Friday, October 17, 2008

Caulfield Cup Preview:

This years Caulfield Cup looks like a vintage field with any number of quality stayers. The Captain and I will run through them to see if we just can't turn up some value.

My thoughts executive summary style: Don't get 4 y.o. Fever. The crop of 4 year old stayers is the best I have seen, however a lot of battle hardened 5 and 6 year olds are slipping through the cracks here.

I like a few horses in the market - Red Ruler, Guillotine and Littorio

I like a few horses in write-your-own ticket land; FU, Ice Chariot and Dolphin Jo.

I don't like the Hussler here. I asked myself a tough question; If the Hussler slipped out to $10, would I want it? No. $15? No. Class is one thing, the ability to stay something entirely different.

Avoiding the imports (Mad Rush and All the Good) until at least Melbourne Cup day.

1) Weekend Hussler:

Professor - $4.80... I don't think it will get the trip. I think that 2000 could be its upper bound, but a super horse and if it is for you then I won't try and talk you out of it.
Captain: I always had doubts he could genuinely stay. Cannot fathom the rush of money for him and am more than happy to leave him out as Caulfield Cup favourite. A true champion regardless of today's performance, it's sad to me that connections didn't target the Cox Plate and the Cox Plate only.

2) Maldivian

Professor - If it gets out to some ridiculous price I might give it a look. Here's my thinking about this guy, on-pace horses tend to look absolutely awful in lead up runs to their target races. So, if you think that he is ready to go (fitter!) then this could be a massive sting at $20+

Captain: For mine, he's just not going as well as this time last year, though I'm glad he's in the race to set a nice tempo for the horses I've backed. Favourite last year, but the field was weaker and I don't think he would have had anything for Master O'Reilly anyway. Not keen.

3) Master O Reilly

Professor - Up hugely in weight from last years tilt with 56.5 kilos (last year 50.5!). Note that some of this has to do with the weights being raised in general so don't get too scared off. Will need to have improved from last year a little though.

Captain: Up in weights but looks an even better horse than last year. One of your serious contenders here, you're not thinking clearly if you're leaving him out of your multiples.

4) Fiumicino

Professor - One that I am yet to back, because I think that $61 on fixed price is under what you will get tomorrow. Regardless, he has so many miles under his belt already, is a seasoned horse, has been in great form (is a joke on the slow so disregard the last one). Suffice it to say, I like him at $61 and I will love him at $100+ tomorrow.

Captain: Was more than happy to back him in some crappy race in Sydney a few weeks ago...far less happy to back him in a Caulfield Cup. Looks like his very best won't even put him in the finish. Likes the wet (the only reason he won an AJC Derby) but failed on the wet in the Metropolitan. Poorly weighted. Do I need to go on?

5) Kibbutz - scratched.

6) Nom De Jeu

Professor - Not for me after the barrier draw - I see the three kiwis form lines as being quite similar, but Red Ruler's run in the Kelt stands out of the three.

Captain: I am leaving out the Kiwis. I think the Kelt form simply isn't on par with the Turnbull form and as such, I'm leaving this one out. Not without a chance but you can't back them all.

7) Mad Rush

Professor - Love Francesca I really do. Will hopefully find a way to introduce myself at the Melbourne Cup but at this stage lets say I would have well prefered it to have run since arriving in the country. Melbourne Cup prefered.

Captain: Francesca Cumani is possibly the most beautiful woman in the world. The Professor won't get anywhere near her at the Melbourne Cup though...there's no way security will let that man close to her after he's polished off 3 bottles of wine and a dozen beers! I like this one for the Melbourne Cup. Think he'll run a nice race here without really looking the winner.

8) All the Good

Professor - See 7, but without the quality.

Captain: Happy to leave him out. A wait and see approach.

9) Douro Valley

Professor - The battlers horse that I have had some great wins on. Will have a nibble tomorrow for old times sake. Also a quality chance but hope to see $20+

Captain: Great win in the Yalumba. Will probably take a sit in this one and looks a good value chance at $17. Second in this race last year. Respect.

10) Ice Chariot

Professor - I will leave this for the Captain, my roughie of choice (even more so than FU!). Hates the mud so disregard last start, but has looked in career best form this prep. Old seasoned horse that has come in well at the weights. If you take one piece of advice here ever, an each way bet on the Chaz is a must.

Captain: All his runs have been pretty good this time in. Anything worse than a dead track and I would have said forget it, but on the dead, why not throw a few bucks each way on this fella?

11) Viewed

Professor - I can't see a cyclone coming in off the coast so I would leave out the mudlark extraordinaire. If it is coming down on Melbourne Cup day, this is your horse.

Captain: It irks me that an in form horse such as Newport, who has a Metropolitan as well as a Brisbane Cup under his belt can miss out on a start in favour of this dubious nag.

12) Littorio

Professor - Yet to put a foot wrong this prep. The knock is that it is in the middle of a long prep for a 4 y.o. horse and hitting a flat spot is not out of the question. On the top of my ratings for this race and I can't fault.

Captain: Here's your winner. A tick in every box.

13) Red Ruler

Professor - if a Kiwi horse is going to take this one out, it is this guy for mind. Have a look at the Kelt replay on this site and eat up some of the $16 on offer.
Captain: See Nom De Jeu. I actually like Nom De Jeu better than this guy at the trip.

14) Boundless

Professor - second pick of the Kiwis. I can't back everything though!

Captain: See Nom De Jeu/Red Ruler.

15) Dolphin Jo

Professor - This cup is extraordinary. Such a bumper crop of 4 year olds that all of the more seasoned types are slipping through the cracks, see $50+ on this and a nibble each way could be a great decision.

Captain: Great roughie. A really strong win last start, albeit in lesser company, but was held up a bit getting out and was a comfortable winner on the line. Looking a better bet for the Melbourne Cup, but you are foolish if you don't have a little bit of this today at silly odds.

16) Riva San

Professor - WANTS.IT.WET. Lacks the class of the other 4 year olds on top of the ground so no thanks.

Captain: Loves this trip and a bit of rain. Not without a chance, though a worrying sign was that she took forever to wind up last start and couldn't reel in Lorne Dancer. Lorne Dancer is not at Caulfield today.

17) Zagreb

Professor - Not as high on this horse as most people. Excuses last start, as G Boss couldn't avoid a clod of ground going into this horses mouth. Poor ride.

Captain: Had a piece of this at longer odds but can't understand the money trail here. A $10 shot makes him another Bossy money train. The Bossy money train is known to derail. Am now hearing he is in doubt for the race so will not tip him for the WHAB faithful.

18) Guillotine

Professor - In a world populated by Guillotine haters, I stand in a small group that can forgive a a 3 year old horse for a poor autumn showing. The spring performances of this horse have been nothing short of sensational. With Simon O' Donnell pulling out barrier 21 for him, it gets tougher but as they say in France, Simon O'Donnell can derelicte my Balls. Go the Tine!

Captain: One of those horses who you leave out because you like other horses better but are still worried about. A big show, but if he pulls even just a little bit starting from the car park then he is no chance.

19) Barbaricus

Professor - No. In a race where you can shop for between $50 and $100 on horses of the caliber of Ice Chariot, FU!, and Dolphin Jo, why on earth would anyone lay down their money here?

Captain: See Viewed...but with double the anger!!! On recent form, what is this doing at Caulfield today? Nevertheless, a genuine Kyneton Cup hope.

No comments: