Kencella is the 2014 The Galaxy tip for leading form analyst Dominic Beirne; with the former bookmaker confident that the progressive gelding can breakthrough for his maiden win at Group 1 level this weekend.
Kencella stepped up to Group level for the first time with a win in the Group 3 McCarten Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens last weekend and Beirne believes that the son of Exceed And Excel is an excellent chance of recording another victory at the same track and distance in The Galaxy this weekend – despite having no form on a wet track.
“Kencella is our top pick and he has no form on the going, so that means you are going to get a decent price,” Beirne told RSN this morning.
“The public won’t warm to it because he has never been on it, but his mother won her only start on a wet track and his two sisters both won on the wet.
“I am going to take the chance that he can run on it.
“Three in a row at the course and distance is a positive.”
Another runner in the 2014 The Galaxy field that Beirne believes represents good value is Gai Waterhouse-trained Whittington, who was far from disgraced when fifth behind Villa Verde in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Royal Randwick on March 15.
Whittington failed to fire in his only previous start on a slow track, in the 2013 Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m), but Beirne said he is happy to back the son of Tale Of The Cat at his current The Galaxy odds of $15.
“Another one that might be value is Whittington,” Beirne said.
“On the only day he ran in it was in the Golden Slipper and he finished 13th, but he probably had enough at the time and he got caught wide up on the speed and dropped out.
“I’m not prepared to be that harsh and if they are fanning all over the place and horses with low barrier are doing ok then he could be value.”
Rain Affair has failed to fire in two starts during the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival, tiring quickly in both the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m), but has been well backed by punters and is currently on top of The Galaxy betting markets.
Beirne admits that Rain Affair’s strong record in the wet should be respected, but is happy to stick with Kencella as his 2014 The Galaxy tip.
“He is going to be very popular, but he has a few duck eggs in a row now,” Beirne said.
“I can see why he has been heavily backed, but I’d fancy that Kencella would overrun him in the straight.”