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Cracking Canberra Preview 21 May 2021 by Neil Evans

*1st Race @ 11.45am


ACTON TRACK (Synthetic) & Rail True:


*RACE 1 @ 11.45am ITP'S GONE WILD 2YO HCP (1206m) - Min Weight 55kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


First time back on the synthetic this year, and the babies get first use. Warwick Farm gelding 2. HUMBLE STAR (Gregory Hickman/Jordan Mallyon; 59kg) has enough natural speed to hold the inside, and can progress here off a smart debut win at Muswellbrook.


*MAIN DANGERS: Provincial gelding 1. Impact Star has closed off okay in two runs this brief prep, and draws to find a nice trail just off the speed. Be surprised if one of those two doesn't win, but keeping safe local gelding 5. Encyclopedia who had little or no luck in his third start at Albury, and also draws to get a soft run.


Likely Tempo: Solid

My Betting Attack: HUMBLE STAR to WIN & Exacta: 2/1,5


*RACE 2 @ 12.20pm BY OTHERS MAIDEN PLATE (1080m) - Set Weights; Apprentices Can Claim:


Decent speed here in a thin maiden overt the short course. Home track three-year-old filly 6. EVANORA (Luke Pepper/Ms Kayla Nisbet; 57kg) has only missed a place once in six starts, and is the one to beat. Led for a long way in a deeper maiden at the Sapphire Coast, and the smaller field is a big plus from the outside gate.


*MAIN DANGERS: Local four-year-old 4. Old Man Emu has been in the placings in his last three, but still searching for that first win ahead of his 21st start. Gets a cheap run on the fence behind the speed. Watch the betting on two-year-old and former Tasmanian 8. Jetz who resumes for only his second start for a new Canberra stable.


Likely Tempo: Good

My Betting Attack: EVANORA to WIN


*RACE 3 @ 1.00pm ACT INTERIORS CLASSIC BENCHMARK 65 HCP (1280m) - Min Weight 55kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


Plenty of chances in this one headed by Wagga five-year-old 1. SIZZLEONTHEBRIDGE (Rodger Waters/Ms Hannah Williams a3kg; 58.5kg) who is hard fit and hit the line impressively in a deeper race at home two weeks ago. Draws okay, and gets back in at the weights after a 3kg claim, and nly has to handle his first run on the synthetic.


*MAIN DANGERS: Capable six-year-old local mare 6. Polyxena is a two-time winner on synthetic, and comes back a shade in distance off a nine-week break. Gets in light after a 2kg claim, although the last 100m is a slight query. Local six-year-old 2. Mad As Zariz also attacked the line third-up in that same Wagga race. Home track seven-year-old mare 5. Away She Goes will be finishing late third-up. Keep safe four-year-old 3. I'm The Business who had a tough and wide run first-up off a long break for the new leading local stable; while 7. Sly Song has been finding the line well all prep, but unplaced from three starts on synthetic.


Likely Tempo: Solid

My Bteting Attack: SIZZLEONTHEBRIDGE to WIN and First Four 1,6/1,2,3,5,6,7/1,2,3,5,6,7/1,2,3,5,6,7


*RACE 4 @ 1.40pm SAMMY GEORGE SHANG MAIDEN HCP (1280m) - Min Weight 55.5kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


Talented three-year-old filly 8. SHE'LL BE APPLES (Gary Portelli/Tyler Schiller a0kg; 56kg) was a good thing beaten first-up at Wagga, and gets a cosy run here right behind the speed.


*MAIN DANGERS: Home track three-year-old 4. Ronny Rock Art drops back sharply in distance, but blinkers go on and he has been placed twice from three on the synthetic. Big watch on resuming three-year-old and ex-Victorian 7. Khaleej who hasn't publicly trialled, but hit the line well fresh last prep. Watch the betting too on resuming local four-year-old 9. Gambler's Quest who was competitive enough last prep, but unproven on synthetic.


Likely Tempo: Reasonable to Solid

My Betting Attack: SHE'LL BE APPLES to WIN


*RACE 5 @ 2.15pm TAB BENCHMARK 70 FEDERAL HCP (1080m) - Min Weight 55kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


Now the feature Federal sprint, and most are having their first run on this surface. High class local four-year-old mare 1. CALESCENT (Matthew Dale/Ms Hannah Williams a3kg; 61kg) is the one to beat fourth-up. Was too sharp for The Unknown Factor here three runs back, and last start only collared in the last stride in a deeper race at Canterbury. Trainer scratched her from the metropolitan meeting on Wednesday to be saved for this.


*MAIN DANGERS: Progressive four-year-old 6. Delightful Dream is also trained on the track, and shooting for three straight wins. Loves to park off the speed and surge home late, but sneaking up in the weights against a smart field. Rival home five-year-old 2. The Unknown Factor won here two starts back before a tough effort in a good quality BM 83 sprint at Albury. All five career wins from only 21 have come over the 1000m dash. Tough local seven-year-old 7. Our Finvarra has two wins from six starts on synthetic, and will relish getting back on firmer footing after failing to finish off at huge odds in heavy going at Warwick Farm. Hard to assess lightly raced mare 8. Wilful Soul first time on synthetic, with all three career wins coming in heavy ground, but she normally fires when on the fresher side.


Likely Tempo: Good to Strong

My Betting Attack: CALESCENT to WIN & Box Exacta 1,2,6


*RACE 6 @ 2.55pm RETENTION IS DUE BENCHMARK 60 HCP (1900m) - Min Weight 55kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


Tricky affair over the much longer journey. Tough local six-year-old 1. FOX BEAT (Luke Pepper/Ms Hannah Williams a3kg; 60kg) was strong right through the line fourth-up at the Sapphire Coast, and gets to this distance at the right time. Drawn to get a nice trail just off the speed, and big weight off-set by a 3kg claim.


*MAIN DANGERS: Improving five-year-old mare 2. Lamour has more than enough ability to win this after just missing finishing well in a stronger race at Wagga, but up 4kg to 61kg from a tricky gate may be the leveller. Honest local four-year-old 8. Casino Time is also ready for this longer trip after working home well in his last couple, and the leading country rider sticks solid from the good draw.


Likely Tempo: Fair

My Betting Attack: FOX BEAT to WIN


*RACE 7 @ 3.35pm BASX EXPRESS CLASS 1 PLATE (1750m) - Set Weights; 3YO's & Up; Apprentices Can Claim:


Local five-year-old 3. PRIDE OF KALARU (Barbara Joseph, Paul & Matt Jones/Jordan Mallyon; 59kg) has only one win from 25 starts but placed a further six times, often in better races than this. Likely to drift back from the draw but has the superior closing 400m.


*MAIN DANGERS: Expect improving four-year-old 5. White Emperor to be getting home hard from a soft draw. Queanbeyan four-year-old 2. Deterge has a poor strike rate, but never been far away all prep. Draws okay, but yet another change of rider is never a good sign; while 1. Brennaman is ready to fire after four runs back, but draws wide under a big weight.


Likely Tempo: Fair

My Betting Attack: PRIDE OF KALARU to WIN


*RACE 8 @ 4.10pm BACKCHARGE CLASS 1 HCP (1206m) - Min Weight 55kg; Apprentices Can Claim:


Lightly raced four-year-old mare 3. JAC THE GREAT (Matthew Dale/Damon Budler a2kg; 56.5kg) can return here with a bang despite drawing the outside barrier. Normally comes to hand quickly in the prep, and was always in the money last campaign against much smarter opposition.


*MAIN DANGERS: Lightly raced five-year-old 2. Catanzaro swept home for an impressive maiden win second-up at Wagga, and can progress here for an under-rated Cowra stable. Watch the betting on progressive and resuming local filly 6. Boho Chick who also comes to hand early in the prep; while three-year-old 5. Grazie draws to get a soft run fourth-up.


Likely Tempo: Solid

My Betting Attack: JAC THE GREAT to WIN and Trifecta: 2,3,6/2,3,5,6/2,3,5,6














R5: Box Exacta 1,2,6




Luke Pepper**

Matthew Dale**

Gary Portelli*




Ms Hannah Williams**

Jordan Mallyon*