Eight races are set for judgement on Thursday as the night racing season continues at Pakenham Park where the track has come up a Soft 5. The rail is out 8m the entire circuit, and history shows that it is no disadvantage to be up on speed when the rail is out that far. It may pay dividends to watch the first couple of maiden races, to judge how the track is playing before loading up on backmarkers. The first at Pakenham is set to jump at 6pm AEDT on Thursday night.
Best Bet: Race 4 #1 Aristo Missile @ $2.15
Tom Dabernig and Ben Hayes will be hoping their gelding Aristo Missile can build on his last start fourth behind a couple of handy types at Sandown on December 23. Off a tough run, Aristo Missile was only beaten by just over a length after settling three wide with no cover and should appreciate dropping down back from a city grade maiden. Despite not running into the minor money this campaign he has been far from disgraced at Moonee Valley and Sandown and having drawn barrier one he should get all the favours in the run and prove hard to hold out when it matters most and salute as our best bet on the Pakenham card. He should be paying around the $2.20 mark with leading racing betting sites.
The Phillip Stokes trained Pacific Rim has been knocking on the door throughout this campaign to break through for his maiden win. He has three minor placings from five runs in, and may never get a better chance to break his maiden tag then at Pakenham on Thursday night. He’s a galloper who prefers to run in the first half a dozen runners and from barrier five, Ben Allen should have no issue settling him one pair off the leaders. In those three minor placings this campaign she has looked like the winner at one stage or another, but has peaked on his run ever so slightly. With the step back to the mile, he looks hard to beat early on in the Pakenham card.
Three starts back the Paul Kramer trained Rushford was an impressive winner at Mornington under similar conditions that he meets here at Pakenham. He’s a galloper who tends to settle towards the back of the field and storms home and with a slick turn of foot. In the final race on the Pakenham card he should be able to run a big race at odds and hopefully he can add some value to the Pakenham quaddie in the final leg.