The Follow Files: WA visitor impresses on Victorian debut

Follow Files blackbook tips

Last Saturday, the Melbourne Racing Club hosted one of its biggest days at Caulfield, which featured three Group 1 races, including the $2 million Blue Diamond Stakes. This week’s edition of The Follow Files will focus solely on that 10-race card, with three runners catching our eye and suggesting that they are worth following this preparation. You can add these runners to your blackbook with your chosen bookmaker to get updates before they run next.


Track rating: Good 4
Rail position: +4m entire circuit

Race 2: Benchmark 84 Handicap (1100m) | Time: 1:03.56

  • Horse to follow: Hanchi (5th)

Sean & Jake Casey chose to send their exciting three-year-old gelding over to Victoria from Western Australia to kick off his autumn preparation, and they would have been very happy with his first run. The son of Squamosa settled midfield from the barrier and was slightly held up on the home turn before being left flatfooted at the 300m mark. However, once Michael Dee pushed the gelding through a gap, he let down as well as any of his rivals to finish fifth, only beaten one-length by Twin Perfection.

When to bet: It is not yet clear whether the Casey’s will keep Hanchi in Melbourne, but if they do, the Flemington program on Saturday, March 9, has two races at 1100m that appear ideal for their galloper. Either the 3YO Handicap or Benchmark 84 are suitable races for this talented sprinter.

Race 4: Group 3 Zedative Stakes (1200m) | Time: 1:10.03

  • Horse to follow: Scully (3rd)

After being sent around at +10000 with most online horse betting sites, Scully from the Andew Noblet stable wasn’t expected to play much of a role in the Group 3 Zedative Stakes. The three-year-old gelding settled last on the fence, and John Allen allowed his mount to balance up before picking off his rivals in the final 300m. The son of Shooting To Win ran up behind the leading pack and was able to push through a gap and thunder home to finish third, beaten 1.6 lengths behind Raikoke. Scully clocked the eighth fastest last 400m section (22.51s) and the fourth fastest last 200m (11.34s) section of the entire meeting.

When to bet: Andrew Noblet will have plenty of options next start after proving his galloper proved he can compete at Group 3 level against his own age group. Over 1200m or 1300m in three-year-old company on a bigger track should be the next target for Scully.

Race 9: Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) | Time: 1:02.63

  • Horse to follow: Benedetta (4th)

Benedetta produced one of the better runs in defeat in the Oakleigh Plate last Saturday, where the Jason Warren-trained mare returned from a four-month spell and took on Group 1 level for the first time. Daniel Stackhouse gave the daughter of Hellbent a very good ride but was disappointed for a run at the top of the home straight before finding a needle-eye opening inside runners at the 200m mark. Once she balanced up, Benedetta let down with her customary turn of foot and worked home nicely into fourth place in a bunched finish.

When to bet: Warren and his team have Benedetta nominated for the TJ Smith Stakes on April 6, so we expect that she will have one more run over 1100m or 1200m before going to Sydney to take on Group 1 company again.

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