Horse Racing

The Chalk Eaters Guide: 6th June

Hey, I’m still going better than the Broncos

A day Dr Seuss described as Wacky Wednesday was in full swing two days ago – First up was Notabadharada, who flew home on the rail to win at Randwick at top odds of 493-1 on Betfair ($201 on TAB), and that evening at Happy Valley, the ex-Kiwi Top Military won at somewhere around the ball park of 283-1 on the Honkers tote.

The longest-priced winner at Happy Valley since Hong Kong went professional in 1971.

As per usual, UBET only offered 80-1.

In more local news this week:

TABs across WA will be back smelling like unwashed locker rooms from tomorrow

Racing NSW have a timetable to restore prize money to ‘Pre-COVID Levels’, and to bring back crowds to racedays by next month… You’d imagine Pistol Pete V’Landys will find a way.

And down south, Racing Victoria, with backing from the Owners & Trainers Associations, voted to give the middle finger to the Melbourne Racing Club and their proposal to turn the Spring Carnival into a hodgepodge.

MRC Chairman Peter Le Grand cracked the shits after realising that the Victorian racing industry isn’t as harebrained as the committee he represents.

Looking ahead to tomorrow, and with most of the Brisbane Winter Carnival binned, this is the last Group 1 meeting of the 2019/20 season, and it just happens to be the biggest day in Queensland racing – The G1 JJ Atkins for the juveniles, and the latest edition of the Stradbroke Handicap.

On that note, here’s my annual replay of Rough Habit going back-to-back in 1992, something that Trekking will be hoping to accomplish from the carpark tomorrow.

Ring-a-ding-ding, Pumper’s the King.


Masaff (No.8, Barrier 1) in Race 6 at Flemington, 2:45pm AEST

2520m Grinders Coffee Handicap

Trainer: Chris Waller, Hoop: Craig Williams, 56kg

Why couldn’t they call him Bull Masaff so we could all have a laugh.

Anyway, thank goodness this race isn’t sponsored by Grindr Coffee, although it’d be a good way to get the LGBTQI community involved in racing.

Despite not racking up a win in the 8 runs since he debuted in June 2018, Irish import Masaff has improved in both of his Australian runs – First-up at Randwick over 1600m, he was cleared to run after some troubles during the float ride, eventually running 6th after a couple of incidents in running, and the latest run was at Flemington a fortnight back, when the weather was so bad that the VRC were better off running the races in the Maribyrnong River.

Giving credence to the theory that a Heavy Australian track is basically a Good 4 for an Irish horse, he powered home to run 3rd over 1800m behind Savaheat, after copping a bump at the start.

Despite having an unflattering career record of 1 win and 6 minors from 9 starts, it should be noted Masaff does have a pair of Group 2 placings + a pair of Listed placings over staying distances back home.

When you compare how average an Australian staying race is compared to those in the land of Guinness, that form reference is golden.

Rock hard fit, he does jump 700m, but he gets a decent gate, drops 2 kilos, and gains the services of the No.1 male model in Victorian racing, Craig Williams.

I hope it works out, because this is the time of year where Craig gets the red mist after finding out that his metropolitan jockey’s premiership is under threat and responds with 7 winners in a day.

Damien Oliver is now only 4 winners behind…


Opacity (No.1, Barrier 14) in Race 9 at Randwick, 4:25pm AEST

1600m Benchmark 78 TAB Handicap

Trainer: John O’Shea, Hoop: Hugh Bowman, 59kg

I changed from Classique Legend to Opacity for my Sydney tip, so this better go well, because I had a joke a joke about Les Bridge training Kensei to victory in the 1987 Melbourne Cup ready to go, and I’ll refuse to let it go to waste.

Kensei’s win in the 1987 Cup was the biggest win for anyone wearing a Cardinal and Myrtle top between 1971 and 2014.

Unless you count that Federal Appeals Court case Souths won in 2001.

Side splitting humour that some of you might understand.

Anyway, switching to another horse who wears a shade of red on his silks, the lightly raced Opacity has racked up 4 wins from 6 starts, the latest coming 2nd Up a fortnight ago on the Heavy Randwick track, beating off Miss Einstein in a driving finish after coming from midfield.

Opacity is defined as the quality of a material that doesn’t allow light to pass through it.

Well, this Opacity is a quality horse that doesn’t allow horses to pass it.

Still, this is a tougher assignment, thanks to lumping the top weight (59 up from 56.5), and being cast out in Barrier 14.

But, even in a tough field, I have every bit of faith he’s good enough to win.


Laverrod (No.2, Barrier 3) & Kay Cee (No.1, Barrier 6) to QUINELLA the Raconteur Stakes at Belmont, 2:37pm AWST

1400m Listed 3-year-olds (Set Weights & Penalties)

What’s better than 1 Perth tip, ah ah ah?

2 PERTH TIPS… AH AH AH.

To be honest, I just wasn’t totally confident on anything at Eagle Farm.

The Raconteur for the 3YOs is the feature race of the day on the banks of the Swan River, and adding to the already considerable star power or the Perth winter, we have a ripping contest between Ascot Horse of the Year, the Rockhampton Rocket Laverrod:

Versus the 2019 G1 Kingston Town Classic Winner, and reigning Super Bowl champion, Kay Cee:

Putting a $1.90 favourite and a $2.80 second elect in a quinella.

I AM BRAAAAAZEN!

The last time I tried picking a quinella for the Chalk Eaters was at Ascot last year, and I’m dead sure the two nags ran 1st and 3rd.

So, either I’ll get it and it’s gonna pay all of $2, or Kay Cee will run 3rd.

I’ll go with Kay Cee to run 3rd.


Another Pike in the Last, Hooray.


Western Pride (No.10, Barrier 4) in Race 9 at Belmont, 4:47pm AWST

1300m Schweppes Handicap

Trainer: Adam Durrant, W.Pike, 58kg

A Durrant-trained Peters horse ridden by the Wizard is something I’ve somehow avoided up until this point in time, and after dozens of chances, we’re finally here.

Yes Mr Wizard, it has happened.

Western Pride went 3/3 as a highly promising filly last season, and she was building up to start favourite in the 2019 Belmont Guineas, but things didn’t pan out due to some kind of ailment, and she was transferred by Bargain Bob Peters from the Williams stable to his ‘other’ client Adam Durrant.

Thus, Western Pride’s last appearance was June 8 of last year – 364 days ago.

To paraphrase Mark Taylor, if you do the math, that’s nearly a year.

Now a mare, she’s made 2 appearances at the trials leading up to her comeback, which were both won by the aforementioned Kay Cee, and it’s not outlandish for me to suggest that Western Pride could win this on class alone.

Unless Pike turns into Puke.


Crazy Craig’s Tip of the Day

Musical hint: You may leave here for four days in space, but when you return, it’s the same old place.


LAYING Rothfire (No.1, Barrier 14) in the JJ Atkins at Eagle Farm, 2:55pm AEST

1400m Group 1 XXXX Dry JJ Atkins (2YO SW)

Trainer: Robert Heathcote, Jockey: Jim Byrne, 57kg

Shabbat shalom gentiles, it’s Crazy Craig, the Boy From Bairnsdale, gunning for back to back failures to find a lay of the day, and I tell you what, if this week actually works out, I’m gonna sit on my deck chair in STUNNED SILENCE!

Crazy Colin will think I’ve been promoted to glory!

I’m donning my Group 1 Hat for the last time this season, and instead of going for a wide open Stradbroke, I’m going for the 2 year olds ONE LAST TIME in the JJ Atkins.

I noticed that XXXX are sponsoring the JJ Atkins this year, and as the timeless saying goes, you know why Queenslanders call it XXXX?

‘CAUSE THEY CAN’T SPELL BEER!

HA HA HA.

Rothfire is clearly the best horse in the race, but if you ask your old mate Crazy Craig, he is looking more than a bit vulnerable from his last start win in the Champagne Classic, where he totally got his way in front.

This time, he’s got a Grand Final field against him instead of 5 camels, he has to handle an extra 200m, and most importantly, HE’S DRAWN OUT IN THE CAR PARK!

I’ve got my doubts knackers, and personally, I’ll be looking for better value, because all things considered, Rothfire is a touch short with the speed drawn inside, and for some reason that I haven’t totally explained, he’s my LAY OF THE DAY.

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


I’d also like to conclude this week by acknowledging that Archie Alexander is about to get a well-earned holiday from RV:

Another trainer in Weir country gets nabbed.

Shocking.

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