Winx is expected to make it 11 straight by taking out the Group One George Main Stakes at Randwick while Caulfield shapes as a brilliant punting card. Here comes The Wolf!
English (Randwick Race 7, No.4)
English is set for a bumper spring carnival says The Wolf. This daughter of Encosta de Lago was brilliant last campaign as a three-year-old. This was despite her using so much nervous energy in the mounting yard. All reports suggest that she is a much more mature mare now. She is always a star trialler and that has been the case again before kicking off here, showing her explosive turn of foot. The last time we saw her she knocked off Black Heart Bart in the All Aged Stakes. If there’s a horse to lower the colours of Chautauqua over the next few months, it’s here.
Double Down: She’s a get back run on type so don’t mind the wide barrier. Don’t panic if she’s near last. Prefer her with plenty of room to her outside.
Magicus (Randwick Race 2, No.9)
Has started favourite in all five runs this campaign for the single win. However, he has been luckless in two of them and should have won. His other two efforts were a sound firsy-up fourth and an even fifth when completely unsuited back to 1200m. The numbers simply don’t do him justice. Chris Waller shoots him back up the Hume to tackle Sydney competition for the first time in his life and he finds a very suitable race. Hugh Bowman steers too and won’t be making the same mistakes as Craig Williams.
Double Down: Drawn wide so expect Bowman to take him back. Want the speed to be set by Signposted and Fabrizio. No loafing in front!
Miss Gunpowder (Caulfield Race 4, No.2)
This mare was rolled at odds on first-up but it was a complete forget. She missed the kick, was hunted out and posted wide the trip. She never settled and didn’t finish the race off. Phillip Stokes is a genius at placing his horses in Melbourne and looks to have found the perfect race for her here. She has tackled the 1400m at Caulfield once before and ran away with a Group Two beating the likes of Jameka, Stay With Me and Super Cash.
Double Down: Maps perfectly here in barrier 2. Either sits outside the likely leader Takeover drawn next to her or tucks in to box seat.
Tom Melbourne (Caulfield Race 8, No.13)
Looked to have every possible chance first-up in the Heatherlie where he couldn’t reel in the race fit leader Great Esteem. His win second-up in the Albury Cup last prep was enormous. That was on a wet track too so doubt the wet forecast will worry him. He’s a quirky horse and Glen Boss makes the trip back to Australia to ride him again. He’s just one of those horses that clicks with Bossy. He’ll take up the running and prove hard to catch with 54kg. The winner books themselves a Caulfield Cup berth.
Double Down: Will be let stride by Bossy from the inside draw. Can overrace if held up so best let him roll. Just want to see him settle.
My Poppette (Caulfield Race 6, No.1)
Resumed at Sandown and to The Wolf’s eye, she was in desperate need of the run. She never looked the winner but her sectionals home were sound enough. She is much more suited out to 1200m and back to her own sex. She’ll have a couple of sharp mares to beat in Miss Promiscuit and Secret Agenda but she looks to have the rest covered on class. She has drawn to get a lovely trail in the race too. Her form card from last preparation does her no justice. She was flying but cruelled by wide gates.
Double Down: Want Mark Zahra to use the gate. Box seat looks the most likely however she has led and won before. Positive ride the key.
8 / 4 / 5,7,8,11 / 9,12,15.
1,4,9 / 4,13 / 2,12 / 1,2,4,9.
Tea Rose Stakes (Randwick)
Foxplay was a dominant winner of the Furious Stakes first-up and is a deserved favourite. Global Glamour hung out badly at Randwick before picking herself up to run third. It was a monster effort and The Wolf thinks she can turn the tables. Awoke is much better than her Furious run. Forget she ever ran. You’d need to be very forgiving to take the current $8.50 though. The one from right field is Sezanne. Bowman jumps off to ride Foxplay but don’t underestimate this filly.
Bill Ritchie Handicap (Randwick)
Handfast was very good fresh and he drops 5kg from the run. This is harder but The Wolf can’t get his previous Randwick win out of his head. He towelled up the likes of Santa Ana Lane there. His stablemate Federal also looks to be ticking over nicely with an encouraging second over 1000m. Tsaritsa’s first-up run was forgettable. She is much more dynamic than that and can bounce back. The inside draw is not ideal for her though. Testashadow the blowout. Happy to risk Happy Clapper with the weight and staying at 1400m.
Heritage Stakes (Randwick)
Five last start winners and of the other six, five finished in the placings. Not sure where to look. Although Russian Revolution’s scratching makes things a touch easier. Tango Rain smashed Thronum two back before splitting Star Turn and Kentucky Miss. Both have franked that form since in a big way. Guard Of Honour is untapped but has to prove he is more than a flash trialler. Spirit And Fire also has a stack of potential. And Hair Trigger fits into the puzzle through Tango Rain. After all that, Tango Rain on top.