Horse Racing

The Chalk Eaters Guide: 4th April

Remember when they let people into TABs?

Birdsville – Still less kickback than a wet Randwick

Well, the shutdowns are kicking off – First it was all TABs nationwide, and now the Tasmanian government (Is Jim Bacon still the Premier down there?) shut down racing on the Apple Isle for 4 weeks…. Without telling the local participants beforehand.

That also means everyone else in Actual Australia is free to continue racing under the current restrictions… Until a Federal Minister gets a bad tip at Randwick and cracks the shits.

Hopefully they can hang on until Danon Premium runs in the Queen Elizabeth next week… My contacts have several futures bets on him.

Anyway, the peak of the Autumn carnival has arrived, as millions of degenerates sit glued to the couch in isolation, to watch the race of the day at Woyal Wandwick.

The Country Championship in Race 3.

Apparently there’s also 4 Group 1 races, such as the TJ Smith, full of 8 headcases ready to go bang for our entertainment, and The Doncaster, festering with lightweight 3YOs.

Meanwhile, over here in soon-to-be independent Western Australia (Get in by midnight Sunday folks), it’s time for the 8th best 2YO race in Australia – The Karrakatta Plate.

Just a thought – If WA is now an Island within an Island, according to our Premier – Does that make the Hutt River Province an Island within an Island within an Island?


Colette (No.3, Barrier 4) in The Adrian Knox Stakes at Randwick, 1:55pm AEDT

2000m Group 3 (3YO Fillies Quality)

Trainer: James Cummings, Hoop: James McDonald, 54.5kg

If only Jason Collett wasn’t pre-booked on Ready’s Girl.

It could’ve been Collett riding Colette.

On to the horse, and 2 months ago, ‘Toni’ was still a 3-start maiden, until a random Saturday meeting at Newcastle, where she got a Soft track at the 1885m.

It resulted in a lazy 7 length win, sparking talk that she could be an Oaks filly, and at this stage, the answer remains a muffled yes.

Then 6 weeks later, at the Kembla mile, she was strung up in midfield, went wide, and from some 5L back, absolutely monstered Gemmahara to win by 2L.

Of course, that was a Benchmark 64 – This is a Group 3 Quality with far better horses…. Like Paradee…

And Fascino.

Apparently.

The ever reliable Grant Buckley rode her in both wins, but JMac takes over here, and on an unrelated note, Bucko had a fall at Newcastle on Tuesday – He somehow rode out the meeting, and later found he’d fractured his collarbone.

So that said, have I got enough Dutch Courage to bet on a horse at poison unders going from a 1600m BM64 to a 2000m Group 3?

You bet your arse.


Benitoite (No.7, Barrier 8) in Race 8 at Caulfield, 4:55pm AEDT

1600m BM90 Handicap

Trainer: Clinton McDonald, Hoop: D.Oliver, 56kg

Boring old Benitote, who I don’t have a gag for, raced in the G1 Coolmore at Rosehill three weeks ago, back when human society did stupid things like hang out and socialise, and it should be noted that despite being totally outclassed, McDonald’s mare wasn’t awful – 4th on the Heavy track with the light weight, albeit 7 lengths behind the runaway winner Con Te Patiro.

With the recent heavy rains in Victoria, Caulfield has apparently been turned into something resembling France in 1917, which appears to be a massive tick for Benitote, despite the threat of Germans in the trenches at the 300m.

She’s won 5 times from 11 starts (With no other placings), with 2 of those wins at The Heath, and she’s a very good 4/4 on Soft tracks, and has 1 win from 2 starts on the Heavy.

That also means she’s never won on a Good track.

That probably won’t change tomorrow…. Because it’s apparently a Heavy 8 at this stage.


Rubisaki (No.2, Barrier 2) in Race 10 at Randwick, 5:50pm AEST

1200m Group 3 (3YOF) PJ Bell Stakes

Trainer: Patrick Payne, Hoop: Nash Rawiller, 57kg

My high opinion of Patrick Payne as a trainer hasn’t changed of late, and it shows when you look at my Payne Power Rankings:

  1. Patrick
  2. Stevie
  3. Cathy
  4. Michelle
  5. Marise

Marise Payne recently overtook Liam Payne for 5th – Getting a few more COVID-19 stricken Australians out of Uruguay might push her up to 3rd.

Going back to the bloke sitting at No.1, Rubisaki is going like an absolute rocket since the end of 2019, moving the picket fence along to 4 consecutive wins.

Those 2020 wins include a quick trip up to Sydney for the rescheduled Warwick Farm meeting, where she won the Inglis Spring on a Heavy track, and then she scored a win in the G2 Kewney at Flemington with a well-timed run from the back.

She’s on the short list for the Best 3YO Filly in Australia, an award which will be absolutely dominated by Loving Gaby.

The one downside for Rubisaki is that because of the travel bans, Billy Egan (Or Jye McNeil) isn’t able to ride the filly, so the gig goes to one of Paddy’s old riding companions from Regional Victoria, Nash Rawiller.

Just keep your eyes on the road, Nash.


Laverrod (No.9, Barrier 2) in Race 9 at Ascot, 5:20pm AWST

1100m 78+ Handicap

Trainer(s): Sean & Jake Casey, Hoop: Patrick Carberry, 55kg

What an exciting contest between the 3YOs and the other assorted characters – Like last start winner Floyd – To end Karrakatta Plate Day.

Of the main fancies, in the blue corner, it’s Laverrod, the four-legged fellow with as many wins as his namesake had Calendar Grand Slams, and in the red corner, it’s the appropriately named Red Can Man, named after the national drink of Westralia.

Personally, I’m more of a Swan Draught-drinking kind of wanker.

What sways me to back The Rocket’s corner is that while he does go up from a 62 to a 78 rating race, he drops a lazy 6 kilos on his last start defeat a fortnight ago, while Red Can Man strangely drops back from 1400m to 1100.

If you want to hear the other painful part of that 61 kilo defeat, Rocket Rod went around at $1.45 before Cliffs Of Comfort made him hurt.

Good thing thing I neglected to include Rocket in that Saturday’s guide.

So in the race traditionally dominated by one W.Pike (Who’s been lumped with 18-1 hope Moschard), I’ll go with Laver to fire down an ace on the Can Man.


Crazy Craig’s Tip Of The Day

Some nice sedate Crazy music to save you from lunacy

Castelvecchio (No.1, Barrier 8) to WIN the Australian Derby at Randwick, 3:55pm AEDT

2400m Group 1 3YO SW

Trainer: Richard Litt, Jockey: James McDonald, 56.5kg

G’day fellow isolaters, it’s Crazy Craig, The Boy From Bairnsdale, and it’s now been 14 days since I was within 1.5 metres of Crazy Colin, and I tell you, things have NEVER BEEN BETTER!

My beer supply is gold for another 4 months!

As they say, every silver lining has a cloud… Or something to that effect.

Anyway, in these troubled times, I’m doing my best to retain the Crazy Craig mentality, and my latest CRAZY effort – I’m going to pick a WINNER.

Just when you think I’m on the road to Sanity!

Cox Plate runner-up Castelvecchio was absolutely superb in the Rosehill Guineas, flying home to claim a long overdue victory (And his second Group 1) against his main rival Shadow Hero, and after a long wait, he finally goes to a staying distance, and it’s first time in his career, he’s started favourite!

How crazy is that!

The major change from a fortnight ago is that Craig Williams, other well-known Craig in Victoria, is locked away with the likes of me, so the flying Kiwi known as ‘JMac’ takes the ride, and he has a bit of history with the old AJC Derby.

He rode Castelvecchio’s fabled sire Dundeel to a huge win in the 2013 race, completing the 3YO Triple Crown, having won the 2013 Randwick Guineas and the Rosehill Guineas!

That Murray Baker – He’s one crazy trainer!

So that said, isolation be damned, I’ve got beers to drink and winners to back – Castelvecchio, my TIP.OF.THE.DAY.

I’m Crazy Craig, and that’s why they call me Craaaaaaaazy Craig!

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