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    Cracking first day, highlight was Nina Carberry's magnificent ride on On the Fringe to win the fox hunters although Arctic Fire getting up after his crashing fall at the last, in the race won by Jezki, was up there.

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      Any good tips floating about
      Stand up and fight

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        What a day of racing we have in Randwick this weekend with Day Two of The Championships. Following last Saturday's washout and rescheduling to Easter Monday we have an overcast/party sunny day forecast tomorrow with the ground currently at a Soft 6 and I would expect an upgrade during the day to a Soft 5 (better known as yielding/good to soft ground).

        $9.5m (EUR 7m) of prize money across a 10 race card with 7 Group races including 4 Group Ones. Highlight being the $4m Queen Elizabeth Stakes which is the world's richest 1m 2f (2000m) race. The card has attracted horses from Japan and UK along with the world's 2 best jockeys in Joao Mereira and Ryan Moore (Sydney on Saturday and back home to ride John F Kennedy at Leopardstown on Sunday!)

        Randwick
        Race 1 - 2 year old race over the mile. No opinion. No bet.

        Race 2 - Hard to look past Federal here for Godolphin to overturn the form with Ygritte. Weight swing, extra furlong and James McDonald on board. Short enough at $2.70 for me. I'll be hoping for $3 on the day before I make the plunge

        Race 3 - Provincial Championships final. I don't know much about the country form bar Oxford Poet who I've backed before. From the inside gate in a big field I'm hopeful he jumps well into the gun spot and will be lightly backing him for a place at $3

        Race 4 - I am massively in the Lake Geneva camp for this. 3rd in both Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper behind two star 2YO colts Pride of Dubai and Vancouver. Back to fillies grade here I believe she will shed her maiden tag for Coolmore. The 2 Godolphin fillies along with unexposed Sempre Libera will be dangers but I'll be going in strong at $3

        Race 5 - 3YO Sprint race where plenty have a chance coming from various form lines. Kuro's Galaxy run marginally the most impressive for me but I'll be staying clear here. No bet

        Race 6 - Oaks - The first of the G1 races and I have a strong strong interest here for Coolmore's Ballet Suite. I tried to back her (e/w) for this before her midweek race second up in Randwick but the friendly bookies here refused to quote me a price! She won that and was installed at $13 which I took along with the $11 after her 4th in the Vinery. I think the wider track and step up to 1m 4f (2400m) will be in her favour along with the booking of Ryan Moore. She is now $7/$2.15 as a result of Moore's booking. She wouldn't want to be any shorter and is still a good e/w bet. Winx and Thunder Lady are the local dangers but the one that worries me most is the NZ Oaks winner (on soft ground) Savaria who is an unknown.

        Race 7 - Queen of the Turf - Another G1 race. This tiem for the older ladies. Bookies have it as a 3 horse race between the elusive G1 chasing Catkins ($5), the overhyped and lately somewhat disappointing First Seal ($3.50) and favourite, ex-UK trained Noble Protector ($3.40). An intriguing race where I'm going to avoid the big 3 and have a small place bet on Telepathic who had no luck in the Epona Stakes behind Scratchy Bottom and Rising Romance. $5 a place will do me. Respect for Diademe over from NZ with Ryan Moore booked to ride

        Race 8 - Sydney Cup - 3rd of the G1 races. another 3 horse race according to the bookies. Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist ($5) who has shown little since then but is now back to 2 miles, Melbourne Cup 3rd Who Shot Thebarman ($4.60) who has remained consistently around the 3rd/4th spot in the big races since and even money favourite, ex-UK trained Hartnell for Godolphin. Hartnell won the Queens Vase over 2 miles back in the UK and looks well in at the weights. I really want to get stuck in but I have a few worries like the others improving back to the 2 mile trip and Tommy Berry replacing James McDonald who is unable to do the weight. If I get $2.50 on the day I will load up. Besides that $3.70 the place is too big a price for Big Memory who I think might relish the 2 miles

        Race 9 - QE Stakes - The big one. 2 Japanese, 1 NZ, 1 UK, 3 ex-UK, 1 ex-Ireland and 4 Aussies. contributer being scratched has messed up the betting. I am a fan of so many of these it is so hard to choose. I have narrowed it down to Criterion and To The World. Cox Plate winner Adelaide has disappointed me since joining Waller but has Ryan Moore on board. Plenty others to be respected. I am slightly leaning towards Criterion but will decide on the day once I see how To The World is looking. Ran out of steam against Hartnell last time out but looked to be carrying some condition still. Hopefully he will strip fitter for than run.

        Race 10 - Group 2 for the older fillies and mares over 6f. No opinion. No bet.

        Flemington (Melbourne)
        Race 8 - 2 ex-Europeans interest me here. Silverball (French) and Swacadelic (German). Silverball has form from the UAE Derby and should be going close here at $5.50. Swacadelic has some Group form from Germany and is first up in Oz here. One to watch and note for the future

        Ascot (Perth, WA)
        Race 7 - Western Australia Derby - If things are going well I'll be jumping on the filly Delicacy at even money ($2). She won the WA Oaks in great style. The only danger I can see here is Boom Time who came back to form when upped in distance and another furlong here could play in his favour

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          16:05 only 11 from 30 finished!!

          Gone for Balthazar King in Grand National
          Last edited by sparks; 10th-April-2015, 15:37.
          Stand up and fight

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            'Ladies' day.

            The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves

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              Confirmed that Ryan Moore is now number one for Coolmore as Joseph's weight issues become untenable. Will only make the Coolmore mafia more powerful.

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                Lord windermere rider was injured today in wexford, Robert mcnamara i think his name is
                Stand up and fight

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                  Originally posted by sparks View Post
                  Lord windermere rider was injured today in wexford, Robert mcnamara i think his name is
                  Will Katie Walsh get the ride? I hope so anyway. I suspect they will water the stones out of the course tonight after so many fallers in today's Topham. I would be with the Management, it is the showcase of the season so the ground should be as slow and safe as possible. The antis are on the march so it is important they do what they can.

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                    If the rain reaches aintree it will make a difference
                    Stand up and fight

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                      Originally posted by sparks View Post
                      If the rain reaches aintree it will make a difference
                      They have pop up sprinklers like a golf course so can put "rain" on at the flick of a switch, which I think they will do. There will probably be a horse or two killed, sad to say, but what is life without risks? I will be hoping for a good start and that everyone horse and jockey gets home in one piece.

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                        Robbie McNamara sounds in a very bad way. Missing a ride in the national could be the least of his worries.

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                          https://youtu.be/DeII2eGcvRs

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                            Davy Condon has been advised that he risks paralysis should he ever ride a horse again and been forced into retirement. Very tough on the fella but at least he has just about got out in one piece.

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                              Autumn Carnival finished up last week. Some decent races in Randwick (Sydney) and Flemington (Melbourne) this Saturday all the same plus a bunch of G2 and G3 races up in Gold Coast, a few ex-European horses turning out plus a few strong fancies.

                              Randwick (Heavy 9)
                              Race 3 - 2 ex-French and 1 ex-English here. Four Carat ($7.50) had been in good form before slipping up last run. Salford Art ($3.50) won well at Warwick Farm and followed that up with a good second at the same venue. Hard to get away from the Waller/McDonald combo but my preference here though is for the ex-French Doukhan ($4.40). First up in Australia he ran a solid race well behind Salford Art. Gets a 2.5kg swing in the weights here plus I always like ex-Europeans second up. Extra furlong will be no worry nor will the wet ground

                              Race 6 - If the track stays a heavy 9 then Dowdstown Charlie (each way) for me at $9.00. The wetter the better for this man. Anything better than a Heavy 8 and forget it!

                              Race 7 - Sense of Occasion ($5.50) is the each-way go here for me. Ran a cracker on slow ground at Warwick Farm last time out. Can improve and go on to better things. Slower ground shouldn't be a problem

                              Flemington (Good 4)
                              Race 5 - We've got This ($2.20) has been smashed in the market all week and will be hard to beat but I'm on Vuelta ($8.50) each-way. Good run last up over course and distance when caught out wide. The value in the race here with the favourite coming up shorter than I hoped

                              Race 7 - Full of ex-Europeans here. Stipulate (ex-Henry Cecil), Gris Caro (ex-French), Verdant (ex-Michael Stoute), Wrotham Heath (ex-Henry Cecil), Silverball (ex-French) and the one I am most looking forward to seeing, making his Aussie debut, ex-Jim Bolger trained Chance to Dance. Personally I can't see past the Europeans here. Chance to Dance ($10) is in the notebook for future dates but will be getting some place money from me here. Silverball ($2.90) is on hot form right now though and having backed him twice to victory I have to stay loyal

                              Race 8 - Only a tiny place bet here on London Stripe ($31). Hasn't done much since the move to Australia but has a second behind Dandino in his locker from UK form.

                              Gold Coast (Soft 5)
                              Race 2 - Imperial Lass ($6) here for me. Good run behind Hi World last up. He's franked that form since during The Championships.

                              Race 3 - The market is led by ex-French trained Index Linked ($4) and ex-Michael Stoute trained Sir John Hawkwood ($3.40). My preference is for Index Linked but no bet for me. Good prep run with the Brisbane Cup in mind

                              Race 6 - I'm all over Regatta Rebel ($2.50) here. Short odds but was so impressive on debut behind Furnaces during The Championships. I'll be having an each-way saver bet on Denpurr ($9) who ran very well behind Sempre Libera at Warwick Farm

                              Race 7 - No bet but a cracking sprint at hand with Temple of Boom, Speediness, Knoydart, Ball of Muscle and Srikandi

                              Race 8 - No bet here either but a great bunch of middle distance runners on show with Foreteller, Moriarty, Hawkspur, Hooked, Silent Achiever, Arabian Gold along with reserves (for some reason they ballot on prizemoney only even though both are Group One winners!) Pornichet and Leebaz

                              Sha Tin (Hong Kong)
                              Queen Elizabeth II Cup - 3 horse race here with Criterion ($2.90) heading the market from the two locally trained, and last year's 1-2, Designs on Rome ($3.10) and Military Attack ($4.50). Interesting change around in jockeys this year. Joao Moreira is now aboard Designs on Rome (previously Tommy Berry). Zac Purton on Military Attack (previously Moreira). Craig Williams is up on Criterion as he was during The Championships win (Hugh Bowman was aboard last time Criterion ran in Hong Kong). Hugh Bowman is aboard the ever consistent globe trotter Red Cadeaux. Fingers crossed Criterion can do the job for the Aussies but I'm not sure he'll break the 1-2 from last year

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                                Randwick - Doukhan ran a stinker finishing back in 6th, Dowdstown Charlie relished the ground to win well, Sense of Occasion ran a good second.

                                Flemington - Vuelta finished back the field in 7th, Silverball finished a disappointing 4th, Chance to Dance in 6th will be one to keep an eye on, London Stripe back in 7th ran well but well beaten by better horses

                                Gold Coast - Imperial Lass disappointing 6th, Regatta Rebel loomed to win and was outbattled to finish 3rd, Denpurr well back in 12th.

                                Sha Tin - Complete blowout with 14/1 shot Blazing Speed showing a great turn of foot to win from a blanket finish behind. Criterion just edged out for 2nd with Designs on Rome back in 4th.

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