FEATURE racing from Moonee Valley takes a break this week, but the popular race track still has a quality eight-race card this Friday night.
The Moir Stakes meeting last Friday was a big success with punters and it set a precedent for future meetings scheduled this season. That includes the Manikato Stakes and Cox Plate meetings during the Melbourne spring carnival.
Race 1 – Maiden Plate (1200m)
Bequeathed finished off well on debut at Mornington when running third. The Lindsay Park-trained three-year-old settled back during the run at odds of $12 before finishing under a length from the winner. That was a nice debut effort and it should get every chance from the inside barrier.
Choisborder has been backed and beaten in two starts to date, but both performances have been good. The Darren Weir-trained three-year-old colt ran second on debut at Seymour before running second at Ararat in a close finish last start. It should get every chance around The Valley and be in the thick on the action approaching the home turn.
Race 1 tip: Choisborder to win ($5.50) at Unibet.com.au
Race 2 – BM78 Handicap (2500m)
Chequered Flag has won only four of its 27 starts, but it has looked good since arriving in Australia from New Zealand. The Weir-trained six-year-old won a hurdle by 10 lengths in July before winning again in a rating 84 at Sandown by almost five lengths. It ran within a nose to Yogi at Flemington in August and that form looks good for this. The distance suits and the 1.5kg claim is ideal.
King Way is a consistent type which doesn’t win often, but is rarely far away. The Shea Eden-trained seven-year-old was a recent winner at Geelong by 2.25 lengths before running second at stakes level at Mornington. Rising in weight isn’t ideal, but it should make its presence known in this field.
Race 2 tip: Chequered Flag to win ($3.60) at Neds.com.au
Race 3 – BM64 Handicap (1600m)
Minoan Spirit is a talented four-year-old which finished a close second behind Sully last start. That should be good form going forward and it’s overdue to return to the winners’ circle after going close this season. The money has come for the Weir-trained runner at $3.70 so follow any further betting moves.
Think Alike is an underrated type which made good ground at Flemington last start. The five-year-old settled back in the field of 12 and made late ground to run sixth behind Spanner Head. It shouldn’t find this any harder, but it does rise up in weight to 61.5kg which makes it tough.
Race 3 tip: Minoan Spirit to win ($3.70) at Neds.com.au
Race 4 – BM64 Handicap (1000m)
Enver Jusufovic lines up Dungeness which scored an impressive six-length win two starts back. The daughter of Hinchinbrook followed that win up with a solid placing at Cranbourne last start and it ran a quick time over the 1000m. Its recent trial performance was impressive and its current odds of $4.60 look about right.
Most of the money has come for Seven Year Reward which won in fine style on debut. The Greg Eurell-trained four-year-old won by seven lengths in a time of 57.33 which is low-flying for the 1000m distance. The son of Reward for Effort has been patiently-handled to date and it only needs to cope with the wide barrier draw.
Race 5 – 55 Second Challenge Heat 2 (955m)
There was a confidence in the camp of Miss Vista when we spoke to trainer George Osborne. The flashy mare has performed best when scorching to the front and holding on for dear life. Those tactics will be used this Friday night and it can return a winner for punters. The current odds of $4.20 is about the best price you’ll get for Miss Vista.
Conchita is fresh up for Paul Perry having won run fifth at Randwick in June behind Memes. The Uncle Mo mare has always possessed better than average ability and the three-time winner at this distance has speed to burn. It won its only start at Moonee Valley and it has the ability to handle all tracks. Chance at $5.
Race 5 tip: Miss Vista to win ($4.20) at CrownBet.com.au
Race 6 – BM78 Handicap (1600m)
Hot Ruby could provide some value at $19 after winning at Tatura last start. The Luke Oliver-trained stayer has solid form over the mile and its win in the Tatura Cup had plenty of merit. This is much harder, but it’s a value runner at the odds and it could provide some cheek.
Ebediyin has won three from nine starts to date, which included a last start win on this track. The Weir-trained import raced in the Irish Derby and the Irish Champion Stakes in Ireland, but it did finish over 45 lengths from the winner in both starts. It might not be as good as they initially thought, but this isn’t a tough race.
Race 6 tip: Ebediyin to win ($4) at Neds.com.au
Race 7 – BM64 Handicap (1200m)
Princeton Spirit is looking to remain unbeaten after winning its first two starts. The Michael Kent-trained has scored two narrow wins at Geelong and Pakenham and it faces a tough test here. The New Zealand-bred four-year-old has enjoyed the cut out of the ground and the 3kg claim will take it close again at odds of $3.40.
Popovich promised plenty when winning its first two career starts, but there has been little to get excited about since. The Robert Smerdon-trained gelding defeated the talented Data Point at Sandown, but ran into Santa Ana Lane next up in the Zeditave Stakes. Its two runs since have been poor, but the $6 suggests it could feature here.
Race 7 tip: Popovich to place ($2.25) at Bet365.com
Race 8 – BM70 Handicap (1000m)
Love Days is an impressive type which has been close at its last two starts. The Clinton McDonald-trained five-year-old finished second in the Vobis Gold Carat in January of last year and it could show some pace in its first start since January this year. The betting indicates that it has a good chance of going close.
Open House has won two of its three starts and it showed good tactical ability when winning at Cranbourne last start. That speed will be needed from barrier 13 here, but it scored by three lengths on debut in similar fashion so respect its winning chances again.
Race 8 tip: Open House to win ($4.20) at Neds.com.au