THE Daily Telegraph racing editor Ray Thomas and Sky Thoroughbred Central’s form expert Ron Dufficy discuss the best chances in all 10 races on Day One of The Championships at Royal Randwick on Saturday.


Race 1, No.4 LEAN MEAN MACHINE Race 5, No. 8 ALWARD
Race 3, No.6 SHE’S SO HIGH Race 8, No. 1 REDZEL
Value bet
Race 10, No.3 WEDGIE


R1 (11.30am): KINDERGARTEN STAKES (1100m)

Thomas: Legend Of Condor has been racing competitively against the top colts this autumn and gets his chance here. Raced on the speed in the Todman Stakes and battled away when fourth to Aylmerton. Drops back fractionally to 1100m but he is rock-hard fit and will be in it for a long way. Vendome is a big watch. He has looked very good in his two trials and is from a powerful stable. Enbihaar was scratched from the Golden Slipper after a setback but she did run second in the Blue Diamond and is a filly of real talent. Lean Mean Machine looked the part winning on debut at the midweeks and is not out of place in this field.

Dufficy: I liked the way Lean Mean Machine went about his business at Warwick Farm. He looks a stylish type of colt who should be even better suited on the big track. Legend Of Condor has been kept fresh for this and has the natural speed to settle on the pace and prove hard to beat. Enbihaar has the right formlines and is very talented but the recent setback lines worries me. Munich is an impressive type and he fought hard behind Lean Mean Machine when resuming.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Legend Of Condor $4.60-$5, Lean Mean Machine $6-$6.50 ($500 @ $6.50 TWICE, $400 @ $6.50, $200 @ $6.50 TWICE), Enbihaar $3-$2.60 ($1,053 @ $2.90, $1,112 @ $2.80, $1,200 @ $2.70), Ennis Hill $4.60-$5





R2 (12.10pm): CARBINE CLUB STAKES (1600m)

Thomas: Assimilate was dominant powering through the line to win the Canberra Guineas a month ago. He has had a barrier trial hitout since where he looked the part again. Promising colt who is starting to realise his potential. Holy Snow is going to be very hard to beat. He looked the likely winner in the Phar Lap Stakes only to be run down by a very good filly in Unforgotten last start. Sondelon has done some good things in his short career and lost his unbeaten record but no admirers with his game second against older horses at Warwick Farm. Dissolution has returned in great form and deserves his crack at this level.

Dufficy: I’m with Assimilate as well. There looks to be enough speed up front for him to unleash that strong finish we saw at Canberra. He returns to his home track, up to a mile and will take holding out. I can see a big improvement from Villermont. He raced too keenly at 2000m last start and will appreciate getting back to 1600m. Holy Snow was very good in the Phar Lap Stakes and will take plenty of beating. Think Straight only won a maiden at Hawkesbury but I think he might have something and is a horse of the future.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Holy Snow $4-$4.40- $4.20-$4 ($500 @ $4.40, $300 @ $4.40, $200 @ $4.40), Villermont $7-$6.50, Sambro $15-$9- $9.50, Dissolution $11-$9.50 ($1,750 @ $10)

R3 (12.45pm): P.J. BELL STAKES (1200m)

Thomas: I’m leaning to Demerara. She can take advantage of her good gate, settle on speed and will be in the right position throughout. This is a step up in grade but she is obviously a talented filly with a good record of five wins from seven starts. Houtzen needs to lift on her comeback effort but she is unbeaten second-up and is at attractive odds. Problem Solver is another at each-way odds and although drawn off the track, she is very fit and capable of running well. Charlayne is unbeaten in two starts and is a promising filly.

Dufficy: The Victorian horses are having a good carnival and they can shape up again here. I’m with She’s So High who was brilliant first-up at Flemington and will strip even fitter here. Her trainer, Mick Price, is a great traveller of horses. The danger is Demerara. She is a good, genuine filly building a very good strike rate but I do have a question mark about her at 1200m. Charlayne is way up in class but this filly has looked well above average winning her only two starts. Catchy has to give weight to her rivals but she is a top class filly coming off a Group 1 placing against the older horses in the William Reid Stakes.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: She’s So High $5-$4.20-$4 ($2,000 e/w @ $5/$2.05, $500 @ $5, $300 @ $5), Demerara $3.50-$3.40-$3.50, Charlayne $15-$13 ($1,000 x $2,000 e/w @ $14/$4.10)




media_cameraBoo Bailey’s cartoon tip for Randwick


Thomas: I’ve got the favourites Suncraze and Don’t Give A Damn going one-two with nothing between them. Suncraze found a way to win at Scone and he will be charging home at the end of 1400m. He will be giving Don’t Give A Damn a start from the turn but the latter is on the quick back-up after winning the Wild Card last Sunday. I’m a huge fan of Victorem and he is going to get the right run which will give him every chance to see out the 1400m. Snitz is another talented young sprinter but he has drawn the car park. This is a terrific race.

Dufficy: Great race. I like one at good odds in Caerless Choice. He has a 1.5kg weight turnaround in his favour after being edged out by Suncraze in the Scone heat. Caerless Choice has great second-up statistics, he’s drawn beautifully and gets his preferred dry track. I like him at double-figure odds. Victorem has been a work in progress but I loved his recent trial win and he is ready for a peak performance. Suncraze hasn’t finished further back than second in 12 starts and you had to admire the way he lifted himself off the canvas at Scone. Don’t Give A Damn is a talented sprinter.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Suncraze $4.60-$4.20 ($556 @ $4.60), Don’t Give A Damn $4-$4.20, Victorem $7-$6-$5.50 ($500 @ $7, $500 e/w @ $6/$2.25, $600 @ $6, $500 @ $6)

media_cameraDon’t Give A Damn is among the favourites for the Country Championships Final after winning the Wild Card last weekend. Picture: Simon Bullard

R5 (1.55pm): CHAIRMAN’S QUALITY (2600m)

Thomas: I’m with Alward — he is bursting to win a race. He has been placed in each of his three starts this campaign and has been racing without luck. He ran on strongly late to finish second behind Master Of Arts in the Manion Cup on a soft track and he will enjoy getting back onto a firm surface. He’s ready to win. Peribsen gets better as his race distances increase and he will be hard to beat out to 2600m now. Master Of Arts defeated Alward and Peribsen in the Manion Cup but he meets those two horses worse at the weights here. Peribsen enjoys a 3kg weight swing in his favour over Master Of Arts. Tally caught my eye running on well last week and on the quick back-up he is a knockout chance.

Dufficy: Surely it is Alward’s turn to have some luck. He has had no luck in each of his three runs this time in but he has run well every time. Alward had to give too much start in the Manion Cup but this is his race. He will be hard to beat. The New Zealand stayer Sir Charles Road should get a nice run on pace and is value with Blake Shinn in the saddle. Peribsen continues to improve and he does stay well. Ormito has only won one race in his career but he should have won the Adelaide Cup last stat and gets in with a light weight.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Ventura Storm $11-$9.50-$10, Alward $4-$3.90-$4 ($270 @ $3.90), Ormito $15-$10, Wheal Leisure $26-$18 ($500 e/w @ $21/$5.80)



R6 (2.30pm): SIRES’ PRODUCE STAKES (1400m)

Thomas: The Golden Slipper form is traditionally the best form for the Sires and with that in mind I have to be with Oohood. She has been placed in a Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper and deserves to win a good race. She ran on well for second to Estijaab last start in the Golden Slipper and should have no issues running a strong 1400m. Long Leaf’s run in the Golden Slipper was super. He was last into the straight but was charging home late to run sixth. He is a tough colt and will enjoy the 1400m. Seabrook raced without luck in the Golden Slipper and her fifth was full of merit. This looks a very good race for her and she has a great chance. Spin has the blinkers back on and I think he is value at $16.

Dufficy: I like the Slipper form as well but I want to be with Seabrook. She was outstanding in the Golden Slipper when shunted wide, got a long way back and worked hard to the line. She has drawn the inside barrier here and will get the right run. Oohood has been placed in all of her five starts and does give the impression 1400m will suit her. Tchaikovsky is an improver. I liked the fact the Snowden stable took this colt to the provincials to get a win on the board and he did that in style. He has learned how to win and can run a very competitive race. Seberate’s run in the VRC Sires was solid, he looks a strong chance at big odds.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Long Leaf $7-$8.50 ($2,500 e/w @ $8/$2.70, $600 x $350 e/w @ $8/$2.70), Not A Single Cent $9-$11, Tchaikovsky $13-$10-$9.50, Oohood $4-$3.50 ($1,000 @ $3.80, $715 @ $3.80, $1,200 @ $3.60, $500 @ $3.50 MULTIPLE TIMES), Seabrook $5-$4.80 ($2,000 @ $4.80)

media_cameraAce High is the one to beat in the Australian Derby. Picture: Getty Images

R7 (3.10pm): ATC AUSTRALIAN DERBY (2400m)

Thomas: Ace High drew wide and was never on the track but still battled hard when sixth in the Rosehill Guineas last start. He showed his staying qualities in the Victoria Derby last spring when he endured a wide run and still found a way to win. The key here is the barrier draw. From the two gate, he is going to tuck in behind likely leader Weather With You and enjoy the run of the race. The firm ground suits and he does enjoy racing at Randwick. Furore won a Taree maiden on debut in January and here he is lining up in a Derby with a real chance. He was very stiff in the Rosehill Guineas but she showed that day he can mix it at this level. Tangled ran on from a long way back to get second on protest in the Guineas and he seems to be coming right for the big day. Belfast’s run in the Tulloch Stakes was very good.

Dufficy: I thought Ace High was ticking along beautifully for the Derby until he had that tough run in the Rosehill Guineas. I want to be forgiving of that run and back on a dry track where he is perfectly drawn, I’m going to stick with him. We know Ace High is a strong stayer and he will be hard to beat. Furore is the new kid on the block and he went into the Guineas undefeated but way up in class and came out as the horse everyone was talking about. He is a definite Derby hope if he can run up to that effort on a dry track. Belfast was the best Derby trial out of the Tulloch Stakes and Weather With You has kept improving through his autumn campaign and keep chipping away at the top of the speed here.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Ace High $5-$4.80-$4.60 ($2,200 @ $5, $10,000 @ $4.80, $1,000 @ $4.80, $575 @ $4.80, $500 @ $4.80), Vin De Dance $9-$8.50, Furore $7-$7.50-$7-$6 ($3,000 e/w @ $8/$2.75, $4,000 @ $7.50), Belfast $9-$10

R8 (3.50pm): T.J. SMITH STAKES (1200m)

Thomas: This race is a mini-Everest and I am going with The Everest winner Redzel. He’s a super sprinter, he’s bombproof and he was at his brilliant best setting off the frenetic tempo set by Super Too in the Challenge Stakes before sailing past for an easy win. I have a lot of respect for In Her Time. She thoroughly deserved her Group 1 win in The Galaxy last start and will make a race of it with Redzel. English does seem to race better in the autumn than spring and her closing sectionals when second in The Galaxy shows she is close to top form. Brave Smash did run third in The Everest last spring and is going better than ever this autumn.

Dufficy: Another fantastic race. I am with In Her Time. She was very good in The Galaxy and I’m convinced she is even better on dry tracks. She is ready to put out a challenge to Redzel in an intriguing. Redzel is the best sprinter in the land and he has certainly trialled nicely since his Challenge Stakes win showing that everything is ticking along well with him. I agree Brave Smash is going better this autumn than he was during spring when third in The Everest. Brave Smash’s effort to come along the inside in the Newmarket at Flemington was outstanding. Trapeze Artist has been freshened and is back to 1200m He’s a very good colt and a bit watch in this race.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Redzel $2.50-$2.15-$2.30-$2.25 ($2,000 @ $2.50, $10,000 @ $2.30, $4,000 @ $2.30, $3,000 @ $2.30 TWICE, $2,000 @ $2.30, $1,700 @ $2.30, $1,150 @ $2.30, $1,000 @ $2.30 MULTIPLE TIMES, $4,000 @ $2.25, $500 @ $2.25 MULTIPLE TIMES), Brave Smash $7-$7.50- $7 ($5,000 @ $7.50), In Her Time $4-$4.20 ($320 E/W @ $4.20/$1.60)

media_cameraIn Her Time looms as Redzel biggest threat in the TJ Smith Stakes. Picture: Getty Images

R9 (4.30pm): DONCASTER MILE (1600m)

Thomas: What a race. I would love to see Happy Clapper win and I think he can. He has run second in the last two Doncasters and finally got his Group 1 win in the Epsom last spring. He has returned better than ever this autumn and goes into the Doncaster off a great second, beaten less than a length by mighty mare Winx in the George Ryder Stakes, which is the best formline. He is drawn to get the right run. Kementari is the one to beat. He was outstanding winning the Randwick Guineas then ran a very competitive race for third in the Ryder. He does meet Happy Clapper 2.5kg better at the weights here. D’Argento was very strong late in the Rosehill Guineas. For a last-start Group 1 winner with only 50kg, he makes a lot of appeal. Lanciato is in great form, he gets the dry track he needs and he will be finishing fast late.

Dufficy: Kementari has an ideal draw, he is beautifully weighted and he has a win over the Doncaster course in the Randwick Guineas. He ticks all the boxes for me and is perfectly set-up for the Doncaster. Happy Clapper is going as well as he has ever gone in his career but he has to carry 57kg against Kementari’s 51.5kg and that gives the colt the advantage. Humidor is a class horse and has the blinkers back on. He did push Winx hard in the Cox Plate last spring, so he has the ability. Tom Melbourne ran well first-up and if things go his way he can run very well.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Humidor $8-$9.50, Tosen Stardom $35-$26, Kementari $3.50-$3.70-$3.80 ($2,000 @ $3.80, $1,000 @ $3.80 TWICE, $620 @ $3.80, $540 @ $3.80, $500 2 $3.80 MULTIPLE TIMES, $2,337 @ $3.70, $2,000 @ $3.70, $1,000 @ $3.70, $500 @ $3.70, $250 x $300 e/w @ $3.70/$1.75), Lanciato $26-$17 ($200 @ $17), D’Argento $7-$7.50 ($1,130 @ $7.50, $500 @ $7.50, $1,000 @ $7)

R10 (5.10pm): ADRIAN KNOX STAKES (2000m)

Thomas: Luvaluva is the best filly in the race but she had that issue last week which forced her out of the Vinery Stud Stakes. She might still come out and prove too classy for this field but the fact she has to carry 60kg and concede all her rivals 7kg might make her vulnerable. At the odds, I thought Wedgie is worth a gamble. Wedgie was beaten convincingly by Luvaluva at Kembla Grange but it looks like she might get control up front and will take running down. Harmattan is a very promising filly and probably should be unbeaten. Chilly Cha Cha keeps improving.

Dufficy: I am a big Luvaluva fan and I ended up sticking with her. It won’t be easy giving 7kg to her rivals but she is a big, strong filly and has class on her side. I loved the way she finished off when winning at Kembla last start and 2000m is perfect for her. She’s A Treasure had excuses last start but at her previous run she was very dominant. Chilly Cha Cha is a progressive filly who maps well here. She can run a competitive race. I concede Wedgie could get a soft lead and has a good chance.

TAB MARKET MOVERS: Luvaluva $3-$3.20-$3.10 ($450 @ $3.20, $300 @ $3.20, $450 @ $3.10), Harmattan $5.50-$3.50- $3.10 ($700 @ $4.20, $536 @ $3.80, $2,000 @ $3.60)

The latest update on the Doncaster Mile. Credit: TAB

Doncaster Mile Update





A granddaughter of the champion who became a legend — Makybe Diva, was beaten 2.5-lens in the G1 Surround Stakes before an uncustomary 11th of 14 in the g3 Classic here last start. She is better than these but is priced accordingly.


Is from the Gwenda Markwell camp and it’s few are far between the times that the Queen of Kembla doesn’t train a winner at home meeting. She’s got a nice team in today, maybe the best of them is this lightly-raced Foxwedge 3YO resuming.


Is a 2YO on debut trained by Clarry Conners — winner of 4 Golden Slippers, hence an acknowledged master of the juveniles. This daughter of Charge Forward hasn’t been let go in her three trials but you can see that there is something there.


JESS TAYLOR is a big chance to win the TAB Jockey’s Challenge at Kembla with six rides, everyone of them a winning chance; best of them is Doctor Manhattan in the first race.


BEST BET: TEN CARAT (Race 4, No. 4)

Is a superbly bred Fastnet Rock son of Diamond Earth that was originally trained by Anthony and Edward Cummings but will have his first run under new trainer, Kris Lees. If his trial in any guide, he’ll be winning big.

NEXT BEST: EDITORS (Race 6, No. 6)

Is a handsome son of Street Cry trained at Taree by the master Ross Stittt. The horse hasn’t done much wrong in his 8 starts for 2 wins and 2 placings but a 4th in a TAB Highway behind Acquittal and Kopi Luwak.



Is the Lucky Starr of horses, he’s been everywhere man, and rarely does he come home without a cheque. Garry Lunn places him beautifully and he’s found the perfect race for another win today.


finally, and deservedly, broke his maiden at start number 17 on mar 26 at Tamworth. He’s been pretty consistent in the lead-up with three straight seconds. No reason why he can’t go on with it now.


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