Caulfield and Royal Randwick host the feature programs this Saturday. The time-honoured Group 1 Caulfield Cup is the main event at the heath, while the $1,000,000 Five Diamond Prelude will ensure a healthy crowd returns to the eastern suburbs of Sydney a week after local punters climbed Mount Everest. Join our experts as they outline their best bets on a super Saturday of racing.
Caulfield Race 5
Caulfield RACE 6
#1 Lofty Strike
Group 1 competitive Lofty Strike has this race at his mercy. The Snitzel flies fresh, and the 1000m looks ideal first-up after a successful autumn preparation. The form around I Wish I Win and In Secret is outrageous, and he should get the perfect cart into the race with the predicated frenetic pace upfront. His recent barrier trial rang the alarm bells for his rivals, and he looks to have a big spring ahead. The allocated weight is his biggest challenge.
Spacewalk was an impressive winner first-up at Warwick Farm. The Exosphere gelding traditionally races well second-up, and the 1000m is in his wheelhouse. His versatility is his biggest asset, and with even luck in transit, I expect him to fight out the finish. The 53kg is a luxury, and Jamie ‘Fast Kah’ will have a menagerie of options jumping from a middle gate. This is his acid test.
Suggested Bet: Lofty Strike @ $2.90
Caulfield Race 7
#4 Shuffle Dancer
Caulfield Race 9
Soulcombe has had a wing on all four hooves since returning to racing. His first-up win was blistering, and his second and third-up performances have caught the eye of punters. From barrier six, he can sit midfield with cover, and if Craig Williams presses the ‘go’ button at the right time, he can gobble up his rivals late. The step out to 2400m is perfect at this stage of his preparation, and I suspect this is his ‘Grand Final’ for the campaign. A run in the race that stops the nation could be the next logical step with a solid performance on Saturday.
At his latest outing, Gold Trip was visually stunning in the Group 1 Turnball Stakes. He put his rivals away a long way from home and furnished into a world-class racehorse. He will relish the step out to 2400m, and he looks well placed in a very thin edition of the time-honoured Caulfield Cup. He will drift back and watch the race unfold, and if he can stay in touch with the leading group during the middle stages of the race, he will loom the winner at the top of the final furlong. The grandstand weight is the primary concern.
Suggested Bet: Soulcombe @ $6.00
Randwick Race 8
#2 Democracy Manifest
Democracy Manifest is racing in succulent form. His run in the Group 1 Epsom was outstanding, and he meets inferior opposition on Saturday. The Flying Artie gelding doesn’t know how to run a bad race, and his win two starts back in the Cameron Handicap at Newcastle was one for the ages. From barrier twelve, he will drift back and give his opposition a head start, and if he can stay in touch with the peloton during the middle stages of the race, he can grab his rivals in the shadows of the post. He knows his racing and judo well!
Cotehele savaged the line fresh. The Tavistock gelding has a fantastic second-up record, and he finds his pet distance here. From barrier five, he can sit midfield with cover, and with even luck, when the field heads over the famous Randwick rise, I expect him to make his presence felt late. His recent winning record is the primary concern.
Suggested Bet: Democracy Manifest @ $4.40
Randwick Race 9
Spangler is ready to win! Both runs this preparation have been full of merit, and I suspect he has been trained to explode third-up from a spell. The Starspangledbanner gelding will appreciate the drop in class, and his record at the distance is too good to ignore. From barrier eleven, he will drift back at find his hooves, and if he can produce his customary turn of foot as they run for the judge, I expect him to figure in the finish. Hard to toss!
Flying Crazy is knocking on the door! The Flying Artie gelding caught the eye at his latest outing, and he has been crying out for the mile all preparation. He will thrive in this company, and he should get the run of the race from a perfect inside draw. The enigmatic five-year-old has the fitness edge over the majority of his rivals, and I expect the flood of money will continue until the barriers open.
Suggested Bet: Spangler @ $5.50