February 19, 2021 National Trotguide
With the benefit of gate one, in what appears to be a race of many chances, SAUCY DREAMS (1) is a suitable investment, following a pleasing effort at this venue a week ago. Prepared by Chantal Turpin and to be driven by Pete McMullen, Saucy Dreams worked home stoutly from her one-one role, albeit three deep on the home turn, when a 7m 3rd to stablemate Miss Ruby Sunshine, with Wahs Fire Bug splitting the Queensland duo. On that occasion the 6yo McArdle mare drew gate seven, and with the pole awaiting her this time around, that will allow McMullen the opportunity to present Saucy Dreams with a far kinder run, and that should result in a competitive showing. EXPERIA (3) has also drawn well in three and with gate speed at his disposal, the 4yo should be making a move for the role as pacemaker. Such a role was on offer at Bathurst last Sunday when the son of Hes Watching dictated the terms in proving too good for Ellmers Image and Maximus Red in the Banjo Patterson Cup. PELOSI (7) appears to be finding form once again, and if her latest outing is any indication, and it should be, as it was in G2 company then a winning display isn’t beyond her . Contesting the Sibelia Stakes, the mare worked home stoutly in posting a 5.4m 3rd to Stylish Memphis and No Win No Feed. Although her form prior was patchy and, below her juvenile brilliance, Pelosi may make a bold statement this time around. BALDUCCI (9) hasn’t been disgraced in two Menangle outings, following a consistent period of racing on the country arena. The son of Mach Three has a tricky draw to overcome but a bold showing over the longer trip of 2300m is a distinct possibility. When forming exotic investments BUNDORAN (2) and FEAR CRUISIN (4) warrant attention while AIR TIME (5), despite mixing his form, also stays under notice in this company, especially over the 2300m.
SAUCY DREAMS 1, Experia 2, Pelosi 3, Balducci 4.
Despite wearing the highest numbered saddlecloth, BALRAJ (11) is clearly the one to beat as he prepares to tackle the qualifying sprints in a week’s time. Resuming from a brief break, following a successful Qld campaign which resulted in the 4YO Championship title, Balraj led from the outside gate a couple of weeks ago, when grabbed in the final few strides by his talented stablemate, Cruz, who came via the pegs in snatching victory. With the benefit of that run, and a slightly more comfortable assignment, Balraj should go one better one this time around, while it should be remembered he did defeat King Of Swing not all that long ago, and not too many can boast such an achievement. MAKOA (3) posted another gritty effort when a 2.5m 3rd to King Of Swing and Burnham Boy two starts ago, then, on the strength of that fine display was expected to take a power of beating in the Banjo Patterson Cup at Bathurst last Sunday. Sent out favourite the 7yo son of Art Major was disappointing in posting a 4.6m last (five runners) to Experia after being four pegs for most of the trip. Suitably drawn in three, which will become two without the reserve, Makoa is capable of giving plenty of cheek. ROCKIN MARTY (10) is racing in superb fashion and it will come as no surprise to see him competitive, despite the presence of a wide gate. Posted without cover a couple of weeks ago, Rockin Marty proved too tough and too good for Fear Cruisin and Balducci. This will be a tougher task, however, this time last year he was contesting the Chariots Of Fire, so he always been a quality performer. BURNHAM BOY (7) hasn’t had a great deal go his way in both the Hondo Grattan and the Paleface Adios G2 events. The talented 4yo is capable of playing an active role in the finish. BETTOR VISION (2) has drawn ideally and that will assist the 7yo in giving a good sight as an exotic player. OUTRAGEOUS EL (4) is racing well and can’t be dismissed from the multiples, along with PUMP THE BRAKES (5), MACH DA VINCI (8) and MOTU GATECRASHER (9).
BALRAJ 1, Experia 2, Rockin Marty 3, Bettor Vision 4.
Heat one of three events set aside for the NSW Oaks which feature the outstanding Victorian TOUGH TILLY (4) who certainly is tough, tenacious and extremely talented. A member of the powerful Emma Stewart team, the 3yo daughter of Captaintreacherous arrives for her first Menangle adventure with five wins and six placings, all as runner-up, from just 12 starts. Following her stylish win in the 2YO Fillies Vicbred Final at Melton on December 31, Tough Tilly had some time off before facing the starter for the 3YO Gold Chalice, once again at Melton. Trapped three wide en route, to parking outside of the leader, her stablemate Rogue Wave, who will again oppose her, Tough Tilly, as she has done on so many occasions, just kept grinding away until the job was done. Suitably drawn in four and definitely favoured by the 2400m, Tough Tilly will go on her winning way. ROGUE WAVE (7) has drawn a few spots wider than her stablemate, but the filly can be expected to be in the fight from the outset. With two wins and six placings from just 10 appearances, Rogue Wave hasn’t had a lot of luck in some of her recent engagements and the longer trip should suit. However, in all likelihood, the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere will again be forced into the role as ‘second best’. CHRISSY CHIC (3) is racing in the best form of her career, completing a quartet of wins for trainer Jason Grimson when she led throughout in defeating Arma Renegade and The Wolf. This will be a big test for the Major In Art filly but claims as an exotic runner can’t be ignored. IMAJOYRIDE (1), courtesy of gate one, should receive a cosy trip and that will certainly boost her claims of making a play for a role in the exotics while IM DESIRABLE (5), WHOS MY MOTHER (6) and GIRL FROM OZ (9) could throw some value into the dividends.
TOUGH TILLY 1, Rogue Wave 2, Chrissy Chic 3, Imajoyride 4.
The powerful Emma Stewart stable will again be out in force with Bathurst Gold Tiara winner JOANNA (5) and PLATINUM SPARKLE (2) facing the starter. JOANNA has been off the scene since a creditable 4th, beaten 12m, behind stablemate Tough Tilly in the 3YO Vicbred Final at Melton on December 31. A recent strong Melton trial appearance will have the classy daughter of Somebeachsomewhere has the perfect opportunity to bounce back to winning form, with the 2400m likely to enhance her claims of greeting the judge. PRESTIGE STRIDE (1) from the highly flying stables of Anthony Butt and Sonya Smith, could prove to be the likely threat to Joanna. The draw is certainly a big plus for Prestige stride who posted a hat-trick of wins, prior to her creditable 8.6m 4th to Tough Tilly last time out. The pole position will allow Butt the option of dictating, or taking cover and, awaiting, for a late shot at the top spot. Either way, the Sweet Lou filly is bound to be active in the finish. PLATINUM SPARKLE (2) led throughout in posting a strong win at Bendigo on December 29, and although she has mixed her form in the elite events, the filly is capable of giving plenty of cheek from her good draw. It is hard to go outside of the top three when looking for winning players, with MARMITTA (4), GOOD CHEDDAR THIS (6), DASHING CHEDDAR (7) and SOVIET STUNNER (3) the value exotic hopefuls.
JOANNA 1, Prestige Stride 2, Platinum Sparkle 3, Marmitta 4.
The final heat should go the way of the star local filly ANNTONIA (5) who is looking to take a big step towards a deserving G1 title. Placed in both the Gold Tiara and the G1 2YO Fillies NSW Breeders Challenge, the classy David Thorn-trained daughter of Bettors Delight resumed at Penrith recently with an emphatic win, as was expected in that class of field, with her mentor pleased on the way she attacked the race from the outset, showing more gate speed than usual. With gate five a suitable starting position, Anntonia should be in the thick of the action from the outset, and whether she dictates or stalks the speed, Anntonia will head into the NSW Oaks on a winning note. BEACH MUSIC (6) is yet another quality filly from the Emma Stewart barn, and although she doesn’t have the same high-profile, the Somebeachsomewhere filly has more than her share of talent. Recently, the filly has found the likes of Tough Tilly and another exciting type in Ladies In Red too good, but along the way she has been competitive, without having a lot of luck on a few occasions. ARMA RENEGADE (7) is finding peak condition after two solid efforts since a spell, the latter when a gritty 2nd to Chrissy Chic a couple of weeks ago. The Brad Hewitt trained and driven filly has always shown plenty of potential and she will have no trouble with the 2400m. CELESTIALFRANGRANCE (2) recorded just her second win from a mere six starts when she led in scoring easily at Charlton recently. Prepared by Brooke Wilkins, who has been learning the trade in Victoria, the filly is coming off a big win at Charlton and although up in grade, the draw will result in a cheeky display. THE WOLF (9) is now under the care of Belinda McCarthy after contesting four races with Tim Butt. The filly is coming off a useful 19.2m 3rd to Chrissy Chic and Arma Renegade and a bold showing in this stronger assignment wouldn’t come as a surprise. Exotic players should also look to BETA JEWEL (3) when forming investments.
ANNTONIA 1, Beach Music 2, Arma Renegade 3, Celestialfragrance 4.
The G2 Robin Dundee Stakes will feature and outstanding line up, with the race likely to develop into an enthralling clash between the host State and Victoria. Back home and boasting an outstanding record at this venue, the Belinda McCarthy-trained BETTOR ENFORCE (6) is entitled to top billing. From 20 starts at Headquarters, Better Enforce has collected 13 wins and five placings from just 20 appearances. The daughter of Bettors Delight posted a gallant 2nd in the Queen of the Pacific at Melton, then return to Menangle in greeting the judge of four-consecutive occasions, prior to heading south once again for the Ladyship Cup at Melton on February 2. Caught facing the breeze, outside of the exceptional mare Our Princess Tiffany, Bettor Enforce was, as per usual, game in defeat in posting a brave half-neck second. Usually, when facing the starter at Menangle, Bettor Enforce leaves the gate from gate 10, but this time around she will enjoy four, providing the two reserves aren’t required. With the lead role being a distinct possibility, Bettor Enforce will take a power of beating. However, the local star will need to be at her brilliant best as MAAJIDA (5) will match her ‘stride for stride’ when the championship rounds come into play. The star, Emma Stewart-conditioned mare, has won 17 of her 23 starts, the latest being the 3YO Fillies Vicbred title in late December. Maajida has drawn one spot closer to the pegs and Kate Gath will certainly keep Bettor Enforce honest during the opening stages of the race. With the race appearing to be a contest between Bettor Enforce and Maajida, exotic players should then look to another Emma Stewart runner in ROCKASAKI (2) as a suitable runner in that regard. The Rock N Roll Heaven mare has drawn ideally and is likely to take her spot behind the mobile in gate one. Following wins at Melton and Ballarat, Rockasaki then did a fine job in posting a 4.9m 3rd to Our Princess Tiffany and Bettor Enforce in the Ladyship Cup. That form must be respected when assessing multiple investments. MISS MCGONAGALL (3) also arrives from Victorian in fine form and the draw will also assist her claims of being involved in the finish. MAKE MINE HEAVEN (8), RCOKNROLL ANGEL (10) and JENDEN STRIKE (11) also have claims as value exotic contenders.
BETTOR ENFORCE 1, Maajida 2, Rockasaki 3, Miss McGonagall 4.
The Chariots Of Fire was always going to be a tough race to assess, but the draw has certainly opened the door for a number of contestants to enjoy success. Despite the wide draw, EXPENSIVE EGO (11) remains the one to beat. Luke McCarthy will have an interesting choice to make, whether to explode early or look for a suitable stalking role, allowing the speed to enhance his claims of powering home. Boasting seven wins and two placings, both as runner-up, from 10 starts at this venue, Expensive Ego had little luck on his side, courtesy of a second line draw in the 4YO Bonanza at Melton on February 6. As a result, the classy son of Rock N Roll Heaven posted a 19.8m 8th to Boots Electric. Back home and Expensive Ego was back to stylish best when he won the G2 Paleface Adios a week ago, comfortably leading throughout in defeating a game Kowalski Analysis and The Mustang. Looming as a major contender is the Paul Fitzpatrick-conditioned ZEUSS BROMAC (7) which has drawn suitably in six, with the second reserve out of the equation. Courtesy of a smart front-running drive by Kerryn Manning, Zeuss Bromac proved too good in the 3YO C&G’s Vicbred on November 21, then posted gritty placings in two Menangle assignments, which lifted his level of fitness to its peak. Driven aggressively in the Hondo Grattan by Gavin Fitzpatrick, Zeuss Bromac dominated the G2 event from the top, which paved the wave for a strong win over Stylish Memphis and Jay OK. The form being confirmed when Stylish Memphis won the G2 Sibelia in great fashion a week later. Group One Gav will again be keen to find the top, a role which will see Zeuss Bromac taking a power of beating. BOOTS ELECTRIC (3) was electric in winning the 4YO Bonanza at Melton a couple of weeks ago. Contesting the 1720m challenge from a kind, three peg role, Boots Electric received a suitable passage in the run home, exploding late to snatch victory from Pacifico Dream and Kowalski Analysis. Anthony Butt will be looking to produce a ‘carbon copy’ drive, and if he does, then Boots Electric is adding another trophy to the mantlepiece. STYLISH MEMPHIS (12) has drawn badly out deep, but she is far too classy to leave out of the equation. The winner of the NSW Oaks a year ago, the brilliant New Zealander loves racing here, having won three from five while finishing runner-up on two occasions. The mare won the G2 Sibelia a week ago in fine style and although the draw may appear a setback, Jack Trainor may allow the ‘power players’ to do their thing, allowing Stylish Memphis to came with a late rush, down the outside of the long Menangle straight. Don’t write off JAY OK (4) when it comes to posting a ‘surprising’ result. The 4yo was unlucky behind his stablemate Zeuss Bromac in the Hondo Grattan, with the son of A Rocknroll Dance clearing a three-peg a shade too late in posting a fast-finishing 2.5m third. KOWALSKI ANALYSIS (5) draws suitably and he was game in defeat when beaten into second spot behind Expensive Ego in the Paleface Adios. The 4yo was also responsible for strong performances in the 4YO Bonanza, the Ballarat Cup and the Hamilton Cup. MINSTREL (9) arrives from WA on the back of a stylish win the Golden Nugget a week ago. This will be a far tougher test but he doesn’t lack talent and with local reinsman Robert Morris in the sulky, Minstrel can’t be taken lightly.
EXPENSIVE EGO 1, Zeuss Bromac 2, Boots Electric 3, Stylish Memphis 4.
With the benefit of two runs for new mentor Paul Fitzpatrick, SAMMY SHOWDOWN (8) is capable of turning the tables of DROP THE HAMMER (9) with the latter having the edge on the former Victorian in each of their past two encounters. Solidly backed when beaten 1.9m by the Darren Hancock-trained 6yo, Sammy Showdown then raced without cover when Drop The Hammer again proved a shade too strong in prevailing by a margin of 4.9m. The 2300m of this assignment will assist Sammy Showdown in going one better. DROP THE HAMMER (9) has collected each of his 24 career wins at this venue and he will be favoured to greet the judge once again. Hancock has been able to dictate the terms to perfection in winning his past two, and the pair will again be looking to ‘nail’ down that role once again. ARNOLD (6) battled on stoutly when a gritty 5.6m 2nd to the champ Tough Monarch a month ago, and another cheeky run from the 7yo can be expected. REVY JAY (7) continues to race consistently and is a suitable exotic player, along with EMPIRE BAY (10). KOWHAI MONARCH (4) is another to consider when it comes to looking for some much needed value.
SAMMY SHOWDOWN 1, Drop The Hammer 2, Arnold 3, Revy Jay 4.
One of the ‘better bets’ on the card appears here, courtesy of the former Kiwi BAD TO THE BONE (3) which drops considerably in grade following two runs for Paul Fitzpatrick, both in G2 events, the Hondo Grattan and Paleface Adios, qualifying races for the Chariots Of Fire. Contesting his first race since crossing the Tasman and in six weeks, Bad To The Bone recorded a pleasing 10.6 7th to Zeuss Bromac, prior to again filling that particular spot when beaten 17.9m by Expensive Ego. Apart from the easier task, the classy 4yo son of Bettors Delight also strips fitter and will certainly appreciate his good draw. With so many boxes ticked, Bad To The Bad will be greeting the judge. STORMY RAIDER (1) had been racing in fine style, but the 8yo’s form fell away, prior to a 7m 3rd to Lets Go To Brazil a week ago. Gate one is a plus for Stormy Raider and that will ensure that the 8yo has every chance to be actively involved in the finish. BACKINTOWN (2) is coming off a couple of sound placings and with the benefit of gate two the 5yo will again be in the mix from the outset. Although he doesn’t win out of turn, the David Thorn-trained son of Bettors Delight is capable of giving plenty of cheek. MYRA DAWN (7) hit the line nicely when an 8.2m 4th to Miss Ruby Sunshine last week and she is entitled to exotic attention. Others to include in that regard are LANI KAI BEACH (4), TEAM OF STARZZ (5), ZIGGY ROCKS (8) and BETTOR TO BE TRICKY (11).
BAD TO THE BONE 1, Stormy Raider 2, Backintown 3, Myra Dawn 4.