on
Good luck!


  1. cowshedend says

    Grat preview Crio. Reckon Puissance might be a nice lay tomorrow, if Ajeeb can get a little bit of cover into the wind round the back (strong NW forecast), he might have a bit on them in the straight.
    Also ran into Bryce Stanaway at Ballarat yesterday, boy he sure leaves an impression, a real character

  2. Agree with you cowshedend about Crios preview.The “management committee”reckons you have a way with words too Crio
    Crio write up in Tiser for all of those with a memory of Pillar of Hercules who didnt rise to fame much on the track after ownership changes and didnt have much success as a sire. It is now a 9yr old and taken over by Michael Hickmont and Lois Paech at the Bridge.Tomorrow at odds of 66-1 it steps out for them at Morphettville
    News from the beach
    David Jolly has one runner in Adelaide-(R7 – 7) place best
    OLeary has horses getting ready for the Balak Cup meeting in Sep
    Weir has bought horses to Adelaide and these will be about the money – hes not afraid to travel

  3. Thanks for the polish Oges. Good to see you being a snout for our SA mail also!
    Saw that Pillar Of Hercules was in…it hasa been out of work longer than you! It raced in top company (including winning the Norman Robinson) before becoming embroiled in scandal. Hilariously, a comment in the Best Bets next to one of it’s final runs reads “Dishonest”. hmmmm

    Keen on a running double at big odds to close tomorrow’s card at the Heath. That’s The One in to Petite Diablesse.

  4. Crio – Great Wall Of China has diminished into a small fence!

    Agree with the great sage, Cowshedend, that Puissance is the lay of the day. Never won at less than 1600m or at WFA. This commonly occurs early in the carnival where the “best horse” is presented way under the odds even when in an unsuitable race. No reason why he would be ready to win yet as he has a big campaign ahead of him. Much prefer something on Launay (4 wins from 7 2nd up and 5 from 12 at this distance).

    Race 7. Quinella That’s The One (1 start at 1200m for a 2nd to Mosheen) and Serene Star (always thereabouts but now down in the weights and blinkers on 1st time).

    The 2nd lay of the day is Octavia in the last. Rises 5kgs on good win in weaker race last time. meets much better mares here worse off at the weights. Think Lady Melksham (unbeaten fresh) is the one to beat but will keep a close eye on Oasis Bloom for future races (I’ve already snapped up the 1,000/1 for Melbourne Cup).

  5. My query on Lady Melksham is the gate, but she’s clearly on top for me now they’ve scratched my E/W spesh!
    That’s The One will have to be good to carry us both. Hope they run along in R7.
    It is a fascinating meeting. The Liston is always good – rarely great or decisive. Nothing like the honour rolls of upcoming races, but nevertheless a gateway to better days.
    Really looking forward to getting to Caulfield tomorrow.

  6. Looks like Budge is out of the winter hibernation, passed drug testing and ready for a big spring. I’m expecting Elvis will also appear before too long.

    Get on early at Caulfield. Saturday Affair will get the chocolates in the first., it’s an average field and he’s on the way up..very impressive last start and will like the 1600. note that it’s Clare Lindop’s only ride and probably could have stayed in good old Adelaide for a treble.

    I have to agree with anyone who doesn’t want to take short odds Puissance De Lune. I’m a bit of a High Esteem fan at good odds, if you think Ajeeb is a chance then High Esteem looks OK taking a line through weights against Road Trippin.

    The Vain is a good race and noticed Hill Spy’s win at Morphettville was very easy and could have won by panels if it had got a run through earlier, it will improve and may be a good chance.

    Otherwise the Adelaide meeting is a bit of a disaster, so I’ll be giving the TVN/Sky/Fox Footy button a bit workout. Looking forward to some of the stars coming out soon as I’ll miss a fair bit of it this year…More likely to attend at Turffontien or Kenilworth than Flemington but a few weeks yet to build a bank.

  7. Good for you Jock. We need a Yaarpie correspondent.
    How long are you going to Sth Africa for? Elvis is due back from USA next week. We all need a Spring bank.

  8. Surely Elvis diverted to Cancun, he’d be a star there…. a real spring break.

    I’ve got 3 1/2 weeks of safari etc. No. 1 nephew is getting married, so I’ve been summoned, even though I told him to run wild for as long as he can get away with it and get a dog when he wants companionship… I don;t think that went down well with his mother.

    Looking forward to it and probably will get to Turffontien. and return before Caulfield Cup. Just got a horse bill and found out that agisting a horse is cheaper than boarding a dog, so I’m chasing winners to cover costs.

  9. Mail is that Puissance de Lune will probably be scratched as track too hard. Stand by for an announcement.

  10. sorry about the wrong lead Budge…. almost everyone had a knock on the Lune, but he is the real deal. Rock hard track, has barely worked and an unsuitable distance. Insiders are taking odds for Cox Plate/ Cup double.
    The Internationals have got panels on our horses.
    Pakal won the second in a canter.

    btw…Greatwall of China ran a brave second in the Broome Cup.

  11. cowshedend says

    How good the Lune.? That was awesome,second up will be intersting ,they look like going to the Cox rather than Caulfield,looks like its going to be a beauty this year Budge
    Roll on spring

  12. Did anyone back a winner Saturday or did the bookies clean up Crio? (and it sure wasnt me )

  13. Oges, we just chopped out – it was that kind of day. The first 2 were backed off the map, Sidestep and the Lune were bad results and we took on Octavia.
    They are, are we say, on again next week!
    Moonee Valley and Warwick Farm.

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