Race 1 – 2:04PM TABTOUCH – BETTER YOUR BET MAIDEN (1705 METRES)
Imagine most will see this as the race for BRAVE CONTENDER, but expecting Peters Investments runner TREASURED CROWN to elevate significantly up to 1705m second up. Was a $3.80 chance on debut and was doing his best work late in a sit-and-sprint affair, and with the winkers on up in trip, this beautifully-bred gelding should be hitting the line hard. Brave Contender was three wide/no cover the entire last start, before being run over late. Nice draw, In consistent form and has race experience, so does tick most boxes. Both SHYSTER and WATTO’S REWARD look ready for this journey third up.
Suggested: 3. TREASURED CROWN win.
3. TREASURED CROWN
1. BRAVE CONTENDER
6. WATTO’S REWARD
Race 2 – 2:39PM WESTSPEED REGIONAL SHOWCASE MAIDEN (1705 METRES)
AVA EXPRESS should be getting the job done here. Did win his maiden at Northam 29/08/19, but later disqualified, so he has proven his capabilities in the past and his two runs this prep have both been full of merit. Top effort against solid opposition last start and he looks perfectly placed coming back to this grade. THE ROAN RANGER got back and worked home in a similar event to this last time. Expecting him to make his presence felt. HUSSTARR got under the market’s guard when placing as a $61 chance on debut. Drawn well up in trip, so has to be a major player, as does likely leader BRIARIC.
Suggested: 2. AVA EXPRESS win.
2. AVA EXPRESS
4. THE ROAN RANGER
Race 3 – 3:15PM FURPHY – REFRESHING ALE MAIDEN (1016 METRES)
Tricky short-course maiden this and opted to side with EXCELLENT DREAM. Resuming for a new stable after previously being trained by Justin Warwick, this fellow looked above average as a 2YO and started favourite against some gifted opposition at his Belmont 27/07/19 debut. Lead-up trial result was good and has the gate speed to hold the lead from this low draw. Was keen on NURHACI first up and it was a total forgive run, getting held up at a crucial stage. Worth another chance. A freshened GOODBYEFEDS must rate highly, while AWAY WE GO caught the eye in a fast race first up at Ascot.
Suggested: 4. EXCELLENT DREAM win.
4. EXCELLENT DREAM
3. AWAY WE GO
Race 4 – 3:50PM AMELIA PARK HANDICAP (1116 METRES)
Anticipating a bold first-up showing from SOLID AZZA. Covered additional ground and still proved too strong in a reasonable form race on debut at York 23/05/19, and it was hard not to appreciate the way she hit the line in her recent Lark Hill trial win. With a nice smother in transit, Solid Azza can let down over the top of these. WAKAN TANKA hails from the red-hot Parnham yard and has been readied for this assignment with two lead-up trials. Maps leader’s back and never too far away at the finish. Smart last-start Bunbury maiden winners DEW WEST and COCKYJOY have to be considered also.
Suggested: 6. SOLID AZZA win.
6. SOLID AZZA
3. WAKAN TANKA
7. DEW WEST
Race 5 – 4:20PM LJ HOOKER BUNBURY COLLIE HANDICAP (2238 METRES)
Taking a leap of faith, but happy to be on board with ARCADIA KING. The blue-blooded half-brother to Arcadia Queen, looks a dead-set two-miler and was only just getting going late in his Pinjarra debut, when supported from $3.70 to $2.45. 1500m to 2238m second up isn’t the norm, but if anyone can do it it’s Team Williams and ‘The Wizard’ Pike. APPARITION has certainly had a more conventional campaign and was solid in a similar race to this at Pinjarra last start. He’s an obvious player. BAFFLING comes out of a stronger race, while CONTENTIONAL boxed on to win this track/distance last time.
Suggested: 3. ARCADIA KING win.
3. ARCADIA KING
Race 6 – 5:00PM MBL FOOD SERVICES MAIDEN (1216 METRES)
Keen on GREAT HEIST. Was a noticeable drifter when resuming from a spell, but was arguably a good thing beat, getting held up at a crucial stage before launching late with some of the best closing splits of the day. Does plenty wrong and has a lot to learn, but with Pike on from this draw, Great Heist certainly stands out. DOUBLE SPICE will have plenty of admirers on debut. The $50,000 yearling stretched out stylishly to win his lead-up trial and maps ideally from this draw. SKY FIVE can lift with blinkers on, CORNFLOWER should be running on, while FAIR FORCE is one for your exotics.
Suggested: 5. GREAT HEIST win.
5. GREAT HEIST
1. SKY FIVE
7. MISS ALIGNED
*Numbers amended after Final Scratchings
Race 7 – 5:35PM PERKINS HANDICAP (1705 METRES)
Looks a terrific option for HE’S A GUNSLINGER. Won a strong form race at Ascot two back, accounting for Money Matters and Put A Spell On You, but had no luck at Ascot on Perth Cup Day when blocked for a run the entire straight. Being stretched out to the mile, so the blinkers have come off, and should enjoy the run of the race from this draw. NICE GO was no match for Friar’s Fantasia last time, but the effort still had merit. Goes close. BURNING PRIDE will relish Pike being back on board, SAN CRISPINO is just about in career-best form, while BLACKWOOD RIVER has a class edge on most of these.
Suggested: 3. HE’S A GUNSLINGER win.
3. HE’S A GUNSLINGER
4. NICE GO
2. BURNING PRIDE
6. SAN CRISPINO
**This edition of #TheLegUp by @thoroheadsWA originally published at 9:00am on Tuesday 14 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.