Racing and Sports Canberra Racing Review - 21 July 2023
The new Acton Track again delivered for connections and punters alike, providing a fair racing surface. Keith Dryden trained four winners and another local, Gary Kirkup trained a double. Jockey honours went to James Innes Jnr who booted home a double for Dryden. Some promising gallopers will emerge from the meeting.
Race 1 (1080m) Bm60
EVANORA $5 took out a good betting race belting down the outside to win alongside WHITE LIAR $7.50 in a thrilling dead heat. SAIKO $3.60F was very close in third. She settled back and was giving away a big start at the top of the straight. She was caught wide here the previous and relishes the synthetic. WHITE LIAR drew the rail, and it was busy up front. She led on turning and was clear at the 200m. EVANORA nabbed her right on the line with SAIKO splitting them. He’s settled behind the pace and held the rail. Finished strongly and next time at 1200m looks ideal. They were well clear of the rest.
Race 2 (1750m) CL1
BRINGBACKTHEBEARS was a heavily bet 2.30F and got the chocolates by a half-length from DANCING IN THE SKY $12 and DASHING ELGEE $9.50. The Maher-Eustace-trained THE HIGH PRIESTESS $3.3 was beaten 3.38L in fourth. BRINGBACKTHEBEARS sat rearwards and was giving the leader 10L at the 800m. He started a sharp forward move passing the 600m and was widest on the turn spotting them a big start. He put in the big ones and took over at the 50m and held a margin. BRINGBACKTHEBEARS switched to the leading Canberra barn and did a big job first-up winning the Maiden off a longish break. He’ll be winning in better grade going on this effort. DANCING IN THE SHY won the dash to the first turn and had a comfortable time of it throughout. He put a couple of lengths on them on turning and toughed it out well. DASHING ELGEE had a soft run behind the speed and looked like a hope at the 100m. THE HIGH PRIESTESS sat forward and on face value had every chance.
Race 3 (1080m) CL1
Another close finish with the $3.20 favourite LIGHT PRESS getting up by 0.4L from PRETTY VEGAS $3.60 with ASTUNNER $8.50, 0.63L from the winner in third. There was plenty of merit in the win. She over-raced in the middle stages positioned midfield but cruised up before the turn and straightened five wide. She finished in a determined fashion and got to PRETTY VEGAS right on the line. The latter found the lead but was pressured by ASTUNER most of the way. There was merit in both efforts. LORD REMY $3.70 sat behind the leader but didn’t finish it off. LIGHT PRESS is thriving in the new barn and is not done with yet.
Race 4 (1080m) Mdn
PROMETIO MAS $3.10f placed here first-up as favourite first-up beaten by Light Press, and after a forgive run at Goulburn came back home and made amends. He prevailed over INSANE BOLT $6 by a 0.5L, with a gap them to LITTLE BE KNOWN $17 and FINITE $7.50 in third and fourth. INSANE BOLT sat outside the leader with the long-striding PROMETIO MAS right on his tail. The longshot leader was feeling the pinch at the 300m, and it was INSANE BOLT who gave the kick and it took the winner the rest of the trip to post a small margin on the line. The minor placegetters were well beaten 2L but didn’t shirk their task. Connections would have been delighted with the first-up effort of INSANE BOLT. He’d been gelded and on debut lined up in the Breeders Plate at Randwick at Group 3 level. He’s a coming winner ready to deliver on his potential. PROMETIO MAS will also go on from this.
Race 5 (1280m) Mdn
MISSILE LEADER $1.85F was clearly best backed but was given a fright by SHERMAN $5.50, beaten 0.3L, with TEXAS OPEN $26 close-up in third and well clear of the remainder. MISSILE LEADER couldn’t have been more impressive. He raced away from the rial in a bunch at the back of the field and turned the home the widest spotting the runaway leader SHERMAN at least 10L. TEXAS OPEN eased out of the speed battle but was a clear second on turning and straightened a clear second making ground. He hit the front in the shadows of the post before being swamped by MISSILE LEADER right on the line. A beautiful strider, the Smart Missile 3yo was on resumption and couldn’t have impressed more. He will win better races than this. SHERMAN was brave and almost got away with it. TEXAS OPEN kept coming beaten 1L and his was a decent effort as well.
Race 6 (1206m) Bm70 - Federal
The Federal looked open on paper and FRISSON $9 spoiled a four-race bonanza for favourite backers. There was only 1.7L separating the first four home with STARLIV $26. MR ALOYSIUS $18 and WHO BUT ROO $7.50 filling the minors. The winner was ridden by Matt Cahill, who posted his first win since returning from a fractured neck – an injury that kept him 14 months out of the saddle. It was busy up from early with FRISSON settling in front. There were a number with a chance as they straightened but the inner just kept giving and held a clear margin on the line. MR ALOYSIUS sat on the leader’s back and was a threat at the 200m and lacked a knockout punch. He was pipped late by STARLIV, who’d raced wide and was doing his best work on the line. FRISSON was beaten a whisker three-back here in this grade and he clearly enjoys the surface. This wasn’t the strongest Federal contested and as the finishing margins attest, there’s not much between these.
Race 7 (1280m) Bm50.
Top local trainer Keith Dryden delivered his fourth winner with the well-bet DEPLOY AND DESTROY $4.60 winning by a whisker from SUPER RIFF $7 and CELTIC VADER $21. HEAVENLY LIGHT $5 was next home finishing 1L from the victor. DEPLOY AND DESTROY has switched from a Victorian barn and was coming off a 13-week break. He continued to firm in betting, but supporters had anxious moments as they hit the line. DEPLOY AND DESTROY raced wide beyond midfield and had a wall in front of him as they turned for home. The splits came for Budler, and he hit the front at the 50m appearing home before SUPER RIFF swooped to just miss in the photo. He raced outside the winner and presented the widest on turning some 8L from the leader. He was backed in from $12. HEAVENLY LIGHT raced forward and led at the 300m. She was the one to catch and was only caught late. CELTIC VADER raced back and was wide on turning. His finishing effort also held plenty of merit. A terrific race and DEPLOY AND DESTROY can go on.