Review – Hobart, Sunday 7 May

08 / 05 / 2017 Article by: Hannah Jenkins
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Racing at Hobart on Sunday saw 9 races contested on a genuine Soft 5 track with horses scouting wide down the back but rarely right to the outside in the straight as has been seen in previous meetings. Scott Brunton again dominated on his home track with four winners, while John Luttrell prepared the two maiden winners to start the program. Leading rider David Pires claimed another three winners, while Brendon McCoull landed a double of his own.

Race 1 – 11:28AM Hazel Bros Maiden (Div 1) (1600 METRES)

Cloudy Bay took up the running with West Burton and set an average tempo. The overall time was very plain and the sections from the 800m mark were some of the slowest of the day so the strength of this form is under question.

Hirvonen was sent out a deserved $2.25 favourite and he never really looked like losing on his way to a dominant win. He continued to pick up ground approaching the turn as McCoull cut the corner and found the lead quite early in the straight. As he usually is he was strong to the line, proving himself over the mile at just his first try. This looks a pretty weak race but the manner of his victory indicates he has at least another win in him in a Maiden/C1 1600m, which may come sooner rather than later in his current form.

Cincha ran a good race after coming wide on turning and he found the line strongly with the last 200m being the best part of his race. That suggests 2100m may suit him when he finally gets to that trip. Cloudy Bay led with blinkers on for the first time and gave a good sight in the best run of his career so far, holding 3rd from Akbar Jay who ran home well like he has done at every run since arriving in the state.

Race 2 – 12:05PM PFD Maiden (Div 2) (1600 METRES)

Pace here was genuine with Bailee’s Moshe, Gee Gee Mistachips and Epidexios sharing the lead for much of the race. Overall time was faster than the previous with the big beaten margins suggesting this to have been a tougher mile test.

Super Leane ($101 to $31) caused some havoc last week in Devonport after losing the rider at the start but he  backed up here and landed some bets at long odds. He was given a great run just behind the speed by Baker and travelled strongly into the race but the best part of his race was the last 200m where he was able to wear down the leader to score. Clearly another Maiden/C1 1600m race is within his grasp on this effort but his strength at the finish also suggests the 2100m may be up his alley also. A surprise win but one with some merit.

Country Way continued his consistent form with another good on-pace effort for 2nd and he beat the rest comfortably. My Kingdom was another specked at good odds ($51 to $18) and he improved with the blinkers back on to run 3rd, well in advance of the rest of the field. Favourite Lovely Lady ($3.60) had a good run midfield and looked a hope on the bend but didn’t finish off at all and may not have run the trip.

Race 3 – 12:40PM Spendthrift Class 1 Hcp (1200 METRES)

Pace was only average here with West On Broadway, Son Of A Fling and What An Option in the firing line up front. The increased tempo mid-race took the finish out of most runners, resulting in only a fair overall time and basic late sectionals.

West On Broadway ($2.25 to $1.85) was well supported after a big maiden win last time and while the margin wasn’t as great, he won again here in similar fashion. Pires had him in the right spot every step of the way and he proved far too strong out wider on the track over the concluding stages. Going into C2 grade now he will start to run into some better gallopers but he has won both times by a clear space so no reason he can’t be immediately competitive, especially under similar conditions.

Schillie Billie was much better suited here back to 1200m and she ran an honest 2nd after running home nearer to the inside. Son Of A Fling was unwanted in betting ($3.60 to $6) and was no match for the winner after enjoying a similar run on speed. Gee Gees Cool Gal made ground nicely from back in the field to grab 4th, just ahead of Goodbye Lonesome who found the line alright but may have been ridden a bit close to produce his usual big finish.

Race 4 – 1:19PM Raine & Horne Autumn Quality (1200 METRES)

Apriano and Issawi landed in front quite comfortably here, getting away with a soft early section before picking up the pace considerably as the field approached the turn. This resulted in a good overall time, with the big mid-race surge resulting in fast last 800m sectionals but the late splits were only fair.

Step The Pedal was surprisingly easy in betting despite having put a few wins together ($1.90 to $2.60) but again she proved too strong over the concluding stages. This required every ounce of strength from Pires, as Apriano gave a great sight in front so the mare had to really dig deep to pick him off late. She ran the fastest last 800m of the meeting to continue her excellent form and she took all honours again, giving them a start and a beating.

Apriano had support at longer odds ($17 to $11) and showed again how well he can go when given some peace in the lead. He was well rated by Baker who took the sprint out of his opposition mid-race, and it nearly resulted in him pinching the race. 3rd was Teriki, who ran another honest race, with all three placegetters being the ones who raced nearer the inside throughout. Those who made their run wide in the straight can be forgiven, with Issawi and My Paige Three being first-up and Geegees Soprano being better suited by a stronger early tempo.

Race 5 – 1:55PM TRC 100 Club Class 3 Hcp (1400 METRES)

Tough Missile took up the running here with Dalehill and Kelly’s Diva working underneath them on turning to make a line of 3. The tempo was strong throughout which resulted in the fastest relative overall time of the day.

Ronaldo’s Goal had some specking in betting ($16 to $46 back to $23) and relished the 1400m fresh to win in very impressive circumstances. He had a nice run just behind the speed for Raquel Clark but was able to stay with the strong tempo on turning and still hit the line very strongly, recording the 6th fastest last 200m of the day. It was a great training effort by Scott Brunton to produce him fit enough at this trip on this track, which proved to be testing all day, and his ability to run over longer distances looked to hold him in good stead. This was a win in genuinely good time which suggests this horse may go to a new level this prep.

Tough Missile followed up his game win last time with another good effort, sticking on well after setting a good pace in the lead. Secrets She Has ($8,50 to $6.50) worked through to grab 3rd from Col’s Hero with Boart also finishing close up. Many of these finished alongside each other suggesting it was an even field but the winner was a clear standout performance despite his long starting price and arguably the best win of the day.

Race 6 – 2:30PM Canteen 2YO Autumn Sprint (1200 METRES)

Uber Ed lead and went out with a big lead, but the sectional times suggest he wasn’t going as fast as it may have looked. Gee Gee Lanett was left to chase him on her own with the overall time being only fair and about 6 lengths slower than the Open 1200m.

Gee Gee Lanett ($1.80) deserved her favouritism and she recorded another win by a comfortable margin. She let the leader go but improved mid-race to having him in her sights on straightening and from there it was just a matter of time until she took over and drew away. She is a very professional filly who does everything right with a turn of foot not matched by many of her age, and showed again she is far too good for the off-season 2yos.

Uber Ed showed good speed to try and steal the race from the front but is still pretty new despite the blinkers and had no answer to the strong finish of the winner. Gasnier did a good job to run 3rd and only narrowly missed 2nd, stepping up from a 900m Maiden win to run a gutsy race on speed and finished off with the 12th fastest last 400m of the day. Gee Gees Can Tell ran an honest 4th, while Bosporus and Pennstock ran home best of the backmarkers but were never really in contention.

Race 7 – 3:05PM Tassie Instant Marquees 3YO Autumn Sprint (1200 METRES)

Angel Of The Abyss led here at a below average tempo, with Mariah’s Magic and Gee Gee Spitfire working underneath her to join her on turning. After a slow early section, the pressure went on from the 800m with many of the fastest late sectionals for the day recorded here. The overall time was very good, especially considering the slow tempo early, and matched that of the Open 1200m earlier in the day.

Chillout ($5.50 to $8.50 back to $4.80) had to carry the top weight of 59kg and had to give many of these multiple kilos but he beat them all anyway. He was perfectly ridden by McCoull, tracking the speed from his outside draw before peeling out to wear down Angel Of The Abyss with the 2nd fastest last 600m of the day. It has been a great training effort by Barry Campbell to keep him up for most of the season and he has developed a strength that wasn’t there earlier in his career. All honours with him in what was arguably the best win of his career.

Angel Of The Abyss was given every chance in front by Pires but just found the winner too strong over the concluding stages. She beat 3rd comfortably and would have lost no admirers off this effort. Count Montagu improved to run 3rd ahead of Mariah’s Magic, while Frog In A Pond again did a great job from back in the field, recording the fastest last 400m and 200m splits of the day. Happy Halloween also returned in good style – the fastest last 600m of the day was his – while $4.80 equal favourite Gee Gee Double Dee didn’t finish off after making her run nearer the inside.

Race 8 – 3:40PM Australian Racing Tours Open Hcp (2100 METRES)

Cheryl’s Horse was able to control the race at a soft tempo here under no pressure with Pires able to choose when he turned it into a race to the finish. This resulted in a fast last 800m for this distance and the overall time was good considering the slow early stages.

Cheryl’s Horse ($2.50 to $3) had excellent 1600m form leading into this and when Pires was able to control the race it was this speed that gave him the edge over his rivals. It was a daring ride by Pires to stay hard up against the inside in the straight, where no horse had won all day, but he knew what he was doing and was never in any real danger of losing. Assumedly he pushes on to the St Leger over 2400m now which will be unchartered territory, but with his tactical speed and an ability to make a sustained run he may well do the same to his rivals again.

King Manu ran an excellent race again to finish 2nd, finishing off with the 4th fastest last 200m of the day. He ran 2nd in the St Leger last year and is on target again off this. Demons Run was well supported ($3.60 to $3.10) but made his run widest and they may not have been the right tactics with the first two home staying nearer the inside. He won last year’s St Leger and is also right on target for that race. Geegees Goldengirl had every chance but may have found the weight a little too much, while Son Of Faith and Divine Denona were also competitive out wide on the track.

Race 9 – 4:20PM Coral Sea BM68 Hcp (1600 METRES)

Ruby’s Wu set a solid tempo down on the inside while Dangerpet, This Cat Rocks and Flash Missile were prominent wide on the track. The overall time was fair for this grade, only a couple of lengths faster than the quicker of the mile maidens earlier in the day but the track may have slightly deteriorated since then with light rain and wear and tear.

Matiano ($3.80 to $5 equal favourite) was still eligible for C1 grade but showed here it isn’t his talent which has stopped him winning races with a narrow but impressive win. On a day where it was difficult to make a lot of ground, he came right down the outside from back in the field to hit the front just before the line and held on to win by a nose. It was a well timed ride from Toker as the horse is well known for stopping when he hits the front but he gave him little chance to do so. He should remain very competitive around this grade and can go on if the penny ever really drops.

Striking Prospect ($17 to $9.50) made the jump from maiden grade and relished the mile, finishing well to run a narrow 2nd with the best part of his race clearly his last 200m. Reann’s Diamond followed up her surprise win last time with another solid effort in 3rd, just ahead of Speckie who hit the lead in the straight but was overrun late. Follow My Dust didn’t have a lot of room out wide and finished close-up while Geegees Lillybet was also solid enough back nearer the inside. This Cat Rocks was well supported to run equal favourite ($8 to $5) but after racing near the lead he was beaten a long way from home.