Midweek racing hits country Victoria this week for the Bendigo Cup. The final pit-stop before the Melbourne Cup Carnival kicks off on Saturday.
Race 1: Zoujea looms as the likeliest of the chances in the opening race of the day, despite coming up against older competitors, the lightly raced 3-year-old should be hard to beat. Won fresh at Sale when running down Gogetthegirl who was ok in the Thousand Guineas Prelude. A safe tip here ($2.25 Playup). Cosmic Ruby will be the big danger here, gear changes last start helped her find some great form. Will come up in class here but looked the more than ready in previous win. Ultra Smart has trialled well and comes here fresh, has a decent first-up record and both wins were early in preps.
Race 2: Hay Cliffy has trialled here and been good, big watch here is with Damien Oliver taking the saddle which will warm the pockets of punters. Follow Olly here ($2.60 Playup). Resuming here is Showcase The Gold who showed plenty of promise last prep, missed out on the luck then. Hasn’t run on a dry track though and the proves the query. Mnemba is the fittest of the main chances here and that may be enough to sway punters, forgive her run at Moe as she had less than no luck from start to finish.
Race 3: Kinane has had a few jump-outs now, nothing overly competitive though. Comes from a strong bloodline and deserves early consideration on debut. Manhattan Spector impressed on debut, was in no-mans-land towards the back and wasn’t in a better spot come the home turn. Probably the one that impresses the most ($4.20 Playup). Ran home well for 4th though. Iowa Hawkeye has jumped out well without lighting the track on fire, last prep first-up deserves forgiveness and was decent after that.
Race 4: Oasis Girl has a great draw and should find some cover early, was unlucky when fresh behind a winner who went on and won a listed race at Mooney Valley. Led all the way last start and will look to do similar here. Beehunter was impressive on debut here, beating Banquo to the line who went on and won in Sale next time out. Worth following that form ($4.80 Playup). Sea Dragon was good at Seymour when leading start to finish, will compete with Oasis Girl for the lead here. Draw also helps – query is a rise in class.
Race 5: Brimm is coming out of some terrific form, 3rd at Cranbourne which has seen the winner finish 3rd in a G2 at the Valley on Saturday and the runner-up scoring since. Will come here peaking and will eat the mile. Get on! ($3.30 Playup). Blenders Edition will come here fitter for the last two runs back, a fast tempo last start will have him primed here! Okotoks has been ok in his last few starts and cant be ruled out.
Race 6: Akkadian is peaking here, will be looking to swoop here again and is every chance to just that. Will improve on last start. Indian Thunder beat out Marcel From Madrid in jump-out a month ago, draw will allow him to settle off the pace here, worth the price ($6.00 Playup).
Race 7: Screenager was all honours in debut win, beat a filly there who had placed behind Broadwayandfourth who won at Mooney Valley on the weekend. Deserves to be short and is worth backing here ($2.70 Playup). That Song has been winless in trails leading up to this but has been good, first up form is reliable and will provide biggest challenge to the favourite. Cilauro has been good upon resumption, will come here fitter and ready to go. Hasn’t won outside 1100m.
Race 8: Raheen House has drawn awkwardly, has plenty of staying ability. Has beaten Enable and deserves plenty of respect for that! Sully was unluckily pipped here before brave showing at Caulfield behind The Chosen One who went on the run well in the Caulfield Cup. His best can win here. Brimham Rocks was caught far too wide and was never in the race during Caulfield Cup, form that got him in that race can win him this on ($6.00 Playup). Top of The Range took the scenic route and just missed out last time at Caulfield, will love the extra distance.
Race 9: Marcel From Madrid should be too good for these but isn’t always reliable, was luckless in Adelaide last start but form before that was terrific. Chips in here ($2.40 Playup). Royal Order has a great first-up record and likes it fresh here. Has chased Ringerdingding.
*All odds correct at time of writing.