February 11, 2021 National Trotguide
With the benefit of two runs from a spell, and an ideal draw, the Michael Doltoff-trained LETS GO TO BRAZIL (2) appeals as the one to beat in a race of many chances. Resuming with a comfortable win over Bronski Belle and Katchar Shoobee on January 19, courtesy of a stalking role, the 5yo son of Rock N Roll Heaven drew wide for his next assignment, which resulted in a midfield role coming his way, en route to hitting the line with intent, resulting in a 2.4m 3rd behind Red Reactor and Accelere. From gate two, Luke McCarthy will have the option of again occupying a kind peg role or dictating the terms, with the latter appearing to be the most likely game plan. Either way, Lets Go To Brazil will play an active role in the finish. ZIGGY ROCKS (7) hasn’t saluted since the early stages of October 2020, however, the 5yo has been in the mix on a few occasions. The son of Pet Rock warrants attention after working home strongly when a 1.4m 2nd to Bettathanfast at Bathurst last week. Although the 5yo has drawn a shade deep, that shouldn’t be a major concern as he is likely to drift back, prior to making his presence known in the run home. MAXIMUS RED (8) has also been racing in fine form, mainly on his home track of Bathurst. Three starts ago at this venue, the 6yo led when a gritty 5.9m 4th to Dream To Share, with Mitch Turnbull, who is driving in good form, managed to find the top after starting from the outside gate, so there is every possibility that the Bathurst pair may again look to ‘play from the front’. CHASING THE WIND (3) had been racing well before a disappointing, lack-lustre effort behind Alta Downs at Bathurst during the week. Ideally drawn in three, Chasing the Wind would certainly be competitive on his previous solid form so don’t ignore the son of Fly Like An Eagle. WE SALUTE YOU (4) was responsible for an eye-catching run when first up for Lucky Lodge last week. Coming off a couple of safely held country appearances, the 5yo son of Well Said hit the line strongly in recording a 4.5m 4th to Mo Casino. With the benefit of a vastly better draw, We Salute You can salute the judge, as well. TEAM OF STARZZZ (1) has been close-up in each of his past four starts and with the benefit of gate one and a possible ‘soft’ peg role, the Geoff Day-trained 10yo could assist in adding value to the exotics.
LETS GO TO BRAZIL 1, Ziggy Rocks 2, Maximus Red 3, Chasing The Wind 4.
With the Garrards Miracle Mile fast-approaching, CASH N FLOW (11) will be looking to take another step towards securing a spot in the great race. After owning the Menangle Mile for a number of months, Cash N Flow ended his previous term of racing on a costly note when he posted a 7m 4th to Whereyabinboppin, with the winner dictating the terms in brilliant fashion, resulting in a blistering 25.5 opening 400m and a 26.8 final quarter. While this was taking place, Cash N Flow was unable to occupy a role close to the action, leaving him in a midfield role and three deep in making his approach towards the tear-away leader. The task proved beyond on him. Fresh and striking a suitable, but quality field, the 8yo son of Mach Three will be ready to bounce back strongly as he looks to make a statement. Apart from Cash N Flow, trainer Belinda McCarthy will also be represented by the main threat, if there is to be one, to Cash N Flow in BRIGHT ENERGY (5), with Brad Elder taking the reins behind the talented 6yo, which is owned by members of his family. Bright Energy enjoyed a solid Queensland campaign, which included three appearances, the latest a fast-finishing head 2nd to One Change in the Christmas Cup at AP on December 19. Suitably drawn in gate four, which is less the reserve, will again give a good account. THE TEXAS RANGER (3) continues to be in the mix, which was again the case a week ago when he posted a 6.2m 5th to Cruz. The Brad Hewitt trained and driven 5yo will have the chance to grab a suitable run close to the action, maybe, on the pegs, which will enhance his exotic prospects. PITCH PERFECT (8) enjoyed the one-one, prior to looming up three wide when a gritty 8.8m 7th to Cruz here last week. The Bettors Delight 5yo has drawn the same alley so expect him to be pushing forward in search of a role close to the action. IGNATIUS (9) returns to the mainland after a strong period of racing back in Tasmania. The 6yo is under the care of Todd Rattray, but it will be James who takes the reins. Ignatius has enjoyed plenty of success at this venue when under the care of James, but the son of Roll With Joe was in the ‘peak of his powers’ at the time and a minor exotic role could be the best he could hope for in this field. ROCKIN MARTY (10) has drawn badly out wide but his recent form is hard to fault so don’t ignore him as a multiple player.
CASH N FLOW 1, Bright Energy 2, The Texas Ranger 3, Pitch Perfect 4.
There won’t be a shortage of contenders for the top spot as this is an evenly graded field. On the strength of a solid win here three starts ago, and an ideal draw, the Belinda McCarthy-conditioned mare MOREAU DRIVE (2) is bound to be in the mix from the outset and, well into the straight on her best form. Following that win, Moreau Drive posted a photo 2nd to Burnham Boy, prior to dictating the terms when a fading 9.4m 7th to Mach Da Vinci. The fact that Luke McCarthy has selected the mare over three other stable runners is a positive guide to the mare’s claims of greeting the judge. One of those stablemates is DREAM TO SHARE (7), with the in-form Jack Callaghan jumping in the bike. After a period of consistent efforts, Dream To Share produced a ‘nightmare’ effort last week in recording a tiring 29.6m last to Rockin Marty, despite having a handy peg role from the outset. The 8yo is entitled to another chance on his previous efforts. BALDUCCI (6) faced the starter for his first Menangle assignment last week, following a solid period of racing on the country arena, and was responsible for a pleasing 3.9m 3rd behind Rockin Marty. Trained and driven by Amanda Turnbull, the 4yo son of Mach Three has a slightly better draw and he is more than capable of giving this a shake. APHORISM (1) draws ideally in gate one and with back-to-back wins to his credit, firstly at Bathurst, then at this venue, the 6yo is worthy of attention when it comes to exotic players. The scratching means that SHANNONSTHEMAN (3) comes off the bench and with gate three an ideal starting role, the 7yo is bound to attract attention as a threat while FEAR CRUISIN (8) also has claims after filling the role as runner-up in three of his past four assignments in such a competitive race there should be value on offer.
MOREAU DRIVE 1, Dream To Share 2, Balducci 3, Aphorism 4.
The G2 Sibelia has attracted a quality field of mares, and although the classy Kiwi STYLISH MEMPHIS (10) has drawn wide in eight, which is less the reserves, she remains the one to beat. Stepping out for her first assignment since a head 3rd to Henry Hubert at Addington in mid-December, the daughter of Bettors Delight contested the G2 Hondo Grattan last week, and although left exposed outside of the leader and eventual winner in Zeuss Bromac, the 4yo was brave in defeat. When the judge called a halt, Stylish Memphis recorded a 1.8m 2nd, and with an opening quarter of 26.6 and the final 400m covered in 26.2, it adds further merit to her gallant performance. Fitter and returning to a race set aside for her own sex, the NSW Oaks winner is poised to go one better. Gate one is a big plus for ROCKNROLL ANGEL (1) who was most impressive in scoring here last week. Despite being confronted by a wide gate, Rocknroll Angel worked across the face of the field, which enabled Cameron Hart to secure the one-one, prior to the mare being left exposed as the field thundered towards the home turn. Despite being first-up from a break, the 8yo powered clear of her rivals, resulting in a comfortable and an impressive win over Arma Naughty and Myra Dawn. Fitter, Rocknroll Angel is again capable of being involved in the finish, despite the stronger opposition. NO WIN NO FEED (2) has also drawn ideally in two and that will result in the mare being a factor from the outset. Following a successful, dual inter-state campaign, which culminated in a close 2nd to Escalera at AP back on December 12, the Belinda McCarthy-trained daughter of A Rocknroll Dance was back in action seven weeks later with a gritty 6.2m 4th to her star stablemate in Bettor Enforce here two weeks ago. That outing would have topped her off nicely for this assignment. The Bernie Hewitt trained and driven MAKE MINE HEAVEN (9) is a reliable mare, and although the wide gate is a concern, the 7yo daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven is worthy of attention. The mare recorded a solid 4.9m 3rd to Bettor Enforce at Headquarters a couple of weeks, which was her fourth run back from a spell. Bernie elected to send Make Mine Heaven to the Bathurst trials on Monday, with the mare defeating Beetson in a two-horse hit-out, resulting in a 27.5 final 400m. When it comes to forming exotic transactions GOTTA PARTY DOLL (7) should be included, along with ARMA HOTSHOT (12), despite the draw being a hurdle.
STYLISH MEMPHIS 1, Rocknroll Angel 2, No Win No Feed 3, Make Mine Heaven 4.
The Scott Hewitt trained and driven ARMA NAUGHTY (8) has the outside draw to overcome, but with only eight runners the task won’t be as difficult, compared to that of a full field. Two starts ago, Arma Naughty finished strongly in defeating Backintown and Obi One, the latter winning since, prior to coming from a rearward role in recording a solid 8.6m 2nd behind Rocknroll Angel last week. The winner would have little trouble accounting for this field, which enhances the claims of Arma Naughty greeting the judge. The Somebeachsomewhere 6yo should be able to ‘find her legs’ during the opening stages of the contest before coming with ‘fresh legs’ over the final 400m. ARTEMIS (3) is back from a spell on the back of two trials, the latter a distant last after striking trouble so don’t read too much into that outing. A quality 4yo, the mare enjoyed plenty of success when last in work and with gate three an ideal starting position, the 4yo will attack this race as a main player. Robert Morris, who will take the reins behind the Lucky Lodge runner, spoke highly of Artemis on Club Menangle TV during the week and he was more than confident of a bold showing. WAHS FIRE BUG (1) peaks in condition following three runs back from a spell and with gate one a big plus, the daughter of Mach Three has the chance to post her first win since last July. The 5yo will find this to be a far more suitable challenge after failing to make her presence felt when a 17.9m 6th to Rocknroll Angel a week ago. MISS RUBY SUNSHINE (2) arrives from Queensland as a last-start AP winner a week ago when she justified her odds-on quote with an easy all-the-way win over Rockita and Nimah Franco. The Sunshine Beach was unplaced at her only other Menangle challenge, but she will find this a far more suitable assignment so expect a cheeky run. Former Queenslander, Ashleigh Delosa will have her first Menangle runner in MAMMALS MAGIC (4), which has been a model of consistency of late. Although rising in grade the Village Jolt mare should be linked to exotic investments. SAUCY DREAMS (7), along with Miss Ruby Sunshine, is in the astute care of Chantal Turpin, and the mare will be confronted by a harder task, her recent form at AP is hard to fault so keep her safe in multiple discussions.
ARMA NAUGHTY 1, Artemis 2, Wahs Fire Bug 3, Miss Ruby Sunshine 4.
The G2 Cordina Chicken Farms Paleface Adios will be an enthralling contest from start to finish, with spots in the Chariots of Fire up for grabs. Since heading back to Victoria, Anthony Butt and Sonya Smith can do ‘no wrong’, chalking up winners on a regular basis, and more importantly, feature wins. PERFECT STRIDE (6), who enjoyed a productive 3yo season, which included a couple of Derby placings, has commenced the new season on a positive note with wins at Cobram and Ballarat, the latter defeating the classy Pacifico Dream, prior to his bold showing in the 4YO Bonanza at Melton a couple of weeks ago. Dictating the terms of the 1720m feature, Perfect Stride gave plenty of cheek, but over the final stages was unable to maintain the effort, following brisk sectionals, three in the 27 plus range, en route to a posting a respectable 6.8m 4th to stablemate Boots Electric, with Pacifico Dream grabbing second. Less one of the two reserves and the classy 4yo will launch his claim from gate five and that should give Butt the chance to position Perfect Stride in the thick of the action. Despite the race overflowing with class, Perfect Stride will take a power of beating. EXPENSIVE EGO (2) returns home after having little go his way in the Bonanza, commencing with a problem at the start, courtesy of drawing the inside of the second line. The classy 4yo found more trouble in running, resulting in a 19.8m 8th, an effort well-below his best, but one best forgotten. Prior to heading south, Expensive Ego had been racing in fine style and with gate two a big plus, the son of Rock N Roll Heaven will bounce back strongly. PACIFICO DREAM (11) doesn’t know how to run a bad race, and although the wide draw is a concern, the Andy Gath-conditioned star 4yo is bound to play an active role in the outcome. Trapped three wide through the opening stages of the Bonanza, Pacifico Dream was eventually left exposed outside of Perfect Stride, however, despite the extra workload, the son of Mach Three kept finding the line with a high level of determination, resulting in a brave 1.8m second. With Kate Gath staying at home, courtesy of a strong book of drives at Melton, local star Robert Morris will take the reins and he will be keen to qualifying Pacifico Dream for a spot in the ‘Chariots’, courtesy of a winning display. If there is to be ‘somewhat’ of a surprise result, KOWALSKI ANALYSIS (1) is the one most likely to provide such a result. A member of the Matthew Craven stable and to be driven by Sofia Arvidsson, Kowalski Analysis has been on the verge of a winning display of late, with his past seven runs resulting in five placings and two respectable unplaced efforts, one of those being a 12.4m 5th to Lochinvar Art in the Ballarat Cup as a $100.00 chance. The son of Roll With Joe is coming off a 2.7m 3rd in the Bonanza after leading out, then taking a sit. Gate one will give him the chance to find a ‘soft’ peg run behind the power and with any luck in the home straight, Kowalski Analysis could give this a shake. BAD TO THE BONE (5) will benefit greatly from his 10.6m 7th to Zeuss Bromac in the Hondo Grattan. The former Kiwi stays in the mix when it comes to the exotics while ONE CHANGE (4) has been in sparkling form at AP, but a minor role in the exotics could be the best chance.
PERFECT STRIDE 1, Expensive Ego 2, Pacifico Dream 3, Kowalski Analysis 4.
On his past two runs, ALWAYS ROCKIN (4) should be rewarded in another tough and open race on the program. The 7yo led and following a clever front-running drive by Jack Trainor, managed to post a creditable 13.4m 2nd to Expensive Ego, which enjoyed a ‘cold’ sit on the son of Rock N Roll Heaven. Last week, left exposed outside of the leader, Always Rockin kept fighting down the running, eventually holding down 3rd spot behind Jimmy Locke and Elroy Jetson, beaten a mere 2.3m in the process. Trainor will be keen to have Always Rockin prominently placed once again, but with the speedy THUNDER DANCE (7) involved, he may be looking at finding a peg role or ‘parking’ in the hope of Always Rockin proving too tough. Down a great deal in grade, DOUBLE ENCOUNTER (8) can make his presence felt. Unplaced in races won by King Of Swing, Motu Gatecrasher and Mafuta Vautin, respectively, it didn’t get any easier for the Harry Martin-trained 7yo a week ago, but he did a fine job in recording a closing, and slightly unlucky, 4.3m 4th to Cruz and Balraj. With the scratching, Double Encounter starts from seven in a field of seven, and with the power likely to be switched on from the outset, Double Encounter is more than capable of having the final say, courtesy of his driver David Morris playing the ‘waiting game’. THUNDER DANCE (7) led when a 5.2m 5th to Jimmy Locke last week and Glenn McElhinney will be out to adopt the same tactics. The 8yo is bound to give plenty of cheek and if Glenn can secure a comfortable quarter in the middle stages, Thunder Dance will prove hard to catch, which was the case four starts ago. OUTRAGEOUS EL (5) scored with ease two starts ago, then did a fine job last time out when a 7.9m 5th to King Of Swing. The veteran is still racing with plenty of ‘zest’ in his legs so don’t ignore him as a winning contender. That leaves MY CHACHINGCHACHING (3) as an exotic player.
ALWAYS ROCKIN 1, Double Encounter 2, Thunder Dance 3, Outrageous El 4.
Despite only six runners will face the starter, the final event is an intriguing contest, with HE AINT FAKIN (6) and TASTY DELIGHT (5) renewing their acquaintance following the running of the G2 Simpson Memorial a couple of weeks ago. On that occasion both ‘rising stars’ were resuming, following an exciting period of racing, however, it is hard to go past the Chris Frisby-trained HE AINT FAIN (6) to get the job done once again. The 3yo son of Art Major was driven a ‘cool, calm, collected’ race by Anthony Frisby, who allowed He Aint Fakin to sit back and enjoy the keenly contested battle up front, prior to the pair unleashing a powerful sprint, which resulted in an emphatic victory over a brave Tasty Delight with Lyrical Genius posting a respectable third. With only six runners facing the starter, Frisby won’t be worried about the outside gate, with the extended trip of 2300m also a plus. Frisby will be looking to produce a ‘carbon copy’ drive in giving He Aint Fakin the chance to power past his rivals once again. The 2300m presents the Brian Portelli trained and driven TASTY DELIGHT (5) with an interesting challenge. This will be his first venture over a trip and with the NSW Derby high on his ‘bucket list’, Portelli will be keen to see his star 3yo settle and relax, and important mixture, if he is to attack the Derby with confidence. The Gold Crown winner raced without cover in the Simpson Memorial and, as per usual, refused to give in without a fight, but he was unable to match strides with the winner over the final 100m. Tasty Delight is likely to find the pegs and set the tempo, with Portelli hoping that it will be comfortable ‘going’ during the middle stages, prior to pressing the ‘go’ button. It will be an enthralling contest. LYRICAL GENIUS (1) continues to impress but with only five starts to his credit, three resulting in wins, the 3yo is still a ‘work in progress’ for his mentor and driver, Amanda Turnbull. Following his hat-trick of country wins, Lyrical Genius drew the outside gate for his toughest test to date, the Simpson Memorial, but that didn’t prevent him from coming from a rearward role in recording a pleasing 10.6m 3rd behind two smart characters. This time around gate one awaits the son of Somebeachsomewhere, along with invaluable experienced gained by his latest encounter. Expect another strong showing from Lyrical Genius over the longer trip, which should also suit him. The undefeated ROAD RUNNER (4) will be confronted by a far harder test, but he warrants exotic involvement with the remaining two runners, JUSTA LITTLE BIT (3) and WOW HES A ROCK STAR (2) also players in that regard.
HE AINT FAKIN 1, Tasty Delight 2, Lyrical Genius 3, Road Runner 4.
- MIKE KO’CASS