SANDOWN: SANDOWN CLASSIC - 16th November 2019
Track: GOOD(4) - Weather: SHOWERS - Rail: TRUE

Betting Portfolio ($50):
Here we are at Sandown again at the end of a Spring Campaign. We have had fairly cold and grey weather heading into the weekend, with a few showers around but probably not enough to really affect the track. Important to note we are racing at Sandown Hillside and they do flip around which track is used for this meeting. Generally they can run on and win well at Hillside, whilst Lakeside can favour those on speed, but in general Sandown has been quite leaderish over the previous winter which is quite unusual. We should get even racing seeing the track has had a decent break, but it is never a disadvantage to be on speed regardless. Also keep an eye out for fresh horses on this day as this is often the after-thought day for many that have been through a long spring campaign.

For the Sandown (Zipping) Classic, horses backing up out of the Melbourne Cup actually have a pretty good record in this race and of course it is at WFA and very few of these horses are WFA horses. The Sandown 2400M is a pretty solid staying contest under these conditions and usually the best stayer wins. There is a real lack of talent and form in this race this year with only one last start winner and only two horses who have won a race this preparation. The 1-HUMIDOR just hasnít really fired this spring, has shown signs, but not really got into the finish and the Sandown 2400M looks a distance query for us. The 2-VENTURA STORM needs a firm track and a very genuine tempo, he is just a few lengths behind them this spring, but has a most interesting quirk of raising his head in the air at about the 100M mark which think he has done every start this time in. The 3-GALLIC CHIEFTAN is a consistent stayer, but really needs a genuine wet track to show his best as does the 4-PATRICK ERIN. 5-SOUTHERN FRANCE didnít appreciate the slow speed in the Melbourne Cup and they were running away from him at the end of the race, you would think the long uphill run at Sandown would suit but find it hard to have as favourite coming off a fairly mediocre Cup run. The 6-DAL HARRAILD creates interest as he is fresher than most of these with just the three runs this time in, was pretty good late at Flemington and then faded badly in Geelong Cup when did have to go early and wide in the run. He ran 2nd in this race last year off better form, but appeals as he is also likely to go forward in a race of little speed up front. The 7-MIDTERM is fit and also likely to race on speed and wonít be far away, whilst the 8-CHAPADA seems to have missed most of the spring so is fresh for this, still only has the 1 win from 13 starts and has ability, just hasnít quite lived up to potential. The 9-SAVVY OAK got the perfect cover and run in a truly awful field on Stakes Day, and the 10-MISS SISKA is another on pacer who is untested at the 2400M and we always thought she only just got 2000M at best.

The speed here looks OK with the 6-DAL HARRAILD, 7-MIDTERM and 10-MISS SISKA all likely to go forward and regardless the Sandown 2400M tends to favour the best stayer in the race. Pretty hard to have a confident bet here, very little form, lots of horses with poor winning strike rates and many not suited under WFA conditions. However, there is one runner that stands out as value here and that is the actually the outsider of the field, the 7-MIDTERM who is one of the only horses with winning form this time in, will race on speed and give himself every chance and was OK at Flemington last week behind two that may be pretty smart. Think he appeals here at $20 as well over the odds and should stay on solidly in the straight on speed. We are putting the 5-SOUTHERN FRANCE in for second, just because history tell us these sort of international horses have a good record in this race, but think the odds of $3.50 are well under the true odds and hard to back with any confidence, and expect improvement from the 6-DAL HARRAILD on speed. Overall not a very confident race to bet in, but think the 7-MIDTERM at $20 is definitely worth something each way.

We actually have fairly small fields which is unusual for this meeting, and strange to see the likes of Race 6: 1-HEY DOC and 5-ODEON pop up when the spring party is all over. There is unlikely to be much value around so the punting strategy for the day is mainly straight out win or each way bets on the top picks in the $4 to $10 range. Just be cautious of the lack of tempo in some of these races if the track ends up favouring those on speed.

BEST WIN: Race 7: 11-AFFAIR TO REMEMBER $7 WIN
Promising 3YO filly who has been aiming to win a good race all spring, but has been scratched a few times and couldnít make a few fields as emergency. Which means she comes into the last day of spring fresher than a lot of these and with a lot of upside. Her last run at Flemington was excellent, she was up in distance off a 2 months let up, couldnít get clear early in the straight and flew home late. The long run here at Sandown should suit and she will need them to be running on and winning, but if they are she really should just about win at $$3.60.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 9: 5-PLATINUM ANGEL $4 WIN, $3 PLACE
QUINELLA: Race 9: 5-PLATINUM ANGEL, 11-VANUATU, 9-JENTICO boxed x $3 = 100%
This one continues to race well at this sort of level, but really does need to get a win on the board as the win strike rate is starting to look a bit wobbly. Fitter for the 3 runs back in, zoomed home 1st up, flat 2nd up and just thought she loomed like the winner in the All Greys race but just got bogged down with the big weight. Strong finisher suited at Sandown and drawn to finish on late. Each way at around $6, and box up a quinella with the main danger the rapidly improving 11-VANUATU and the only on pacer the in form Adelaide visitor 9-JENTICO.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 5: 6-THERMAL CURRENT $3 EW
QUINELLA: Race 5: 6-THERMAL CURRENT, 2-CRYSTAL DREAMER x $2 = 200%
QUINELLA: Race 5: 6-THERMAL CURRENT#3,5,8,11 x $2 = 50%
Old timer who can be hard to catch but looks ready to do something now with the two runs in. He does have some bad habits, sometimes he refuses to go to the barriers, and last start at Flemington he missed the start, but was held up for runs at a crucial stage about 200M out and then went to the line well and probably should have placed. Outside barrier and decent speed here should suit as he is a drop back and run on horse. Back each way at around $8 and wary of the stable mate the 2-CRYSTAL DREAMER who we did tip on Oaks Day but was scratched, so maybe just check the reason behind that (and check which cap colours are which!) and save in a quinella. Go again in a quinella with the 3-EASY EDDIE from Sydney, the 5-ASHLOR who finally gets away from WFA fields this time in and the value runner 11-EASY BEAST fit and ready to win from Adelaide.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 6: 7-ORDER OF COMMAND $4 EW
Another small field and whilst this one probably isnít suited under this weight scale he is one of the few fit and in form horses in the race. Fitter for the 3 runs in and was strong to the line last start. He is a better Flemington straight track horse, and probably a slight query at 1300M, but donít think they are going to go that fast here and he is always strong at the end of the 1200M so he should be able to just get the distance today. Looks a solid each way bet at around $10 and well over the odds in this field.

BEST ROUGH: Race 2: 7-ETAH JAMES $1 EW
Small field of mediocre stayers again and the likes of 1-SOUND and 3-NEUFBOSC really have shown nothing in Australia even though they have been racing in feature races and this is a lot easier. The 7-ETAH JAMES creates interest here, showed a lot of potential early winning 6 of her first 11 starts and then hasnít won a race in her last 13 runs. Fitter for the 4 runs in and seems to be building in form, led and stuck on OK last start at Flemington. Likely to lead again here with jockey Meech on board, more a matter of what the pesky 2-HAKY does as the other leader, but suspect she is going to stick on better than the $31 odds suggest and is some chance of an upset here against mediocre opposition.

BEST ROUGH: Race 8: 7-MIDTERM $2 EW
Pretty hard to have a confident bet in a mediocre field in the WFA Sandown Classic, but think this one represents a stack of value. Fit and in form, plugged on really well to win the Kyneton Cup, and then wasnít disgraced behind two smart ones in the Queen Elizabeth on Stakes Day. He will go forward here and suspect he is going to stick on pretty well in the straight and should be in the finish at nice odds of around $20.

BEST ROUGH: Race 10: 11-EXASPERATE $2 EW
What better way to finish spring than with a $61 winner. We tipped this as Best Rough on Oaks Day but he was an emergency and didnít make the field and realistically it looks like they probably wanted the run there over 1600M so they could head 3rd up into this race over 1800M. But despite missing a run letís give it another try today. Progressive horse who is a very strong finisher and is proven at Sandown and a lot of the better performed runners are bogged down here at the top of the weights. Will need some speed in the race so he can run home, but look at his last prep over winter when he didnít finish further back than 4th and continually improved. Have a dabble to end spring at around $61.


LAY OF THE DAY: Race 6: 4-DíBAI at around $2.80
We have two intentional horses going around today, this one and the Race 10: 4-SETTING SAIL. Fair enough the fields arenít that strong but both are extremely short odds for total unknowns. This one has had one start in Australia in a much harder race, but then had a 30 week lay off so really impossible to line up how he is going so why would you want to waste your money at these sort of odds?

TURF DELI WONDER BET: Here we try and turn $5 into a betting bank for next spring.
ALL UP
PLACE: Race 4: 8-MR EXCLUSIVE
PLACE: Race 5: 2-CRYSTAL DREAMER
PLACE: Race 6: 7-ORDER OF COMMAND
PLACE: Race 8: 7-MIDTERM
We have an absolutely appalling record with these Poor Manís Quaddie, but the smaller fields today mean it is worth a shot. We are a big fan of the Race 4: 8-MR EXCLUSIVE and have tipped him quite a few times, he just keeps running places though, but he looks a good kick off leg at least at $3.60. The Race 5: 2-CRYSTAL DREAMER and Race 6: 7-ORDER OF COMMAND are both consistently in the finish, so itís going to come down to trying to bump up the dividend with the roughie in the feature race Race 8: 7-MIDTERM. Looking at around $500 for a $5 investment.

The Tips:

Race 1: EARLY 2YO RACE. ENJOY THE HERITAGE LISTED GRANDSTAND
Race 2: 7-ETAH JAMES, 4-AZURO, 2-HAKY
Race 3: 2-XILONG, 3-SOPHIAíS CHOICE, 4-PALURIEN
Race 4: 5-WILLIAM THOMAS, 8-MR EXCLUSIVE, 1-WIDGEE TURF
Race 5: 6-THERMAL CURRENT, 2-CRYSTAL DREAMER, 11-EASY BEAST
Race 6: 7-ORDER OF COMMAND, 3-HOME OF THE BRAVE, 1-HEY DOC
Race 7: 11-AFFAIR TO REMEMBER, 1-BANQUO, 10-PRETTY BRAZEN
Race 8: 7-MIDTERM, 5-SOUTHERN FRANCE, 6-DAL HARRAILD
Race 9: 5-PLATINUM ANGEL, 11-VANUATU, 9-JENTICO
Race 10: 1-PACODALI, 3-PLEIN CIEL, 11-EXASPERATE