Christmas Cup Final
Callaghan Park, Reaney Street, Rockhampton / Wed 19 Dec
Christmas Cup Final & Knights & Dames Series Final
Lot 1, Percy Street, Redcliffe / Wed 19 Dec
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BATTLE BORN (1) returns from a Menangle campaign that saw him place in 2 of 4 outings and his most recent outing a luckless run when only beaten 8.5m behind MACH ALERT. 2 starts back over the mile he hit the line strongly when only 3m from MATTGREGOR. He gets every chance here.
SECRET JACK (8) resumes from a break without the benefit of a trial and should appreciate a cosy run in transit at the return. He closed out his last campaign in strong form when putting together a hat-trick of victories and all when working in the run. He can be coiled and ready to strike.
FIOKI (9) has found form and last start was in search of a hat-trick of wins when striking some trouble in the run after landing gate 12. With a sharp sprint he can drop to the pegs and sizzle home.
MAFUTA VAUTIN (6) isn’t too far off another win after another strong run last start. Cutting the breeze throughout he fought hard to the line and although he has a tough gate he has claims.
SELECTIONS: BATTLE BORN (1), SECRET JACK (8), FIOKI (9), MAFUTA VAUTIN (6)
SUGGESTED BET: BATTLE BORN (1) to win
LILAC FLASH (10) had put together 8 successive victories as he marched through the grades with ease. 2 starts back when starting fav off gate 6 he went back early and then couldn’t get into the contest. He charged home last start and with good tempo on offer here he can swoop home.
SOMEPARTYSOMEWHERE (3) returns from a break without a public trial. 3 starts back he was only beaten 1m by JOES STAR OF MIA who lines up in Rd 3 of the InterDom. Forced to do it tough last start he worked hard when fading off and was sent for a break. He will be right in the fight here.
BODHI TREE (4) went straight to the front and was only grabbed on the line 3 starts back and followed that with a tough win. This is easier than his last start Be Good Johnny and he has claims.
DARK ENERGY (1) was a passing lane winner here 2 starts back from gate 1 when arriving to win by a head. His run from gate 6 last start had merit and with the ace gate he can go mighty close.
SELECTIONS: LILAC FLASH (10), SOMEPARTYSOMEWHERE (3), BODHI TREE (4), DARK ENERGY (1)
SUGGESTED BET: LILAC FLASH (10) to win
TYGAR (9) will line up if not needed as the emergency for the Christmas Cup and if gaining a run here can give this a shake. A Menangle winner 3 starts back, he was sent forward from a wide gate 2 starts back when 8m from the winner. Beaten by gate 12 in the Be Good Johnny he is up to this.
SLICE OF HEAVEN (12) closed out his last campaign with a hat-trick of victories to make it wins in 8 of his last 12 runs for the season. His last run was a strong effort when doing plenty of early work and forging clear for a big win over the 2138m trip. With 2 smart trials to prepare he is in the mix.
FRANCO TOTEM (5) rolled forward to the breeze last start and was working in the run when fighting on to finish mid-field behind THE SPACE INVADER. With a cheaper run in this he can chime in.
EVERYTHING (4) shoots for the hat-trick after successive wins when leading throughout in each. From gate 1 last start he led then up and held on to score by a head. He can challenge again here.
SELECTIONS: TYGAR (9), SLICE OF HEAVEN (12), FRANCO TOTEM (5), EVERYTHING (4)
SHARDS HALO (6) was knocking on the door for victory and then in a heat of the Young Drivers Series had a perfect trip in the pocket trail and worked home to score. Last start from gate 10 she was tracking home strongly to get within 3m of victory. Back to mares only company she can score.
ARGYLE BEACH (12) started fav last start and finding 1x1 cover was soon covered in the run and never got a decent crack at them to finish 4th and under 5m from the winner. A Redcliffe winner 3 starts back, if she can secure the right trail home she can arrive for the prize.
KOTARE KASAI (9) has placed in 3 of her past 4 starts with the latest a tidy effort when charging home from back in the pack to get within a head of the winner. She has podium claims again.
JUST ROKIN (4) took on a similar race at Redcliffe 3 starts back and from the pocket trail was a 7m 3rd to SOMEROSESOMEWHERE. Back to mares only grade suits and with early speed can feature.
SELECTIONS: SHARDS HALO (6), ARGYLE BEACH (12), KOTARE KASAI (9), JUST ROKIN (4)
SUGGESTED BET: SHARDS HALO (6) to win
SOMEMONDOSOMEWHERE (2) was 1st up in Qld on Tues and from gate 1 was able to hustle through to hold the front. Steady through the opening 800m, the tempo spiked through the 3rd panel and he was able to stave off the challengers. Fitter from that effort he can look to dictate once again.
THE GOLDEN CROSS (1) worked hard in the breeze last start and was still fighting when finishing 6m from the winner EVERYTHING. Facing some tricky gates at his previous 2 starts he looks to get the perfect trip from the ace here and will be primed for the closing shot.
PRINCE OF ZANZIBAR (6) isn’t far off winning one here in Qld. Last start he had no luck whatsoever when snagged back from gate 7 and went to the line looking for space. With even luck he has claims.
RIVERLEIGH JEFF (8) claimed the bronze last start on the grass at Kilcoy after working in the run. From this gate he should enjoy a soft run and be ready to challenge when the gaps open.
SELECTIONS: SOMEMONDOSOMEWHERE (2), THE GOLDEDN CROSS (1), PRINCE OF ZANZIBAR (6), RIVERLEIGH JEFF (8)
SUGGESTED BET: SOMEMONDOSOMEWHERE (2) to win
COLT THIRTY ONE (11) steps it up to take on the “big boys” for the first time and hasn’t had any favours from the barrier. After a stellar 3YO term he has returned in great touch and has been clinical in scoring dominant wins in his 2 runs back. Both wins have been over the 2138m and he can take this step with finesse.
MACH ALERT (4) speared out to find the front over the sprint trip last week and setting a strong tempo couldn’t hold out the sprint lane winner RAKAROLLA. That followed a Menangle win 2 starts back and with the speed to fire out early and a strong record at the distance he will be fighting.
OHOKA PUNTER (3) was beaten by the barrier last start and was trying to work home in the closing stages wide out. A tough 2nd from the breeze over the 2138m 2 starts back, he won’t be far away with the longer trip suiting.
WATCH PULP FICTION (6) settled in the running line over the mile at Menangle 2 starts back and packed too many guns to score. He found the line nicely last start and with the right trail can chime in late here.
SELECTIONS: COLT THIRTY ONE (11), MACH ALERT (4), OHOKA PUNTER (3), WATCH PULP FICTION (6)
SUGGESTED BET: COLT THIRTY ONE (11) to win
FEELINGFORAMIRACLE (6) will be further tightened from his latest run at Redcliffe when 3rd up from a break. Starting from the 2nd line he was forced to do plenty of work wide out and fought hard to hold on for 3rd. His run 2 back was strong after making an error and with even luck can claim this.
CAESARS ASTRUM (1) slid across from gate 6 here on Tues and after doing some early work found cover before running on to finish mid-field behind MATT BELFORD. From this gate she will get the options and protecting the pegs for the right cover can be running on late.
WEE JIMMY (8) will need a slice of luck from this alley as he looks set to be buried in the run. He found his race last start and worked home well from back in the pack at Redcliffe to score. Just needs some luck here to feature.
WEASEL (2) races at AP for just the 2nd time in almost 2 years and comes into this in nice touch after placings at his past 3 in succession. Working hard in the breeze from gate 5 last start he won’t be too far away here.
SELECTIONS: FEELINGFORAMIRACLE (6), CAESARS ASTRUM (1), WEE JIMMY (8), WEASEL (2)
SUGGESTED BET: FEELINGFORAMIRACLE (6) to win
JACK FARTHING (10) had placed in 2 runs back from a spell at Menangle and then last start showed the benefit of the return runs when finishing strongly wide out to score a career best win rate. The gate makes this a little tricky but with the added fitness, he looks ready to go on with it.
THE DEMOCRAT (8) will be looking to get a great trip and can be ready to take the closing shot when the passing lane arrives. He tried to take them all the way from gate 1 last start when grabbed up the passing lane. 3rd to THE SHADY ONE 3 starts back he will be hard to hold out of sighting space.
PATERNITY SUIT (1) has the gate to take advantage and had put together a pair of strong wins at Redcliffe heading into his most recent start. If not pressured in front he can fight on, but winless in 8 attempts at the 2138m is a sticking point.
MISTER HART (2) has placed at his past 3 starts the latest when using the passing lane to get within a head of the winner EVERYTHING. Limiting his early work will be key to him challenging.
SELECTIONS: JACK FARTHING (10), THE DEMOCRAT (8), PATERNITY SUIT (1), MISTER HART (2)
SUGGESTED BET: JACK FARTHING (10) to win
ELENIARK (7) completed a hat-trick of wins last start to remain undefeated for the season. Last start in mares company she was sent forward to the breeze and packed too many guns to score a comfortable win. That followed a win when working home from back in the pack. The gate hurts but she can take the next step in this.
SMOOTH SHOWGIRL (1) returns from a Menangle campaign and is the big winner in the barrier draw. 2 starts back she did her share of early work when finishing mid-field behind VILLAGE WITCH and last start was drawn wide when snagged back and looking for luck late. With the speed to lead she will be gripping on.
ANNIKA MAGIC (4) was in the pocket trail here last week when finishing 4th to ELENIARK after angling back to the passing lane. Back to the front line is a big plus after 3 successive 2nd line draws.
OUR MILLWOOD MAIZIE (6) was the best of those back in the pack last week and was hitting the line strongly to grab the silver behind ELENIARK. That followed a 4m 3rd to ALLELUIA and she will be swooping late again.
SELECTIONS: ELENIARK (7), SMOOTH SHOWGIRL (1), ANNIKA MAGIC (4), OUR MILLWOOD MAIZIE (6)
SUGGESTED BET: ELENIARK (7) to win
REDRIVERDEBBA (10) was locked away in the run at Redcliffe over the 2613m trip 3 starts back and was hitting the line strongly to get within 3m of the winner NORTHERN MUSCLE. With the writing on the wall she stepped cleanly and took them all the way next start. Her last start at Marburg was strong off 40m and she can arrive here.
STONED AGAIN (12) has the tough gate to negotiate but has been racing well off big handicaps in recent starts. Only 4m from the winner after starting from 30m 2 starts back he then was close up off 40m last start. Winless in 25 attempts from the mobile is a big concern, but he can look to rectify that here.
MISS INVASION (5) is knocking on the door of victory, waiting for conditions to open it for her. After 4 successive 2nd place finishes, she has made errors at her past 2. Back to mobile conditions is a big plus and she is right in the fight.
ARNOLD (6) makes his Qld and Aus debut for Brad Connelly and arrives a four-time winner, three of those from the mobile. His past 2 starts were during NZ Cup week where he struggled to show his best. He stays right under notice here.
SELECTIONS: REDRIVERDEBBA (10), STONED AGAIN (12), MISS INVASION (5), ARNOLD (6)
SUGGESTED BET: REDRIVERDEBBA (10) to win