Me vs The Bookies – The most lopsided rivalry since Knives vs Cheese
It’s the end of August, and in some alternate universe, it’s the bye week before the AFL Finals that the Memsie Stakes meeting usually fills, but instead, it’s the most boring last Saturday in August since the last most boring Saturday in August, as we kick off the Melbourne Spring Carnival, which will be devoid of annoying Channel 7 puff pieces about fashions on the field.
It’s also been another strange old week in the great game – The false start controversy at Scone, gun filly Loving Gaby being retired due to injury, horse travel between Victoria & New South Wales being slightly eased, the AFL Grand Final-Cox Plate Double Header being announced, Melbourne Cup nominations, this piece of horsemanship by Julien Welsh and Dougie at Mornington:
But, the weirdest thing of all…
For the first time since the start of May, there is a good track at Sydney on a Saturday.
It’s been that long, that instead of asking the question ‘Can they run on a wet track’, it’s now ‘Can they run a good track?’, a question that will be asked of Anders in the San Domenico.
On another note, as we focus on the Group races, I’d like to say it’s fantastic to see the SAJC finally name a feature race at Morphetville after the Hall of Fame trainer Leon Macdonald, and it does seem fitting that he’s got Dalasan heading the field, backed to the exclusion of all others.
One for Betty (No.3, Barrier 7) in Race 2 at Eagle Farm, 12:13pm AEST
1600m Mount Franklin Handicap (No Metro Wins)
Trainer: David Vandyke, Hoop: Stephanie Thornton, 54.5kg
Better warm up this section with Ram Jam’s only hit, which is still earning them a lovely percentage of royalties thanks to Spiderbait.
One for Betty was with Matty Dunn since her 2YO season in 2018, but she was transferred across Tweed Heads to David Vandyke last month, and it looks like David has hooked her up with whatever Alligator Blood was eating for breakfast, because she’s won both starts since the move.
Oddly enough, one of those was at Eagle Farm last month (Still last season), which makes me wonder how she managed to squeak into a No Metro Win race.
Well, it is Queensland.
Technically speaking, it is actually a rise in class from her BM75 win at the Sunny Coast, but outside of Barrachiel from Rockhampton, this field doesn’t look to be setting the world on fire anytime soon, she actually drops 2 kilos on the win, and out to the mile, I cann’t wait to see how my latest foray into the Sunshine State goes awry.
Tagaloa (No.1, Barrier 8) in the HDF McNeil Stakes at Caulfield, 3:30pm AEST
1200m Group 3 3YO SW&P
Trainer: Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young, Hoop: Michael ‘Cuzzy Bro’ Walker, 59.5kg
After getting shut down due to a COVID-scare at Cranbourne last weekend, the partnership of Busuttin & Young are barring up at the thought of the return of Blue Diamond winner Tagaloa, and my word, this edition of the McNeil looks an absolute nightmare, considering every runner is either 1st or 2nd Up.
After being tucked away following his 4th in the Golden Slipper, Tagaloa looks ready to take off like an Apollo mission as he begins his 3-year-old season, which is a thought I’ve had after watching his trial performances at Cranbourne, which were nothing short of promising.
Obviously there are three sticking points – He does have to give the entire field at least a kilo by lugging 59.5 kilos 1st Up, and he’s got the blinkers on first time, which the stable seem to think will make him go even better than his juvenile season.
$3.70 – My goodness, I’m going hunting for value!
Mugatoo (No.3, Barrier 3) in Race 8 at Rosehill, 4:30pm AEST
1900m Group 3 Premiers Cup
Trainer: Kris Lees, Hoop: Kerrin McEvoy, 57kg
When you combine me with Crazy Craig, you get a Mug-a-too.
Good, let’s move on.
While I did think about including Anders in the Group 2, there’s just something about the improvement in track conditions since his two massive wins that’s turned me off, so instead, I’ve gone back to an expat Irish horse who still fits the bill of your progressive staying import.
While Sikandarabad did begin the season with a Coffs Harbour Cup win, Mugatoo does have a regional cup to his credit, having walked in the Canberra Cup back in March, which funnily enough, was the very same day that pissed up idiot in my weekly cover photo ran on the track.
After that win, Kris Lees eventually tried him at Group 1 level in a 2400m WFA Tancred, where he, like everyone else, was no match for Verry Elleegant, although it should be noted he did slip coming off the float at Rosehill, passed a vet exam, and then raced too keenly and ran 6th.
Showing there’s still improvement to come from a 6-year-old with only 12 starts under the belt, he won last month’s Winter Challenge 1st Up at 1500m, Lees ticked him over with a Gosford trial, and you’d think he’ll go damn close to winning tomorrow.
Piss Poor Perth Punting Part
It’s time for the Idyllic Prince Stakes over here in Wait Awhile, with a far from idyllic field, and sadly, it’s also the last time in 2020 that people will be able to warm-up at Belmont before crossing over to Optus Stadium, given the Dockers are flying off to North Queensland after Saturday, where they’ll be hoping to join The Harrovian fan club up in Cairns.
How about that today – The Harrovian has raced 8 times at Cairns after today’s Newmarket, and he’s won all 8 times.
The hero that North Queenslanders have lacked since Johnathan Thurston.
Silkinize (No.9, Barrier 1) in Race 8 at Belmont, 5:15pm AWST
1000m Crown Towers 72+ Rating Handicap
Trainer: David Harrison, Hoop: Chris Parnham, 54.5kg
It looks another one of these typical stupid 1000m races in Perth where everyone goes Helter Skelter and gasses their mounts, and the swoopers usually claim the prize.
No wonder The Gabster keeps telling me never to back 1000m races, even though he’s been documented investing in them.
Anyway, it looks an interesting contest between Cliffs Of Comfort, We’ve Got Dreams, Nerodio and Silkinize, with yours truly taking particular interest In Cliffs Of Comfort and Silkinize, who have both saluted in the Chalk Eaters in the past month.
Silkinize won the first contest at the 1000m on the first Saturday of the month, thanks mainly to a certain William Pike, then they went to 1200m, where Cliffs Of Comfort turned the tables sitting on the speed to win well, and that afternoon really proved that David Harrison’s gelding is more your 1000-1100m type.
Of course, this time around it’s back at the 5 furlong chute, which is why I think Silkinize is perfectly capable of bouncing back to a level we know he can perform at.
Another big change is that Chris Parnham goes aboard, and we do regard Chris as one of the more reliable members of the Parnham family, and further to it, he’s also leading the Perth Jockey’s Premiership in the absence of the Wizard.
So all that said, hopefully Silkinize is looks silky smooth tomorrow, which he probably won’t.
Crazy Craig’s Tip of the Day
He doesn’t need a four leaf clover, because he’s got lucky lips!
Express Pass (No.11, Barrier 5) EACH WAY in Race 2 at Caulfield, 12:20pm AEST
1100m Evergreen Turf Handicap (BM78)
Trainer: Nick Ryan, Jockey: Rhys McLeod, 58.5kg
Hello hello again friends, it’s Crazy Craig, the Boy With Lucky Lips from Bairnsdale, pushing my luck once again after two miracles in a row, as the Victorian Spring gets underway!
If you think my success on this segment was amazing, just recently, I had $500 the place on a horse called Patricia Anne at Sandown, and I thought it was good luck, because I had a girlfriend called Patricia Ann!
She ran 2nd and I won a month’s worth of beer money!
How crazy is that!
Anyway friends, I’m once again going CRAAAAAZY, and taking on a favourite with a second favourite, and after both of my winners were trained by James Cummings, I’m going a bit further left field and taking on a horse coming from a part of the world where my Perth contact Mr Alfonse resides!
Windstorm is a good horse, and he probably will win, but he still hasn’t physically raced in Victoria, and my manic mind thinks Express Pass can run a good race staying at the 1100m, where he tasted success at his most recent run at Bendigo!
Fun fact – He’s won 2/2 at the 1100m, and that win was a Benchmark 78!
I think he has a hope of running in the Top 3 knackers, so consider me hooked!
Express Pass – MY TIP OF THE DAY.
I’m Crazy Craig, and that’s why they call me Craaaaazy Craig!
Ah yes, as for the Memsie, I’ll take Savatiano with no expectations at all.
Categories: Horse Racing