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Racing & Sports Canberra Review - 11 January 2023

The Rail was out 3m the entire and they raced on a Soft 5 surface. Jeff Penza rode a double on a day that promised more. Sydney trained John Sargent scored a double. Emma’s Gift defied a big betting drift and some issues in the run, to take out the Federal for Keith Dryden, with Jack Martin up. Generally, on-speed advantaged. 

Race 1 (1600m) Bm60

The two firmers ran the quinella with IVERSON $3.50 proving much too good for the hot favourite YOU ARE KING $1.90. The latter was caught in a speed battle with Mookareena $8 and they gapped the rest and turned for home well clear. Iverson sat back but got going after the 800m and looked threatening as they headed for home. He took over at the 200m and has 3.5L to spare at the post. You Are King battled on bravely but was gassed out and it was IZFALLINGDOWN $6 who ran into third well clear of the others. The winner was back in grade and the pressure up front played into his hands. You Are King is worth another chance.

Race 2 (1000m) Cl2

ALICIA ROMA jumped a $1.45 favourite and led and didn’t give them a chance flying along in front. BEAU ROCK $13 trailed and had every chance beaten 1.76 and it was a good effort off a 25 week break. LETHAL LADY $4.60 was beaten almost 4L and (with the pace on) didn’t finish it off as many would have expected. The winner is promising and was well-placed. She’ll win more around tracks that suit.

Race 3 (1400m) Cl1

Three gallopers were backed to the exclusion of all others and ran the trifecta. PATRIKA MIST $2.40-$3.50 was clearly the best on the day defeating HOW DO YOU SLEEP $2.60F by 2.7L with KWIK AZ HELL $3.90 next 4L from the winner. Kwik Az Hell found the lead before Eight Willows $91 crossed and belted along. How Do You Sleep worked up to sit outside Kwik Az Hell and Patrika Mist railed behind. The latter came through and hit the lead at the 200m racing boldly, and was clear on the line. The runner-up tried hard but had to do some mid-stages and that may have told.  Kwik Az Hell led them for home but was under pressure at the 200m. The first three home are all capable and the winner can go on from this.

Race 4 (1000m) Bm70 - Federal

EMMA'S GIFT blew like a gale out to $8.50 but put a lie to that recording a strong win for the Dryden barn. The firmers were CRUCIAL WITNESS $5.50 and the favourite FEEL THE NIGHT $2 but they had to settle for third and fourth with PLATARA $6 getting second money beaten 0.67, after racing three-wide throughout. There was only about 4L from first to last down the back and it was tighter on the turn for home. OFF TO WAR $6 held the lead on the rail and gave a great night before being nabbed at the 100m first by Platara — who looked the winner before Emma’s Gift flashed late to get the prize. Hers was a commendable effort. She has a wall in front on turning and made contact with Feel The Night trying to force a run. The latter was doing his best work late beaten 1.6L in fourth. He was just ahead of OFF TO WAR who was brave. As the bunched finish suggests there’s not much between these, but all honours with the winner. 

Race 5 (1200m) Mdn SW

Two locally trained galloper ran the quinella with FIRE AND GEMSTONE $11 holding out VELLA MAGIC $2F by a half-length with gap then to BULLEYES $3.60 beaten 2.7L racing three-wide throughout). The other supported runner BREAKAWAY WEEK $6 was beaten more than 4L. There was a bunch at the 100m vying to lead and trapped wide Owen on Fire And Gemstone elected to go on and lead. Vella Magic sat off him one off the rail. Bulleyes was three wide close-up behind. The winner was still clear at the 200m with Vella Magic trying hard, but she was well held on the line. Not a lot of depth in this. Going to the front proved a winning move. Vella Magic was entitled to show more finish dash and the soft surface may have been against.

Race 6 (1200m) Mdn SW

They only wanted one horse — XTRAREVZ $1.95 — and he gave supports a scare winning by a head. MERISI $6.50 was a notable drifter and didn’t run it out. They just lobbed along with the first three home content to sit mid-field or worse. Merisi hit the front on turning with Xtrarevz threading through on his inside. Second-placed KARAOKE KING $12 was emerging down the middle. In a ding-dong go the favourite got the verdict fighting like a tiger WHETU $12 railed to take third 1.6L from the winner. There was a lot to like about the effort of the first two home.

Race 7 (1300m) Bm 65

The Sydney-trained HEALTHY BEAUTY $2.50 has been away from racing for 306 days but opened short and got even shorter in betting progressed. She was able to deliver the hat-trick in a tight go from I AM MAMWAAZEL $6.50 who was also looking to make it three on end. KEEP IT DOWN $31 was beaten 1.7L in third just ahead of FLYING TYROL $6.50 and ROCSTAR BOY $5. I Am Mamwaazel held the lead and they ran along okay. The winner sat rearward but was positioned in clear air on turning with work to do. With the high head carriage, I Am Mamwaazel was well clear at the 200m but was putting in the short ones in the shadows of the post and was gobbled up. The money was spot-on and Health Beauty couldn’t have been more impressive and will win better races. The next four home all showed enough to encourage connections.   

Race 8 (1400m) Mdn

The Maher-Eustace barn couldn’t get favourite-backers home in the last with RISE TO IT $3.60-$2.90 beaten 2.4L in fourth without a great deal of luck. The Bjorn Baker-trained debutant XCITED $10 was a drifter but just held out MAJEEDIS $6-$10 and with SERENE NIC $3.80 in third beaten 0.7L. Majeedis led and Xcited trailed and Serene Nick was three wide just behind. These three were the ones to fight it out with Majeedis looking the all-over winner before being grabbed on the line. Rise To It and Bonus Tempus both finished it off okay but never looked winning propositions. On-pace clearly advantaged but no knock on the debutant to knock over the more seasoned gallopers.