THE hustle and bustle of the Melbourne Cup carnival continues this Thursday with the Victoria Oaks.
Punters can check out our free racing tips for the entire card at Flemington, but we’re focusing solely on the $1 million feature here where 12 of the best staying fillies line up.
Most of the betting attention has come with Aloisia, but it has drifted out a touch since punters got a look at the track on Melbourne Cup day and there’s some concerned punters with the track bias.
Inside draws could be key on Thursday and that could bring some of the lesser-fancied runners right into the contention and punters shouldn’t forget what happened last year when Lasqueti Spirit caused the boil over.
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2017 Victoria Oaks odds
Not much has changed in the market throughout the week, but the odds for Aloisia have drifted.
The three-year-old filly opened at $1.70, was backed into $1.50 earlier this week but has since drifted back out to a more respectable $1.70.
No money has come for any other runner at odds.
2017 Victoria Oaks betting guide
1. Aloisia – $1.70 at Neds.com.au
The Oaks favourite could be one of the best fillies Australia has seen in some time.
A daughter of Azamour, the three-year-old has won her last two starts which included a win in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas. That came over subsequent Flemington winner Shoals and its form didn’t falter last start in the Moonee Valley Vase.
Trainer Aaron Purcell had the filly in prime order for the 2040m race where it raced away from a handy field to score by 3.5 lengths. That win saw its odds for the Victoria Oaks shorten significantly and based on what Purcell has said about the filly, it’s tough to see her getting beaten.
The $1.50 was too short earlier this week, but we can on board with the $1.70.
John Sargent knows what it takes to win an Oaks and Luvaluva looks a nice each way chance.
The daughter of Mastercraftsman is bred to see out the Oaks distance and Sargent, who was successful with Kirramossa in the Oaks, has a strong opinion of the filly.
She only battled in the Group 1 Flight Stakes behind Alizee earlier this season, but a placing at Randwick behind Kaonic and a win last start in the Wakeful Stakes holds her in good stead for this.
It settled well back throughout the run last start at Flemington, which is a concern given that it was tough to make ground from the back on Cup day, but Blake Shinn might settle the filly closer to the pace this time around.
This filly was on the third line of betting before its disappointing run in the Wakeful Stakes last start.
Tony McEvoy lines up the daughter of High Chaparral, which is bred for the Oaks, but its first trip over the staying distances was a failure. She was unable to show anything in the straight last start and that prompted bookmakers to lengthen the odds.
$21 is about right for a filly which punters could have a hard time trusting.
Pinot is our clear second pick after scoring consecutive wins coming into this race.
The Waterhouse/Bott-trained filly has only progressed with more distance and time under her belt and the Oaks is a natural step up.
With breeding lines crossed with Zabeel, Pinot looks a natural stayer and it’s biggest asset is her ability to lead. That’s going to suit perfectly on Thursday as the front runners have been winning at Flemington and Aloisia might need to work extra to pick up Pinot.
It was $7 earlier this week, but each way punters have taken a liking to the smaller-framed filly.
5. Rimraam – $15 at Topbetta.com.au
Having never finished out of the money in seven starts, Rimraam looms as an each way chance again.
The Lindsay Park-trained daughter of Commands was a maiden winner three starts back at Geelong and her form since has been solid.
A second placing in the Ethereal Stakes behind Pinot was good and that form continued over to the Wakeful Stakes where it battled on well for third behind Luvaluva.
Does it possess the ability to turn that consistent form into winning form? That’s the question, but she’s a solid place chance at $3.
Hiyaam is another consistent runner which has run in three consecutive stakes races.
The daughter of High Chaparral finished second in the Edward Manifold, third in the Ethereal and fourth in the Wakeful Stakes. Its last run was a good form guide for the Oaks where she was finishing off well down the outside and punters should be confident of another good run.
Another filly with Zabeel bloodlines, Hiyaam could be a true stayer in the making and there’s some confidence in the Mick Price stables.
This looks like a stab in the dark for connections of Lucky Louie.
The filly by Pluck has placed in three of its nine starts and although she was finishing off well in the Ethereal Stakes, she followed that up with a poor ninth in the Wakeful.
Its odds have drifted from $26 to $101 and that just about tells the picture.
Each way money has come for Reliable Dame, which would have been at triple-figure odds had it not run at Geelong last start.
The Anthony Freedman-trained filly finished fourth in the Geelong Classic behind Weather with You and that performance behind the boys was a good indication of its talent.
Her form prior to that wasn’t great, which included a maiden win at Ballarat, but she didn’t come close to Anchor Bid over 1600m in September.
Respect the money coming for the three-year-old, but it would need to lift a touch to win.
The odds for Sweet Mischief are consistently drifting and that should continue.
Having placed in two of its four starts, the Zoffany filly looks tested at this level as it showed last start. She finished seventh in the Neil Robinson Stakes at Caulfield and she was almost 10 lengths from Cliff’s Edge.
There was a glimpse of form two starts back when it ran on behind Pinot, but it would need to lift a few gears to figure in the finish.
Unsure what connections are aiming for here.
The Animal Kingdom filly finished 14.25 lengths behind Aloisia last start at Moonee Valley and it wasn’t even able to win a maiden at Seymour prior to that.
The odds reflect its chances.
Sebring filly which could win a nice midweek race somewhere, but this is a test too far, too soon.
Drawing barrier two is the only positive.
The ambulance might beat Miss Admiration home.
2017 Victoria Oaks tips
It’s almost impossible to tip against Aloisia so we won’t.
The impressive filly has the best form coming into the race and we’re happy to take the $1.70 at Neds.
Each way hopes belong to Pinot ($5 at Sportsbet) and Rimraam. Both horses have shown their ability to cope with the staying distances and they could provide some value to quinella, trifecta and first four players.
For a big upset, we think Reliable Dame could be running on late, but it would need to lift a touch.