Moonee Valley Racing Preview – Saturday June 17th

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Moonee Valley will host Melbourne’s premier race card on Saturday and strong fields have been drawn to all nine races.

Extra Zero will make his 101st competitive appearance at Moonee Valley on Saturday. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Extra Zero will make his 101st competitive appearance at Moonee Valley on Saturday. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Some of the best racehorses currently in work will step out at Moonee Valley on Saturday and we have analysed each race and runner in detail, in order to help you find a winner.

The action is set to get underway with the running of the Friends Of Epworth Handicap at 12:15pm and will conclude following the Embassy Print Solutions Handicap at 5:15pm.

Race 1 (12:15pm) Friends Of Epworth Handicap (1200m)

Eleven runners remain in contention for Race 1 at Moonee Valley on Saturday, following scratchings. Elle Street (barrier 1) debuted to racing for a smart win at Wangaratta on June 6th, but faces a big step up in class into this race. Speak Softly (barrier 7) was only narrowly denied on debut and has reportedly taken plenty of benefit from the hit-out leading into this race, while Behave (barrier 3) also appears primed for a maiden race win after savaging the line for second in the Dominant Cleaning Solutions Plate (1200m) a fortnight ago. The Sebring filly could receive the run of the race from her inside draw and will be partnered by Luke Nolen.

Tip: No. 4 Behave ($3.80)

Race 2 (12:50pm) Bidford Handicap (1000m)

Twelve three-year-old fillies have been confirmed in a smart field for Race 2 at Moonee Valley. Soviet Secret (barrier 10) has yet to produce her best through two starts this time, but has performed well amongst company far better than this previously and is not without a chance. If Not Now When (barrier 5) has been charged with carrying topweight, but is arguably the best horse in this field and should prove tough to beat. Airino (barrier 9) and Ariaz (barrier 4) have both been in terrific form of late and should once more relish the conditions of this race, while Unique Lovely (barrier 3) carries winning form into the race and is drawn to receive a terrific run close to the pace.

Tip: No. 9 Unique Lovely – Each Way ($7.50/$2.60)

Race 3 (1:28pm) Zouki Handicap (1000m)

Topweight and live chance Dane With Fontein has been scratched from Race 3 and that has subsequently opened the race wide open, from a betting perspective. Miss Vista (barrier 10) has won in similar races to this previously and is always dangerous, while Appalachian Annie (barrier 5) is drawn to get a gun run and carries winning form into the race. Zara Bay (barrier 4) has not been seen at the races since February, but her class suggests that she is more than capable of winning this race fresh. Sasayuri (barrier 8) should find a good position behind the early pace from barrier 8 and will only improve off her first-up win at Geelong a fortnight ago.

Tip: No: 7 Sasayuri – Each Way ($7.50/$2.55)

Race 4 (2:05pm) Kane Constructions Handicap (1600m)

An outstanding field of Saturday-grade horses will line up for the Kane Constructions Handicap (1600m) and a case can be made for close to half the group. Adelaide raider Beluga Blue returned to winning form with an excellent performance at Morphettville a fortnight ago, but will need luck from a wide draw and with 60.5kgs in tow. Soho Ruby (barrier 4) has returned to the races in excellent conditions this time and should prove extremely tough to beat from barrier 4, particularly in taking 6kgs from the topweight. Mamzelle Tess (battier 6) is seeking a fourth-consecutive win and is primed for another big performance, while Dulverton (barrier 10) is also set to improve off a last-start third at Sandown last week. Vandancer (barrier 3) is up to this class and is over the odds at her current quote.

Tip: No. 4 Vandancer – Each Way ($12/$3.70)

Race 5 (2:45pm) GJK Facility Services Handicap (1200m)

A number of outstanding sprinters will take their position in the field for Race 5 at Moonee Valley on Saturday, including Reldas (barrier 8). The Testa Rossa gelding finished second in the Group 3 DC McKay Stakes (1100m) first-up on May 6th and should be tough to beat, with positive jockey Noel Callow in the saddle. Lord Da Vinci (barrier 9) will resume in the race, but was outstanding at his most-recent preparation and should be right in the finish of this. Whistle Baby (barrier 1) will retire into a career as a broodmare after this race and should be given every chance to go out a winner from the rails draw and with only 54.5kgs in tow.

Tip: No. 1 Reldas ($6)

Race 6 (3:25pm) Epworth Medical Imaging Handicap (1200m)

Race 6 at Moonee Valley on Saturday has drawn an open field from a betting perspective and there is plenty of value to be taken. Katsuro (Barrier 12) carries winning form into the race and should again prove tough to beat at Moonee Valley, while Yu Long Sheng Hui (barrier 1) resumed for a smart win and should take an ideal place in transit from the rails draw. Highland Beat (barrier 5) is yet to show his best this time in, but is arguably offered his best chance of returning to winning form in this race, from an ideal draw. Liberty Song (barrier 8) has steadily built to the task this time in, is weighted well and appears set to peak in the Epworth Medical Imaging Handicap. Palladian (barrier 2) and Special Diva (barrier 4) are both more than capable under the conditions of this race.

Tip: No. 6 Liberty Song – Each Way ($9/$3.10)

Race 7 (4:05pm) Silver Thomas Hanley Plate (2040m)

Warhorse Extra Zero will have his 101st competitive start in the Silver Thomas Hanley Plate (1100m) and there is no reason he cannot repeat his outstanding last-start win in this race. Having flown home from the rear of the pack to register the impressive win at Flemington, the Danzero gelding will have only improved from the effort and is primed for another big run. Megablast (barrier 2) also returned to winning form last time and should be tough to beat with only 55.5kgs in tow, while Rose Of Virginia (barrier 9) is sure to have taken benefit from her impressive second-up run a fortnight ago and will enjoy another tilt at the Moonee Valley 2040m course. Mr Journeyman (barrier 7) faces a steep step up in class, but has been in good form this season.

Tip: No. 6 Rose Of Virginia – Each Way ($13/$3.90)

Race 8 (4:43pm) Travis Harrison Cup (1600m)

A capacity field will step out for the Travis Harrison Cup and this is another race which is wide open from a betting perspective. Amovatio (barrier 8) is a black type winner at the distance and should lay a great account for himself here despite a heavy weight, while Kenjorwood (barrier 11), Killarney Kid (barrier 7) and Heart Starter (barrier 2) are all more than capable of delivering for trainer Darren Weir. It is tough to pick how Mr Individual (barrier 3) will perform in any of his starts, but he has conditions to suit on Saturday, loves Moonee Valley and will carry only 54kgs. If he brings his best, he is probably the race winner.

Tip: No. 13 Mr Individual – Each Way ($12/$3.90)

Race 9 (5:15pm) Embassy Print Solutions Handicap (1200m)

The final race at Moonee Valley on Saturday has drawn a talent-rich field, including Fire Agate (barrier 15). The Strategic gelding flew home to win the Browns Sawdust & Shavings Plate (1000m) at Cranbourne on May 19th and will carry plenty of improvement into this race. Leodoro (barrier 8) has finished close at his three most-recent starts and should prove tough to beat on Saturday, while Septamore (barrier 3) and Catch That Cat (barrier 1) are both more than capable at the class and distance of this race.

Tip: No. 11 Fire Agate – Each Way ($7/$2.65)

About The Author

Jared Timms

Jared graduated with a journalism degree in 2011. He is a keen sports fan and has enjoyed many accolades for his lively writing style and comprehensive coverage of major sporting events and horse racing. Today, you can find Jared cheering on his beloved Manchester City with a beer in hand.


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