Horse Racing

The Chalk Eaters Guide: 7th December

Robert Smerdon working as an Uber driver…. Does he give milkshakes to his passengers?

I’ll be honest to all of you reading this – I should have called this the W.Pike Backing Guide

And here we are, the last Group 1 of the year and decade, the Kingston Town Classic to finish off The Masters, named after The King’s win in the 1982 edition (The Western Mail Classic), his 30th and last victory, in what also turned out to be his final start before injuries brought an enforced end to one of the most beloved turf heroes we’ve ever known.

At this stage, Pikey is riding 6 favourites at Ascot on Saturday, so if I put all of them in this week’s guide, I imagine he’ll boot home none of them.

There’s another bunch of of boring crap going on around the place, such as the Pakenham Cup, three Listed races at Doomben, as the Magic Millions is now just over a month away, and the other usual stuff in other parts of the country that haven’t been lost to bushfires.

Forgetting about our camel races, the big meeting of the weekend in the Thoroughbred universe will see everyone going Bonkers in Honkers on Sunday, for the annual International Races at Sha Tin, and there are runners of Antipodean interest – Kris Lees has In Her Time in the HK Sprint, and Melbourne Cup runner-up Price Of Arran goes around in the Vase, partnered again by Cuzzy Bro Walker.


Mangione (No.3, Barrier 1) in Race 4 at Rosehill, 3pm AEDT

2000m BM78 Graeme Ferris Handicap

Trainer: Chris Waller, Hoop: Nash Rawiller, 58.5kg

Talk about unique – A horse named after King Of The Hill character, Mega Lo Mart spokesman, and former mainstream trumpeter Chuck Mangione.

I’ll never forget his performance at Buckley’s funeral after Mega Lo Mart burned down, which segued into another performance of Feels So Good.

On to the nag, and at Gosford on Halloween, Mangione found out that winning also Feels So Good, and in his two runs since, has stepped up in distance, and run 3rd and 2nd.

The big difference from his last preps was that in those 3 runs, he was ridden more positively, and on Saturday, he does gain the services of a handy on-speed rider in Naughty Nash Rawiller.

Chris Waller also has 4 of the other 7 horses in the race, so I think we could see some Melbourne gangland style tactics on the other 3 runners in transit – I’ll put my imaginary sheckles on ‘Pinning them on the fence with an equine human shield’, allowing Mangione to blow his own trumpet through to a win.


Laverrod (No.5, Barrier 5) in Race 5 at Ascot, 3pm AWST (6:00)

1400m. SWP Listed Sir Ernest Lee Steere Classic

Trainer: Sean Casey, Hoop: Pat Carbery, 55kg

Rocket Rod after knocking off his good mate Muscles Rosewall in the ’69 French Open

When you think about it, Rocket Rod Laver had more Calendar Year Grand Slams (2) than Laverrod has race wins, but they both have one thing in common – They both display enormous natural talent.

And no, I haven’t visited Northbridge past midnight this week, I am going against Pike at least once in this guide – Massimo is low altitude flying of late, making it a hat-trick of victories and 4/6 by knocking off Laverrod in the Placid Ark, but surely, at some point, the equine tribute to the Rockhampton Rocket is going to get his shit together and actually win a race…. Or risk going down as one of the all-time great milk drinkers of the modern age.

Like Oohood.

Still, the Lee Steere Classic looks like another 3YO cracker – Massimo, Laverrod, Champion Fillies runner-up Sanabreanna, WA Guineas winner War Saint – Even Godolphin have Widespread backing up from the Guineas!


Tuscan Queen (No.16,Barrier 3) to win the Kingston Town Classic, 4:50pm AWST (7:50)

1800m WFA Group 1

Trainer(s): Grant & Alana Williams, Hoop: W.Pike, 50kg

The last Group 1 of the year, and there’s five 3YOs in the field…. I seriously can’t remember there ever being that many in a WFA Group 1, but that said, you’ve still got to be a darn good colt or filly to win at WFA.

Unsurprisingly, Pike is aboard the raging hot favourite Tuscan Queen, who gets in at the featherweight 50 kilos under the WFA scale, and follows a very similar path to another of Uncle Bob’s horses in Arcadia Queen, who won the race

AQ won her maiden in September, beat the older horses in open grade, placed in the Burgess Queen, won the Champion Fillies, won the WA Guineas, and then romped in the Kingston Town.

TQ won her maiden in September, beat the older horses, placed in the Burgess Queen, won the Champion Fillies, but the difference was Mr Peters decided it was a tad too hot to race in the WA Guineas.

It’s another one of those freaky historical coincidences… like how Presidents Kennedy and Lincoln got shot in the head by a guy with three names, and were succeeded by a guy named Johnson.

Still, there’s another very good field there to beat – Best Of Days gets the weight swing after his runner-up in the Railway, Pacodali and Gailo Chop are here from Victoria, and conceivably, any of the other 3YOs could spring up out of the ground, like Kay Cee, who did inflict the only defeat of Tuscan Queen’s short career in that Burgess Queen.

TL;DR, Bla Bla Bla, Back Pike, Drink What You Like… Except washing detergent.


Sentimental Gift (No.11, Barrier 6) in Race 9 at Ascot , 5:30pm AWST (8:30)

2100m 66+ Rating Handicap

Trainer: Grant & Alana Williams, Hoop: Pike, 54kg

Well, on that note, it’s time for another completely unoriginal, shitty meme by me.

Being serious (Which I’m not vert good at), there’s a good chance British Bessy could beat her again.


Crazy Craig’s Tip Of The Day

Toot toot for Craig and Ozzy’s Crazy Train!

LAYING Luccicello (No.6, Barrier 5) in Race 6 at Rosehill, 4:20pm AEDT

1350m F&M Benchmark 78 Handicap

Trainer: Chris Waller, Jockey: Tommy Berry, 57.5kg

Whassup boys and girls, it’s Crazy Craig, the Boy from Bairnsdale, and guess what, you’re all aboard the CRAZY TRAIN!

Yes, forget about Billy Thorpe for this week, with my time running out, I’m branching out into the Crazy songlist, so next week, it could very well be a song called Crazy!

Anyway, I’m heading north this Saturday to Smog City, primarily because living conditions there are still better than they are here in Bairnsdale!

I still don’t have a functioning plumbing system, or a working telephone!

Talking of things that aren’t functioning, Luccicello certainly wasn’t last start at Kembla, when she drifted way too far back against Kylease, and was never a hope of winning!

Her racing pattern looks as pretty as George Christensen in budgie smugglers, and it cost her big time, as Kylease ran away, while the Italian stallion filly was fighting it our the minors, and only ran 4th.

AND YET SHE’S COME UP $2.40 HERE!

THAT’S TOO SHORT FOR CRAZY CRAIG!

So there you go, for no sane reason, Luccicello is my LAY. OF. THE. DAY.

I’m Crazy Craig, and that’s why they call me CRAAAAAAZY CRAIG.

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