It’s a big day of racing slated for Flemington on Saturday, including both the Listed Andrew Ramsden Stakes (3200m) and the time-honoured Listed Straight Six (1200m).
Capacity and talent-rich fields have been taken for almost all nine races and we have analysed every runner in each, in order to help you find a winner at HQ this weekend.
The action is set to get underway with the running of the Saintly Hall Of Fame Trophy (1400m) at 11:45am and will conclude with the Carbine Club Handicap (1600m) at 4:45pm
Race 1 (11:45am) Saintly Hall Of Fame Trophy (1400m)
Thirteen two-year-olds have been confirmed in the final field for Race 1 at Flemington on Saturday and there is a case to be made for several runners. Indernile (barrier 1) returned to the races for fourth in the Listed Thoroughbred Club Cup (1200m) on April 29th and is sure to have taken plenty of benefit from the run. The Street Boss colt has shown plenty of class through his short racing career and should be right in the finish of this race. Grandioso (barrier 6) has posted two impressive wins from as many starts and is undoubtedly the horse to beat in this race, particularly after drawing favourably. Hecta (barrier 4), Salsamor (barrier 5) and Masculino (barrier 3) all made winning debuts, but face a big step up in class into this race.
Tip: No. 3 Indernile – Each Way ($6/$2.15)
Race 2 (12:20pm) Light Fingers Hall Of Fame Trophy (1200m)
A classy field of three-year-olds will take to the barriers for Race 2, including Motown Lil (barrier 14). The Sebring filly posted consecutive wins in a pair of Victorian sprinters over 1000m through March and April, but went slightly amiss when sixth in the Listed Redelva Stakes (1100m) last time out. She will appreciate a step back in class and step up in distance into this field. Wasabi (barrier 10) has returned to the track in career-best form this time and is seeking a third-consecutive win in the race, but will need to improve given the step up in class. Divine Quality (barrier 13) has posted two wins from as many career starts and is set to start a clear, if not odds-on favourite. The daughter of Sepoy has not won by a margin of less-than three lengths and has the notable advantage of in-form hoop Ben Thompson in the saddle.
Tip: No. 6 Overstep – Each Way ($9/$2.75)
Race 3 (12:55pm) John ‘JJ’ Miller Hall Of Fame Trophy (1800m)
It is a smart field of Saturday grade horses that will step out in Race 3 at Flemington on Saturday, however Gallic Chieftain (barrier 8) is set to start the race as a justifiable favourite. The OTI Racing horse finished third in a 1700 race during the Warrnambool festival and will enjoy a step up in distance. Granddukeoftuscany (barrier 16) should find a position off the early pace from his wide draw and will look to run on in the final straight. Lieder (barrier 2) has found competitive form amongst handy company this season and should relish the conditions of this race, particularly with only 54.5kgs in tow.
Tip: No. 4 Gallic Chieftain ($3.80)
Race 4 (1:30pm) Winx Hall Of Fame Trophy (1600m)
Race 4 at Flemington on Saturday boasts a depth of talent and there is a case to be made for close to the entire field of fourteen. Jaws Of Steel (barrier 9) has shown plenty of ability throughout his career and returned to winning form at his last start. While charged with overcoming topweight, the Shark Bite gelding will relish the Flemington mile and is more than capable of winning this race at good odds. The Passage (barrier 11) was a dominant winner at Warrnambool on May 3rd and is another horse who will enjoy a mile, while Guangzhou (barrier 12) has finished no worse than second in his two starts this time and is the market mover at the time of publication. ($18 in to $15).
Tip: No. 7 Guangzhou ($15/$4.50)
Race 5 (2:10pm) Lloyd Williams Hall Of Fame Trophy (1400m)
There is several strong chances in the field of Race 5 at Flemington on Saturday and plenty of value to be taken. Mahuta (barrier 15) has not returned to the races in his best form, but the horse’s class alone could count for a lot in this field. Charmed Harmony (barrier 16) has finished a close second at his two most-recent starts, but may have to do a lot of work early to figure from a wide draw. Now Or Later (barrier 7) is sure to have taken plenty of benefit from his first-up run and should go close with a light weight, while stakes winner Sovereign Nation (barrier 1) is a proven first-up performer and will be tough to beat from the rails draw. Mr Individual (barrier 5) and Well Sprung (barrier 4) are both more than capable in this race in peak form, but it is always tough to predict how they will perform on race day.
Tip: No. 5 Well Sprung – Each Way ($21/$6)
Race 6 (2:50pm) Listed Andrew Ramsden Stakes (3200m)
The only 3200m race run at Flemington other than the Melbourne Cup, the Andrew Ramsden Stakes has drawn a smart field of stayers this year. De Little Engine (barrier 5) is one of the country’s more consistent Saturday stayers and will carry winning form into the Andrew Ramsden Stakes. Pace horse Mujadale should have no problem taking up the running from an inside draw, but has been charged with carrying 57.5kgs. Like A Carousel (barrier 12) and Renew (barrier 11) are both proven at the distance and the latter has enjoyed a smart return to form since transferring to the care of Darren Weir. Shampion (barrier 2) finished third in a race over 4000m last time out and will have no issue running out the trip.
Tip: No. 9 Renew – Each Way ($11/$3.30)
Race 7 (3:30pm) Listed Straight Six (1200m)
The second black type race at Flemington on Saturday will see a classy but open field of sprinters line up on the famous Straight Six course. Perth galloper Malibu Style (barrier 12) has found terrific form in Melbourne this season and won the Listed Bel Esprit Stakes over course and distance two starts ago. Veteran Thermal Current (barrier 8) is still more than capable of winning a race like this, while Tashbeeh (barrier 2) is not without a chance at odds and first-up. South Australian sprinter Karlovasi (barrier 10) has also accepted into The Goodwood field at Morphettville on Saturday, but will be extremely tough to beat in this race if trainer Richard Jolly elects to send him to Flemington. Veteran sprinter Le Bonsir (barrier 4) is the field’s rank outsider in betting markets, but is far better than his $126 quote suggests.
Tip: No. 4 Malibu Style ($4.50)
Race 8 (4:10pm) Archer Hall Of Fame Trophy (2000m)
Several noted stayers will take their position in Race 8 at Flemington on Saturday, including Observational (barrier 10). The veteran has returned to racing in excellent form this season and posted consecutive wins in the Listed Golden Mile (1600m) and Group 3 Easter Cup (2000m), before placing second in the Listed Warrnambool Cup (2350m) last time out. Master Zephyr (barrier 2) is drawn well and will carry only 54kgs, while both Extra Zero (barrier 3) and Longeron (barrier 9) are more than capable, if they bring their best form to the track. Magnapal (barrier 4) has reportedly taken benefit from his first two starts this time and is ready to run a big race.
Tip: No. 2 Observational – Each Way ($8.50/$3)
Race 9 (4:45pm) Carbine Club Handicap (1600m)
Saturday racing at Flemington will draw to a close this weekend with the running of the Carbine Club Handicap, which has attracted several smart milers. Fastnet Latina (barrier 12) has found terrific form this season and is well placed in a race like this, while Godolphin galloper Unbreakable (barrier 6) ran a close second over a mile and amongst smart company last time out, and should take improvement into this race. Guizot (barrier 17) is another horse who has returned to form this season, but faces a tough task in overcoming a particularly wide draw in what will be his fourth start since resuming.
Tip: No. 4 Unbreakable – Each Way ($9/$3.30)