Follow Files: Queensland Derby winner ready to win at Caulfield

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Last weekend was stacked with Group racing, kicking off with Moir Stakes Night at Moonee Valley on Friday, continuing at Randwick with Epsom Handicap Day, and wrapping up with the Sandown Stakes meeting in Melbourne on Sunday. In this week’s edition of the Follow Files, we have picked out three runners that appear ready to win at their next start.

Moonee Valley

Track rating: Good 4
Rail position: True entire circuit

Race 2: 3YO Colts & Geldings Plate (1200m) | Time: 1:10.12

  • Horse to follow: Brave Mead (2nd)

After performing admirably behind Steparty in the Listed McKenzie Stakes at Moonee Valley first-up, Brave Mead from the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace stable went into his next run as a well-backed favourite last Friday night. However, when Mark Zahra couldn’t cross from a wide barrier and find the lead, the race began to unravel for the three-year-old colt. This son of Brave Smash was made to travel four wide from the 600m mark, while the winner, Maharba, received the perfect run on the inside.

When to bet: Brave Mead is already nominated for the Group 2 Callander-Presnell over 1600m on October 28; however, you would expect the Maher & Eustace stable to give him another run in between at 1400m. If he can find a three-year-old contest over 1400m on a big track, he will be a very nice bet.

Race 7: Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) | Time: 0:56.47

  • Horse to follow: The Inferno (4th)

Prior to the Group 1 Moir Stakes, trainer Cliff Brown said he felt like he had The Inferno back near his best this campaign, and after a good fourth behind Imperatriz in the feature at The Valley, it appears he may be right. This seven-year-old gelding ran the second-fastest last 600m, 400m and 200m sectionals, with only Imperatriz running faster times. Considering he was first-up on Friday and most of his rivals had the benefit of a run under their belt, this son of Holy Roman Emperor will be very hard to beat over 1200m next start.

When to bet: Brown will be excited to get The Inferno up to 1200m, and if he chooses to go to a bigger track, he should get a very good chance to return to the winner’s circle.


Track rating: Good 4
Rail position: True entire circuit

Race 8: Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) | Time: 1:09.46

  • Horse to follow: Kovalica (2nd)

Queensland Derby winner Kovalica proved that 1300m was way too short for him first-up in the Theo Marks Stakes, but once he stepped up to 1600m in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap, the son of Ocean Park showed just how good he is. This four-year-old gelding was strung up in traffic on the home turn, but once Joao Moreira got his mount into clear air, Kovalica exploded with a blistering turn of foot to flash home down the outside. Even though he finished second to his stablemate Rediener in a photo finish, this guy showed he is ready to go next start over further.

When to bet: The Chris Waller-trained galloper holds a nomination in each of the Cox Plate, Caulfield Cup and Melbourne Cup, so it appears that he is destined to make his way down to Victoria for his next start. The Group 1 Might And Power Stakes over 2000m at Caulfield on October 14 looks like the ideal race for Kovalica to record his first win as a four-year-old.

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