Author Archive for jamesbroadhurst

Brett Honey’s WA Oaks Night Preview

Group 2 WA Oaks over 520m (Race 5)

A superb edition of the Oaks awaits us on Saturday, with the market heavily favouring those drawn towards the inside.

Mandurah Oaks winner Sunset Serengeti (box 2 – pictured) faired best from the box draw. She was superb winning from box 8 last week where she isn’t suited, and those box manners are becoming more reliable each week. I think she leads Shy Emoji (box 3) which is key, as that will allow her to settle top 3 in running at worst through the bend. She would be very hard to beat from there.

Miss Envy (box 4) is promising, with my only concern being how she steps in the first few strides. Girls Like You in box 5 will want to work towards to the rail and I expect both Sunset Lasso (box 1) and Serengeti to step on her inside. She’s only had three starts and this is a tough assignment.

I give a small hope to West On Miley in box 8 who has the ability to lead this field and can only improve off last week, where she ran 30.06 in defeat first time over this track and trip. She will be relying on some traffic behind her to sneak away up the back.

I’ll be on Sunset Serengeti in what is a fairly even race.

Bet: #2 Sunset Serengeti, very small save #8 West On Miley

 

Other Selections On The Card

Race 1 #1 Kuro save #2 Scramble Button

I have a few questions with Chole Star’s draw in this race. Kuro is very strong and will be better served drawn towards the inside with his lack of early speed. I will be saving on Scramble Button who finds a race she’s every chance to lead. We will be seeing a different dog if she finds the arm.

Race 2 #6 Skye Monelli

A very generous early price of $4.60 is available for Skye Monelli who is flying. She’s won four on the bounce over the staying journeys at both Cannington and Northam and is starting to run time as well. The clear danger is West On Nugget however, he’s taking a long time to warm up at the moment. Skye Monelli may have done the job by then.

Race 3 #3 Stylish In Black (each way)

This is a race full of characters who haven’t made a habit out of winning. Stylish In Black looks ready for a stint over 600 and drawing towards the rails helps. I expect her to settle relatively close and can play a part from there.

Race 6 #4 Hippy Trail

Hippy Trail won’t find a more winnable race than this. Small field suits and can break 35 seconds unlike most of her opposition here. She may get back but will descend late.

Race 8 #5 Obsessed Much save #1 Mohican Mistress (place heavy)

I think Obsessed Much can break the line in this and she posted 21.67 when doing so four starts back. There’s no real pace drawn underneath her, which means she only has to deal with Steel Girl in box 6.

Mohican Mistress won’t miss a place from the red. She can begin much better from the inside and has become a professional placegetter in recent times.

Brett Honey’s WA Derby Final and WA Oaks Heats Preview

Race 1 WA Oaks Heat 520m

A cracking heat of the Oaks gets us underway on Saturday night where Sunset Hornet (box 8) is a commanding odds-on favourite. Any doubts about her running the 520 were swiftly quashed last week, posting an impressive 29.71 and defeating the likes of Disco Daisy and Sunset Serengeti. She deserves favouritism and is clearly the one in the race who can run the best times. Box 8 does throw some questions however, given she can be hit and miss early.

Girls Like You (box 1) is drawn beautifully on the inside for Paul Kaltsis and has a strong record from boxes 1 and 2. She has run home as quick as 11.29, therefore if she can navigate the first turn safely, she is one who can run into a place or capitalise on any trouble should Sunset Hornet find bother.

Bet: #1 Girls Like You (each way, heavier the place)

Race 2 WA Oaks Heat 520m

The second heat of the Oaks seemingly looks a race in two between Sunset Serengeti (box 8) and Miss Envy (box 3) but whilst they are the two fastest dogs in the race, both are drawn poorly. Sunset Serengeti is far more effective from an inside draw and wants the rail quickly. It is a big ask to get over from there. Miss Envy was a very impressive maiden winner, posting a blistering 29.53. She can be tardy out of the boxes, and I expect West On Miley in two to show early speed and move up the track.

In looking for a greyhound who may be able to capitalise on this questionable map, look no further than Such A Vibe in box 1. The rails draw will suit her, and she is improving with each start. Whilst she’s gone nowhere near the times of some of her opposition, she looks the one that gets a great run in transit. At the double figures, is certainly worth consideration.

Bet: #1 Such A Vibe (each way, heavier the place)

Race 3 WA Oaks Heat 520m

Connections of Wise Barra would have been doing the Hokey Pokey when seeing the heat she drew for the Oaks, and box 6 only helps her cause. Wise Barra has a commanding record at Cannington and has gone toe-to-toe with some of the better dogs in the state. She runs a wide line and with no real pace to speak of on her outside, she gets every conceivable chance.

Shy Emoji in box 8 is the other in the race who can run fast time but box 8 does her no favours. I found it tough to find anything in this to knock off the 6.

Bet: #6 Wise Barra

Race 4 WA Derby Final (Group 2) 520m

What a race. Eight deserving greyhounds all get their chance to take out what is the strongest Derby in years. Fingers crossed we see clean racing and the best dog wins.

Sunset Frazier (box 8) opened $3 earlier in the week and has been well supported throughout betting, to the point he is now into $2.40. The box holds no problems for him and looks a near-certainty to lead. The 29.56 he posted last week would see him go a long way from there.

The other dog who ran 29.56 last week was Fire Lighter (box 4), however there are far greater concerns about his draw. Uncle Tommy in 5 will show his customary early speed and doesn’t mind getting his hands dirty in finding a spot. It’s also important to note that although Fire Lighter went 5.40 to the mark last week, he was never fool proof out of the boxes at Wentworth Park. He’s been a big drifter and the map would have much to do with that.

There are three dogs outside of those two who I think can run a big race and they are Bergelmir (box 2), Uncle Tommy (box 5) and My Anarchy Boy (box 6). Bergelmir (pictured with trainer Jamie Marsh) was the recipient of a fortuitous run last week but he’s every chance of getting a similar run this week. He has been beginning much better and if he were to miss Kanan Stark early, he can run into the race from there.

Uncle Tommy (box 5) has the task ahead of him from the squeeze, but his character takes him a long way in races. You only have to look at his Perth Cup triumph when running down Frazier for proof of that. Boxed outside Fire Lighter, will he get close enough?

My Anarchy Boy is the longest of those three but was a good thing beat last week. His Mandurah Derby triumph was superb and is capable of bringing that form to Cannington. Needs luck but is a threat.

I could keep writing; this is such a good race. I have Sunset Frazier on top but is getting very short now. Looks a great race to play exotics.

Bet: #8 Sunset Frazier, play exotics around numbers 2,5,6,8.

Other Bets On The Card

Race 5 #2 Hippy Trail (place heavy)

Race 7 #4 Chobe Star

Race 8 #2 Penny Magic

Race 10 #2 Cadia Gold

Brett Honey’s WA Derby Heats Preview

We’re got the heats of the Group 2 WA Derby at Cannington this Saturday night. Brett Honey takes a close look at each race:

Race 4 WA Derby Heat 1 (520m)

The first of 4 rather intriguing heats of the Derby with the market settling on four key chances. Sunset Mirage (box 1) and Bergelmir (box 4) are the top 2 in betting and arguably would like to swap boxes. Sunset Mirage is flying and showed some ticker last week behind Sunset Frazier when finishing second. His map is sticky drawn outside Sunset Nightjar and Apple Crumble. Bergelmir’s lack of early speed will play into his favour here. He wants the rail and is a different dog when finding it. If he can miss it and flop to the rail, something will have to give with speed in boxes 1 through to 3. The last time he found the rail at Cannington was three back when going 29.69 and defeating Wise Barra.

My Anarchy Boy (box 8) returns to Cannington after a brilliant Mandurah Derby triumph. His challenge is to bring that form to headquarters and whilst he is quite effective from outside draws, I’m concerned he may get posted wide here with not only the speed on the inside, but Cadia Gold in 7 as well. I’m more than happy to risk Sunset Nightjar (box 2). On a night when they were running time, he only went 30.19 when winning last week and is no certainty to lead with Apple Crumble next door.

I think the race sets up nicely for Bergelmir and he runs the times to win this race comfortably.

Bet: #4 Bergelmir

 

Race 5 WA Derby Heat 2 (520m)

The second heat of the Derby looks a tap-in for Sunset Frazier on paper. He was runner up in the Sandgroper three back and won last week in a blistering 29.64. It typically doesn’t matter where he draws but I do have a few questions about what is drawn around him. Kanan Stark in 7 can begin well off the mat and wants to head left out of the boxes, whilst I’m expecting Comfortably Numb in five to hold his line early and show some speed. Sunset Frazier probably just wins but there are a few seeds of doubt.

So if he doesn’t win, who does? Toad and Sunset Pepe have drawn well in boxes one and two, but their recent starts have been disappointing and I think Molfetta Cruise in 4 is better suited at Mandurah. All About Rock (box 8) likely starts around 50/1 but brings some decent Mandurah form and is the only run on dog in the race. A few of these will throw the toys out of the cot when they don’t lead, and it wouldn’t shock me to see All About Rock run into the placings. He has beaten Sunset Comanche fair and square before. I’ll have a small place bet on him.

Bet: #8 All About Rock (place)

 

Race 6 WA Derby Heat 3 (520m)

Heat 3 in the Derby seemingly bills as a match race between Sunset Tyson (box 2) and Uncle Tommy (box 6). Sunset Tyson has a PB of 29.45 which suggests that if he leads it would be all over. However, he was disappointing late last week in going 30.00 behind Sunset Comanche and his run home was slower than Sunset Frazier’s. He may be open to improvement and the draw gives him little excuse. Perhaps I can look past last week.

Uncle Tommy (pictured) is the obvious danger, and he is all heart this bloke. He was run down by Runaway To Mars on Sandgroper night and has not been seen since. If he leads, expect him to go around the 29.90 mark and be hard to beat, although it is a tall order to cross Tyson when there’s no pressure around him.

West On Astro (box 2) and Gimli (box 7) are both capable and run the 520-trip strong. I’m concerned that one of the two favourites will sneak away here and with no third dividend, it is difficult to make a case each way.

I’m leaning towards Tyson, but he will need to sharpen up on last week.

Bet: #2 Sunset Tyson

 

Race 7 WA Derby Heat 4 520m

What do we do here? I think there is only three hopes in the final heat with Sunset Comanche (box 1), West On Boomer (box 3) and Fire Lighter (box 8) all presenting strong cases. Whilst he was the recipient of first turn fortune last week, Sunset Comanche was brilliant in making Sunset Tyson look second rate on his way to posting 29.68. If he sits close, there’s very few in the state that can hold him off. I do prefer Comanche with a bit of room, however if he can hold a position through the turn, look out.

West On Boomer is an odds-on chance to lead and he’s very capable when doing so. First up since the 13th of April is a concern because his lack of backend strength is what may bring him undone. With the no third dividend, he is an each-way price and if he leads, top 2 looks very appetising.

Fire Lighter has come to town from New South Wales and is in the capable hands of Paul Stuart. He brings very good form from Wentworth Park where he comfortably breaks 30 seconds and can handle a wide draw. First up Cannington is always a query.

Three genuine hopes. I’ll play the outsider of the three in West On Boomer. He may be a sitting duck late, but we can play him top-2 as well.

Bet: #3 West On Boomer (each-way)

Other Bets On The Card

Race 3 #2 Sunset Serengeti

Race 8 #6 Sandy Basa (each way)

Race 11 #5 Carter Axelrod

Multi: Race 3 #2 Sunset Comanche into Race 9 #4 Chobe Star into Race 10 #1 West On Nugget

Brett Honey’s Sandgroper Night Preview

Race 5 – The Sandgroper (520m)

What a race this is, seven Victorians and a West Australian do battle in what will be one of the strongest races ever contested in WA’s 50 year history. A worthy winner awaits.

Big Energy (box 1) is the favourite and if his first up win at Sandown in 29.15 wasn’t a statement, his trial in track record time certainly was. He’s clearly at the top of his game and box 1 gives him every opportunity. Or does it? He only began fairly at Sandown and more so mustered to find the front on that occasion. He also used a bit of the track and moved right out of box 3. Sunset Frazier has drawn box 3 and I expect him to begin better back at Cannington. Whilst Big Energy deserves favouritism, he will be certainly made to earn it if he does win.

Trooper Tears (box 7 – pictured) turned heads throughout the Perth Cup series and his wide running style clearly suits box 8. He won his Cup heat in 29.39 and importantly, clocked 5.40 to the first mark. If he can hold out Explicit in the early stages, he has the best map of any dog in the race and runs the time to win. He’s a huge show in this and has been priced rather generously.

I thought Morton (box 2) and Explicit (box 8) faired worst out of the draw. Morton has to deal with Big Energy moving up and will need a miracle to hold Sunset Frazier on his outside. Explicit will need to cross Trooper Tears immediately and his trial last Saturday night left a lot to be desired. He’s open to improvement off that but also needs to.

I wanted to find Mepunga Smokey (box 4) at a big price off his sensational Perth Cup run but I have too many concerns with Fernando Phil in box 5. Phil wants to move towards the rail quickly and I’m not sure Mepunga Smokey can hold him up. With any luck, he can make his presence felt.

Hector Fawley is the run-on dog in the race, however it is hard to know where he gets to from box 6.

Sunset Frazier (box 3) is the lone local and we know what this bloke is about; spear the lids and blow them off the track. I’m confident he will begin better back at Cannington, however I’m not sure if he can sneak away by enough to hold on. His achillies heel will always be his last section.

In what is a sensational 2ND edition of the Sandgroper, I’m backing Trooper Tears to use the outside draw to sit forward and go on with the job. He’s an each way price and you can play him as such. With a good beginning, he simply has too much in his favour and he has the talent in spades.

Bet: #7 Trooper Tears

Race 6 – The Sunchaser (520m)

A good edition of the Sunchaser where our leading sprinters in WA are racing for $15,000 to the winner. Uncle Tommy won the Perth Cup in gutsy fashion and showed those same qualities when running second behind West On Boomer in the Lew Dorsa Memorial. He finds a race without a stack on genuine early speed and will find it much easier to lead in this. That’s where he does his best work. West On Boonie (box 2) and Nangar Chief (box 8) are the run-on dogs in the race but backers of those dogs would like them to trade boxes. I’m not sure if they can get into the race quick enough to run down Uncle Tommy should he lead. Go Seek Kotoni (box 1) and Maximum Kuna (box 7) are the dogs capable of going with Tommy early, but their box manners have deserted them in recent weeks. Hinto (box 6) has to be respected on class alone.

Expecting Uncle Tommy to lead and win.

Bet: #4 Uncle Tommy

 

Other Bets On The Card

Race 1 #5 Dawn Of Time

Race 2 #7 Canya Bon Bon

Race 4 #8 Victory Road

Race 9 #7 Sunset Hornet

Race 10 #3 Midnight Kuna

Brett Honey’s Perth Cup and Galaxy Preview

Race 1: Perth Cup Consolation (Group 3, 520m)

The first feature on the card has thrown up an interesting field of early splitters, fast dogs with quirks and not many dogs well drawn. One dog who I do think is well drawn is Seriously Lush in box 7. Her run last week behind Uncle Tommy was full of merit where he gave her no peace early, yet she was able to come again late. She’s much better with room to operate and the speed in boxes 3,4,5 all want the rail. Sunset Serengeti in 8 won’t be involved in the early speed battle either. Her sections last week of 5.48 and 18.52 would see her leading this for a long way and she’s sneaky strong at the back end of her races.

Ghost Emoji (box 2) and Bergelmir (box 1) are the two fastest dogs in the race and deserve their spot in the market. Both dogs are far from the finished product however and will need to manage their way through the first bend to have a crack at the leaders late. At the $16/$4.25 for Seriously Lush, she’s one of my better plays on the card.

Bet: #7 Seriously Lush (each way) 

Race 2: Perth Cup 2nd Consolation (520m)

The second consolation throws up more questions than answers. Nearly every dog in the field runs a similar early split and finding the leader is even harder than finding the winner. Coulter Bale (Box 8) wanted to race wide last week where he didn’t get warm quick enough behind Uncle Tommy. He had the best first split of these last week but isn’t a reliable beginner. Daddy’s Girl (box 2) is drawn well down on the inside but hasn’t broken 5.60 to the first mark in 4 weeks. She is strong but it’s likely the leader of this field will be hard to run down.

For the sake of a tip, I’ll throw out Storm Alert from box 7. He’s only one in double figures at the time of writing but is drawn well up the track and comes out of a handy cup heat behind Mepunga Smokey. In an even bunch, happy to play the biggest price.

Bet: #7 Storm Alert (each way and very small) 

Race 4: Perth Cup (Group 1, 520m)

The big one, and this is one of the best Perth Cups in recent memory. Trooper Tears (box 1 – pictured with handler Luke Townsend) is the favourite and set the clock alight last week, going 29.39 when he led all the way. He went sharp right out of the boxes which immediately poses questions about the red for him. Historically he hasn’t done that at box rise and he may be more familiar with the track heading into this but when he is likely to be crossed by Sunset Frazier (box 6) early, it’s a big question at such a short quote.

I’m teaming up with Sunset Frazier in this. He’s a near certainty to lead and behind him is a very messy map for all concerned. Uncle Tommy likely takes care of Mepunga Shine early, then with Transponder (box 2) and Trooper Tears (box 1) wanting to duck off, does Frazier just run away with it up front?

I’ve put lines through Transponder, Mepunga Shine and Uncle Tommy. I can’t see them getting into winning positions. If you’re a Frazier fan, you’ll be nervous if Sneaky Emoji or Buddy Monelli get on his tail. But again, how do they get there?

Keeping it simple and backing the leader in the cup.

Bet: #6 Sunset Frazier

Race 7: The Galaxy (Group 1, 715m)

The second of the Group 1’s is equally as intriguing, purely because there is so much speed here. Boxes 2,4,6,8 all have realistic claims to lead this and two of those, Chloe Ant (box 4) and West On Boonie (box 6) posted the fastest times last week.

West On Boonie is drawn well off the track and is much better mustering around dogs, however he does have a concern with Argyle Queen in box 8. Simply, Boonie must negate her early and if he does, I think he can take over when they greet the judge the first time around.

The run-on dogs in the race are Jelly Monelli, Zipping Neutron and Savic in boxes 3,5, and 7. Jelly Monelli is the best drawn of those three and was one of only three dogs to break 42 seconds last week. She’s also the biggest price of those three mentioned as well. She has to be respected at the large each way quote.

Savic and Zipping Neutron are classy customers but will need luck from their draws.

Not a lot of confidence in this year’s Galaxy but will be playing around West On Boonie and Jelly Monelli.

Bet: #6 West On Boonie, small save #3 Jelli Monelli (each way)

Race 8: The Galaxy Consolation (715m)

I’m very keen on the prospects of Couch Surfer (box 5) in the Galaxy Consolation and we are getting a decent enough price as well. Boxes 1,3,4 all show good early speed and importantly, West On Nugget (box 1) is a mustering, wide running type. Couch Surfer isn’t stepping at the moment. He’s every chance to flop over to the rail and miss any potential traffic. He could be in front by half-way.

Much has been made of his recent form, but his middle section of 30.06 last week was only bettered in this by West On Nugget. It’s important to note that Nugget had to contend with far less speed in his heat last week, when compared to what is on his plate here.

Blessed Doll (box 2) will go around at cricket score odds but is a sneaky hope to run a place at $8+. She ran home nicely last week and a few of these will be put out of business if they cannot lead.

Confident this is the race for Couch Surfer to return to the winner’s list.

Bet: #5 Couch Surfer and small place bet #2 Blessed Doll 

Other bets on the card

Race 3 #3 Care Factor

Race 5 #2 West On Boomer

Race 10 #4 Girls Like You

Brett Honey’s Perth Cup and Galaxy Heat Night Preview

Race 1: Galaxy Heat 1 (715m)

The first heat of the Galaxy kicks us off and it’s an even betting affair to start. Couch Surfer for much of 2023 was the dominant stayer in WA and took out the Christmas Gift over this distance. His form coming into this series has been well below his best, beaten in his last 6 starts. Whilst his effort in the Galaxy prelude was an improvement where he had no luck, box 8 makes him a risky proposition at the sub-$3 quote.

I thought the effort of Chloe Ant was very good behind Flying Freda, running 42.29. It was her second consecutive start over this distance and improved her run home sectional sharply. Box 1 is perfect for her and can go with Hurricane Taylor (box 4) early here. She looks ready to show her best.

Bet: #1 Chloe Ant 

Race 2: Perth Cup Heat 1 (520m)

Heat 1 of the Cup sees the exciting Mepunga Smokey (box 4) come to town who two back won an Australian Cup semi-final in a hot 29.70 at the Meadows. He runs a nice straight line and has no problems going past a dog. He commands respect and is clearly the one to beat.

He does run into talented local Sunset Pepe (box 7) who is blessed with brilliant early speed and had a nice tune up at Mandurah last Sunday, going 26.93. His start prior was full of merit behind Sunset Frazier. If he leads here, he can give some cheek.

Although his form doesn’t read well, Solidified from box 2 is capable of sharp improvement from the inside draw. He has a wide runner outside and a slow beginner on his inside, aiding the cause.

No bet 

Race 3: Perth Cup Heat 2 (520M)

It doesn’t get a lot easier in this race. Transponder (box 7) comes across and brings strong form lines with him. He has early speed and a commanding record off the outside but is not foolproof out of the boxes. He will be hard to beat if stepping but has come up a short quote for a dog who needs to get it right early and is yet to see the track under race conditions.

Kryptonite has had some early support and despite the steep incline in grade, has proven he can run time and has begun beautifully his last two starts. He’s posted 5.43 and 5.44 in his two most recent outings and last start won in 29.78. He runs a straight line so box 5 is no issue. He’s a big chance to sneak away with this. I found it hard to find anything outside those two.

Bet: Small win #5 Kryptonite 

Race 4: Galaxy Heat 2 (715m)

Sensational heat of the Galaxy. The decision to take West On Boonie to the Galaxy by Chris Halse is a brilliant one and he put the writing on the wall coming from well back to post a blistering 34.40 over the 600 last week in a good field. Over the 715 metres he’s a massive chance to lead and he is a very fast dog. Every chance to break their hearts mid-race and be off and gone.

Savic (box 6 – PICTURED) is in perfect shape to tackle the Galaxy after impressive wins his last two. He went 41.96 in a classy win last start and time wise, that’s been the benchmark this year. Box 6 is the main concern and where he finds himself early on. Pearly Tears (box 7) and Zinzan Chopper (box 2) are capable, but I’m leaning to the dogs with strong Cannington form in this.

Bet: #1 West On Boonie 

Race 5: Perth Cup Heat 3 (520m)

There’s a few questions here. Trooper Tears scorched the clock in a trial last week going 29.48. The first section of 5.45 looks good but hardly matches his prior Victoria form. With Kanan Stark in 7 capable of pouring the pressure on early, he poses a risk early doors.

I thought Nangar Chief (box 2) warranted consideration from an inside draw. He’s won at Free-For-All level and was very good last week despite being beaten by West On Boonie over 600. The pace is concentrated out wide in this race and he could be presented with a nice rails run. Hoping for a drift and we may be able to play him each way, heavier the place.

Bet: #2 Nangar Chief (each way, place heavy if possible)

Race 6: Perth Cup Heat 4 (520m)

This is a cracker. We see the return of last year’s cup winner Elite Machine who’s first up since November. He typically handles wide draws well and is certainly a threat if near his best. He is an unknown this year, however. Excitement machine Sunset Frazier (box 6) is a short odds favourite to lead this race. He owns the second sectional record of 18.01 after his Puppy Classic win two back and backed that up by winning the Perth Cup prelude in 29.84 last week. He does get tired late, but if you want to back the leader, he’s your man.

Madigan (box 8) is the X factor here and was superb winning in 22.20 over 400 last start at Mandurah. He’s won 4 from 6 out of box 8 and has a good record over further. He’ll be naturally strong over 520 and if he can lob close enough to Frazier up the back, he’s a chance of getting over the top.

Bet: #8 Madigan (each way)

Race 7: Galaxy Heat 3 (715m)

This preview is getting long enough already so we’ll keep this short. If Flying Freda begins well, she wins. I thought the only other chance was Cawbourne Roses (box 3) who I like being first up over 715 in the heats and can make her move up the back straight. The inside draw suits her as well.

No bet 

Race 8: Perth Cup Heat 5 (520m)

Mepunga Shine (box 8) ticks many boxes in this race. He’s fast, loves box 8, there’s no pace in 7 and Canya Cracken in box 6 wants to go left. He only needs to begin well, and his class should take care of the rest.

I thought the main danger to Mepunga Shine was the greyhound who may give him the run over in Canya Cracken. He was good last week running 29.83 and posted 5.45 to the first mark. If leading, he can run a big race.

Bet: #8 Mepunga Shine

Race 9: Galaxy Heat 4 (715m)

Last chance to qualify and I’m very keen on the prospects of Xylan Bale in box 2. He was good last week in the Galaxy prelude, going 42.34 in his first start at Cannington. He was well back and worked home nicely. There’s no speed in 1 and Argyle Queen in three runs a straight line. That along with the 6-dog field allows him to settle closer. He’s a big each way chance.

Sunset Louie, West On Nugget and Zipping Neutron dominate the betting and are all very capable. West On Nugget went 42.16 first try when he was first stepped up to this distance and a similar tactic has been applied here. My main concern is the last 50 metres of the race for him. Sunset Louie has been good his last two, the box is his biggest concern.

Bet: #2 Xylan Bale (each way)

Race 10: Perth Cup Heat 6 (520m)

An all-local heat of the cup where the favourite Barbeque Man (box 8) finds himself in what really is a City Grade 5. He was impressive first up beating a handy field in 29.74 before missing the start last week and bumping with the running rail. If he has come through that ok, he looks hard to beat here.

Curate’s Egg (box 3) and Vandar Harley (box 1) looks to be his main rivals in this. Curate’s Egg was good last week behind Sunset Tyson and ran solid time. Vander Harley was very close to leading last week and will appreciate the red. He’s strong to the line and can run a placing at least. At the prices, we’ll go that way.

Bet: #1 Vander Harley (each way, heavier the place)

Race 11: Perth Cup Heat 7 (520m)

The penultimate and I’m keen to play a couple at each way prices. Hinto (box 2) has been a wonderful campaigner for team Robartson and it’s hard not to love him. Last week he didn’t look himself however and in a good heat, he looks under the odds at even money.

Coulter Bale (box 3) and Carter Axelrod (box 8) tick boxes here. Coulter Bale trialled here in 29.81 before running on nicely from an unsuitable draw last week in the Cup Prelude. He ran home in 11.21 and with a wide runner boxed outside him, he can find a stalking position and storm home late. Cater Axelrod is also drawn where he wants to be out wide and is has honest as they come. Uncle Tommy in six can make the race for him and at double figures, can run into the placings.

Bet: #3 Coulter Bale and #8 Carter Axelrod (both each way, heavier the place) 

Race 12: Perth Cup Heat 8

The lucky last and we will need luck to the find the winner here. Sunset Tyson (box 4) is very fast and warrants favouritism. Whilst he has enviable muster, he can be tardy off the mat and with plenty of pace parked in the inside three boxes, he can’t afford to make too many mistakes. Buddy Monelli is the other in the market and brings solid eastern state form lines. He runs good time and can improve off his trial. Box 7 is the main concern.

No bet

Group 2 Birthday Cup Runner-By-Runner

Brett Honey takes a detailed look at each runner in tonight’s Group 2 Birthday Cup (400m) at Mandurah.

Box 1: West On Boonie (Chris Halse)

West On Boonie did what he had to do in his heat and was able to score in 22.32. Box 8 was certainly his friend last week as it allowed him to wind up out wide and be on the scene early. While box 1 is what 95% of connections would be hoping for in a 400-metre final, I have serious concerns about the cherry for Boonie. With more early speed in the final, Boonie won’t be afforded the room he had last week and he’s certainly more comfortable going around dogs. It’s hard to rule him out, but he will need luck.

Box 2: Renegade Cochise (Cosi Dagostino)

What a recruit this bloke has been for Cosi. Since arriving in WA Renegade Cochise has sizzled through the grades and is an undefeated 6 for 6 over this distance at Mandurah. He’s typically tardy off the mat but has a turn of foot few can match in the state once he gets going. He sorted those box manners last week and clocked the fastest first section of the meeting (6.08). He will need to produce a similar effort if he is to lead this week and he needs to lead to win. All Over Kaja in three runs a straight line so he may get some of that room he needs. He runs the time, he’s a huge threat, but he must step to win the Birthday Cup.

Box 3: All Over Kaja (Lewis Clay)

All Over Kaja made it look easy in his heat, posting a slippery 22.07 in winning his way through to the final. He had box 7 and you could see on the head-on shot how much he enjoyed it out there, where he was able to take his time to cross before putting his opposition away. Kaja has been competitive without winning against Crumble Monelli in recent months but I don’t think the draw has helped him one bit in turning the tables. Boxed between Renegade Cochise and Crumble, he’s unlikely to get any peace early and will need his best first split to lead here. If he did manage to sneak away in front, he’d be very hard to run down.

Box 4: Crumble Monelli (David Hobby)

The reigning champ (pictured)  is simply made for this track and trip and is undefeated through four starts over the new 400m starting point. He can be hit and miss early but his superior muster sees him lead most of his races and is aided by the fact that there is not as much speed boxed outside him compared with those drawn below. If he can beat out All Over Kaja in three, his map looks fine and that makes him easily the hardest to beat. He’s the best dog in the race and those who like him are getting a reasonable enough price to find out.

Box 5: Cubit Monelli (David Hobby)

This is the acid test. Cubit Monelli has turned heads at both Mandurah and Cannington, and is responsible for some of the quickest times at either circuit over the last twelve months. After having to do some work early in his heat, he quickly put pain to his rivals to run 22.00, the fastest of the six heats. He has his quirks and has plenty to learn, but he brings the X Factor to this final. He will need to do better than 6.30 early (his first split last week) to find himself a strong position in running and has a railer drawn outside him in Go Seek Kotoni. The others will be very nervous if he managed to land in the first couple.

Box 6: Go Seek Kotoni (Damien Crudeli)

Go Seek Kotoni was game in his heat last week, making plenty of ground on Renegade Cochise in the concluding stages to only go down by ¾ of a length. His time of 22.16 bettered two of the heat winners as well. His best work clearly comes from the inside and box 6 gives him no favours in this. He will struggle to find the rail early enough here and in the likely event he doesn’t cross, the map looks poor. I think the box gets him beat.

Box 7: No Limit Needed (Christine Robartson)

No Limit Needed has been a wonderful campaigner for team Robartson and whilst she’s taken a while to find her best since returning, she’s timed it very well to make this final. She was afforded room to operate when winning her heat from box 2 last week and was too strong for her rivals late. Box 7 isn’t her go and there is far more speed in this race which makes her task very difficult. She is aided by Kotoni in 6 working to the fence and Barrio Beast outside her who isn’t known for early dash. This might be a stretch too far, but it wouldn’t shock to see her run on.

Box 8: Barrio Beast (Lewis Clay)

The Beast found his best last week and after being moderately away, served it right up to Crumble Monelli, qualifying in 22.17. Box 1 certainly helped, but his record from outside draws is far from hopeless. He will be relying on some trouble up front to keep in touch early, but his 10.58 run home last week suggests he will be one of the stronger ones late. He can hit the frame at a big price but will need luck to win.

The Verdict: Crumble Monelli

I’m happy enough to be with the favourite in a sensational edition of the Birthday Cup. He’s the best 400 metre dog in the race and just needs to beat out All Over Kaja for his map to look very manageable. They won’t catch him if he leads. Like the rest of the field, he will need to do everything right but he’s clearly on top for me. If you’re playing exotics, keep No Limit Needed and Barrio Beast safe, I can see one of those two hitting the frame with some luck out wide.

Mandurah Cup Runner By Runner

Brett Honey takes an in-depth look at all the runners for tonight’s Mandurah Cup.

Box 1 Sand Patch (Darryl Smith)

Sand Patch hasn’t missed a place in nine starts and has had a wonderful start to her career for trainer Darryl Smith. Her PB of 29.83 over 520m at Cannington puts her right in this and she was very good in her heat last week. From box 6 she found herself well back but made decent ground throughout the race. She also has a blistering 21.57 to her name over 380m at Cannington, which was from box 1 on a bend start, similar to where she finds herself tonight. She will need to lead to win but her best early split gives her a chance to do that.

Box 2 Crumble Monelli (David Hobby)

Crumble Monelli up until last week had been well below his best but it’s amazing how box 1 can change fortunes. He was able to find the arm in his heat before eventually being run down by King Tommy. His time of 27.14 is the second fastest at Mandurah to date and he is a chance to break the line and prove very difficult to catch. He is a mustering type and will have to contend with Sand Patch and Nangar Bubbles, both who are very capable early, to find the lead. The inaugural Sandgroper winner’s Mandurah Cup tilt will be decided in the first 20 metres.

Box 3 Hinto (Christine Robartson)

You’ve just got to love Hinto. He’s chases hard, he’s very good in a field and he cashes in when he gets an opportunity. He’s done just that in his two starts at the new Mandurah circuit and whilst there is a stack of speed around him his versatility makes him an undeniable chance. There’s a world where he gets a beautiful run on the fence with boxes 1,2,4 going forward from the inside division. He does run the risk of one breaking the line and the margin being a bridge too far but it would be no surprise to see the 2022 Derby winner run into the placings.

Box 4 Nangar Bubbles (Sean Kavanagh)

I’ve got a lot of time for this girl. Sean Kavanagh has done a wonderful job with Nangar Bubbles and she showed some ticker to get the job done last week. She was taken off the track before gathering herself and was able to hold off some talented types including Solidified. She’s capable of a fast beginning and middle draws cause her no concern as she likes to race mid track. At $8-9, she looks a good bet to find the front and her 29.88 run at Cannington three back suggests she will prove hard to catch.

Box 5 Runaway To Mars (Krystal Shinners)

Runaway To Mars has three wins and a further two placings from his last six starts and has got his hands dirty of a few of those occasions. The knock on Runaway To Mars early in his career was that he was lead or bust but recent efforts have clearly shown he can produce from off the arm as well. Whilst he was no certainty to win, he was squeezed up for room in the straight when running second to Canya Mia last week and still ran 27.39 in defeat. His draw looks horrific here, however. With the speed battle on inside, plus Canya Mia having her say early from box 7, I struggle to see Runaway To Mars finding a good position in this race and for that reason I’m prepared to take him on.

Box 6 King Tommy (Chris Halse)

What a dog! King Tommy (pictured) has a chance to become the king of WA by taking out this superb edition of the Mandurah Cup but be assured, he will be made to earn every bit of it. He was simply superb last week posting a new track record, albeit two weeks into the new track, running 27.10 and reeling in Crumble Monelli as if he was a grade 5 country dog. He’s proven to be very good in a field and is by far the fastest dog in the race.

With all that said, they really tried to give him the worst draw possible. I have no idea where he gets to and he is a chance to cop the back end of any trouble. I couldn’t back him but you would be stupid to make a huge book around him. Let’s see what he is made of.

Box 7 Canya Mia (Andrew McLaren)

New track, new Canya Mia. She was a shell of herself at Cannington but has hit the ground running at Mandurah, running a gutsy second behind Hinto two back before taking out her heat in 27.35. Her first section last week was only bettered by Crumble and box 7 is suitable for her. She’s the outsider of the field but there are far worse double figure shots on this card than Canya Mia. She is a sneaky chance to cross and lead and it wouldn’t shock to see her improve timewise. Smokey’s hope and a must for exotics.

Box 8 Solidified (Krystal Shinners)

Solidified has been a model of consistency in recent months and went 27.61 behind Nangar Bubbles from this draw last week. Prior to that his form had been over 600 at Cannington where his early speed put him into the race. Whilst he handles wide draws fine, box 8 makes his task in the cup rather difficult. He is likely to find himself posted wide unless he can get a cart into the race from Canya Mia. Luck required.

The Verdict

King Tommy should be favourite and only bad luck beats him but his draw has certainly brought that possibility forward. I’ll be having small bets on #4 Nangar Bubbles and #7 Canya Mia. I’m hoping either of those two can find the lead and with so much pace in the race there could be some trouble as a result. They are both priced well enough to have spec in what is a brilliant edition of the Mandurah Cup.

 

Brett Honey’s Canning Show Cup Night Preview

Race 1 – Maiden 520m

With a wonderful card of racing to follow, I won’t be spending any of my hard earned on this maiden. Best of luck to all connections.

Race 2 – Free For All 520m

A small but select field of five do battle in this week’s Free For All (FFA), where Runaway To Mars (box 2) is an odds-on favourite with TABtouch. He was gutsy last week handling Canya Mia early and then holding off the talented Inside Scoop. His big concern is the speedy Carlecatup inside him this week and she will be a lot stronger through the bend then Canya Mia was last week.

I thought there was an opportunity for a strong dog to arrive on the scene late and the $13/$4 about Super Charge (box 4) is very appealing. Super Charge was a nice performance last week, only missing by a head to King Tommy which is as good a form reference as you can get. The small field suits him, where he can track up behind Carlecatup and Runaway To Mars and he’ll be right there turning for home. Looks a wonderful place heavy bet.

Bet: #4 Super Charge (each way, heavier the place)

Race 3 – Young Stars Classic Heat 1

First heat of the young stars and there’s more questions than answers on a few in the market here. Cubit Monelli (box 3) and Inside Scoop (box 7) are the fastest dogs in the race but their last start efforts have me concerned.

Cubit Monelli will be first up for a few weeks after losing some concentration last start when not leading. He also has all sorts of problems at box rise with the fence crashing Kanan Stark (box 4) drawn to his outside.

Inside Scoop really should have won from where he was last week. It’s safe to say he threw it away but in saying that, there’s no Runaway To Mars here and looks the class runner.

Nanger Bubbles is also first up and drawn beautifully in box 8. She’s a wide runner with superb muster and I trust she will be ready to go first up. She can break 30 and in front is where you want to be in this race. She’s where my money is going.

Bet: #8 Nangar Bubbles

Race 4 – Young Stars Classic Heat 2

This is tricky. Lil Bit Twisted is having his first go over 520 metres after notching his ninth win from as many starts last Friday. Does he run the trip? I honestly don’t know. With his style, he will need to lead to be a winning chance and he must jump clear of Flying Freda (box 7), who is back on the scene after trialling 29.80 last week.

Disco Daisy is well drawn here in box 4. She’s a listed winner against the older dogs and is well suited with a vacant box on her outside. She is capable of breaking the line and was only beaten one and half lengths by Inside Scoop two starts ago. I’m leaning towards her but would like her price to start with a 4 before jumping on board.

Bet: #4 Disco Daisy (hoping for a drift)

Race 5 – Young Stars Classic Heat 3

No real confidence in this race. Monkey Emoji (box 7) runs the times required and has a fence crasher drawn inside him. His main concern is his box manners from the wide draw but if he gets it right early, he’ll be the one to beat. I thought Speedy Willow (box 1) could spear out to lead but I cannot in any way entertain the $3.50. Happy to stay out here. Numbers 1,2,7 for the quaddie.

Race 6 – Young Stars Classic Heat 4

West On Boonie (box 8) is the class runner and should be handling his business from the outside. His trophy cabinet is quite full already and from outside draws (6-8), he’s recorded 5 wins from 7 starts. Boonie backers will be hoping Sunset Nightjar can give him a cart over because there is some pace in the race from the likes of Spanner, Sunset Mirage and Starlight Panama.

He’ll be a leg of a few multi’s on the night at even money. He only beats himself.

Bet: #8 West On Boonie

Race 7 – Young Stars Classic Heat 5

Looking forward to the early speed battle between Rare Speed (box 1) and First Look (box 6). Rare Speed has no real pace boxed around him and First Look has a similar map from the outside, where he’ll have every opportunity to produce his 5.47 first split. Outside of those, there’s a few in this race that would need to lead to win and look unlikely to get it.

One of those not in that category is Starlight Ariel (box 3). She’s coming back from a start over 600 metres and prior to that, had produced some handy run homes over 520. If she can cross Ziggy Boom (box 2) early, she could get a lovely rails run here and looks a great place bet at $3.20. If Rare Speed and First Look undo each other up front, she may even get over the top.

Bet: #3 Starlight Ariel (each way, place heavy)

Race 8 – Young Stars Classic Heat 6

Bunji Man finally draws inside again and only has to hold out West On Boomer (box 6) to find the front here. He’s a 29.75 dog when finding the arm and has been priced accordingly at a touch longer than even money. He’s certainly the one to beat.

Jami Keeping (box 8) has a surprisingly good record from outside draws and whilst never running time over this distance, has been racing well over 600. If Bunji Man was to make a mistake, she looks the immediate danger.

Not overly keen to bet with Bunji Man so short.

No Bet

Race 9 – Canning Show Cup 600m

The main event and we have a very competitive market here. King Tommy (box 2 – pictured) is the favourite and will take a stack of beating. I do have questions about him on a bend start however and his backers will be hoping he flops out early and makes his run through the middle.

I’m quite keen on Solidified’s (box 1) chances from the inside draw. The last three feature races over this distance have been won by dogs who are leaders/early splitters who can run the trip. I speak of dogs such as Quick Smart, Amplified and Rostered Off. Solidified ticks those boxes and was very good from an unsuitable draw last week. Once he found the rail he was very impressive and still went 34.89. I think he can go quicker from box 1.

Please, please keep Cawbourne Roses (box 6) safe in all exotics. She is airborne and has had zero luck in her two return runs. Box 6 doesn’t help her winning chances but could be a nice place bet at $3.20.

Bet: #1 Solidified

Race 10 – Free For All 715m

Clifton Cruz looks the class runner in the absence of Couch Surfer, but I don’t think he is anywhere near his top. He has also had some chances from outside draws against similar company in recent months and got himself beaten.

The money has come early for Disco Trixie (box 2) and looks the main danger. She was a shade disappointing last week, therefore it will be interesting to see what she does here. I have trust issues with most of this field. Not for me this race.

No bet

Race 11 – Grade 5 600m

Sunset Louie (box 2) only has to avoid Tessa Nature on his inside to be a massive threat in this provincial middle-distance race. He returned to 600m racing three starts ago and won in 34.75 from box 1. That’s definitely winning this race when Fortified Mack (box 6) is probably the only other in the field that could match that time, and she has her own issues being boxed inside Penny Magic (box 8).

Miss Ronnie Mac had a good stint over this trip, and ran some nice times in doing so, but has found the step up in grade challenging. Penny Magic is the only other chance if she were able to cross. Sunset Louie is the only one I could contemplate backing.

Bet: #2 Sunset Louie

Race 12 – Grade 5 520m

I really like Sand Patch (box 7). She knocked off Inside Scoop two starts ago and whilst Scoop returned the favour the second time around, Sand Patch still went 29.84 in defeat. I don’t see an issue from box 7. Whilst Seriously Lush in 6 has early speed, she will be no match for Sand Patch through the bend and it should be game, set, match from there.

Once small concern is that she was scratched on the 21st of October but Darryl Smith has a brilliant strike rate and has always been very particular with nominating his greyhounds. Hopefully Sandy will be the icing on the cake, rather than a blast out come Race 12 Saturday.

Bet: #7 Sand Patch

ELITE MACHINE BACK ON TRACK THIS SATURDAY

Star chaser Elite Machine returns to racing on Saturday night when he contests the 520m Free To All at Cannington.

The multiple group 1 winner hasn’t been sighted since the end of July but trainer Jamie Marsh is happy with the Elite Machine’s preparation, even though he indicated that the greyhound isn’t likely to be at his absolute peak for his first start back.

“He’s been trialling super since he’s been back but he’s probably a week or so underdone going into Saturday night,” Marsh said of Elite Machine.

Marsh also noted at Elite Machine has been winless at Cannington since he fell in the final of the Winter Cup in June.

While the dog subsequently travelled to Queensland and claimed the Brisbane Cup, he got beaten in two starts back at Cannington after that victory.

“(That fall) is always in the back of our minds… but since he’s returned to work we can’t fault any of his trials.”

“We are looking forward to seeing what he can do this weekend.”

The timing of Elite Machine’s comeback is ideal as he will get a run or two under his belt before the Group 2 All Stars Sprint series kicks off on 14 October.

Elite Machine goes around in Race 4, the Sign Strategy Call Phil 520m Free To All, which is scheduled for 8.08pm on Saturday.