Horse Racing

The Chalk Eaters Guide: 15th August

The guide that didn’t get a text message about a massively talented first starter at Sale

That bloke had the worst closing sectionals of the meeting

In case any of you missed it, that first starter was Barocha for Jamie Kah & Clayton Douglas, who was backed into $1.80 and won like Bernborough.

Here’s another story from the blue – He Knows No Fear won at Leopardstown last night, at the grand old odds of 300/1, the greatest winnings odds in the history of Irish racing.

Pfft, what rock bottom odds they’re getting in the Emerald Isle – Some older readers will remember Pablo’s Pulse won the 1987 Warwick Stakes at 500/1.

Anyway, some more good races around the nation – The card at the Heath, led by the Group 2 P.B Lawrence Stakes, has been massively enhanced by the arrival of Sir William Pike and Bob Peters’ horde of star Sandgropers, the Group 3 Up & Coming Stakes at Randwick, and with absolutely nobody paying attention, the Belmont Newmarket rounds out the day.

In all, we are set to ‘sort of’ begin what will be the weirdest Spring since the New South Wales EI outbreak in 2007.


Parlophone (No.3, Barrier 6) in the Quezette Stakes at Caulfield, 3:20pm AEST

1100m Group 3 3YO Fillies

Trainers: Mick Price & Mick Kent Jnr, Hoop: Dodgy Damien Oliver, 57kg

Fair dinkum, what a lineup Parlophone had in the 1960s, all thanks to Sir George Martin.

The Beatles, Cilla Black, The Hollies, Adam Faith, Gerry And The Pacemakers…

The kids of today could name about 2 of those artists.

As for the actual horse, Parlophone ran at a 33 1/3 pace at the Lightning Stakes in Adelaide just on 3 weeks ago, circling the entire field on a Heavy track 1st Up, but deadset, she spun Just Zerene right round like a record in the straight, and won by an impressive 3L.

Clearly Just Zerene was still feeling the effects of that last week, because she didn’t even want to get in the barrier in case Parlophone was still there.

The filly returns to her home track of Caulfield, and does go up in class to a Group 3, but she obviously stepped up in class last time and handled it like a pro, which suggests she’s perfectly capable of doing it again, although with one D.Oliver aboard, anything and everything could happen.


North Pacific (No.2, Barrier 1) in the Up & Coming Stakes at Randwick, 3:40pm AEST

1300m Group 3 3YOs

Trainer: John Hawkes & Sons, Hoop: Tommy Berry, 56.5kg

After a successful run on Broadway last month, the sequel to the acclaimed Rodgers & Hammerstein classic is back for another highly-anticipated run!

Just down below, you can see where South Pacific ended up after he put in that stinker at Flemington last week.

North Pacific is a Pandora’s Box of a horse – He ran 3rd in the Silver Slipper on debut, then John & Michael Hawkes kept in on ice until last month where he couldn’t have looked more impressive in waltzing up from the rear and winning, with his closing sectionals being faster than the older horses for the July 11 meeting at Rosehill.

The Hawkes boys have kept him fresh with a trial, and as for his rivals course, I imagine there will be plenty of interest in Smart Image, given he just happened to be the poor old nag that Hugh Bowman used to send Hot ‘N’ Hazy into the afterlife, and Andrew Adkins into a Sydney rehab clinic.

Can win again, which means he probably won’t.


Behemoth (No.2, Barrier 5) in the Spring Stakes at Morphetville, 3:41pm ACST

1200m WFA Group 3

Trainer: David Jolly, Hoop: Todd Pannell, 58.5kg

Behemoth is nominated for the Cox Plate, and he’s already had a win this week, with Jungle Edge’s official disqualification from May’s Group 3 DC McKay for a prohibited substance promoting the 5-year-old into the winner’s position, as the once-loved Jungle Edge joins the Ben Johnson club of disgraced drug-taking winners, even though he will go around in the Vain Stakes at Caulfield tomorrow.

Still, this is Australian racing, where we seem to turn a blind eye to major indiscretions.

From that Group 3 at Morphetville on to another Group 3 at Morphetville, the main focus of tomorrow’s feature is the duel between Dalasan and Behemoth, who both come in 1st Up off somewhat successful Autumn campaigns.

The key will probably be how much rain falls in Adelaide, with a decent dump definitely favouring Dalasan, who is 4 from 7 on Soft going, including a Group 2 win at Flemington on Derby Day, but at the distance, Behemoth did finish 4th in the Group 1 Goodwood, which shows he is up for it.

The other thing potentially weighing the big Behemoth down is my recent record in Adelaide, where I’m pretty sure the Adelaide Crows have had a win more recently than I have.

There is a first time for everything, I suppose.


Cliffs Of Comfort (No.12, Barrier 5) in Race 8 at Belmont, 4:25pm AWST

1200m Vale Marjorie Charleson (BM72)

Trainers: Dan & Ben Pearce, Hoop: Smokin’ Joe Azzopardi, 54kg

Another race named in honour of the WATC’s trailblazing Public Relations Officer Marjorie Charleson, who died last Saturday at the age of 88, and not many people know that besides being the first female PR officer of an Australian race club, Marjorie’s main role was attracting overseas & interstate trainers/jockeys/horses/people of note over for the Perth Carnival.

Surely, Charleson’s most notable coup had to be convincing Tommy Smith to send Kingston Town over for the 1982 Western Mail Classic, a month after he’d been mugged on the line by Gurner’s Lane in the Melbourne Cup.

Marjorie’s charm did the job, and TJ sent the King and Miracle Mal Johnston over, and in what would be his final appearance on a racecourse, the King thrilled Ascot with a win.

It looks like a jaw-breaking contest between David Harrison’s duo of Jericho Missile and Silkinize, against the Pearce brothers with the once unbeaten Cliffs Of Comfort, who had his colours lowered for the first time at the beginning of the month thanks to William Pike’s piece of riding brilliance on Silkinize, while Cliffs fought on well to run 3rd, far from disgraced.

Obviously Silkinize loses the services of The Wizard, while Cliffs of Comfort drops 2.5kg and gets out to 1200m, which should be another tick in his favour.

The Pearce boys seem confident, Smokin’ Joe seems confident, so I ask, WHAT COULD GO WRONG?


Crazy Craig’s Tip Of The Day

I guarantee you’ll have never heard this song:

Musical hint: Crazy Craig using Cliff Richard to describe his mouth

Throw at the stumps on Varda (No.5, Barrier 5) in Race 3 at Randwick, 1:05pm AEST

1100m Schweppes Handicap (BM88)

Trainer: James Cummings, Jockey: Jason Collett, 55.5kg

Bonjour kiddies, it’s Crazy Craig, the Boy From Bairnsdale, and I’m having one of those CRAAAAAAZY weeks again, because I’m not laying a horse, I’M BACKING ONE!

WHY CRAIG! WHY!

Because I’M CRAZY CRAIG, THAT’S WHY!

I am a realist knackers, and Masked Crusader looks extremely tough to topple in this the 3rd on the card on the Randwick Quagmire, but I think if ANYONE can bring down the $1.60 favourite 1st Up, it’s got to be the mare Varda, who comes in on the back of a hat-trick of wins on rain-affected going, and so good were her performances that I tried including her as the Lay Of The Day!

The only thing my usual anchor did was keep her to winning by 2 lengths!

It’s a genuine throw at the stumps, but do you think I care?

SHIT NO!

VARDA – PICK OF THE DAY.

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

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