Group 1 racing is finally back after some 3 months off, with the C.F. Orr Stakes headlining the card at Caulfield.
Trent Crebbin has analysed the chances of every runner in the competitive field and provided his thoughts below.
I have the speed map looking like this, with Lightsaber leading, Behemoth and Tofane pushing forward, Sinawann finding a spot midfield and I’m Thunderstruck getting a fair way back.
- I’m Thunderstruck- Incredibly exciting horse resuming coming off Toorak and Golden Eagle wins last prep. He should’ve won the Rupert Clarke at this T/D first up off a 7 week let up but that was with 52kg in a handicap. Now to WFA, which I’ve got no doubt he’ll measure up to. The concern here is how forward he is. The stable have said he might need this run, and there doesn’t look to be a great tempo on paper. Happy enough to oppose him off the map and think he’ll be better suited in an All Star Mile at Flemington.
- Cascadian- Didn’t win a race last prep but as usual attacked the line at every start. His first up run in the Winx at 1400m was excellent when 0.5L off Mo’unga and his overall 1400m and fresh records are good. Not sure he has the early speed to hold a spot from barrier 1 however and he’ll need a fair bit of luck. Not the worst at a price if he’s here (also accepted in the Apollo)
- Behemoth- He loves the Caulfield 1400m, having won 3 from 5 here, including two Memsies, and a Rupert Clarke with 60kg. He was rolled as a short favourite by Kemalpasa first up but I thought he still ran very well, breaking 33 seconds for his last 600m and 22 seconds his last 200m in a dash home. I do wonder if he’s half a run short given that wasn’t a big exertion and they had originally planned to miss the Orr and go straight to the Futurity, but many thought that last prep and he still won the Memsie. Kah on, he should be able to roll forward with Tofane and find a decent spot which should see him very competitive again.
- Wild Planet- Didn’t run badly in the Australia Stakes behind Marabi first up, coming home in the race fastest last 600/400m. He’s better suited at 1400m and 2nd up, which is typically when he does his best racing. His 2nd up run last prep was a bit plain in the Stradbroke but he did race wide so there were excuses. I’m just not sure if he’s quite up to a few of these on class and I’ve got a few ahead of him.
- Secret Blaze- Stayer resuming, actually ran very well first up last prep over 1200m but this is much harder and he’ll need the run.
- Just Folk- Another okay run behind Marabi first up, finishing towards the rear but he did get a bit tight for room in the straight. Another one that I just don’t think is good enough at group 1 level- the Crystal Mile win was okay but it wasn’t a strong race and he got every favour. He did go onto run well in the Cantala but here at WFA he’s up against it.
- Sinawann- Probably the horse to beat in my opinion. He was a real eye catcher in the Australia Stakes, coming home in the fastest last 200m of the race behind Marabi. I don’t think he loved The Valley so getting back to Caulfield where he ran last prep will help. The 2nd up win last prep was very strong off a solid tempo and puts him right in this race. He maps for a decent run midfield or perhaps just off and be put into the race at the right time.
- Tofane- Good mare who had her best winter/spring ever. She ran in the Memsie first up last prep off a short break and had every chance but Behemoth was simply too good. She’s not getting any younger and I believe this will be her last prep, but she has to be considered a winning chance. She should be able to settle near the speed despite the barrier, although it wasn’t until last prep that they really started showing intent on her. No real knocks, just think there’s a couple of other better horses with a run under their belt.
- Sierra Sue- She really came of age towards the back end of last prep after starting $41 and finishing 12th behind Tofane in QLD, going via a Mildura Cup win before eventually winning the Rupert Clarke at this T/D in a strong effort. Now she’s up to WFA which will be harder again, but she’s jumped out well and should be hitting the line well.
- Inspirational Girl- Expect she’ll need this run, the WA group 1 winning mare. Her only run last prep before injury was good in the Memsie, beaten 2.5L by Behemoth but I think there’ll be minimal intent here from the wide draw. She’s a good horse on her day, but yet to prove herself over East and I think she’ll improve once she gets out to 1600m with some race fitness.
- Lighthouse- Talented mare on the up, having suffered her first loss in Australia last start where Open Minded just got too easy a lead and she couldn’t quite reel him in. That was at listed level and she now steps to group 1 company at WFA, going up 0.5kg in weight. I think she really had to show she’s up to this level by winning last start and expect she finds this a little too hot. Despite that, she’s rock hard fit and maps for a soft trail so she wouldn’t completely shock.
- Lightsaber- The only 3yo in the field, another coming out of the Australia Stakes. He settled just behind the leader Marabi there and battled on well for 4th but this suits much better. A firm track should be much more to his liking, and his best form is at 1400m. I know the guineas prelude he won was an awful race, but once he found a fast race in the Guineas he ran super behind Anamoe, with the trifecta ahead of him all coming from midfield or worse. He should find the front comfortably and will take some running down. Definitely include in exotics.
I think (7) Sinawann is the horse to beat. His Australia Stakes run was excellent once he balanced up, really hitting the line well. Up to 1400m is a big positive and his win 2nd up last prep rated very well. If he can land 3 pairs back, one off, he’ll be hard to hold out. (3) Behemoth is hard to knock. His late sectionals first up were very good without winning, and his record here is exceptional. If he can land 1-1 or just behind the speed without working too much, he’s too good to leave out. (12) Lightsaber the 3yo will take some running down. I think he’ll improve a fair bit on a good track at 1400m, which should suit leaders. Playing around those three, which nets you approximately $2.13 odds for the dutch bet.
(7) Sinawann- $4.40 at Bet365
(3) Behemoth- $6.00 at TAB
(12) Lightsaber- $13.00 at TAB
1.5 units WIN Sinawann, 1 unit WIN Behemoth, 0.5 units WIN Lightsaber