It was a gripping weekend of racing in Melbourne and Sydney, with the All-Star Mile undoubtedly living up to the hype, despite being run in treacherous conditions at Moonee Valley. Meanwhile, at Rosehill, Krone continued the trend of long-priced winners in the Coolmore Classic, taking out the Group 1 at $14.
Tim Geers and Trent Crebbin have reviewed both meetings and listed their horses to follow and horses to sack below.
Horses to follow
Persan – Showed he’s come back incredibly well from his Melbourne Cup placing and was the only winner to circle the field all day. First up at 2040m after drifting heavily in the market suggested he’d need the run, but he was simply too good on the day. He can only improve, and the Andrew Ramsden looks at his mercy.
Pandemic – All honours with Ancestry but Pandemic should’ve finished a lot closer after having no luck buried on the fence. He trialled very well between runs and anything at group 3 level over 1200m he’ll be very hard to beat.
Grandslam – absolutely destroyed them. He got the favours on the day being able to lead on a wet and biased track, but the margin was 6.25L and I think he probably wins that no matter the conditions. They were clearly waiting until he was fit enough to really take a race by the neck and it’s paid dividends. He’ll only get better the further they go and I think he’s the #1 seed for the ATC Derby off that effort.
Russian Camelot – Proper race with Mugatoo and Russian Camelot fighting it out on the wet track. Of the two I want to follow Russian Camelot because it’s been confirmed his next run will be in the Doncaster. If he strikes another wet track, I’d think he’d be very hard to beat in that, even with a fair bit of weight. Both horses will be very competitive in the Queen Elizabeth.
Hilal – Ridden extremely negatively once again and he ran about as well as he physically could. Ran the fastest final 200m, 400m and 600m of the race and looks to be a major player heading towards the Sires’ Produce and the Champagne Stakes. Barriers have made it hard but as soon as he’s put into a race, he’ll be very hard to beat. Worth following your money on him if you’ve been backing him in recent starts.
Awe – Another runner from Team Hawkes who made his debut in the Pago Pago Stakes. He was right alongside Hilal rounding the turn, and although he didn’t finish off as well as his stablemate, I thought his run was very good in a race which had depth. He can find an easier race in the coming weeks and be winning.
California Zimbol – Did a good job to win first up and she tends to improve second up, so she will be very hard to beat wherever she goes next. Not sure she is A-grade, but she’s not far off it.
Wandabaa – Ran home very well behind California Zimbol from an awful position in the run. That was her first defeat when first up from a spell, but she went down by just over half-a-length, which was a tremendous effort. Can be followed with confidence, especially if she strikes a wet track.
Subpoenaed – I was on her in the Coolmore Classic and she just had no favours at all, stuck out wide without cover throughout the race. I thought she did a relatively good job to be beaten just 3.8L in 7th, as she was entitled to drop right out with the run she had. She’s come back in terrific order this prep.
Rock – probably the horse to follow out of the whole meeting. He was outstanding first up, coming from the back of the field in the Ajax to be beaten less than a length. He’s won 3/3 second up from a spell, including an utterly dominant win in the G3 Cameron Hcp at Newcastle last prep, so there’s every chance he explodes off the weekend’s run. He probably goes to something like the Doncaster now, which might test him on class, but if they end up going for an easier option, he’ll be closing in on ‘moral’ territory.
Horses to sack
Hard to sack any horses out of The Valley, because the track was wetter than what they said and it was nearly impossible to make ground further than three horses off the fence. So many times we see starting prices hold up going forward, so we should be looking to forgive rather than forget some of the performances we saw on the weekend and follow them into their next start, where we are likely to get a better price.
Buffalo River – Very glad this horse made the journey up to Sydney, as it gave me a chance to bet against him as he took up a large percentage of the market, and also gives me a chance to sack him. He’s now gone down at 2.70, 4.80, 7.50, 4.00, 4.80, 2.70 and 5.50 in his past seven starts.