Racing Preview Canberra - Friday February 22, 2019

The clock is ticking down to Canberra’s premier race day, The Black Opal, on Sunday March 10.

On Friday we see a number of preview races for horses gearing up for the Black Opal, the Canberra, Cup, the Canberra Guineas and the National Sprint.  

The Black Opal preview is the last event on the eight-race card, with only six of the 15 acceptances having faced the starter. Debutants from the Waterhouse-Bott, Newnham and Baker yards add plenty of Sydney interest to the event.

With mild weather forecast in the Capital the track should present in perfect order and the rail position is true the entire course.

Race 1

Most of these get back and it may be left to Typhoon Max to do the leading. TOBERMORY (1) is a promising stayer who bolted in at Wagga and then went to Randwick beaten 3.4L in a Highway. Gets a hefty weight even with the claim but has the figures to go close. LARMOUR (5) made sharp improvement winning the Maiden at Orange at the mile. Will race handy and expect her to handle the extra journey and be right in the finish for the ACT premiership yard. BENDETHERA (2) hasn’t won for a while but will run the trip right out using the low gate.

TYPHOON MAX (3) led winning the Maiden at Queanbeyan at the mile and will be in it for a long way.

Race 2

Enjoy The Stars, Orithyia and Dictation should all push forward. ENJOY THE STARS (1) brought strong form and was expected to win FU. Had to work hard to get to the front and fought bravely before fading late. Has had three weeks to get over that and the promising mare is the one to beat. ZEDFORCE (5) was beaten a lip FU in the same race at her first run for the Bateman yard. Returned a career best and fitter is feared. HEAVEN ON EARTH (3) also ran a peak beating the two above and impressed. Needs a good ride but no knock. ZUZZUDIO (9) had been threatening and then didn’t have much luck out-graded at Warwick Farm. This suits a lot better and Jess Taylor sticks.  

Race 3

Debutants engaged from sharp yards and the market bears close watching. Matt Dale presents FLYING YANKEE (4) off-the-shelf owning a trial win at this venue with her race-day rider up. Looks to have plenty of ability and is sure to be tuned up. Just needs a good ride from the tricky gate. MILAMOO (1) is best of the raced-brigade and experience counts. Missed a lip here behind Paris Lights before just being nudged out at Queanbeyan. Gets the claim and her chance. TIMANDJACK (2) resumes for Team Joseph and two back was just beaten on debut on the Acton synthetic. Has been away for a while but expect him to have done plenty of work and come back better. GIOCOSO (5) debuts for a low gate and has trialled with today’s jock Cahill up. Gets the blinkers applied and a decent run is on the cards. ATOMIC BOMB (6) hasn’t shown a lot at the trials but represents a top city yard and the market moves must be monitored closely. Elevate if the money comes.

Race 4

BANJA LUKA (7) has missed less than a length the last four runs and has become one of the unluckiest Maidens around. Rates highly again again and the apprentice should find cosy spot pushing forward. There will be plenty of cheers if he salutes as his figures suggest he can. JAILBIRD JAYJAY (8) brings a string of placings and missed a nose here two back. Peaks today and sitting back just needs to find a way through. CADENCE (4) is fast and should clear the wide gate okay. Was much better 2U at Goulburn and the Cunningham yard is building a strong record this venue. Needs to be kept very safe. MAJOR TIME (3) led and was good here at his second race run. Faded the same venue after but gets Reith today and the blinkers off and an improved effort won’t surprise.

Race 5

Plenty of speed with Action Shale and Fusca perhaps the most prominent from the jump. SAUSEDGE (5) was well backed seeking a hat-trick FU in a Highway and found a couple better. She has plenty up the sleeve and should be winning for Matt Dale using the handy gate. ACTON SHALE (3) was expected to win at Albury and may have been a touch unlucky. Made a ratings spike and should go close on-speed from the sweet draw. FEARLESS GIRL (1) is much better then the form line reads. Has been racing well in stronger grade including in Melbourne and it’s hard to risk the Waterhouse-Bott partnership. The six day back-up suggests she’s pleasing. FARTHING WOOD (10) comes off a forgive run and impressed winning the Maiden here prior. It’s a step up but expect she has more to offer.

Race 6

APPOINT PERCY (3) ran favourite LS in the Bega Cup and took it out running his best figure. Had been building and is a course and distance specialist and weight carrier capable of winning again for the local yard in easier grade. CHALK (4) also brings strong form and forgive the latest at Canterbury when he didn’t handle the heavy. Won there prior and will go close using the low gate. GRAND FINALIST (6) hasn’t won for a long while but was back to his best just missing at Kembla from the front. Gets the big weight drop in stronger but expect that form to stack up. The market will tell with him. Resuming stablemate DIAMOND STAR HALO (10) and SIR BARB (1) also deserve consideration.

Race 7

UP TRUMPS (5) was wide missing a lip at Wagga and then was beaten a whisker in a 70 at Warwick Farm with Bowman on. They both rate well and he promises more and will go close. WHO'S KNOCKING (6) made a big impression winning here FU in open grade. Gets a tricker gate but can build on that peak. LEVEE BANK (1) was looking for the hat-trick in the Rosehill 75 and spoiled things with a slow off. Flies this course and trip and can bounce with the claim and low gate. EQUAL BALANCE (7) is much better than the form line reads. Hasn’t had much luck since recording the comfortable Open grade win three back at Goulburn. Up to winning this if he found his best. TE ATA (12) is up a lot in grade but won well LS and may have turned the corner.


Race 8

A tricky 2yo to end the card and relying largely on trial form and stable reputation. The market will prove very interesting. TEARS ARE FALLING (14) debuts for the Newnham yard and owns two sharp Warwick Farm trials with Shinn aboard. Gets Mitchell Bell for this and is drawn handy enough and looks ready to go. BRIGHT RUBICK (10) has been well-trialled in Sydney and won the latest at Rosehill. The Bjorn Baker filly draws low and expect her to take beating. BELLEVUE HILL (1) has had two trials for Waterhouse-Bott and got closer the latest. Gets the blinkers applied and the market will tell a lot. GALAXY (5) won an Open 2 comfortably here 2U and gets the chance to build on that. ZELAGO (9) is a local who was heavily-backed to win at Wagga on debut and things didn’t work out. Is likely to seek the lead again and gets the blinkers applied. On the quick return and don’t take lightly.


BEST BEST: Race 2, Enjoy The Stars (1)

BEST BET: Race 5, Sausedge (5)