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Full Winterbottom Stakes Day Preview news

Full Winterbottom Stakes Day Preview

Terry Leighton | Metropolitan Racing | Fri 30 November, 2018

The lengthy stint in the nets paid dividends last week when all our wildest Railway Stakes dreams came true. Unfortunately there are still remnants of the hangover present as I type this four days later, but that won’t stop me from doing it all over again at day two of the Masters.

I physically do not have it in me to write another 25 page epic (and let’s be honest, you don’t want to read another 25), so we’ll stick to a speed map and a race overview.

Race 1 - I Believe I Can Fly

Speed Map - This looks like a very self explanatory speed map, but surprisingly I have found that things don’t always go to plan. Agent Pippa (barrier 1) should be able to hold the fence and lead them up. Tango Ora (3) will come across and sit on her outside with the other speedster crunched in between them, Chinetti (2) forced to take a sit. Despite leading most starts he is more of a ‘musterer’ than an out and out speedster from the gates and I highly doubt there will be any room to muster in this field. This should leave him on Agent Pippa’s back (and the first horse beaten) and allow McGruddy to drop Jingtang (5) into the one out, one back slot. Having the slowest horse in the race (over the first 100m) drawn directly to his inside is a blessing for this Gangemi runner.

How To Fly would have loved to have drawn closer in, but should take Jingtang’s back only 3 lengths from the top, while The Celt (7) who is 1100m back to 1000m with a stack of speed drawn underneath him, will be forced to take a sit. Zuccheros (4) would settle last regardless of the draw.

Race Overview - We saw a slightly hot rail on Railway Stakes day with the inside pad being the place to be (even the horses who came from well back made their runs through the field rather than around; Galaxy Star, Royal Statue etc), but with the rail out to the 3m spot, I am not too concerned about a bias. It has been a brilliantly fair track all season.

Agent Pippa drops out of the Group Three Prince Of Wales won by Dainty Tess and she was far from disgraced. Locked horns with Super Maxi out in front and was always going to be a sitting duck late, despite the weight relief. Her chances will rest on how much peace she gets out in front. If given it soft (which she shouldn’t), they won’t get past her.

With the top end speed, this race does look nicely set up for something just off them and How To Fly ticks all the boxes. She was far from disgraced 7 days ago behind the very smart Misty Metal and does look a mare who appreciates the 1000m scamper over the 1200m. Expecting Pike to ride her with more patience here and I think you’ll see those famous Electra silks pop past them over the final 50m. Should pop the winners to runners ratio up to around the 35% mark.

The Celt has form around Misty Metal, which cannot be glossed over, though Robert and Todd Harvey did have Misty Metal a little soft for that outing with The Celt being able to find a spot outside the speed. Highly unlikely he races on speed here.

Tango Ora is flying in the South West and her last win was better than it looked on a quicksand inside pad at Albany.

$3 is currently the quote for How To Fly. I cannot see a great deal of support for any runners besides her or Agent Pippa. Likely to start around $2.80 - $4.


How To Fly
Agent Pippa
Tango Ora
The Celt

Suggested Bet: 100 wins How To Fly.


Race 2 - $59,000 Gift

Speed Map - Specialism (barrier 6) probably crosses to lead, but Rapid Eye Movement (5) will have some interest in holding the front. Jericho Missile (2) pops in behind them.

Race Overview - I don’t have a huge amount of interest in this race. Specialism has race experience and with the conditions of this event is absolutely dropped in at the weights. The big question is what has she faced? We really have no idea and you’d be brave taking the $1.55 to find out. Jericho Missile looks sharp as does Rapid Eye Movement and if either have that bit of X-factor, they could give this a shake. Nice little $59,000 earner for the winning connections.


Jericho Blues
Rapid Eye Movement
Sacred King

Suggested Bet: No bet.


Race 3 - Bob v Jim

Speed Map - Spillinova (barrier 2) will lead them up here with Mrs Brown’s Boy (8) working across to his outside, in a race which has a fairly obvious look about it. Hot pot Arcadia Prince (3) has reasonable barrier manners, but doesn’t often draw well. I suspect Pike will have him just off the speed, aware of the strengths the two front runners possess. In fact, with the tardy Stocks drawn to his inside, Pike should be able to stalk Spillinova everywhere he goes. The rest of the field really simply work themselves out by their barrier draws, but I don’t think we need to look any further back.

Race Overview - Spillinova was the entirety of Australia’s best bet a fortnight ago, in a first for a non-Pike ridden Western Australian conveyance. Jason Brown did not let the masses down with a clinical front running ride. That being said, the horse flesh behind him was relatively thin and he was entitled to win with that type of authority.

Mrs Brown’s Boy could well make life a little more difficult for the Brown and Taylor combo. This son of Discorsi is one of the states more under rated gallopers as is the case with a lot of Anne King’s runners. Only just went down to Arcadia Prince at their most recent outing, but the effort of the latter when sustaining a 600m dash around the field was close to the effort of the day. Hard to see him sitting in the death and winning this.

Expecting the front two to give a really good kick, but the vigour of the Wizard and class of the Prince should be enough to get over them late. Currently $1.90, I reckon we might see a slightly better quote on race day - Spillinova is a horse they like to back.


Arcadia Prince
Mrs Brown’s Boy
Sovereign Trade

Suggested Bet: 100 wins Arcadia Prince.


Race 4 - Call The Palise

Speed Map - Firstly, I am pretty happy with my race name for this one (relevance will become apparent shortly). Another speed map which really draws itself. Song Of Vincent (barrier 6) should roll forward and lead with Misty Lad (10) coming across to park on his outside. There’s no real other speed of note in this event. The well drawn Nordic King (3), Deception Game (4) and Crystal Valley (1), while not noted barrier horses should be able to take advantage of the good alley on a comfortable speed to hold spots in the first 6. Ouqba Jack (8) has been ridden with a degree of aggression at his last two, though I do think the ride might be a little more circumspect here, considering past successes. Favourite, Platoon (5) should settle midfield from a far more favourable barrier draw.

Race Overview - Song Of Vincent has been relatively well supported both first and second up when having very little luck. Young apprentice Palise (the reference above will now make sense) did get in some trouble with the stewards at her most recent outing when she opted to hand up and take a sit. She never saw daylight after that. While I think the reprimand was a bit stiff and we see senior jockeys get away with that type of move on the regular, this son of Your Song, should appreciate the senior jockey and lack of top end speed engaged here. Didn’t have a huge amount of luck last campaign either and his career record could look a lot better than it does. Pushed the smart Send My Love to a half length last campaign and this race doesn’t have any superstars engaged.

Nordic King was a nice winner first up when recovering from some early interference in the straight to pick up late and really attack the line. Conditions really do look in his favour here with the step up to 1500m, good barrier draw and services of the all conquering Wizard. Goes close.

Platoon is clearly the best credentialled runner in this event. A second to Arcadia Queen, placings in two black-type juvenile events and a recent slashing effort behind The Velvet King all read like winning form for a race like this. The obvious question is what the gut buster in the Guineas just seven days ago took out of him. He was parked 3 deep the trip on a relatively hot tempo and in all fairness stuck to his task admirably. I would have considered it highly unlikely they would have been backing him up after that type of effort, but you do need to trust one of the states leading stables. If he is 100% he gives them windburn.

Deception Game is super consistent and probably should have won his most recent outing, can’t be discounted.

Happy going with the value runner here and putting Song Of Vincent on top. $16 is currently available for your likely leader who has raced without a lot of luck in his career thus far.


Song Of Vincent
Nordic King
Ouqba Jack

Suggested Bet: 30 wins and 30 places Song Of Vincent.


Race 5 - Outside Command

Speed Map - A race devoid of a great deal of top end speed could well allow Rising Sea (barrier 5) take up the running and dictate. The last two occasion this son of Sebring has lead, he’s won. He just struggles to find the right race which allows him to take up a forward role. Nicconi’s Boy (2) will be right on his hammer or could even takeup the running for Chris Parnham. I do think they will be looking at the blueprint for recent successes however and want some cover. I have no doubt the cerise and white army would have done their speed maps and hotpot Royal Command (8) will look to go forward and find a spot just off the speed. Did this two starts ago when battled on OK behind Freo. Is a better horse ridden cold however. King Louie (9) and Upward Others (10) are likely to have the final crack.

Race Overview - Spillinova’a popularity at his last start was only matched by Royal Command’s (accurate) detractors. At $1.90, he’ll be about as popular as Gerald Whatley here. It’s just about finding what will beat him.

As alluded to Rising Sea is a gelding who does his best work when leading and should be able to take up that role. Isn’t a super quick beginner so often finds one or two quicker early which leaves him taking a sit. This race doesn’t appear to have that speed. Or any speed for that matter. Again, the $5 currently on offer doesn’t exactly make you want to back the bobcat up.

For those looking for something a little bit out of the box at a price, then Upward Others is clearly the one. Drawn wide and likely to go back to last (numerous attempts at riding this horse forward have ended poorly), his career record probably doesn’t completely do him justice. Has a win over Thisaway to his credit as well as a placing behind listed winners Mississippi Delta and At The Ready over a journey. Second up this campaign he was held up for the entirety of the straight when appearing to be bolting, before running a bolter behind Spillinova at his most recent outing. The horses who settled 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 on the turn in that race ran 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th. He flooded home to run fourth - it was a far superior run to Royal Command.

Royal Command $1.90. Upward Others $17. I’ll find it difficult not to have a little each way on the superior last effort of the two.


Upward Others
Rising Sea
Royal Command
Nicconi’s Boy

Suggested Bet: 10 wins and 30 places Upward Others.


Race 6 - I’ve Been Everywhere Man

Speed Map - The simplistic speed maps end here. The Country Challenge final tends to be as difficult as predicting the next Australian Test Team. Bay Publisher (barrier 8), Bells Tower (16), Aluminize (17) all do their best work when leading and I would expect the three of them to be fairly passionate out of the steel cages. Bells Tower may well be the quickest of the three and find the rail. Distant Trilogy (5), Father Knick (1), Force Element (7), Paradise Square (4) have all got good gate speed and good gates so should get nice runs in behind the speed. Captivated Point (13), Flower Of Scotland (19), Fine Scent (12) and Finally French (11) also like to race in the first half of the field, but all are drawn awkwardly. This, no doubt will be a race with a three wide and possibly four wide line so it may not be the worst thing in the world.

Akiko (14) is a horse we all associate with leading, but after his recent Geraldton victory when Chris Parnham took a hold after a tardy beginning, I suspect we will see similar sit and sprint tactics here. He really let down nicely. Snow Blossom (9) and Bon Voyage (15, if getting a start) will be the final two having a crack.

Race Overview - Assessing the form lines from the various country qualifiers is no easy task, but the Northam event won by Fine Scent, to me looks the pick of the bunch. And the run of that race (by streets) was Father Knick. Jumping from an awkward alley, Father Knick was forced to sit deep, without cover the trip. A horse who has had previous city successes when getting ‘the right run’, this showed a bit of toughness we hadn’t previously associated with this son of Blackfriars. Running a close third while reeling off the quickest final 600m split of the day was quite phenomenal considering the run he had. Would make him one of my best of the day, but barrier one could prove to be quite sticky for Joey Azzopardi if he ends up two or three back the fence. A race which you always require luck in.

Perennial bridesmaid Finally French, without doubt goes close here. Troy Turner will look to stay out of trouble early before unleashing a sprint late. Connections will forgive the string of second’s if he was to put his beak in front in this $100,000 event. Vermont Lady is a very particular, but talented mare and Lucy Warwick has now ridden her twice to success. Her race day manners are integral to her chances.

Captivated Point at $30 looks the pick of the South West gallopers, while I am really interested to see how well Akiko performs if ridden cold as expected. Paradise Square, Snow Blossom, Distant Trilogy and Bon Voyage are all winning chances in a percentage killing quaddie leg.

We’ll have something small each way on Father Knick. The current quote of $5.50 is in a 175% market (there is an understandable lack of confidence with the corporates for this race) so I would be waiting for the day and shopping well clear of this price. Close to double figures would be no surprise.


Father Knick
Finally French
Vermont Lady
Snow Blossom

Suggested Bet: 25 wins and 25 places Father Knick.


Race 7 - Winterbottom Stakes

Speed Map - They will not be mucking around here. Belter (1), Valour Road (3), Rebel King (4), Ashlor (8), Durendal (12) and Runson (15) are all runners who would prefer to lead this event or at worst race in the first four. I suspect we’ll see a slight alteration on the tactics of Belter who will drop in behind leader Valour Road, with Runson using a lot of early fuel to race on the three year olds flanks.

Rebel King, Malaguerra (7) , Malibu Style (6) and Ashlor will be looking to pop in just behind the break neck speed, with Viddora (5) and Profit Street (2) just behind them. Local mares Dainty Tess (11) and Enticing Star (13) will be having the final crack in a race which will suit a patient ride.

Race Overview - When analyzing the Eastern States runners, Viddora’s form, complete and utter dedication to this race (this was the target not an afterthought) and prior success in this event make her a complete standout. If she is not successful here, then I would suggest the Winterbottom will be staying at home.

While we have the fifteen runners engaged, I see only two potential winners in Viddora or Enticing Star. With even luck, even if Enticing Star returns to her brilliant best before her well publicized issues last time out, the Adelaide mare may well be too good. The barrier draw has only further enhanced Viddora’s claims on a second Winterbottom.

Enticing Star’s recent trial has polarized opinions. I find it difficult to come at a horse who really does struggle to keep up early in such a high pressure, high quality event. Her trial showed minimal improvement in that area again and if they go as mad as they are expected to here, she could be 15+ lengths of the leaders at the turn. She hit the line brilliantly in that trial as we’ve come to expect though it was a relatively hard held Vital Silver only two lengths off her. Jury is still out I am not willing to completely discount a mare who has captured the states attention, but I am very strongly in team Viddora.

Dainty Tess was not suited at her most recent outing when they walked and the leaders dominated over 1100m. I don’t believe she is a 1000m specialist, but do think she needs a strong tempo, which she will see here. The jockey change does give me cause for concern with Paul Harvey more adept to on speed horses at this stage of his career. For that reason I’m going to give Profit Street the nod for an unlikely Winterbottom placing. Ran second last in that same event as Dainty Tess but to prove how little tempo was in the event he actually ran the quickest last 600m of the entire day and the quickest last 200 and 400m splits from that event. Expecting Mitch to channel Pike’s ride on fellow Bunbury trained galloper Hadabeclorka from the 2010 edition of this race (highly recommend watching a replay of this event - you won’t see Pike winning too many Winterbottoms at $50+) and look for the shortest way home. The race will suit those with a patient ride.

The Viddora quote is slowly trickling in, with about $2.70 currently on offer. She’s still value.


Enticing Star
Profit Street
Dainty Tess

Suggested Bet: 100 wins Viddora.


Race 8 - Pike Party

Speed Map - I really dislike politics, but it is about this stage of the day where we all become members of the Pike Party. This speed map is designed for our commander in chief. Illustrious Tycoon (barrier 10) is unbeaten through three career starts and resumes here after a near 12 month absence from the race track. Recent trial showed he is in top order, but does have to contend with a very awkward draw, with some serious speed underneath him. Get The Vibe (1) and Ice Maker (4) will have no other intentions but to lead this event with Blizzard Express (6) and Kaapander (9) also likely to want to be prominent. I cannot see Illustrious Tycoon finding a spot on speed without burning a lot of early fuel. Really difficult task for a horse to win from that position after a lengthy lay off. Dam Ready (3) and Truly Belong (2) look the two beneficiaries of the top end speed. Both park midfield, let the carnage happen in front of them before reeling off sharp final 200m splits.

Race Overview - Truly Belong isn’t the star of the cerise and white show, but she is still a more than capable sprinter. Most of her racing has been done in top three year old company where she has been competitive without winning and thus she looks completely dropped in at the weights here. They tried to stretch her out over a staying journey last campaign with mixed results. She looks a better sprinter. Might be her last campaign in the cerise and white before we see her at the dispersal sales, but it doesn’t mean she doesn’t have a win or two left in her for RJ.

Dam Ready was afforded one of the better rides of the day when saluting at Ascot 10 days ago carrying half the grandstand. A patient Pateman waited for the gaps to appear and got the money. This has always looked a gelding with plenty of talent. Drawing next to Pike, it’ll come down to Pateman outriding the Wizard to get the chocolates here.

Truly Belong is currently $5. Happy with this as an each way quote, though this is not a galloper who receives a huge amount of betting support in races, even with the Wizard on board. Hard to suggest a ‘best time’ to hop in, though the $5 is a more than acceptable quote.


Truly Belong
Dam Ready
Illustrious Tycoon

Suggested Bet: 40 wins and 40 places Truly Belong.


Race 9 - Stone Motherless Take Two

Speed Map - Beaucount (barrier 11) would be a nice horse to own as you really do know what to expect every start. He will again roll along out in front here and get most of these off the bit nice and early. He separates the boys (and girls) from the men (and women). Not sure what happens to the gender neutral, the old saying never allowed for that.

Brother’s Keeper (5) was slowly away at his most recent outing, but that was an anomaly and I would expect him to be in the chasing division behind Beaucount. Mr Alby (17), The Big Show (4), Abeldane (7) are others likely to be in that grouping. Magical Charm (3) will be just off that bunch, with Pike picking which back he wants, to cart him into the final 300m of this event. The Pontiff will be looking to do something similar with Arctic Stream (10) while Barzinho (8) will likely be out the back and having the final sweeping crack at the field.

Race Overview - As I allude to most weeks Beaucount goes around, it is a totally different race when he’s engaged. The tougher horses who can handle a 800-1000m+ sprint and the true stayers are really advantaged by his presence in the race. While it is the boring and somewhat obvious suggestion, Magical Charm is a true stayer, having his second go at the journey and coming out of a ‘Beaucount style’ race, after Prue put 20 lengths on the field at his most recent success. Peter Hall was onboard that day as she raced without cover for the final 600m of that event. It was a really nice staying effort from a mare only third up this campaign. Pike replaces Hall, she draws a nice gate and the extra fitness will be crucial over the final 150m here. Was highly competitive in the three year old staying feature races.

Brother’s Keeper is absolutely flying for Tiarnna Robertson. Missed the kick at his most recent outing before finding some trouble in the straight and hitting the line as well as anything. Is a tough campaigner who should be suited in this type of event. Mr Alby will be the forgotten runner here, but his last two efforts against Beaucount have produced a win and a second, with the latter arguably being a touch unlucky with Lucas Camilleri finding some bother early in the straight. Drawn horribly here so will need to use some fuel early to come across and find a spot on speed. That could be telling late, but is likely to start $20+ and be the considerable ‘overs’ for the event.

I was really disappointed with The Big Show’s effort a fortnight ago. Chased hard with the low weight behind Beaucount and was one of the first beaten. In theory the step up to 2100m should be ideal, though he’d want to be tougher here. Arctic Stream, Barzinho and even Lennon’s Song are all hopes in a very open finish to the day.

Magical Charm is currently $3.50, though I suspect we might see better on the day. There are a number of ‘money horses’ in this event and I would not be surprised if we see upwards of $5 to pay for our first few frothies in the Stone Motherless.


Magical Charm
Brother’s Keeper
Mr Alby
Arctic Stream

Suggested Bet: 60 wins Magical Charm.

35 Comments | 2 years ago

Recent Comments


H-BOMBER 02 Dec | Posts: 8389

D Weir winning the good races is a great thing for the Masters. Might get a few others involved to come over.And yes, seems like a champion bloke from all the media Ive seen from him.

User spinking

spinking 02 Dec | Posts: 2909

Do they take DK on face value and he sorts them out later or does he carry 5 long around on him which or whatever good bloke to do it . Racing could do with ore like him

User hash

hash 02 Dec | Posts: 6923

Can confirm... ordered a round half a dozen drinks and was only charged for the vodka beer wine and bubbly was the house at the Stone motherless

User paraletic

paraletic 02 Dec | Posts: 3691

Very nice i must say.

User spinking

spinking 02 Dec | Posts: 2909

Certainly endearing himself to on course patrons. Good on him good jesture

User paraletic

paraletic 02 Dec | Posts: 3691

Weir thru 5k on the bar after the win yesterday? Lad!!!!

User PC

PC 02 Dec | Posts: 1482

Voodoo Lad, a true Melbourne B-grader And wins a Group 1 in WA. Says a lot about our racing which has been the case for years now and that is....sadly....WA racing is not strong and is lengths and lengths behind Vic and NSW racing If thats the case ...

User therealkramer

therealkramer 02 Dec | Posts: 7932

Voodoo Lad, a true Melbourne B-grader Very harsh, he is some B don't run 2nd in a Newmarket or a Rupert Clarke as a B grader.....outstanding ride but a pretty serious horse in my view. Hes probably more a Group 2 horse(fairly sure Weir ad...


GLAMOUR 02 Dec | Posts: 455

Voodoo Lad, a true Melbourne B-grader And wins a Group 1 in WA. Says a lot about our racing which has been the case for years now and that is....sadly....WA racing is not strong and is lengths and lengths behind Vic and NSW racing If thats the case ...

User VillageKid

VillageKid 02 Dec | Posts: 1704

Of course we are the poor cousin to vic and nsw pc after them though think we are in front of the rest. No disgrace in being behind them bigger populations than us . Wouldn't mind a couple b graders like him though 1.3 million in prize money before today . If ...