The Randwick track will be rated in the heavy range for the start of day one of ‘The Championships’ on Saturday but track manager Nevesh Ramdhani is tipping it could be back to a soft rating by the time for the running of the Group 1 $3m The Star Doncaster Mile (1600m).
Randwick has received a further 32.2mm of rain on Thursday night, taking the total for the last seven days to 47m and was rated a heavy 9 on Friday morning.
Even though Ramdhani said the sun was out this morning, he still thinks the Randwick track will be rated in the heavy range on Saturday morning with some showers still forecast today and tomorrow, but is optimistic it will improve throughout the day and possibly get into the Soft category for the Doncaster Mile which in race nine on the ten event program..
“The weather has certainly had the final say on Carnival days,” Ramdhani told RSN’s Racing Pulse.
“We have had 32.2mm of rain overnight and that takes us to a heavy 9 this morning.”
“But fortunately though the weather seems to be improving and for the first time we have seen a bit of sunshine in a couple of days.
“They say a possible shower today and a possible shower tomorrow, less likely tomorrow than today, so as least that is looking favourable for us.”
“I think in the morning we will be (in the heavy range) but one thing to consider is a strong southerly breeze that is blowing keeping temperatures very low and we will probably just touch twenty degrees with the wind chill factor. They are saying a maximum of twenty-two, twenty-three, over the next couple of days.”
“It is certainly not drying days but it is still good to see the sun.”
“We know the track can dry pretty quickly so I suspect we will probably improve to the better side of the heavy track and then hopefully by some point in the afternoon tomorrow we will get back to a soft track.”
The last meeting at Randwick on March 4 was run on a heavy track and saw most jockeys heading to the outside fence in the straight which was the case when Doncaster Mile favourite Le Romain beat Chautauqua by a nose in the Group 1 $500,000 BMW Canterbury Stakes (1300m).
Ramdhani said that he doesn’t expect that to be the case on Saturday with the rail in the true position, but added that the jockeys could scout to the middle of the track later in the day.
“I don’t think they will be getting that wide. The rail was out that day as well so it was much easier for them to get there so I don’t think they are going to gain that much going out that wide,” Ramdhani said.
“We are on a true rail, 28m wide, I don’t think the track is terribly inconsistent right across so I think it is fairly even.
“They will race probably true in the first few and then start getting off as they get into the day but certainly not as wide as they raced on the 4th of March.”
The Kris Lees trained Le Romain sits at the top of a wide open Doncaster Mile market order at $5.50 at Ladbrokes.com.au and as well as winning the Canterbury Stakes at Randwick on a heavy track, is also a winner over the same course and distance as the Doncaster Mile when he won the Group 1 $1m Girvan Waugh Randwick Guineas (1600m) last year as a three year old.
Le Romain has drawn barrier eight in the original draw but could move in one spot if third emergency Top Of My List (barrier 4) fails to gain a start and will be ridden by Hugh Bowman who is replacing Glyn Schofield.
Last start winners Palentino, Happy Clapper and Redkirk Warrior share the second line of betting at $9 each.