Horse Racing

The Chalk Eaters Guide: 17th October

Voted the 48th best favourite backing guide in the Asia-Pacific

“If you were a racehorse, who would you be?”

Take your pick as to what the big race of the day is on Saturday, in this ever-annoying Sydney vs Melbourne pissing contest.

The traditional Caulfield Cup, considering it’s one of the four major races of Australian racing, The Everest, with a world-best $15,000,000 prize pool that Scrooge McDuck would happily drown in, but to me, the one true feature race of the day is…

The Kosciuszko.

How’s the Kozi chaos already – Second favourite Front Page got scratched after a float incident, and favourite It’s Me needed a vet check after coughing coming of the water walker midweek.

The biggest race for country horses is turning into a series revival of Dr Harry’s Practice.

Still, what a thoroughly enjoyable Saturday awaits, and just when the people of Victoria hadn’t suffered enough, they have to sift through another Caulfield meeting.

For the record, I’ve taken Classique Legend in the Everest, because he’s the only horse who Glen Boss claims can knock off Bivouac, and regardless of any Melbourne rain, I’ll be supporting Master Of Wine in the Caulfield Cup….

AND I HAVE A T-SHIRT TO PROVE IT.

Also, I heard Anthony Van Dyck drew Barrier 21 for the Cup.

That’s great, but what horse is he riding?


Fituese (No.3, Barrier 8) in the Alinghi Stakes (Race 6) at Caulfield, 3:10pm AEDT

1100m Listed SW&P

Trainer: John Thompson, Hoop: Craig Williams, 58kg

Would you look at, another Sydney horse is heading down to Melbourne to eye off the wounded Vics.

Fituese has proven herself a damn fine mare, with 6 wins from 9 starts, including the Listed Denise’s Joy in the revised Scone Carnival back in May, and last start against the boys at Rosehill, carrying 58kg.

I’d hope John Thompson also sent down a couple of tapes of Rachel King riding the mare to Craig Williams, because this is only the second time King hasn’t ridden her – The other time was when Cejay Graham rode her at Kembla on Melbourne Cup Day last year.

It does seem a simple equation – Sit one of the fence a few pairs back, ease her out in the straight, and let her build into it.

You might think California Zimbol is a good chance of winning, but to me, California Zimbol deserves nothing but SCORN.

It was just on a year ago that she pillaged Loving Gaby, the very same Loving Gaby who won the Manikato at her next start.

Then, California Zimbol ran in the Red Roses on Oaks Day up the Flemington straight when everyone was on her, and she laid a fat old egg.

I’LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU.


Deprive (No.1, Barrier 9) in the Sydney Stakes at Randwick, 3:25pm AEDT

1200m Group 3 WFA

Trainer: James Cummings, Hoop: Rachel King, 58.5kg

This is what Rachel King can do on Deprive

Ah, the Sydney Stakes, now the unofficial consolation race for the horses who were left hanging by the Everest slot holders.

Still, I don’t know what they’re so upset about, everyone knows The Everest is just a rich man’s TJ Smith Stakes, without the Group 1 badge.

What would you rather win – About $7.5m in the middle of an economic downturn, or a Group 1?

Staying on the subject of rich sprint races, Deprive is the 1st Emergency for the Everest, and when you look at his return in the Premiere, it’s not hard to see why.

He settled last, and from nowhere, was good enough to beat home Nature Strip and run 3rd to Classique Legend and Libertini.

You’ll see all 3 of them at 4:15pm AEDT, and rather prominently.

Another run like that and Deprive would’ve have had slot holders sending Sheikh Mohammed’s answering machine haywire.

If the form from that Premiere Stakes holds and Deprive shows some natural improvement, he’ll go damn close to winning here, although oddly enough, the last time the gelding saluted the judge was this very race last year.

For reference, that’s still a shorter time between wins than Santa Ana Lane, who hasn’t won since the 2019 TJ Smith a full 18 months ago, yet Santa still smuggles his way into top notch sprint races like he hasn’t been the same horse since that Hong Kong trip.


Windstorm (No.9, Barrier 10) in the Moonga Stakes at Caulfield, 4:30pm AEDT

1400m Group 3 SW&P

Trainer: Grant & Alana Williams Bob Peters, Hoop: W.Pike, 58kg


Well, it worked well in the Weekend Hussler last week, so HERE WE GO AGAIN


Piss Poor Perth Punting

So it’s Northerly Stakes Day at Ascot on Saturday, and it seems fitting that they’ll run the race named in honour of the Fighting Tiger, not only on Caulfield Cup Day, given he won the race in 2002, but also on what would’ve been his 24th birthday.

There’s something you didn’t know, Northerly was foaled on October 17, 1996 – The day after yours truly was born.


Vital Silver (No.1, Barrier 9) E/W in the Northerly Stakes, 5:05pm AWST (8:05)

1400m Group 3 SW&P

Trainers: Dan & Ben Pearce, Hoop: Smokin’ Joe Azzopardi, 58.5kg

Waterford TAB character The Gabster has told me many times that Joseph Azzopardi can’t ride, but at his age, The Gabster is usually the equivalent of this:

So most of the time, we take his thoughts with a pinch of salt.

First of all, I wouldn’t bother re-watching Vital Silver’s run in the Black Heart Bart Stakes, because it was an absolute all-round arsehole to sit through when it happened, as the ghostly grey never settled in the run and finished 5th, beaten by Stageman, Cup Night and Red Can Man, who go around here.

While that race was at Belmont, I believe the record shows that Vital Silver is a much better Ascot horse – 4 starts for 3 wins and a runner-up in the 2019 Winterbottom, and he’s 2/2 at the Ascot 1400, although that said, those wins were in December of 2018, in a One Metro Win, and a 66+ Rater, just before the Pearce boys realised he was good enough for black type racing.

That Ascot record was part of the reason why I went with the grey over Massimo, Kay Cee and the other assorted weirdos heading the market, because when you look at it, it is a genuinely open race.

You’d expect a better showing from a horse who is a proven Group 1 performer, and could it be possible that the change in jockey will get him back closer to having a sniff at a win.


Quick Note

Crazy Craig has informed me that he’s taking the weekend off after hearing of a new COVID case in Bairnsdale, so on that note, here’s THE CHEETAH.


The Cheetah’s Willing Tip Of The Day

A guy named after a cat, and a song named after Cats

Osamu (No.2, Barrier 3) in Race 3 at Caulfield, 1:25pm AEDT

1400m Listed Gothic Stakes (SW 3YO Colts & Geldings)

Trainer: Chris Waller, Jockey: Damian Lane, 56kg

G’day folks, The Cheetah here, thrilled to be a very willing participant in this tipping service.

One of my associates here on the glorious Glitter Strip was on the phone to our mate Chris down in Sydney, who has a few runners in at Caulfield on Caulfield Cup Day.

With that in mind, I took a look at the form guide, and asked him if Chris had said anything about Osamu, who I saw last week in a Group 2 race that featured Wild Ruler, which means he’s dropping back in grade on the short back-up.

My associate’s reply was a fairly simple one – In Chris’ words:

“CAN WIN.”

I can’t confirm or deny that means he will win, but it’s better than “CAN’T WIN.”

Regardless, enjoy your Saturday folks, stay willing – Cheetah signing off.

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