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Champagne Stakes preview

The finale to the Sydney juvenile Triple Crown is the Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes over the metric mile. We don't have the Golden Slipper winner going for the glory this year but it's still a quality field. Making his debut on the blog is Josh Humbler, the wise man behind the Excelleresport website which also provides trading advice on EPL, La Liga and the PGA Tour. You can also follow him on Twitter, @excelleresport. Welcome aboard!

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RACE 5: Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes, 1600m, Group 1

Randwick has played at its testing best over the carnival thus far with no leader winning and race fitness an asset. The final leg of the Sydney 2yo Triple Crown presents an interesting challenge with varied form lines coming in. It may serve to remember a filly has won each of the major 2yo races this season – Magic Millions, Blue Diamond, Golden Slipper and Sires Produce. Prices in brackets are assessed prices.

#1- Riocetto ($101): a decisive winner over this course and distance last week in the Fernhill. Was the recipient of a perfect run last week and may well prove to be a superior wet tracker. Conditions aren’t likely to suit tomorrow

#2 - Criterion ($16): possesses the shortest starting price of those coming out of the Golden Slipper, though has not run since. Although his racing pattern may suggest he is looking for this trip to the eye, he must be risked on this testing Randwick track.

#3 – Fast ‘N’ Rocking ($21): a similar profile to Criterion with two starts against that horse for a 0.2L loss and a 0.3L win. The market, however, has sided with Criterion twice. Tomorrow you are asked to take the same price about this horse. He must be risked for the same reason as that horse, no start since the Slipper.

#4 - Fuerza ($51): proven somewhat at this distance last week behind Riocetto. Blinkers go back on and may well settle handier from the wider draw. His form is well exposed and the best of it exists in sales restricted races. Looks safely held.

#5 – Charlie Boy ($21): will need to make a decision whether to go forward or back from the gate. Sat midfield in the Sires and stayed towards the inside of the track which was not the place to be. Can improve into a place using the middle of the track.

#6 - Champollion ($101): scored at big odds two starts back before meeting many of these in the Sires last start. Looks tested against this better class of animal.

#7 - Havana ($101): one to risk. Battled home alongside Champollion in the Sires, which is not good enough to compete here.

#8 - Equator ($34): certainly bringing a different form line to the event. The winner of both of his starts, a 2yo maiden and a 2yo no metro win race. A typical Gai Waterhouse style of horse that sits handy to the speed, and may well set the speed in this event. The form around him is not strong. Worth risking.

#9 - Drago ($10): an improving profile with a strong finish in the Sires, powering past all bar the trifecta of fillies. I expect him to be the first colt home again tomorrow and he provides good each way value.

#10 – Star Wars ($501): likely to be well back in the field and highly unlike to feature in the finish.

#11 – Guelph ($3.50): an impressive win in the Sires when she was able to blouse the other two fillies late. She is very well found in this event and won’t be flying under the radar. Would need to get out past the assessed price to warrant investing.

#12 – Scandiva ($5.00): I sense she was ridden solely to beat Overreach last start. She achieved that task, ambushing that filly at the 250m mark only to be swallowed up by Guelph inside the final 50m. Robl would be well advised to let Equator and perhaps Diva Dee go here and with a softer run will be right in the finish.

#13 – Diva Dee ($21): started $8 in the event won by Riocetto last week, however has been widely dismissed by the market over a wet track failure. Blinkers come off and, ridden positively, she is a place chance at big odds.

#14 – Shahad ($8): another with a solid foundation of race fitness and a positive finish in the Sires. She shares similar form lines to Scandiva and is surprisingly not priced closer to that filly. Should be positioned much closer from gate 3 and represents terrific each way value.

SUMMARY – The value lies with 12 – Scandiva, 14 – Shahad and 9 – Drago – stake accordingly across these selections. Should 11 – Guelph reach the assessed price she is worth saving on. Owing to the dominance of fillies, 13 – Diva Dee is worth a place ticket.

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