It's the biggest day in Australian harness racing on Sunday with the first running of the new revised Inter Dominion Championship, supported by a fantastic programme full of Group 1 races. Running a close eye over the feature events is one of Australia's leading harness experts, chief harness racing trader at Betstar, Ben Krahe - @benkrahe.
Preview for Menangle 3 Mar 2013 by Ben Krahe
Race 3 – NSW Oaks – Group 1 race for 3yo Fillies. Very even race this year with no clear standout
1- I’m Smouldering – My tip in the race. Might be 3rd on the rails but this filly is flying at the moment and in a very open Oaks she is top pick for me
2- Glenferrie Shuffle – 2nd em - if she got a run would be a genuine contender who might roll to the lead and be very hard to beat
3- My Sunday Girl – 1st em - Kiwi with little chance
4- Bold Life – Ran career best race in heat but no chance here
5- All Starzzz Shark – Best chance is if they burn early and he runs home but only a very slight place chance.
6- Musical Delight – Prepost favourite for the event. May have been a little underdone last week. 2nd pick
7- Rozelski – The Kiwi ex factor horse. Won as it like last week and is the favourite for the event but don’t think it will get things its own way this week. Happy to risk today
8- Its Nosurprisesthere – Beat Musical Delight after having soft run last week. Place chance
9- Priceless Gem – Roughie who choked down on Tuesday so must be in some doubt. No
10- Charli Springfield – Drawn the carpark and will need a taxi
11- Frith – Dominant winner of heat after leading but today a different story. Place only
12- Ohyouluckything – Ironically named because cannot draw a gate. With any speed this is the run on horse and the knockout hope. Good ew chance
Selections: 1-6-7-12 Suggested Bet – I'm Smouldering Each Way
Race 4 – Ladyship Mile – Group 1 race for Mares over a mile. An extremely even bunch of mares which has been made even more so by the barrier draw.
1- Our Sixpence – Favourite for the event after barrier draw. Should lead although will be pressured early by the 2. It can run time but will need to in order to win this race. I however will be happy to lay this horse today at anything under 2/1
2- Cheer The Lady – Kiwi Group 1 winner who will be pressuring the 1 for the early lead. Doubt she can win but definite ew chance
3- Tamanisha – 1st em who if gets a run is 100/1
4- Blucolla TIgerpie – Strong sit sprint mare who will be coming home hard at the end. E/W
5- Elusive Chick – Kiwi mare in form who can run a place
6- Little Red Cloud – 2nd em – ran a nice trial on Tuesday but outclassed here... No
7- Torque In Motion – Qlder who won this event last year but is she going as good? No in my opinion.
8- Forever Gold – Beat Our Sixpence last week with soft run behind leader. Won’t get that today and only a place chance
9- Broadways Best – One of our best mares in the last five years who will appreciate Menangle 3rd up from a spell today is worth a bet at double figure odds which looks overs
10- Baby Bling – Disadvantaged by the draw here and I can’t see her winning.
11- Pembrook Caesar – Australasia’s most improved mare facing the acid test here. Draw has hurt big time as she does her best work from in front which she won’t be today. No
12- Bettor Cover Lover – Kiwi champion mare who wouldn’t be out of place in the inters final today. She may be a better stayer and has drawn the worst possible barrier. Big chance
Selections – 9-12-1-4 Suggested Bet – Broadways Best Each Way
Race 5 – NSW Derby – Group 1 race for 3YO C&G – Great race as per usual this year with 3 main hopes that are all extremely good horses and this could be a vintage year
1- Dealer – 2nd em who cannot win with a headstart
2- Guaranteed – Probably leader who has won 11/15. Is favourite for the event and rightly so. Massive winning chance
3- Blissful Guy – 1st em who is better off in easier races
4- Bit Of A Legend – Boom kiwi horse which wouldn’t surprise me if took the early lead and handed up to Guaranteed. Ran a great heat race and always improves for finals. Top Pick
5- Ultimate Art – Hunter Valley trained horse who has excelled to make the final but that’s it for him
6- Ee And Em Stride – McCarthy hope but in my opinion will run 5th or 6th at best
7- Caesar Augustus – Qlder 2nd hope who won his heat in great style and is in form Can run a race but doubt can win
8- Lochinver – Making up the numbers
9- Macha – Has won 4/6 but needs to lead to do best work for mine which he will struggle to do. Place
10- Majestic Mach – Unbeaten Qld horse who has won 12/12... Today is D Day. Some say he is the best in the land – this is his chance to prove it. I personally question the opposition he has been beating so will be happy to lay him
11- Bebrave – Not from this draw
12- Lennytheshark – Place chance at best. Goes ok
Selections – 4-2-7-10 Suggested Bet – Bit Of A Legend Each Way
Race 6 – Chariots Of Fire – Group 1 race for 4YO over a mile – This could be the best race of the day with the top 3 horses all future Grand Circuit Stars
1- Louvre – Will be 3 or 4 back on the pegs and a rough place chance at best
2- Keayang Steamer – Flying and at around the 12/1 mark is a decent ew chance
3- Mach Beauty – Won the Golden Guitar at Tamworth last month and is now in a G1... Stick to Tamworth
4- Christen Me – One of two Kiwi stars in the race who beat Imthemightyquinn In a trial hard held on Tuesday. Won a lead up race very easy and this horse is flying at the moment. Favourite for the race from the draw and has been well backed all week from $3 to $2.60.
5- Restrepo – Vic Star who beat Smolda last week. Interesting to see where it will be in the run but the camp say this is the best horse they have ever had. Has been solid with backing this week also $4.40 - $4.20 and is clear 3rd pick
6- Only The Brace – 1st em who if gains a run is making up the numbers
7- Scandalman – Local hope who is flying but not as good at Menangle as he is on the small tracks. Won’t run a place
8- Im Victorious – WA Star who is airborne atm and won a lead up race as it liked at Menangle in flying time. Draw doesn’t help but has been heavily supported $21-$11 but I struggle to see it beating the top 3 here.
9- Exciteusinthecity – strong horse at the end of a mile who could fluke a place
10- Medal Of Honour – 2nd em Couldn’t win running downhill
11- Jason Rulz – Kiwi who beat Christen Me last time they met and has a picket fence next to its name. Is double figure odds and may even get better odds come raceday so for those who are keen it’s definitely worth an ew bet
12- Smolda – Kiwi champion who would be in the top 3 favourites if running in the Inters. Horrible barrier draw over a mile but I expect him to announce himself today as the best horse in Australasia and is a future Inters winner for mine
Selections – 12-4-5-11 Suggested Bet – SMOLDA to win
Race 7 Interdominion Grand Final – Group 1. Is the pinnacle of the sport and is open to any horses who qualify throughout Australasia’s Premier Harness Tracks. What a race!
1- Mah Sish – Kiwi who is flying at the moment. Won the Hunter Cup and Ballarat Cup and 2nd in the Victoria Cup. Cannot do much more than that. Is thriving in Australia. A bit concerned about where he will be in the run but he will run the distance and is a huge hope. Australasia’s most improved horse
2- Caribbean Blaster – Vic hope who is Mr Consistency. Won the Victoria Cup and last year’s Chariots OF Fire. Tough as Nails and could find the front and prove hard to run down
3- Jaccka Clive – This guy was a claimer last year but has found form when it counts. Roughie who hasn’t excelled at Menangle before and at best can run top 6
4- Chariot King – Legendary racecaller Johnny Tapp trains this local hope that has improved leaps and bounds. Top 6 best
5- Excel Stride – Former boom NSW horse who was 3rd favourite at about $6 in opening markets. Hasn’t done much wrong but just not as dominant as we thought he would be. Is NSW leading hope but has he got the x factor required to win?
6- Im The Mightyquinn – Speaking of X factor this is the horse. WA’s best horse. Australia’s fastest horse. Most say he is a champion but I say he needs to win this to prove himself outside of WA. The most talked about horse in harness that is yet to prove himself in the east. D-DAY. I’m laying him as I’ve been his biggest critic and I can’t stop now
7- Terror To Love – What a barrier draw with the 2 nominal favourites drawing next to each other. Fairytale stuff! NZ best horse and in my opinion is the winner. He has blistering speed and is a great stayer. Time for him to prove he is the best and will!
8- Mysta Magical Mach – WA hope who won farcical race on Tuesday in prep for this. No hope for mine from the gate
9- Lincoln Royal – Explosive out of the gates but under an injury cloud and went ordinary in heat. No
10- Keayang Cullen – Airborne atm but needed a draw and a soft run. Not the visitors draw which it got. Can’t win and top 8 looks best
11- Pub Blitz – Will be on the pegs 3 or 4 back and steaming home. Can’t win but could fluke a place
12- Mach Alert – Speedy horse but not quite up to it and needed to lead. No
13- Bitobliss – Last year’s boom horse was 2nd or 3rd favourite with opening markets. Seems to have gone off the boil but if a 20/1 horse is going to win this is it. Not out of it
14- Washakie – Grand old campaigner who has won more races than I’ve had baked dinners. Can run a place with a good run but that’s it
15- Devil Dodger – 1st em who will gain a run if Lincoln Royal pulls out. If he does gain a start however will change the course of the race as he flies the gate and could lead early... Won’t be leading when at the winning post though. No
Selections – 7-1-2-6 Suggested Bet – TERROR TO LOVE to win
Race 9 – Glenferrie Farm Challenge – Group 1 for Trotters who are invited. Unfortunately this event has been robbed of the best trotter I Can Doosit however sees the arrival of Top Kiwi Stig to our shores. Should be a great race and the track record could be in jeopardy!
1- The Fiery Ginga – Kiwi who explodes out of the gate and its duel early with the 2 could determine the race. Is about a 10/1 chance and that looks about right
2- I Didn’t Do It – Australia’s best hope that does his best work in front. IF he can cross the 1 he will give a merry sight in the lead and can run fast time
3- Vulcan – Kiwi who has lost his shine and hasn’t won for over a year and won’t be changing that streak here
4- Keystone Del – Ex Kiwi who has thrived at Menangle and is currently airborne. Last win was just outside record time although his trial on Tuesday didn’t give me huge confidence
5- Sovereignty – Another Kiwi who was in the top 3 in the land a few years back. Might be past his prime but can run a cheeky race and has been money for it
6- Cyclone Jake – Outclassed
7- Stig – the X factor Kiwi Champion who is favourite. My concern is the travel but if at best will blow these away.
8- Mister Zion – Not a noted miler and will struggle here
9- My Escapee – The new kid on the block. Has explosive speed and my tip to win. If he trots all the way look out!
10- My High Expectations – This guy is killing them at the moment in 2nd tier events in Vic. Stick to those events
11- Neville Vaughan – Not a miler and not a star. No
Selections – 9-2-7-5 Suggested Bet – MY ESCAPEE to win