Far from ideal conditions for Sydney punters Saturday with a Kenso heavy track meeting to kick off the New Year.
They could give me the inside word on a ‘Fine Cotton’ job with Black Caviar painted up in four white socks and a chestnut rinse for a tilt at a 1000m Maiden, and I’d think twice before parting with my hard-earned.
No such dramas for the once maligned Eagle Farm track which had them winning from everywhere on a highly entertaining card leading into the Magic Millions meeting in a fortnight.
With that in mind, we’ll shift our focus north for the coming weeks and give Sydney some time to get its backyard in order.
Queen of Wizardy (Bris Race 4)
Very impressed with this win. Travelling sweetly to the corner then it appeared it was race over when she looked all but out of options at the 300m. To the rider’s credit, she took her medicine, eased across heels and let her balance up with one run, nabbing them late. Only a small margin and average time but she was full of running through the line and I think it would have been a gap job had she had even luck entering the straight. Still very backable odds in the 2yo race in a fortnight.
Barade (Bris Race 6)
While it’s back to the drawing board for one-time race favourite Ballistic Boy after a barrier mishap, it would appear it’s upwards and onwards for this Archie Alexander import. Has been up a while but has had his runs well spaced and showed a sharp turn of foot when asked to after gradually improving from last at the 1000m and had them covered at the furlong. Imagine J Byrne sticks which is another big plus. Appears to have this lot covered and it would take some fresh form line to knock him off in the Subzero.
Athiri (Bris Race 9)
Bonny team Blue filly who gives the impression she’d run through a brick wall at the minute just to be first past the post. That’s precisely what you want to see a fortnight out after gaining a wild card entry for Magic Millions day. She’s two from two this prep and she now heads to a 1300m race under the exact same race conditions as she won on Saturday. Her gritty on pace pattern is suited by the tight Gold Coast circuit and I’d expect her to look the winner at some point.
Smart Image (Syd Race 6)
Forget he went around on that track. His only two fails have been on the heavy, the other effort was a day when it was a race to the outside fence. He’s a quality animal with enough class to give Isotope a hurry up under the right conditions in the 3yo Guineas and he will be a price.
Oscar Zulu (Bris Race 7)
I think the favourite has a bit on them in the 3yo race, but draws are crucial at the Gold Coast as is luck in running in the big fields on Millions day. Really liked this bloke’s run, attacked the line strongly after having to do a bit of work to ease clear. If things go pear-shaped for Isotope, he’s another who can crash the party at double figure odds.
Aim (Syd Race 6)
Recently gelded and trialled too well to sack on the back of a plain run first up on a tough track. Stretched out nicely late, can bounce back.
Rogue Rocker (Bris Race 7)
Had enough for his first prep. No luck at the barrier draw three cracks at stakes grade. Will come back an even better horse.
Baccarat Baby (Bris Race 8)
Former Sunny Coast (now the Winx) Guineas winner who has been thereabouts her three runs this time in and thought a win might not have been far away. But given every opportunity Saturday. Did pull up with the ‘thumps’ post-race but it’s been too long between drinks and my patience has run out with her.
Desert Lord (Bris Race 8)
Former Sydney based money muncher, gone through his grades for new stable up north but has well and truly met his match against the likes of Tyzone, Niccanova, Soxagon and co.