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Caulfield Sprint preview

Once the Cup's been and gone, you'd better start looking for the next race to top up those winnings (or dig yourself out of a hole). Straight after the Cup is the Caulfield Sprint featuring the return of star speedster Lankan Rupee and the next step for potential star Hellbent.

Tasked with splitting them is this week's debut previewer, local form analyst Callum Gogerly, @_gogs10.


Dilmah For Lovers Of Tea Caulfield Sprint
Group 2 Handicap, 1000m, AU$200k
Caulfield R9
1710 AEST, 0710 BST

Prices quoted from Sportsbet at time of writing

Speed: 1000m so don’t expect any loafing here. Faatinah (3) will work across to try and be prominent you would think while Wild Rain (4) will look to use the barrier, whether that is leading/outside leader or one back the running line is up to Stephen Baster. Lankan Rupee (1) usually pings the lids and can be prominent, while favourite Hellbent (5) you would expect to be midfield or worse.

1- Lankan Rupee ($11)- Former sprinting superstar who is returning after a year out of the game due to injury. Although only over 1000m having the impost of 61kg is never easy, let alone first up after a year. Stable flagged during the week that the Winterbottom in Perth is a possible target, which seems suitable. I’ll just be watching him today.

2- Our Boy Malachi ($5.50)- Winning machine who has not disgraced himself since being moved to Team Hawkes in Sydney. Just nutted first up after caller Darren Flindell really got our hopes up. Where does he get to from that barrier? First go Melbourne way. Strangely hasn’t raced at 1000m since April 2014. All of which points to him seemingly being a little short in the market at $5.50.

3- Faatinah ($11)- A little disappointing I thought as a well tried favourite last time. Back to 1000m and usually an on pacer, you think that he may have to do some work from that barrier. David Hayes seems to constantly talk up his horse and clearly has a high opinion of him. I’m probably inclined to risk today after last start.

4- Wild Rain ($5.50)- An absolute ripper. One of those horses that you would love to own. She has turned herself into a little bomb proof 1000m specialist. Always has gate speed to either lead or sit off them and with a favourable barrier draw again today you have to think that isn’t going to change again. I thought she might have met her match last start, but was placed behind Extreme Choice (could be anything) and beat home Chautauqua if you don’t mind! Ticks lots of boxes. Is in this up to her ears.

5- Hellbent ($2)- Wow! That was the reaction as the well backed favourite hooned down the outside to pick up his rivals with consummate ease last start. Not only was it visually impressive, but it was also backed up on the clock, running the fastest last 400m of the day. He beat Sheidel who came out last Saturday and won well in her own right. In on the limit with 53kg is another luxury. Although he doesn’t have to drop out to last, you’d think he will be giving some of these a start and he will have to run past better horses than Inz N Out and Trevinder this time around.

6- Grane (Scratched)

7- Ruetigger ($21)- First up today after showing good form up the Flemington straight towards the back end of last preparation. A win over Voodoo Lad two starts ago looks good on his CV. Only run at 1000m was on debut, so you’d think that they might be a little too sharp here. Keep an eye on him down the straight during the Flemington carnival.

8- Viddora ($17)- Freshened after a last start second to Heatherly. That doesn’t look too bad now after Heatherly and Wild Rain finished together last start. Looked to have trialled well last week and from the barrier will have the option of hopefully sneaking runs through to the line. Astute Adelaide trainer as well, keep safe.

9- Take Pride ($41)- High class fromer 3YO who was good in a Thousand Guineas last year. Held on reasonably first up, but you’d think she’d rather step out in distance than come back in trip? Not here.

10- Orujo ($81)- Seems to be racing well at a lower level, step up in class seems a bit ambitious. Would like to see in a BM84 instead.

11- Sunday Escape ($41)- Hellbent has given him windburn on the last two occasions. Meets him either equal or worse off at the weights than on those two occasions, so on that fact alone, it is hard to see him turning the tables.

Tips: This seems to be a reasonably straight forward race (we hope!). Wild Rain you would think would be ahead of Hellbent and given her rich vein of form may take some stitching from the there. Hellbent may very well be as good as he looked last start, but conceding a start to an in form, fit and reliable mare evens the ledger. I’m split 50/50 between the two and at the price you have to go with Wild Rain. Only 2.5 winning chances in this race I believe with Viddora the only other hope.

1. Wild Rain
2. Hellbent
3. Viddora
4. Ruettiger/Lankan Ruppe


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Villiers Stakes preview

The highlight of summer racing in Sydney is the Villiers Stakes. Tasked with the preview is Mitch Fenton.


Villiers StakesRandwick, G2, 1600m
1615 local time, 0515 GMT

Form link

Twitter: @weekndkngracing
Facebook: /weekendking

The most reliable guide to the Gr2 Villiers has always been the Festival Stakes.

I’m going to stick with that form line; here’s the horses who ran in the Festival, running today.

1 I'm Imposing (55.5) 20-1
2 [0.1] Estonian Princess (54) 7-1
3 [0.3] Strawberry Boy (57.5) 6-1
5 [1.7] Sir Moments (56) 11-2
6 [2.5] Multilateral (54) 60-1
7 [3.8] Scream Machine (56) 20-1
8 [4.3] Aomen (58.5) 30-1
11 [6.8] Monton (60) 16-1
12 [8.0] Keep Cool (54) 80-1

Out of all those runs in the Festival, Strawberry Boy was a clear top pick for mine.

He worked very hard out in front with his 1500m to 600m times and was 3L quicker than the average. He was entitled to drop out of the race but instead he fought on dogged…