Flemington Preview: Anzac Day, Thursday 25 April

FLEMINGTON

Track: Good 4

Rail: +8m entire

Weather: Mostly sunny

Back to Flemington for the first time since the Carnival and fine weather should ensure a Good surface is served up. With no recent traffic the track should be fairly even for all.

RACE 1

Speed map/race shape: Anzac Day at Flemington kicks off with a staying event. The big grey Valac can lead from NZ raider Sampson, giving Self Sense and Sin To Win an ideal trail.

Advantaged runners: The small field of eight means BASS won’t be far off them in the run and he will be hard to hold out here. First up in Australia over 1800m he flew home to go down a nostril brings UK form through Melbourne Cup winner Rekindling. It will take a good one to beat him and SELF SENSE at least has the runs on the board. He was last seen finishing two lengths off Gallic Chieftain at Group 2 level. Perhaps SAMPSON brings something different. The Kiwi stayers tend to measure up over here and the NZ St Leger winner obviously arrives with a plan in mind. Respect to VALAC if he gets things his own way in front and OBSERVATIONAL who took ground of PLEIN CIEL late in the Easter Cup last start.

RACE 2

Speed map/race shape: Just eight acceptors for the second as well. The speed comes on the grandstand side down the straight track from Big Reel and Written Choice, giving cover to The Centaurian and Rocket Tommy.

Advantaged runners: A few of these on-pacers might be sitting shots late. Both BANDIPUR and INVINCIBLE AL get in very well at the weights. Bandipur was a driving winner at Caulfield last start over 1200m and that may actually bode well for the drop in trip here. Two back at the track and trip he was arguably in inferior ground when third to Superhard. Invincible Al will be coming on strong as well, he isn’t always at the top of his game first up but does have an affinity with the Flemington straight. On ratings ROCK ‘N’ GOLD should be very competitive but he’s been racing at 1400m lately and the move to accept here is confusing. WRITTEN CHOICE and BIG REEL can give a sight but may be outclassed late.

RACE 3

Speed map/race shape: Most runners stepping up in trip and therefore could race handier than they had previously. The main candidates to lead include Deserved and Wedgetail, with Super Seth handy in the run from a good draw.

Advantaged runners: Looking towards runners who have been hitting the line strongly at 1200m in recent starts. SUPER SETH is the obvious, his last start win to remain unbeaten was awesome. He looks to have considerable talent and this is a smart next step mapped out by a savvy stable. DESERVED ground home to beat a few of these on debut and being by Dundeel you’d assume she’ll appreciate the extra trip. ANGEL ROCK was again unlucky last start but attacked the line like the extra furlong would suit, while CHAILLOT must be respected on the last-to-first debut win.

RACE 4

Speed map/race shape: Bigger field for the fourth over 1710m. Analytica and Zouy’s Comet should come out running from wider draws and cross Algiers and Predecessor to lead. Many of the stronger runners are coming from off-pace and may get moving on the turn.

Advantaged runners: This may be a battle of the fitter fillies and taking on the resuming/freshened geldings. In the red corner are ZALATTE and LIMESHOW. Zalatte can be forgiven her beaten margin when well backed in the G3 Adrian Knox. Two starts prior she was 2.7L off Nakeeta Jane and will improve on a dry track. Limeshow has produced two strong finishes against the pattern at Sandown and now gets to an ideal event third up and can strike from midfield. DECLARES WAR has been freshened for this, while VOW AND DECLARE and NOT A SINGLE CENT resume after contesting Stakes grade Spring events, all will be running on. ANALYTICA is the wildcard and will put himself in the race on-pace.

RACE 5

Speed map/race shape: Sky Call and Asgard Massif can control this three-year-old event from the 1400m start, with Outrageous and Igniter handy as well.

Advantaged runners: From a midfield position, ZOUTORI gets an ideal set up to go 2/2 this prep. He was Stakes-competitive in the Spring – finishing just 2.5L off Ringerdingding in the G2 Sandown Guineas – and returned from a spell to win at Pakenham when doing all the work. Second and third have since gone well. He’ll race in close quarters with OUTRAGEOUS – he’s the class of the field and well weighted with Poy’s claim. MRS O’MALLEY flies the flag for the fillies, she’s drawn wide but would have gone back anyway and Flemington should suit her racing style. IGNITER will like this trip and looks to have come on from the Spring.

RACE 6

Speed map/race shape: Big field for the St Leger. Transact will go forward from the middle and be joined by Wil John from out wide. Rock Dove, Jenstar, Budd Fox and Miss France will all settle in the first half. Don’t expect any speed records to be broken here.

Advantaged runners: STARS OF CARRUM is extremely well suited by the set weights conditions. He enjoyed an ideal run behind the winner in the ATC Derby but just didn’t handle the wet himself. His prior runs all pointed to a preparation that was on track, and now he gets back to the scene of his VRC Derby second. The Laing-trained colt looks extremely difficult to beat. TRANSACT has been doing good things of late up on the pace and his form ties in with the likes of BUDD FOX, AMERICAN IN PARIS and CONVICT SAM who all look promising staying psocpects. Of the fillies, ROCK DOVE has been up forever but is honest as the day is long and was close up in the G3 Adrian Knox. JENSTAR and MINER’S MISS are the other fillies to pay close attention. All need to step up to beat the favourite.

RACE 7

Speed map/race shape: Call Me Handsome will likely look to cross them all from the widest gate here, with Al Passem, Dark Eyes and Second Bullet close by. No great pressure on here.

Advantaged runners: Not the deepest field in the Les Carlyon. CALL ME HANDSOME may be testing the patience of some punters but things certainly work out well for him on paper in this event. The last time he was beaten more than 1.6L was by Avilius back in early February – and that day he endured a tough run. He’ll try and lead all the way.  SECOND BULLET may get first crack at him. He’s been freshened after just missing in the Launceston Cup, but was humming along prior. He loves Flemington! MANTASTIC is in a rich vein of form and will be among the main closers if the tempo allows – the layout here suits him. DANE THUNDER can’t be dismissed after defying the pattern to place at Caulfield, the winner has won again, while HAPPY PHARRELL is a major unknown first up in Australia.

RACE 8

Speed map/race shape: A few runners keen to sit up on the pace here including Winkelmann, Pria Eclipse, Truly Discreet and Special Diva.

Advantaged runners: The Fillies and Mares take on the mile in the last. TRULY DISCREET looks a major player out of an ideal form line. She drove through a gap to win third up and gets a similar run, she’s ready for the mile. TEMPLE OF BEL made ground against the bias to run a place there. Her best form would win this – her last look at the Flemington mile was at Group 1 level (beaten just two lengths!). JESTER HALO brings the other intriguing form line through Miss Siska, who was a whisker off Group 1 glory in Sydney. She’s another one ready to step back up to the mile. It is hard to knock WINKELMANN’s form and she’ll get a few favours on pace, while PENNY TO SELL hasn’t been beaten too far away in good company at her past couple so can be a contender at odds.

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