Horse Racing

Crazy Craig’s Picks of the Day: 11th September

Based on a series of plausible events in a regional Victorian town

He says Regional Victorian town and uses a cover image from Canberra

Hello once again assorted strangers and people who clicked on a link to this post and now want to spit at me, another chapter in this crapshoot of a Spring Carnival is just around the corner, and as the United States and their assorted friends commemorate the 20th anniversary of the defining moment of the 21st Century, here comes a mysterious character from Eastern Victoria to commit another terrible act against the human race on September 11.

Before I get to Crazy Craig, I’d just to point out that it was great to see the people’s dog in Tommy Shelby get the Australian Greyhound of the Year Award, and true story, I briefly played against Steve Withers and Team Tommy on a Wednesday night at the Manning Bowling Club a few months back… the winner was Swan Draught.

Now, on to the bigger four legged creatures, and this weekend’s nationwide feature is the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington, in which 10 out of the 13 horses in the race have achieved a Group 1 victory, and yet, the favourite in Incentivise is one of the three that hasn’t.

If you want to know something else, I reckon it isn’t bad to lose the Makybe Diva, because recent history shows it is nothing short of a cursed race, with Weekend Hussler in 2008 being the last winner of the race to win another race that same Spring, and even then, Weekend Hussler’s form fell off a cliff, because while he won the Underwood Stakes at his next start, he would never run in the Top 3 for the rest of his career as injuries ultimately sent him into a well-earned retirement.

So yeah, to the connections of the winning horse on Saturday – Enjoy drinking from the poisoned chalice.

Elsewhere, Rosehill has once again magically turned into Kembla Grange, playing host to the Sheraco, the Theo Marks, and the dreaded Run To The Rose, with the return of Anamoe, who will no doubt join the current budding list of star 2-year-olds from last season who have inglorious starts to their 3-year-old seasons.

So on that note, it’s on to ‘Crazy’ Craig for his Picks of the Day, and accompanying him as always, it’s the familiar sound of Cliff Richard covering Ruth Brown, because he’s got LUCKY LIPS!

As sent at 10:32am AEST on Friday morning

Pick of the Day: Mankayan (No.1, Barrier 3) in Race 2 at Kembla Grange (SR2), 12:15pm AEST

2400m BM78 Dyson Handicap

Trainers: Ciaron Maher & David Eustace, Jockey: Hugh Bowman, 60kg

Hello hello hello everyone it’s Crazy Craig The Boy From Bairnsdale, alive and kicking like Simple Minds ahead of another Saturday, and I could be wrong, but starting from this Saturday, there’s going to be non-stop Group 1 racing right up until the start of November!

How crazy is that!

Still, I wonder if we’ll find any Group 1 races at Kembla Grange this Spring, considering it is a rebadged version of Rosehill for now, and they’ve still got the Golden Rose to come in a fortnight… I think we tried that rebadging thing in Bairnsdale once, when we rebranded ourselves as the Melbourne of the east, but the problem was people thought they were in Geelong!

Anyway, my pick of the day for Saturday isn’t Ayrton or Artorius or Anamoe or any bloody nag starting with the letter A, it’s Mankayan, the Irish horse from Ireland who came to Australia a few months back in the care of the Maher-Useless team, and he appears just about ready to win after 2 runs in Australia, which have seen him run 2nd and 3rd going up in distance, and last start at Kembla he looked absolutely nowhere when the sprint went on, but he eventually clicked with 200m to go and charged home to only go down by 1.1L, and it was the run of a horse screaming out for his best distance of 2400m, where he’s run 7 times for 2 wins and 4 second placings!

The big difference this time around is that after drawing barrier 12 in both runs, Mankayan has finally drawn a low barrier, which should hopefully mean that BOWMAN should be able to settle him within a reasonable distance of the leaders, rather than settling all the way back in Dapto, and as for the weight, it SHOULD NOT BE AN ISSUE, because he’s had plenty of experience carrying 60+ kilos in his time in Old Blighty, in fact, one his wins over the 2400m came with him lugging 60.5kg at Doncaster!

If Anyone Can, Mankayan Can!

Value Pick of the Day: Aegon (No.9, Barrier 4) in the Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington (MR8), 4:50pm AEST

1600m SWFA Group 1

Trainer: Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman, Jockey: Luke Currie, 58.5kg

This pick is so craaaaaazy, you’ll think I’ve lost a few brain cells!

In fact, I probably have!

Obviously the Makybe Diva Stakes features a couple of very good horses like Tofane and Mo’unga, while you’ve also got Incentivise who will be proven to have a heart as big as a pea, but stuff the lot of them, because I need to find a bit of value, so after careful analysis, I’ve gone with a horse who’s never placed on a good track, Aegon, the New Zealander from New Zealand!

Yessss I’ve gone off the deep end like Peter Brock with the Energy Polarizer, BUT, I should note that Aegon was very close to running a place 1st Up in the Memsie Stakes, because after getting back in the ruck, he then got held up on the turn as the eventual trifecta started their runs, before he finally got out and rattled off the fastest final 600m, 400m and 200m sections of the race to run 4th, 2.2L off Behemoth, and I’d argue he should’ve been closer!

The former star 3-year-old should be at his best at the mile, given he won the New Zealand 2000 Guineas at Riccarton, plus the Karaka Millions at Ellerslie, he’s also won both his previous 2nd Up runs, and if Luke ‘Chicken’ Currie, jumping aboard in place of Jumping Jye McNeil, can actually use the bloody good gate he’s got, then I think Aegon has half a hope of running in the Top 4, and another exotic you can probably plonk in the exotics…. Keiai Nautique, the Japanese import from Japan!

So there you go, Aegon for the value pick, and on that note, enjoy your Saturday anyway you can folks, and remember, I’m Crazy Craig, and that’s why they call me Crazy Craig!

On another note, you don’t need to guess who I’ll be supporting in the Makybe Diva:

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