Race 1 – 12:47PM TABTOUCH – BETTER YOUR BET MAIDEN (1410 METRES)
Very keen on the chances of likely odds-on fave DARK MISSION. Produced one of the best performances on the card when a slashing third at her Pinjarra 19/12 debut, clocking some of the day’s fastest closing sections. Suited up in trip in this small field and it’s hard seeing her being defeated. LONSDALE LADY did put the writing on the wall with a brave second-up effort this track/distance last start. Capable of elevating further and she’s the only possible danger to Dark Mission. Anticipating a better effort from RUN LIKE FIRE second up, while first-starter GINGER BREADHOUSE is fourth best.
Suggested: 5. DARK MISSION win.
5. DARK MISSION
3. LONSDALE LADY
2. RUN LIKE FIRE
7. GINGER BREADHOUSE
Race 2 – 1:27PM FURPHY – REFRESHING ALE MAIDEN (1410 METRES)
SWEET STRAWBERRY really caught the eye on debut two weeks back and with William Pike booked to ride, appears the horse to beat. Was held up at a vital stage on that occasion, but once clear surged towards the line and the Guesteen formline does look like holding up. 1100m to 1410m isn’t ideal, but from a suitable map Sweet Strawberry should still get it done. The luckless RUBILICIOUS ROSE is a genuine threat though, having been a good thing beat at both starts to date. Will have plenty of admirers. STAADEN should compete well first up, while LONROCK worked home well on debut.
Suggested: 8. SWEET STRAWBERRY win.
8. SWEET STRAWBERRY
7. RUBILICIOUS ROSE
Race 3 – 2:08PM AMELIA PARK MAIDEN (1690 METRES)
MIDNIGHT BLUE stands out. The Peters Investments 3YO was only getting going late on debut over 1413m on Boxing Day and will no doubt thrive rising to the 1690m of this event. Bred to continue to elevate as the distances get longer, but Midnight Blue really should be breaking through here. THE ROAN RANGER comes back to the mile range after not quite running out a strong 2000m last time. He can impact with a reasonable run in transit. BRAVE CONTENDER hasn’t quite lived up to expectations this prep but this is a thin contest, and likely leader FAIR ONE can box on into the top four.
Suggested: 8. MIDNIGHT BLUE win.
8. MIDNIGHT BLUE
5. THE ROAN RANGER
7. BRAVE CONTENDER
3. FAIR ONE
Race 4 – 2:50PM JCW ELECTRICAL MAIDEN (1108 METRES)
Plenty needs to go right from a tricky barrier draw, but PICK YOUR BATTLES certainly has the talent to score. Brave in defeat first up from a lengthy layoff and the Tinto Belle form has certainly been franked since. With even luck, Pick Your Battles should take a stack of beating. TRUTIARA will be well found with Pike hopping on and a sweet barrier draw. Comes out of a hot race at Ascot and has to rate highly. As does INDIGO WILD, on the quick back-up after attacking the line with gusto fresh last Sunday, and likely leader Jarrad Noske is a good booking for likely leader ROCK THE PLANET.
Suggested: 1. PICK YOUR BATTLES win.
1. PICK YOUR BATTLES
7. INDIGO WILD
10. ROCK THE PLANET
Race 5 – 3:30PM RANGEVIEW STUD HANDICAP (2219 METRES)
This looks the right set-up for LAVISTARR. The Adam Durrant-trained mare has been rock-solid at each of her three Ascot runs this prep and really should’ve finished closer behind British Bessy in a much stronger race than this last start. Pike goes on from a nice low draw, and the blinkers on are another major positive. BARBIE WILL DO is in career-best form and is on the quick back up after doing her best work late over 1800m at Ascot last Saturday. Major player here. MONTAGNA continues to race well, but is lacking a knockout blow, while DOC FRIAR stays well and will be strong late.
Suggested: 4. LAVISTARR win.
2. BARBIE WILL DO
Race 6 – 4:05PM BUNBURY PLUMBING SERVICES HANDICAP (1410 METRES)
Happy to be on board with ICE TRADE. Hailing from the in-form locally-based Michael Lane stable, this mare was nosed out right on the line in a similar event to this last start, but will appreciate the 21 days between runs and regular rider Chris Parnham being back on board. Maps to get it soft from gate one and with clear galloping room, should be strongest late. KITGUM got the win he was searching for last week, leading all the way to score comfortably. Leads again and takes come catching. WILD GALAH can improve without surprising, while forget ALLURING went around in a race race last time.
Suggested: 3. ICE TRADE win.
3. ICE TRADE
2. WILD GALAH
Race 7 – 4:40PM LJ HOOKER BUNBURY COLLIE HANDICAP (1208 METRES)
LADIES OF LONDON looks to get her chance. Hasn’t been far away in her three outings this prep and was a bit stiff last Sunday, edged out narrowly by a flying Tinto Belle after encountering some traffic issues in the straight. Expecting positive tactics from the high draw and this doesn’t look as strong as what she’s faced recently. Anticipating a bold showing from YADREAMIN’. Put in an eye-catching fresh effort at Pinjarra and lookout for her launching late again. MISINFORMED BEN is racing consistently and the Bee Quick form is solid, while UNIVERSAL APPEAL can impact first up.
Suggested: 4. LADIES OF LONDON win.
4. LADIES OF LONDON
1. MISINFORMED BEN
8. UNIVERSAL APPEAL
Race 8 – 5:15PM PERKINS HANDICAP (1108 METRES)
Very difficult race to finish and you’ll be doing extremely well to find the winner. Eventually landed on a fresh PINK ‘N’ GRAY to get the job done, having raced really well when last in work and a bit stiff not to register wins at both Belmont and Ascot. With a reasonable run in transit, Jason Whiting can guide her to victory. Have to respect AMELIE ARGOT, who has a terrific first-up record. Apprentice Kristy Bennett is starting to hit her straps and with a clean getaway, Amelia Argot should get her chance. ZETORIO, PERCEIVE and CITICHANT are all possible winning chances in a wide race.
Suggested: 8. PINK ‘N’ GRAY each way.
8. PINK ‘N’ GRAY
2. AMELIE ARGOT
**This edition of #TheLegUp by @thoroheadsWA originally published at 9:00am on Friday 3 January 2020
The Leg Up is provided by Thoroheads — Digital content producers servicing the Western Australian Thoroughbred Horse Racing Industry.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of the Bunbury Turf Club.