Group 1 day @ Caulfield- The mail with Bruce


Saturday February 10



It’s “family Day’ at Caulfield complete with a pop-up – (maybe bomb-in better suited to describe) pool for the punters. But it’s the first Group 1 race of the year with the autumn stars sweltering through a hot afternoon of summer action on and off the track. A deep and exciting meeting to look forward to, rail back to true from 9m last week.








Race 1: 7-2-4-5

Ok, get this one out of the way and don’t get too involved. DOWNHEARTED goes in off a 69 mark so not that well placed even with Thornton’s 3kg claim against GALLIC CHIEFTAIN (95) who has 8kg more. Just think the weight pull, the race fitness and the 1800m suits but my day won’t live or die off this. PLOT THE COURSE and KHUTULUN are the other legitimate hopes off their placings behind dominant race winner Morton’s Fork.

SUGGESTED: Don’t be DOWNHEARTED is this play doesn’t come off. Better races and things coming your way.



Race 2: 2-4-9-1

OOHOOD (now with winkers) was – to my eye – the pick of the Preview brigade heading for the 1100m now – that she’s on top of CROSSING THE ABBEY (respected, slight query 1100m), DOWNLOADS (very good late), PURE ELATION (too keen and green – winkers and a lugging bit plus experience helps), and LAKE DISTRICT GIRL (went too fast early – has a cross over noseband now). Fan of AL NAIFA – blinkers made difference at Sale and form ties in to these through Lady Horseowner. ENBIHAAR was impressive Adelaide debut. In right stable.

SUGGESTED: Pretty keen OOHOOD – others not much between many.



Race 3: 6-8-2-5

Reckon whatever beats PLAGUE STONE wins. It beat itself on debut Rosehill when $1.35 (ouch). Has trialled brilliantly since, gear changes significant and obviously oozes talent. Best value is HIGH RATIO – win was at Bendigo, but liked the manner of it and some gallops since. Hard to knock what OLLIVANDER has done, ready for 1100m and professional. Best value for mine is BEN HERCULES who just missed out at Ballarat. NATIVE SOLDIER has been a typical Weir work in progress and with 4 starts (last 2 as wins) comes with the most experienced, which will count for something.

SUGGESTED: Think PLAGUE STONE is value at $3.8.



Race 4: 1-3-4-5

GAILO CHOP clearly the best horse and his 1st-up form is good enough to think at 1600m under these conditions he should be winning. WYNDSPELLE was excellent resuming, better suited 1600m but wary of its moderate win record (2/21), especially at the current odds. Can win – spring form (inc G1 placing good and this not too deep, but want better odds. HARLEM (gelded) and SEABURGE (fitter and on his best would be much shorter), go in minor discussions.

SUGEGSTED: Class to take GAILO CHOP through.



Race 5: 4-1-3-2

Going value LEATHER’N’LACE who made maiden to G1 graduation in the spring and the back up from the Manifold 1600m (query) to the 1000 Guineas didn’t work. SHOALS is top shelf, won a listed race fresh last time at the 1200mand obviously hard to beat. Form ties in with BOOKER who beat it in the Tranquil Star (Guineas Prelude). TULIP only has to run to its Everest run to be in the finish.




Race 6: 6-8-7-2

Terrific race. Now with a $28m stallion price tag the pressure on MERCHANT NAVY to start delivering on route to Royal Ascot. Reckon the bookies take it on but no reason to doubt here. Only beaten once (Golden Rose in Sydney) so obviously unbeaten both fresh runs. Stick solid – out to $3.4 now. ARDROSSAN comes with solid Kiwi (soft track) reputation but recent jumpout (beating Snitty Kitty) was impressive. PREZADO missed last week for this and has that fitness edge to like. SUPER CASH has brilliant fresh record, must admire. Wary HELLBENT – no wins for Weir but loads of teasing runs – could explode.

SUGGESTED: MERCHANT NAVY and class to sail by.



Race 7: 1-2-10-5

Big fan of LEVENDI – unbeaten two fresh runs (albeit one on a heavy) but that was accounting for talented Snitzepeg. VILLERMONT got to a Sandown Guineas in his 1st (4 start campaign) – looking for him late. SCARECROW is not well placed off Gawler/Morph Parks wins but as a gelding is making the right progression as he will need to do again here. PREVAILING WINDS has the worst of draws, has to press forward, clearly with fitness advantage and doubt 1400m an issue. Need more for quaddie like ASTORIA/ANDAZ/WEAPON/HOLY SNOW.

SUGGESTED: LEVENDI is a terrific race.



Race 8: 3-11-1-2

TOSEN STARDOM has finally come to his best in Australia and Group 1 wins in the spring in the Toorak and Mackinnon underscore that. He could go to a new level this Autumn, but where he is at right now, is just about good enough. HARTNELL won this race’s spring equivalent, the Lawrence beating BLACK HEART BART (bar plates- wary). Has trialled well as you’d expect he would and should. SHILLELAGH has also trialled well, can see it getting good run and is good enough though needs to do so under wfa conditions. BRAVE SMASH will improve, LORD OF THE SKY (Ollie Ollie Ollie) could pinch it) and keep on going.

SUGGESTED: Brilliant race, but very keen TOSEN STARDOM.



Race 9: 1-6-7-4

SILENT SEDITION appeals fresh on home track, ran in same race last year, won by speedy PRUSSIAN VIXEN who will have to absorb more pressure here. JUST HIFALUTIN is absolutely flying and with some transit luck, can measure up to this grade in the form she is bringing. FLYING JESS might be the overs, ran some terrific (and not so good) spring races PETITION didn’t win in the spring and her racing pattern was the reason. May just be able to put it together now as a more mature mare.




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