Four Group 1s. Two at Flemington on Super Saturday and two more in Sydney at Randwick.
It’s a huge Saturday as the Autumn Carnival steps up another level with some high-class racing on Saturday.
We pick out the best bets for your weekend.
KING OF YULONG ($6.26 ClassicBet) is clearly the class horse in the field, having contested Group One races in his last two starts. Three starts ago he won the Group 2 Richmond Stakes (1207m) at Goodwood, defeating a horse called Marie’s Diamond who went onto contest the Group 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Horses that have raced in the Richmond Stakes in previous years included the likes of Jungle Cat. I really liked King Of Yulong in his two recent jumpouts, he was given a nice hitout to win the jumpout at Werribee on February 18 and followed that up with a quiet maintenance gallop at Flemington on March 1. With Mark Zahra on board from barrier 10, he looks a great bet to start the day.
Race 6 – Newmarket Handicap
EDUARDO ($9.01 TopBetta) put up a huge run in the Oakleigh Plate. He sat three-wide no cover on a hot speed set up by Nature Strip. The positive sign for me was, despite his tough run, he still ran 2.5 lengths faster than Group One average for his final 600m. That’s the sign of a class horse. My small knock is, he is second-up, two weeks between runs off a gut buster so there is a chance he’s flat but he is the value in the race.
Race 8 – Australian Cup
AVILIUS ($1.96 TopBetta) looked after us in the recent Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield a fortnight ago and there is no reason to suggest why the former import can’t do it again when he lines up in the Group 1 Australian Cup. Since coming to Australia he has won six of his eight starts. In his two other runs he was flattened in the Melbourne Cup (3200m) and ran a respectable 4th in the Cox Plate (2040m). He comes out of the right lead up race and accounted for a number of the rivals that he meets again on Saturday. He will be even better suited out to the 2000m at Flemington and it is hard to see him missing out.
Spright brings strong form to this having finished two lengths from Booker in the Oakleigh Plate (1100m), but I can’t go past WINTER BRIDE ($5.01 TopBetta) who is reportedly travelling better than ever. Whispers from the stable suggest she’s in career best form and her barrier trial at Gold Coast on February 19 gave me Goosebumps. Winter Bride narrowly beat Booker in Melbourne last campaign and must be respected here.
Race 7 – Randwick Guineas
THE AUTUMN SUN ($1.62 ClassicBet) will start at short odds in the Randwick Guineas but should justify that quote when he lines up in the first leg of the Sydney Triple Crown for the three-year-olds. The Chris Waller-trained galloper removed any doubts as to whether he has come back in good order with a tough win when resuming in the Hobartville Stakes (1400m), which has always been the key lead up to this race. He has missed out just once in his career and that was in narrow fashion on a Heavy track when first up at his last preparation. He then excelled when stretching out to the 1600m, smashing his rivals in the lucrative Caulfield Guineas.