Race 1 – 1:19PM FURPHY MAIDEN (1200 METRES)
Expecting BEL MY PAGO to take some beating on debut. Hailing from a quality family, this four-year-old came from a long way back to win her Belmont 8/10 trial, clocking fast time and appearing to have plenty left in the tank. Jockey Mitchell Pateman has his work cut out from a high draw, but with clear galloping room Bel My Pago should run over the top of these late. TOGETHER WE DREAM maps on-speed from a low draw and hasn’t been far away racing out of her grade recently. First-starter APACHE CHIEF caught the eye at trials and has drawn well, while VAGABOND BOY can elevate second up.
Suggested: 14. BEL MY PAGO win.
14. BEL MY PAGO
12. TOGETHER WE DREAM
8. APACHE CHIEF
1. VAGABOND BOY
Race 2 – 1:58PM ROD BYNDER 10 YEAR MEMORIAL HANDICAP (1675 METRES)
This looks the right race for the gifted ARCTIC STREAM. Is unbeaten on his home track and looks ready to produce a peak performance third up with the blinkers on. Looked a black-type horse in the making last season, so if he’s close to his best, he really should get the job done. BEAUCOUNT has returned in good nick this spring and was brave in defeat second up when setting a cracking tempo out in front. Should lead and take some catching. SALON DU CHEVAL is a horse with plenty of raw ability and is expected to make an impact fresh, while BOLLINGER BOY was huge late last start.
Suggested: 2. ARCTIC STREAM win.
2. ARCTIC STREAM
1. SALON DU CHEVAL
7. BOLLINGER BOY
Race 3 – 2:38PM PRINCE OF WALES HOTEL HANDICAP (2000 METRES)
Thinking up-and-comer NOIR DE RUE can win again. Hard not to be impressed with his last-start victory when crunching his opposition in a high-rating race, with the likes of Dark Prospect and Reveille emerging from the event and scoring strong wins last weekend. Has the perfect platform to rise to 2000m and the expected genuine tempo should help him slot in from an awkward draw. Likely favourite QUEEN BEY jumped out of the ground late and just missed last time. Will be steaming home again. MASTER MAGICIAN is better than what he’s shown recently, while HONORFIC maps well with 52.5kg.
Suggested: 5. NOIR DE RUE win.
5. NOIR DE RUE
7. QUEEN BEY
3. MASTER MAGICIAN
Race 4 – 3:14PM AMELIA PARK HANDICAP (1200 METRES)
Ripping clash, with SPECIAL REWARD and ROYAL COMMAND set to dominate the market, and pretty keen on the exciting three-year-old Special Reward first up. Heading towards the spring features, this fellow looked well above average last prep and probably should be unbeaten. Recent trial win was dominant, and he should be able to land on-speed and control the race from there. Royal Command is no slouch though and he can make things interesting at his first run for Adam Durrant. High draw hinders though. MULTIVERSE is in the zone and must be respected, while on-pacer KIMBO’S GIRL can figure fresh.
Suggested: 8. SPECIAL REWARD win.
8. SPECIAL REWARD
2. ROYAL COMMAND
5. KIMBO’S GIRL
Race 5 – 3:50PM TABTOUCH 3YO CLASSIC (1000 METRES)
Only a small field, but what a race it promises to be with most of last season’s best juveniles crossing swords. And with even luck in running, confident the unbeaten BLACK SABBATH can announce himself as a major player this spring. Made a big splash with two dominant Ascot wins in May and his Belmont 1/10 trial win was very sharp. Karrakatta Plate winner VALOUR ROAD looked in mint condition in his Lark Hill 25/9 trial and he’s been set for this race. Stablemate LADY COSMOLOGY certainly has the class and draw to win, while don’t be surprised to see plucky filly NGAWI run a cheeky race also.
Suggested: 3. BLACK SABBATH win.
3. BLACK SABBATH
1. VALOUR ROAD
6. LADY COSMOLOGY
Race 6 – 4:25PM JCW ELECTRICAL HANDICAP (1100 METRES)
Have a big opinion of STAGEMAN and expecting him to score first up. Another member of the star-studded Peters Investments squad, this fellow was a moral beaten at his last run before a spell and trialled every bit as good as Railway Stakes winner Great Shot at Lark Hill 25/9. Draw isn’t ideal, but Stageman is all class and should find a way. Really liked the way SALORSCI attacked the line first up and expecting more positive tactics with Jarrad Noske back on board. HOW TO FLY goes good, but faces a challenge from a high draw, while BIG CAROLINE continues to hold peak form and must be included.
Suggested: 10. STAGEMAN win.
4. HOW TO FLY
7. BIG CAROLINE
Race 7 – 5:00PM IN MEMORY OF BRENDAN BALLANTYNE HANDICAP (1400 METRES)
Hot field this with the rapidly-rising GREAT AGAIN set to measure up against his toughest assignment yet. The lightly-raced six-year-old has charged through the grades in 2018 with five straight wins, carrying weight and posting strong figures in the process. With positive tactics he can settle on-speed and if he brings his best, he’s going to take some overhauling late. Exciting prospect MISSILE LAUNCH trialled well at Lark Hill 25/9 and maps to run a race fresh. As does the gifted ROYAL STAR, who resumes for Adam Durrant, while WA Derby winner ACTION is expected to be rattling home late.
Suggested: 8. GREAT AGAIN 1 x 3 units.
8. GREAT AGAIN
10. MISSILE LAUNCH
4. ROYAL STAR
Race 8 – 5:35PM CIVILCON CONSTRUCTION HANDICAP (1400 METRES)
Don’t mind DISTANT TRILOGY in a tricky end to the program. Has raced well on his home track in the past and should be ready to produce a peak performance at his third run this campaign. Maps to land in the sweet spot, stalking the leaders, and gets his chance sliding down 4.5kg to 55kg. REGAL MOON looks the horse to beat and will have plenty of admirers after two strong performances for new trainer Steele Casey. Can be sluggish early though, which isn’t ideal in this full field. SIGIL is racing in great heart and has to be included, while expecting sharp improvement from MIRACLE MAN second up.
Suggested: 11. DISTANT TRILOGY each way.
11. DISTANT TRILOGY
5. REGAL MOON
1. MIRACLE MAN
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of the Bunbury Turf Club.