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Ascot Preview, 9th March news

Ascot Preview, 9th March

Terry Leighton | Metropolitan Racing | Fri 9 March, 2018

Race 1 – A Jockey Change Is As Good As A Holiday

Tell you what. Perth has lobbed up some serious weather this week and it will continue into a glorious afternoon of racing at Ascot. Eight competitive fields, with the feature race being the only letdown size wise. They say that size doesn’t matter, but unfortunately the quality is also lacking. You better have a good personality. Anyway, after a fairly solid run for a few months, the last fortnight I’ve started tipping like Donald Trump on acid (presuming this would be erratic and inaccurate). We’ll change that today.

The opening event isn’t one I will be partaking in, but happy to lob William Pike and Adam Durrant on top with Magic Planet. This Planet Five gelding was extremely green on debut when Mollie Clark never got anything out of the horse. Recently, more than ever, we have seen the importance of a good jockey change (Snow Lord gets a relatively soft lead at leader bias York and can’t win with Maddison Brown on, before he jumps to a 72+ in the city and Pike makes him look like a world beater). Simon Miller can certainly train a young filly and I was taken by the trials of First Strike. I haven’t seen this many quality young fillies in the one stable since Tiger Woods was in his prime.

Bam’s On Fire was a huge debut, but the Renee Forrest appointment is one which leaves me a touch flat.


2 Magic Planet
8 First Strike
7 Bam’s On Fire

Suggested Bet: No bet.

Race 2 – Steve’s Streak

Jockey’s go through lean patches and I think the nerves will understandably be present when Steve Parnham saddles up to ride (current) favourites Jeraft & Ellicazoom in the next two events. This is a midweek field at absolute best and he will get his chance here. Not since Australia picked Mick Lewis in the coloured clothes (0 for 113 off his 10 for those playing at home), have I seen a weaker line-up.

Jeraft should be going very close. The barrier draw isn’t ideal with Steve likely having to jag him back into the second half of the field. His aim will be to find a cart up on a nag capable of doing so (which isn’t a forgone conclusion in this field), otherwise he might be left needing to make a sustained 600-700m run. Taxagano looks the logical danger after a luckless effort over the unsuitable 1200m first up. Is far better over 1600+, but the 1400m and good gate are in his favour. Probably over the odds at $5.

I am going to look a little further afield with my on top selection and ironically (sort of), tip the horse Steve Parnham has jumped off, Grey Enigma. The barrier is a major turn-off, but the handicapper has been kind to this He’s A Decoy gelding with 9 rating points being axed in his last 7 starts. The last time he raced in a 62+ was May last year when he was first past the post. His last two efforts are a lot better than they look on paper. Jason Brown is riding well and if he can give this fellow a gun ride from the wide alley, then the $17 will look silly.


6 Grey Enigma
1 Taxagano
2 Jeraft

Suggested Bet: 25 wins and 25 places Grey Enigma (6).

Race 3 – Candlelight Wizard

“Ellicazoom is the best horse in the race”. I’ve read this a bit. Where is this coming from? She was a good three-year-old, but she has done very little since. Was Paul Haselby the best player in the AFL three years after he won his Rising Star Award? No. Yes, she has done the majority of her racing over East since, but just because a delusional trainer takes a horse across to Melbourne continuously (Malibu Style anyone?), doesn’t make it a star.

That rant should ensure Ellicazoom wins by 3. Chuck my cheque in the mail thanks Nev.

There is a lot of talk about the potential track bias with the rail at 7m but going into a meet with this mindset can be fraught with danger (unless you are betting at Narrogin). So, I will be having an ‘all things being equal’ mindset. Candlelight Star has been one of my favourites for a long time. Throughout his very unique career he has always (in my always correct opinion) been trained or ridden incorrectly. Finally he lands in the stable of Adam Durrant and finally, William Pike hops on. A little bit more intimidating than the Roy Rogers & Jerry Noske combo. Weight has proven not to be a major issue in the past with this Kendel Star gelding and I am quite bullish on the big grey storming down the outside here. His last effort over the unsuitable 1000m was huge with Andrew Castle not really getting interested til the final 150m. The quick back-up only increases my confidence.

The Celt was huge for new trainer Anne King, who alongside Ashley Maley are probably the two most underrated trainers in the state. He is the biggest danger. Delicate Miss has opened $71 the win and $17 the drum. Her last run was brilliant, and the Pontiff is only getting better with each ride. She is way over the odds, despite 1200m not really being her go. Get Over It will appreciate the senior jockey going back on (those who took $3 a fortnight ago, with Fiona Bell on a sit and sprinter in a capacity line-up should go buy a mirror), while Max Almighty and One Short are winning hopes. Great race.

$7.50 Candlelight Star for me, happy attacking him on a win only basis in case of track bias vulnerability.


1 Candlelight Star
7 The Celt
8 Delicate Miss

Suggested Bet: 80 wins Candlelight Star (1).

Race 4 – Martin Luther Pateman

I have an issue. What is Fred Kersley doing with these regular outlandish distance rises and drops? North Ridge is 1800m back to 1200m in a fortnight after running a pretty good race over the 1800m. It is nothing training.

Anyway, I do like Battle Hero to continue his winning run here, but I cannot go past the price in the race which looks to be complete nuts. This is a 7-horse field and I am happy putting a firm line through the names of Lenience, North Ridge, Infathuated and with the bar shoe going on Rebel King, I will add him to that list. That leaves us with three.

Dream Lifter will carry his lowest weight in since winning the Mt Barker Sprint by over 2 lengths 26 months ago. This Danehill Express gelding is getting a little bit long in the tooth now, but the very recent form lines are still there. Two starts ago he runs second to Red Ora, giving that gelding 5kgs. Red Ora should have beaten Battle Hero with a smarter ride at their most recent outing. Four starts ago he is a half length off Dainty Tess at WFA with the likes of Winterbottom place getter (at his next outing); Durendal, behind him. It is a shame this is only a 7 horse field, as the three dividend each way would have been a huge bet, but at $31 and $11 the drum (top 2 only) he is a ridiculous quote. He did fail at his last outing, but you can put a line through that – Carbery was having his first ride on him and gave him none. I have him finishing ahead of Royal Missile.

Royal Missile is a 78 rater in a 90+ feature. She gets 2.5kgs off Dream Lifter, when at the ratings she should be getting 8.5kgs. Her last few wins have been good, but beating horses like Sweet Ora and Tenterden, compared to finishing next to horses like Dainty Tess and Profit Street are in a different ball park. The $1.80 for her is complete madness in my book. Double her with Ellicazoom.

I Had A Dream. $31.


3 Dream Lifter
1 Battle Hero
7 Royal Missile

Suggested Bet: 35 wins and 35 places Dream Lifter (3). 30 unit quinella – 1 & 3.

Race 5 – The Kingsley Tavern

When I think of ‘Western Temples’ I think of sports hubs like the Kingsley Tavern. Or perhaps the old Carlton if you are looking a little bit more central. Tremendous establishments where every expense has been spared.

I tipped three favourites last week and they all lost. I have some form of undiagnosed disability when it comes to tipping favourites, but even I shouldn’t be able to stop Western Temple. The barrier draw has again been cruel, but this field is a Barry Crocker. Pike will probably snag him back to last and it is always a risk hopping into the $1.70 with a horse required to go around the whole field, but he has lengths on these. When Kaapander and the bar shoed Cougar Nights are the next two in line at around $6, you know she ain’t a strong event. I think the Laverton Cup form could hold up here with Avidus running a drum.

If the $1.70 is too short for you, then just stand him out in your quadrella.


3 Western Temple
5 Avidus
1 Already Famous

Suggested Bet: 100 wins Western Temple (3).

Race 6 – Pierro’s Progeny

I can’t be bothered writing about this race. There are that many question marks and contrasting form lines, that it really is a ‘stay away’ event.

Money Maher’s run in the Fairetha was sublime and I think a lot of us are holding onto that effort. First up over the 1400m he was serviceable without looking like he really wanted to be there after being off the bit very early on. He did run a sharp last 600m but was entitled to as he didn’t leave the rail. He is about as predictable as Colin ‘Funky’ Miller’s next hairstyle. Action is the other ‘class’ animal of the race who was run off his legs first up, before absolutely smashing the line. Second up he was forced to settle back near last and make a long-sustained run on a day where long sustained runs were not the go (jockeys take note – this is most days). Friar Fox franked that form. The 35-day break is the worry, but the stable is one to trust.

Miracle Man should have won first up after a tardy getaway and then not getting the clear running room late on. Private Dancer has since proven that form looks very good. The blinkers go on here and he will be wanting to improve his barrier manners. Hard to win giving the rest of the field a length on jumping.

Sentimental Friend looks the best of the rest, but I do think it will be run and won between the three fancies.


2 Action
3 Miracle Man
1 Money Maher

Suggested Bet: No bet.

Race 7 – Three Millers Thanks

Simon Miller looks to have a strong-hold over this event, with 3 live chances all jumping from good gates. I questioned Aaron Mitchell’s use of the whip two starts ago on Atacama Sky. His response was that the horse does not respond well to the whip. Kate Witten replaced Aaron on this Scandal Keeper gelding at his most recent effort, and when she went for the stick with 100m to go, we found out that Aaron was spot on. He stopped dead. The blinkers go on from barrier one here, and you get the feeling Miller money will come hard for one of the three. The blinkers may suggest Atacama Sky to be the one.

I am however, going to tip his secondary runner in Scalpel. The blinkers come off, so expect him to take a sit just off the speed from barrier 4. Last campaign he drew barriers 15, 12 & 10 and was forced to work extremely hard. A little bit like Hoboken (sad face) last week, this looks the horse mapped to get the perfect run. I love the $8 each way about him here. A ‘safe’ bet… because that is a real thing, safe bets.

Show Honey will appreciate the step down from 1400m, but really is a 1200m specialist. Look to see her rattling late. From the gate, she just might be too far off them. Jingtang is going well and will appreciate the drop back to 1000m.


10 Scalpel
11 Show Honey
4 Jingtang

Suggested Bet: 35 wins and 35 places Scalpel (10).

Race 8 – I Found Him

Wally. I wouldn’t call this my ‘best’ of the day with Western Temple clearly the most likely horse to win on this 8-race card, but I would call this my favourite bet of the day.

If you possessed the amount of speed this race has, you’d get 12 years in Hakea. Blizzard Express, De Andes, Cranky Dancer, Akiko, Kimbo’s Girl, Mrs Brown’s Boy, Wacked Out, Dynamite Dream & Halldora are all horses who prefer to find a spot in the first two in running. To quote D-Mac this will be “the charge of the light brigade”. I am just glad Neville Parnham found a suitable race with a lack of speed for Wacked Out. Face palm.

Where’s Wally is my little special for the day (thus the ‘I Found Him’ reference). After 13 months off the racetrack, Ted Martinovich brought this Rogano gelding back with a brilliant trial before two luckless efforts (held up the entire straight twice) when well thought of in the market. Ted then stepped him up to 1400m on a leader bias track and he was never interested. He has been freshened up here, has drawn perfectly for a race which looks like it will suit a 3 and even 4 wide line and if we remember the class he possesses (his last run before his lengthy spell was second to Caipirinha), he has the class to get over the top of these late. There is definitely some speculation in this investment with the 68 day freshen up. It will probably be a win or bust type outcome, with me looking like a Wally always a possibility. At $19, I am happy playing, but there is every chance he could end up a longer price on the day. I’ll be having half my intended stake at the $19, with half just before jump. A weird looking bet, with a saver on the place.


13 Where’s Wally
14 Dynamite Dream
16 Lady Le Jean

Suggested Bet: 70 wins and 20 places Where’s Wally (13).

33 Comments | 3 years ago

Recent Comments

User hash

hash 11 Mar | Posts: 6973

bingo, hashie...did u get on..unreal price? $-) :x Beers on me in two weeks time Ill be up your way, will have to get @H-BOMBER to meet aswell since its so close for you both

User Nevershowsurprise

Nevershowsurprise 10 Mar | Posts: 892

Hash is this the same Bob that rocks up to the races on his own meet after meet, week after week, year after year? He can smoke his cigars with green backs but I'd rather run last every start with a bunch of mates every day of the week

User paraletic

paraletic 10 Mar | Posts: 3721

I can leave out Where's Wally , looking at the barrier and the rider. Good call. A very average ride. Knuckey is still looking to get out. Forget it ran and follow next start that ride can go in the "cant be farked" file. Never saw clear running and whe...

User DaggerVee

DaggerVee 10 Mar | Posts: 34

Gareth the mock asking Brittany Taylor after her horse Dynamite Dream won the last: "Is there any better feeling?" He's either a virgin or he's doing it wrong ;)) >:)

User therealkramer

therealkramer 10 Mar | Posts: 7932

Gareth the mock asking Brittany Taylor after her horse Dynamite Dream won the last: "Is there any better feeling?" He's either a virgin or he's doing it wrong ;)) >:)

User paraletic

paraletic 10 Mar | Posts: 3721

If he let his horses race up the front we'd all be fuched i reckon


SLIPPERGOLDEN 10 Mar | Posts: 5823

I can leave out Where's Wally , looking at the barrier and the rider. Good call. A very average ride. Knuckey is still looking to get out. Forget it ran and follow next start

User Gilgamesh

Gilgamesh 10 Mar | Posts: 3482

We all know Bob hates his horses leading. Do you think seeing a horse like Battle Hero go to another stable and be ridden possitively and race so well would have any affect on him or is he too old to change his ways now? While were on here question...

User Gilgamesh

Gilgamesh 10 Mar | Posts: 3482

We all know Bob hates his horses leading. Do you think seeing a horse like Battle Hero go to another stable and be ridden possitively and race so well would have any affect on him or is he too old to change his ways now? While were on here question...


SKIDS 10 Mar | Posts: 954

Alive in the qauddie with; 4, 7, 8 & 14 in the last.