Makybe Diva Stakes Day at Flemington will be the highlight of Saturday’s horse racing around the country.
Cox Plate favourite Mystic Journey is favourite ahead of Scales Of Justice to capture the Makybe Diva Stakes.
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Super Seth ran his final 200m in 11.36 when first-up this campaign and that was the quickest final split of his career. Interestingly, only Lyre has matched that sprint, but the Leon Macdonald and Andrew Gluyas-trained DALASAN ($2.70 TopBetta) has run 11.28 and 10.98 in his first campaign, and he clearly has a strong turn of foot. His first-up win over subsequent Memsie Stakes winner Scales Of Justice in the Spring Stakes (1200m) was very impressive, and it rated 11 lengths above all benchmark (BM) which is easily the strongest last start BM figure in the race. He maps well here and should be able to follow Lyre into the race before peeling late and finishing best.
FIDELIA ($3.40 TopBetta) is unbeaten in three starts at Flemington and she really caught the eye with a slashing but somewhat unlucky run first-up behind Pippie. She went back from barrier 9 and tried to angle out and build momentum, but with nothing eventuating, regular rider Jye McNeil ducked back to the inside and started to make a run. Gaps were closing and the mare had to switch course a couple of times, and with clear running she may have made things interesting. She looks to have come back in great order and should be better suited over 1400m back to Flemington.
Race 7 – Makybe Diva Stakes
I’m willing to take a punt on CASTELVECCHIO ($2.80 TopBetta) after he showed significant improvement in his second barrier trial. I his first 1000m trial behind Redzel, he settled a distant last and stayed there throughout and didn’t want to accelerate. Four weeks later he went to Warwick Farm for a 1200m trial, and while he also settled at the rear, he picked up in the straight this time and worked home stylishly without being put under pressure. I like the fact he resumes over 1500m, and his brilliant turn of foot will take him a long way this campaign.
Sticking with BALLER ($7.50 TopBetta) who won for us last week and is on the one-week back-up at his third run this campaign. Second-up last preparation, he was beaten four lengths in the Listed Fireball Stakes (1100m), and then third-up he was beaten five lengths in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) behind Nature Strip and Pierata. I really like that third-up form, and Baller now drops 6.5kg on his last run, and he should be right at his peak.
ALL TOO ROYAL ($4.60 TopBetta) was two from two at this track until finishing near last and going for a spell after a taxing campaign. At his first run this campaign, he broke the Kensington 1100m track record, ran he quickest final 600m and highest benchmark (BM) rating from the 600m. He’s very consistent win seven wins and three placings from 13 starts, and he looks well placed here from barrier 7.