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Ascot Preview, 18th May news

Ascot Preview, 18th May

Terry Leighton | Metropolitan Racing | Fri 18 May, 2018

Race 1 – Seeya Scott

With a small tear running down my cheek, we say goodbye to another Ascot season. There has been some high’s and some low’s but as long as we’ve all learnt that there should be no pressure applied to Simon Miller runners in two-year-old features, we’ll all be better for it.

My form guide for the Royal Wedding will be done at the completion of this piece of writing. I can confirm my best of the day will be the $1.83 available about Prince Harry to be clean shaven. Not sure how the corporates are going to decide how to pay out on the same bet for Meghan.

I really hope this marriage works out as I do not want to go through all this again. Who gives a flying f*** about the ‘surprise vegetable on the menu’ or whether ‘Meghan’s estranged brother will attend’. I need to stop talking about this, it’s ruining my zen a nightmare day on the punt at Northam has built up.

Black Sabbath has opened $1.20 and that looks about right. It was seriously impressive in beating Market Ruler, who subsequently won with a leg in the air. Only bad luck or injury sees this son of Blackfriars get beaten. Kelly’s Callisto looks a clear second elect after beating subsequent winner Shapita in a recent Lark Hill trial. Fairly confident the final two-year-old event of the season won’t be heading Simon’s way.


1 Black Sabbath
5 Kelly’s Callisto
3 Nemiroff

Suggested Bet: At the $1.20, we’ll just watch. No bet.

Race 2 – Rolf

The horse named after Rolf Harris’ favourite line to kids, Come Play With Me, looks to be one of the better bets on the card. Stepping up to the 2400m second up, his effort in the WA Derby when he raced without luck received more than a pass mark. The drop back in grade, albeit against a reasonable little field of stayers saw the money come ($6 to $3) and him salute with ease. The horses who ran 2nd and 3rd from that event, just quinellaed a staying event at Northam, beating home Press The Petal to give that form a little bit of extra gloss. Hasn’t got a good record at Ascot, though he does look a more professional horse at his last two starts. With 53kgs on his back after the claim of form apprentice Brodie Kirby, he looks awfully hard to beat.

Dudemanbro appears the main danger, coming out of the listed WA Cup when gallant in defeat to Dark Musket. That can be quite the taxing run and the drop-in distance of 1000m could perhaps see this galloper a little dour. Palace Rogue has opened the fixed odds favourite, which is quite the surprise. His last effort was huge, but the horses he beat in that class one would all be $50+ here. Should lead this event and make his own luck, but this is a major rise in class.

Middle Earth is talented, but I can’t have him with Casey Hunter on, while War Ksar has been racing well in the South West and has shown the ability to bring that form to town in the past.


3 Come Play With Me
2 Dudemanbro
8 Palace Rogue

Suggested Bet: 100 wins Come Play With Me (3).

Race 3 – Distance Dilemma

This is a race I’ve had a lot of trouble dissecting with the drop from 1200m to 1000m being key. Traditionally it is very difficult to drop back in distance with success, though the two favourites in Masquerade and Finally French do look to have a length or two on their opposition here. Masquerade was given a perfect ride by the Wizard to narrowly defeat the Robert & Todd Harvey trained Finally French at their most recent outing, though Troy Turner did struggle to fully test his mount over the concluding stages which probably cost it victory. I like the appointment of Jason Brown here in the absence of Troy. I suspect they will look to ride him forward without cover.

Debellatio was disappointing on face value first up, though may have needed the run. Races over 1000m for the first time in his career and will appreciate the services of the hard-hitting Pontiff. Despite the 61kg’s, is one who could quickly turn his form around and at around $12 is probably the value in the event. Undefeated second up.

Chesten Flyer is coming out of a weaker race, but the win was impressive nonetheless, while My Demi will appreciate being ridden with a sit in this.


9 Finally French
1 Masquerade
1 Debellatio

Suggested Bet: No bet.

Race 4 – Tricky Track

With the rail at 4 metres for the first time in several months, a little bit of guesswork needs to be applied when determining if there will be any form of track pattern. The last three times the track was either at 3 or 5 metres, there was a significant on pace bias. It is fair to suggest at 4 metres, this may very well be the case again.

New Age looks the best animal in this and the opening quote of $3.60 has been snaffled up by the early shoppers. It did look a touch over the odds. Her first up effort over the mile at Pinjarra when she sat deep in the run, but still won effortlessly was huge and she should strip fitter here. We have seen a lot of short priced Pike & Peters sit and sprinters get nailed recently due to their racing patterns and this could be another to add to the list. A risky investment from barrier 12.

Forty Four Red was our best of the day a fortnight ago when leading from start to finish over a pretty mediocre lot. Losing the services of Jarrad Noske is not ideal, though the tactics on this Congrats gelding are relatively straight forward for Andrew Castle. Mrs Brown’s Boy was tardily away last week which cost him any hope of victory, but still ran a reasonable race against his usual racing pattern. Tracking him through the Roganella form at his previous outing is the way to go. Expect him to land on the outside or just behind Forty Four Red if he steps cleanly.

Invisible Pro is racing in fine form for Simon Miller and is another who will race handy to the speed and has strong claims. Avidus at $51 isn’t the worst either. His most recent effort was a lot better than it looks on paper after CJP didn’t ride his best race. Is a horse who tends to race quite erratically, however with the likely tempo in this event, if new jockey Aaron Mitchell can get him to settle well on the back of Forty Four Red, he could spring a surprise. A really competitive event.


8 New Age
6 Mrs Brown’s Boy
2 Avidus

Suggested Bet: No bet.

Race 5 – How Good Is He?

I don’t think we learnt a lot about ‘WA’s next big thing’ at his most recent outing when he simply got the job done against 4 opponents. I was impressed by the ability to hold off Broker late, who did have the softer run, but it was a race he had to be winning if he wants to compete in the November and December showpieces. If there is the rail or pace bias I suspect there may be, the wide barrier could look even more daunting. We have seen him sit deep without cover a couple of times in his career and there is every chance he may be forced to do the same here. A big ask.

I find it hard not to tip Broker to turn the tables. From barrier 4, CJP who rides this horse brilliantly, should have this four-year-old son of Trade Fair just off the speed, getting a nice cuddled up run. Add to that the 1.5kg weight swing and it looks a tall order for Missile Launch.

Taxagano wasn’t suited to racing on speed last start and the appointment of Brodie Kirby is a positive one, while Elegant Blast is racing in career best form and can win this. Jazari is a maddie for first four players after a nice effort over the unsuitable 1500m last time in. Is looking for 2000m+, but if Steve Parnham can hold a spot from barrier 2, could sneak into a place at $20+.


5 Broker
2 Missile Launch
11 Jazari

Suggested Bet: 50 wins Broker (5).

Race 6 – Our Star

I don’t know if I am more excited about watching Galaxy Star win this by five lengths or watching Willie Rioli take mark of the year in a game we confirm Premiership favouritism. Toss up.

Galaxy Star was game in defeat over the unsuitable 1100m first up and to say she will relish the step up to 1400m here would be a massive understatement. When Pike presses the button, she will absolutely explode past this lot and make a reasonable bunch of gallopers look second rate.

I like Red Publisher to run an improved race here after Ashley Maley had a throw at the stumps in the Northam Sprint that not even Jonty Rhodes could have hit. From barrier 2, he should be able to hold a spot on speed and run a race at big odds, as he often does.

I don’t like hopping into many $1.65 pops, but she’s worth it.


5 Galaxy Star
2 Red Publisher
3 Gunnago

Suggested Bet: 100 wins Galaxy Star (5).

Race 7 – Rock Battle

Really excited about the return of Rock Magic after his efforts in the countries premier sprints earlier this year. Raced without a huge amount of luck over East and proved just how good he is. Jarrad Noske’s suspension would normally be a negative for a horse he rides so well, but I am sure the appointment of William Pike won’t upset the camp too much. Having run in the Group 1 William Reid only 57 days ago, the key will be how well he has settled in since returning. He might be some type of risk first up, but with the strong hand Chris Gangemi holds, I don’t think he would be racing him unless he was 100%.

Battle Hero has come on leaps and bounds since he was astutely purchased for $45,000 at the dispersal sales. Again, usual jockey Jarrad Noske will be watching from the stands, but Peter Knuckey will know he just needs to jump and run. This looks a genuine two horse race, despite the hot trial (55.33 over 950m) of Great Shot. I am just not convinced he is on the same level as Rock Magic and Battle Hero when it comes to a weight for age sprint. A great race.


1 Rock Magic
3 Battle Hero
2 Great Shot

Suggested Bet: No bet.

Race 8 – Stealing

The final race of the Ascot season brings together a capacity line-up of contrasting form lines. Forceful is the deserved early fixed odds favourite, though hasn’t raced for 31 days. Whether this was by design or there was a setback I’m not sure, but it is disconcerting. While his last win was super impressive, it was on a day where you had to be coming down the centre of the track to win and that is exactly what he did. He appeared to enjoy the sting out of the ground that day (2 from 2 on the soft, 0 from 3 on the good), so with the harder track and potential on pace bias, this is a lot harder.

Brodie Kirby has taken all before him in his debut riding season, and it would be fitting to see him take out final event for another young trainer who has enjoyed a stellar season with a small team. Tirreno’s trial back on the 9th of April has stuck with me after comfortably beating Stageman who appeared to be the one under more pressure of the two. His first up effort behind Fabergino and beating home subsequent winner Alpha Sky, needs no explaining. First up he was handled by Casey Hunter who got lost in the straight but did manage to find clear galloping room over the final 100m and hit the line strongly, narrowly missing a place. The Enticing Star/Speeding Comet form is strong form for a race like this and the importance of the appointment of Kirby for Hunter cannot be understated. Should pop in just behind what appears to be a lot of top end speed with the likes of Naturaliste, You Watching Me, Arfa Chance and Rubia Miss engaged and get the first crack at them on straightening.

I’m also going to suggest a small saver on $100 pop, Quest To Venus. Another trial which has stuck with me, before Sasha Starley got absolutely nothing out of this Planet Five mare first up. If Autier can hold a spot from gate 1, there is no reason he cannot salute at triple figure odds.

A couple of roughies to round out the Ascot season.


1 Tirreno
8 Quest To Venus
10 Forceful

Suggested Bet: 25 wins and 25 places Tirreno (1). 10 wins and 10 places Quest To Venus (8).

35 Comments | 3 years ago

Recent Comments

User piker

piker 20 May | Posts: 325

These horses with blocked runs are going to fare better at Belmont?Or are they so evenly matched that if one sneezes he/she loses?

User Tigers2014

Tigers2014 19 May | Posts: 66

Had a shocker, hopefully he bounces back today :)>-

User Ngawyni

Ngawyni 19 May | Posts: 560

COME PLAY WITH ME - Brushed the inside running rail and shifted outwards and became unbalanced for a short distance passing the 1600m. Unable to obtain clear running for the entire length of the straight and as a result was unable to be ridden out over the c...


H-BOMBER 19 May | Posts: 8967

I backed come play with me, new age, red ora and tirreno today at ascot. Fair to say had a Howler Tirreno also blocked pretty much the whole straight

User Tigers2014

Tigers2014 19 May | Posts: 66

someone is teaching that kid bad habits.....

User DamienWyer

DamienWyer 19 May | Posts: 6870

What a great result for the Gangemi's !!

User TheFunkster

TheFunkster 19 May | Posts: 3748

Ascot surface has had enough . Horse and punter welfare should have been at the fore. Roma cup has always been Belmont. Don't believe for one minute attendance would of been smaller at the concrete graveyard. If you were attending the races for the day out (It...

User thefalcon

thefalcon 19 May | Posts: 17757

someone is teaching that kid bad habits.....

User detonator

detonator 19 May | Posts: 3146

Obviouly the ride suggested the $2.30 was not that attractive today. Zero initiative. That was bad. We have been "willowed"

User Thunderstruck

Thunderstruck 19 May | Posts: 5182

Indeed...Wow that was hard to watch X(