Sal’s Racing Preview: Cox Plate Preview – It’s On for Young and Old – and especially the young

Greetings All,


Was intrigued by all the fine young things at Randwick belting out a number that was released in 1969!  Was great to see Randwick and Caulfield packed with plenty of younger participants for the meetings last week and that should endure for the next couple.  Suspect we won’t see it again till this time next year.  However the young are making a more permanent mark on racing especially in the training ranks.  Training partnerships have worked introducing the likes of David Eustace, Sam Freedman, Michael Kent Jnr and the Hayes boys.  The banner boy for this week though has the Clayton Douglas with the performance of Giga Kick in winning the Everest as a 3yo defeating the veteran Nature Strip.  A rematch down the Flemington straight is mouthwatering.  Back to the singalongs – how will the Valley go if Mr Brightside was to salute!


Track Time


The rehearsals are over and it’s the Grand Final for the Cox Plate contestants, can Anamoe make up for last year’s disappointment or does another first foreigner snatch it.  A few other good races on the program leading up Flemington next week.  While in Sydney the move of the Spring Champion Stakes has given another option leading into the Derby.  Last week’s downpour coming before race day at least provided some punting predictability.  This week it is expected to start at about the same time as the meeting on Friday night.  Suspect we need to do form with the expectation of a rain affected track, that is expect to deteriorate through the 18 races.  The barrier draw for the big races had everyone clamouring for the inside, that may not be such a benefit by race 17 the Cox Plate.



Moonee Valley


Friday Night Lights


Just a program from my perspective and a tough one at that.  The Cunning Fox (R6, #9) could be the one each-way.  Is first up but has good form as a 3yo and P Payne has a pretty handy strike rate.

Race 8 – The Manikato Stakes (G1, 1200m, WFA)

The Moir was a dress rehearsal but how will the extra 200m count?   Best of Bordeaux (13) and Coolongatta (14) will try and take advantage of their lightweights and set a cracking pace – will they be able to hang on.  Suspect it will provide the advantage to GSOB’s Paulele (5).  Closed the Moir well, was outstanding in the Schillaci and just think he will have the strength to come over the top and salute.  Bella Nipotina (11) is a model of consistency and can win here, while track watchers were enamoured with the work of Eleven Eleven (2).  If they really over do it up front then it sets well for The Inferno (4) and September Run (9).  Mentioned a few and still could miss the winner.


Selections – 5-11-14-13





We open with a restricted 2yo race but worth $500K.  Have a look while you have your lunch!  Sartorial Splendor (R2, #6) gets weight relief and will go like the clappers, some handy ones against him but likes it here.  Annabel Neasham missed the Manikato with Sweet Ride (R3, #2) so should be well placed running against his own age group, note also that Great Barrier Reef (R3, #9) was scratched from the event on Friday Night.  Just been waiting for Greece (R4, #12) to return after a very impressive win at Geelong also like Sweetened (R4, #15) at a longer price if the inside is cutting out.


Race 5 – Moonee Valley Fillies Classic (G2, 1600m, Fillies SW)


Tough to assess with plenty of lightly raced fillies making up the field. Hell Hath no Fury (5) has been progressing well, stepping out to the mile is a challenge but can win if she sees out the journey.  If she doesn’t then I reckon Do it La (2) can do it, she ran well in the Manifold and this is not as strong.  Respect for Climbing Star (7) one from one reads well and of the rest Starianne (8) has cost punters in the last two but it usually means there is a bit of talent there.


Selections – 5-2-7-8


Race 6 – Crystal Mile (G2, 1600m, Fillies SW)


Three of the top four from the Toorak appear here with the odd one out having a crack at the Cox Plate.  Can’t see why Tuvalu (2) can’t repeat the dose despite this not being his main target – winning form is good form.  Gentleman Roy (6) and Military Expert (9) do both have victories here and are very hard to split.  While if it gets really wet thenCallsign Mav (1) comes right into the picture.  Certainly a watch on the import My Oberon (5) who is 3 from 5 first up.


Selections – 2-6-9-1


Race 7 – The Vase (G2, 2040m, 3YO SW)


The best of Berkeley Square (1) wins this.  Needs to negotiate the tight track and the extra distance but so do the rest.   The filly Jenny Jerome (12) takes this path towards the Oaks and looks well up to this.  Anything the Blue Army puts in for the juvenile classics will be a threat Pericles (3) looks promising after two starts and Virtuous Circle (2) looks every part a Derby hope.


Selections – 1-12-3-2


Race 8 – The Moonee Valley Gold Cup (G2, 2500m, SWP)


Many of these met in The Bart and the best run was Francesco Guardi (11).  Nearly fell then picked himself up and nearly won!  The Maher-Eustice pair Persan (6) and Grand Promenade (1) contest this with significant weight relief compared to the winner Lunar Flare (5) who goes up ½ a kilo.  She can still win this and loves the Valley.  Interesting runner is Nerve not Verve (9) who was knocked out of 24th spot in the Melbourne Cup by her stable mate Emmisary in winning the Geelong Cup.  Desert Icon (3) is in good form and up to this.


Selections – 11-6-5-1


Race 9 – WS Cox Plate (G1, 2040m, WFA)


After the incredible win in the Might and Power thoughts were that only the barrier or luck in running can stopAnamoe (10), drew gate four so it’s now only luck in running that stops him!  Does luck match the price to take?  The  great unknown is El Bodegon (12) good form in Europe  and proven over the distance, Winx aside the last four winners of this race have been internationals hitting it first up.  Will be against him but can’t ignore him.  The other wild card is Laws of Indices (7) coming off a super run in the Toorak.  Of the previously beaten brigade Zaaki (1) gets the gun run from the inside barrier provided the rain does not hit, Alligator Blood (3) has drawn poorly getting to the lead from the outside draw will take some work.  I’m Thunderstruck (2) will want to trail Alligator Blood (3) into a comfortable spot, if the rain has hit and the inside is off he is in this.  Then there is Gold Trip (6) super effort in the Caulfield Cup drop back in distance here a question mark but will relish it if the rain comes.  Lots of questions but sticking with GSOB and Anamoe (10)


Selections – 10-2-6-12-1-7


We close out the day where Roots (R10, #6) looks a weight special, but plenty of respect the Sirileo Miss (R10, #1)who found form at Caulfield and could go on.




Race 8 – Spring Champion Stakes (G1, 2000m, 3yo SW)


The great run of Elliptical (1) in the Guineas should have him primed for this, will take a smart to beat him if he repeats that performance.  She’s Extreme (11) has the class and gets track conditions to suit.  The Rogersons don’t bring them over unless they are sharp and smart, Smart and Sharp (3) appears to be just that after winning the Gloaming and Renaissance Woman (12) is proven over the range and will be in this provided she backs up well after last week.


Selections – 1-11-3-12




Will go with the two quaddie strategy with Anamoe one out in the first and then spreading the chances in the Cox Plate in another and trimming the others to keep the percentage up.


Quaddie 1 – Go ‘Moe

Leg 1 – 1, 2, 3, 4, 12

Leg 2 – 1, 5, 6, 11, 12

Leg 3 – 10

Leg 4 – 1, 3, 4, 6


100 Combinations, $25 Investment returns 25% of the dividend.


Quaddie 1 – What about Curly and Larry?

Leg 1 – 1, 2, 3, 12

Leg 2 – 1, 5, 6, 11

Leg 3 – 1, 2, 6, 12

Leg 4 – 1, 3, 6


192 Combinations, $25 Investment returns 12% of the dividend.


Go Moe,


Cheers, Sal



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  1. Sal Ciardulli says

    Some mayhem at the Valley last night with the Manikato Stakes now Race 11 today and a new set of Quaddie Races. For anyone who wants another tripod here are the updated numbers.

    Quaddie 1 – Go ‘Moe

    Leg 1 – 1, 5, 6, 11, 12
    Leg 2 – 10
    Leg 3 – 1, 3, 4, 6
    Leg 4 – 2, 5, 10, 13, 14

    100 Combinations, $25 Investment returns 25% of the dividend.

    Quaddie 1 – What about Curly and Larry?

    Leg 1 – 1, 5, 6, 11, 12
    Leg 2 – 1, 2, 6, 12
    Leg 4 – 1, 3, 4, 6
    Leg 4 – 5, 10, 14

    240 Combinations, $25 Investment returns 10.4% of the dividend.

    Go Moe,

    Cheers, Sal

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