Warwick Farm Race 4 No.1 Island Missile (Blake Shinn) - $2.60
Island Missile has always been a good style of galloper, who's been within a nose of being a stakes winner already. He appears ready to get back into the winner's stall after two runs this preparation and now that he's down in grade.
First up this time in he was ridden very cold on a heavy surface at Randwick in a Saturday race that was dictated by those up on the speed, but he hit the line very nicely for a close-up fourth giving weight to all.
Then last start, a fortnight later at the same venue, and again in rain affected conditions, he got well back and ended up in the worst part of the track down on the inside. He battled away gamely late behind what looks to be a class filly in Seahampton.
Now he gets back on top of the ground, draws nicely to take a more prominent position in running and should be hitting his peak, fitness-wise. Although this is a similarly rated event to that last start, the field drops away very quickly and lacks the same quality.
I expect him to simply be too good for this lot despite the big weight.
AROUND THE GROUNDS
Warwick Farm Race 2 No.14 Veranes (Jay Ford) - $9.50
This filly's record, on face value, won't jump out at most, but she's not without some talent. If Chris Waller can get her to realise that ability in her second start for the master trainer, then she's certainly capable of being competitive in this field.
Originally with Kelso Wood, Veranes ran on well in all three of her starts in Queensland in her first preparation, including two at stakes level, before being tipped out.
She returned with Waller at Doomben on Tatts Tiara Day in the race won by Malahide, and was heavily supported late in betting, actually jumping as favourite. She got back to second last in the run, and when Kerrin McEvoy was attempting to angle her into the clear as they straightened, there was essentially no room. She arguably wasn't going good enough anyway, but she was never really tested over the last 200 metres.
Waller brought her to the Sydney base and gave her a very quiet trial last week where she was stuck behind a wall of horses and was allowed to coast to the line under a hold by Hugh Bowman.
Draws the fence here, is down in the weights, and although there's some promising types engaged, I'd suggest don't let her sneak under your radar at juicy odds.
Sandown (Lakeside) Race 4 No.11 Four Sisters (Ben Allen) (a) - $13
Four Sisters is the type of mare that needs to be ridden cold and come at them late with one run. I thought she was given no hope last start when a massive drifter in betting at Cranbourne, getting way out of her ground and only getting out the last 200 metres or so. I reckon apprentice jockey Melissia Julius would like that a mulligan on that ride.
Mick Kent brings her back to town for this midweek fillies and mares event, where, yes, she goes up in grade, but she plummets in weight. She gets the in-form Ben Allen aboard and can hopefully get the chance late in the long Lakeside straight to wind up and produce her best.
I reckon she's going alright, she just needs a race run to suit, and a little bit of luck when it matters. If she gets that here she's well and truly capable of winning this.
OVER THE ODDS
Sandown (Lakeside) Race 7 No.7 Radical (Stephanie Thornton) (a2) - $23
It's now been more than 2 ½ years since Radical won a race, so, obviously, he's not the type you can tip with a heap of conviction. I do believe he's racing pretty well this time in and a race like this is well within his scope given the form he's displayed of late.
Earlier this preparation he was placed in the St. Pats and Warracknabeal Cups, and wasn't beaten far in a quarter of a million dollar VOBIS race at Caulfield behind Self Sense. He put in a few poor ones when outclassed in an open grade Saturday race and struck wet tracks at Cranbourne and Swan Hill. He almost broke through at Corowa last start when just failing to run down Hunamosa, who's won a few in town, in what was a good quality event.
Stays at a mile, which is probably his best trip these days, draws the fence, and should get a good surface which he vastly prefers. This field is of pretty average standard even for a Benchmark 70 on a Wednesday at Sandown. If he can reproduce that last start effort I reckon that puts him right in the mix here at an attractive double figure quote.
Leg 1 - 1
Leg 2 - 1,2,3,6,8,9,10
Leg 3 - 1,2,3,4,6,7,8,10
Leg 4 - 1,4,5,6,10,11
($100 = 34.72%)
Leg 1 - 3,13
Leg 2 - 1,2,6,9,10
Leg 3 - 7,9,10,11,14
Leg 4 - 4,6,12,13,20
($100 = 40%)