Crio’s Racing

Sneak a look at your racing calendar and it becomes apparent that, as good as some of the horses and contests presented at Randwick and Caulfield this Saturday are, the main feast is still a few weeks away.

Nevertheless there’s a lot to get excited about – declaration of Acceptances on Wednesdays is henceforth eagerly anticipated from now until the last day of The Championships – exactly 2 months from today (11/4).

And this week’s fayre is pretty good by any standards.

The G1 drawcard is the C.F.Orr Stakes (MR8, 1400m, WFA, G1), for years a springboard for further glory. 2015 isn’t a vintage edition, though Dissident may be in for a really good prep.

The standout is the return of Chautauqua in the Rubiton (MR6, 1100m, SW+P, G2). Team Hawkes has an incredible playlist of hits to juggle – with the Lightning Stakes and Oakleigh Plate on successive weeks, it appears they may have chosen to see if the straight course Spring sensation can handle the Heath’s nuances and thus leave Deep Field as their stable’s HQ challenger to Lankan Rupee (21/2) as the stars head towards a mouth-watering Newmarket on 14 March.

The heats of the Diamond Prelude are further reason to pay attention to events down Dandy Rd.

Rightly, most interest is in the Fillies’ edition (MR3, 2yoF, G2, 1100m) after which it is expected favouritism for the rich juvenile classic (28/2) will be confirmed. Fontinon is the boom and looks to be on the “up”. Heatherly, on the evidence of the Valley scamper last Friday, flies. Secret Agent is the other who figures in markets.

The young boys go around in the next – for less money and status (MR4, 2yoC+G, 1100m, G3). The logic, apparently, is that the females have been proven to be superior in recent years and thus their race rates higher – might not, therefore, a similar logic be applied to compress the weight differential between the sexes, which is the main reason the girls are winning? “Positive discrimination” again! The interesting runner in this division is Of The Brave. Mark Riley, seemingly doomed to a lengthy “holiday”, keeps finding ways to delay a verdict, thus allowing him to push on with earning coin from the Debutant winner.

The Carlyon Cup, Kevin Hayes, Autumn and Bellmaine Stakes are amongst a raft of other fields which will require scrutiny – there’s plenty of time…RVL has again gone with the 6.25pm R9 much to the annoyance of on course Industry participants (the cricket will be well in to its second innings before we emerge).

Excitingly, Randwick also offers much – arguably more – for fans.

How wonderful to see Fiveandahalfstar back (100/1) after such a lengthy absence (SR4, 1200m).

Some serious quality parades for the Light Fingers (SR5, 1200m, 3yoF, SW, G2)…First Seal, Mossfun, Winx, Memorial – Peggy Jean might be 16/1. Great race named for one of the truly greats.

The Apollo Stakes is the other banner feature (SR6, 1400m, WFA, G2). Obviously it clashes directly with the Orr down here. I’m pretty keen on Contributer (8).


Like the World Cup of Cricket, it is just the early rounds but most of the main combatants have finished their trials and are ready to show their wares. The big prizes are still some way off but the games have begun!

As always there are other racing attractions all around the country and the globe.

One for omen punters runs in the second last at Goulburn on Friday…the 13th!! Devil’s Mark jumps from Barrier 6 with a career record of 6/6/6 and having previously saluted on this superstitious date!

If the sun rises on Saturday, there’s, of course, the annual Buchan picnics – and many other Buchan options.

Tips invited – nay, demanded.

Good luck!


  1. Crio, you’ve forgotten the five race, non TAB meeting in Corowa. Truthfully, it would be a suprise to see any runners there who might ever come to the “Big Smoke”, though the injury prone gelding Infuse is running.

    To my recollection it sold to Lloyd Williams team for around $330,000.00 at the Inglis yearling sales, starting its career well, with 2 wins from the first 4 starts. Ongoing injury problems since then. The Freyer stable obtained it a few years back, thoug its struggled to get on track. Both of its runs in the last few years have seen it finish well back in the field. It came third in a trial at Tatura earlier this week, so hopefully it’s fit enough to be a handy contributor.


  2. Glen, I simply ran out of time. I’d noted the entries for Corowa, specifically Miss Yearn in R2. Acceptances are not until 9am Thursday.

  3. G’day Crio, it’s all become an esoteric dialogue, as the two horses in question are not acceptances. Any how Maryanne and i will be down river in Echuca for the Riverboat Blues Festival. Rock on, and Happy punting !


  4. Crio love the omen bet …spooky!, more Doris Stokes than Phillip Stokes though.
    For what i am about to say, may god have mercy on my soul; Having had a number of horses with Ellerton, i know him to be the most negative non-spruiker in the game, he said “Heatherly could be the best horse i’ve ever trained” in Ellerton speak he reckons it’s a freak.
    I’m already on it in the Diamond.
    Warning; Any moron tipping 2yo’s, should be treated with contempt and disdain, so feel free to heap derision upon me, considering the last 2yo winner i backed, Cliff Fahler was getting fitted out for his first stetson!

  5. Crio – you left out Onemorezeta from discussions in the Light Fingers. Was a big win on Oaks Day beating Eloping & Tawteen, although received weight from those two. First go at 1200m should be interesting.

  6. Yeah. Cracking race

  7. With the temperature tipped to be in the very high 30s (and bowls postponed) Im keeping out of the city races in the hope that I can snare a winner on KI. Kangaroo Island hosts its annual Carnival starting on Friday and finishing on Sunday with the running of the Cup (another bucket list one Cowshedend Crio from this area- think of the damage we could do?)
    (Its a wonderful two days with a day in between for fishing touring or winery visits)
    Im looking for OLeary to get a winner as well as our other local trainer who has a Wolf Blass owned horse in the second (Wolf has been a great supporter of the KI races for many years)
    I suppose Ive got to back Heatherly now
    If all else fails I will try and jag a winner at Strath next Wednesday

  8. Oges – Wolf practically ran the KI races for years. Never ever beaten in a photo finish!

    Crio – I’m a Contributer fan. Has awesome fresh form just a bit concerned at 1400m. Will be steaming home.
    Noticed one nominated for Doncaster/QE Stakes in Freedman stable. A German horse called Ivanhowe. Has won 5 of 10 mainly in Germany Group Ones but ran in the Arc and Japan Cup. Form is top drawer and worth watching when he lines up here. Could easily measure up to the Queen Elizabeth. Doncaster may be a bit short.

  9. Oges, back Heatherly as a Valentine gift for the long-suffering

  10. Elvis has a runner at the Valley tonight. He bred and owns it but leased out to race. Race 2 BABY DON’T CRY (out of New Sensation).

    Go you good thing!

  11. Unusually I have had a sports bet – laying the Australian team at skinnies. Jimmy Anderson might catch them on a seamer as weather very unsettled.
    Other possible danger is Duckworth/Lewis which trims markets due to random algorithms.
    My only other dip was NZ months ago at overs. Will lay off later.
    Wary, though, that Cricket Cup will be a goldmine for corporate bookies

  12. Track a Soft 5 now at Caulfield. Very happy to risk Chautauqua first up around the bend on rain affected track. Think Oakleigh Girl will lead with Eloping popping out to sit on her outside and kick in the straight. Flamberge is the one at odds. Excellent first up record (4-3-0-1) and Soft (3-2-0-0). Worth something each way at around $19.

    Other races
    R1 No reason River’s Lane ($12) can’t win again as similar field to last time and D Oliver stays on. Should get a gun run from barrier 1 but soft form only so-so. Use The Lot ($26) is the one at odds that could improve. Has won 3 of 5 at Caulfield.

    R2 Reckon Thinking Of You ($4.80) is the best horse. Favourite will get an easy lead but she’ll be finishing on hard (if you can?)

    R7 Zebulon ($11) has been gelded since last prep and looks well placed here fresh.

    R8 It’s now or never for Dissident ((2.90) today. I expect the real Dissident to stand up though he is short enough. Toydini ($21) and Star Rolling ($26) appear overs and will add value for the exotics.

    R9 Girl Guide ($3.30) is top shelf and should win. Politeness ($6) main danger but is a bit of a non-winner.

  13. Track raced really well and the good horses won…Fontiton, Chautaqua, Dissident – as Bruce and others often commented, “all goes well” for the Carnival.
    Pretty chuffed re Contributer.
    The oddity was the starstudded Light Fingers…winner a big shortener at huge odds.

  14. As the crow flies it’s circa 200K’s along the Murray river from Corowa to Echuca. Have spent a few great days enjoying the Riverboats festival. Today, I got on to the computer for the first time since Friday to discover Saturdays races in Corowa were abandoned after R 2. Does any one know why? The news hadn’t travelled down the Murray, so i’m none the wiser.


  15. Good Q Glen.
    I see it was a Good4 @R1 and a Heavy8 @R2…must have been a dangerous deluge.

  16. Budge on fire, pity about Zebulon, would have given me the quaddy.

  17. Budge, on fire

  18. Ta Crio, I should look closer at the results. We chose well going to Echuca for , a few days of talent like Adalita, Dan Sultan, Sarah Blasko and the Whitlams is more fun than a washed out non Tab.


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