I’ve seen the Slipper winner. And I think J-Mac might have too.

The former Kiwi sheep herder looks spoilt for choice with the pick of the plum rides for the 2yo feature but I’ve a suspicion I know which one he’ll pick.


Stay Inside (Syd Race 2)

Ran quicker time than Enthaar over the same trip on debut, just a shade outside Redzel’s 1000m track record. The booking of Macdonald here was not just a result of fortuitous circumstances. This was a sound out job. Cannot believe the prices that have been bet about him in the Slipper prior to Saturday and my pre-post faith was justified with that win. Travels like a seasoned professional and ticks the wet track box. Into third favourite, just hope a few punters followed my big push for him after his debut win and secured the big odds. He’s in to $7.00 now in Sportsbet’s Golden Slipper market.

Masked Crusader (Syd Race 6)

Nice to see this bloke back. Looked his race but they’ve danced around wet tracks with him since his defeat first up last prep. Proved no concern whatsoever as he let down like an old mudlark. Needed that stakes win to boost his rating, now he’s got it, he could be back on track to fulfil the potential he showed early just whether they develop him into a miler or think he’s a hold up sit/sprint 1200/1400m horse will dictate where he goes from here.

Colette (Syd Race 7)

Think this win shocked a few people including the stable. Blinkers off, one trial and talks of a Sydney Cup prep. With that in mind, I couldn’t have had her even with her excellent wet record. But I won’t be fooled again. An Oaks winner but her two best wins since have been at 1400m and 1500m. Imagine the two-mile handicap is off the cards and Queen Elizabeth is firmly the target after Saturday.


Tricky Gal (Syd Race 4)

No better rider in Sydney at the moment than Rachel King but fair to say this is one she would rather forget. Should have won and will get her black type win this prep.

Gem Song (Syd Race 6)

Two stone lighter now after twelve months off the scene. Loved the way he lengthened out late first up 1200m. Beaten less than a length and a half against the older horses in a G1 over 2000m at 3yo, also ran 4th in a very strong Epsom. Might have a nice race in him this prep and will be the type of horse punters bet around. Don’t forget him.

Cherry Tortoni (Melb Race 7)

Don’t often weigh in on Melbourne racing (although I did have some choice words to say after the Lightning) but this bloke is on the top lines of betting for the Sydney 3yo Classics and we will see him soon enough. Still a big raw bugger but looks like he’s starting to fill out those bones since his VRC Derby prep. Got an absolute minute off them that day and did well to finish as close as he did. He’s the best of the 3yo staying talent I’ve seen, he looks a staying star of the future and his run first up Saturday only enhanced my opinion of him. Looked lost when he came up for the Spring Champion but will have benefited from that. Imagine he’ll be here by Rosehill Guineas at the latest and is going to take a power of beating on the big track in the Australian Derby but on Saturday’s effort he could well bag an Australian Guineas on the way through. Impressive return.


Away Game (Syd Race 8)

Thought she went enormous first up when on pace. I’m tipping Isotope would have gone really close in this. Understand trying to hold her up out to 1400m in the MM Guineas and had no luck there getting galloped on in the fall at the top of the straight. But thought they would have pressed on here, race fit, back to 1200m. As it turned out, the winner led all the way and she just couldn’t pull back the ground off her. Her biggest asset is jump and run speed, but I can’t see her breaking the run of outs in this grade if they aren’t prepared to utilise it.

Thy Kingdom Come (Syd Race 9)

Had every chance. If they can’t get it done under Nash in those circumstances, they’re not for me.

Cristal Breeze (Syd Race 9)

Thin race after scratchings. Got his chance in this. Travelled sweetly, good wet stats, no excuses on the back of another last first up. Hasn’t come up.