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The Melbourne Review Mar 14

2 weeks ago

OVERVIEW

The verti draining process seemed to mediate any sort of bias or pattern and the track could not have played more fairly. There were some really good runs on the day that will point towards future winners - I think we need to follow quite a few from this card!

STAND OUT WINS

R2 GRAND PROMENADE: Tough, tough, tough - I hope the UK colts we've bought in the last two seasons come out as good as this bloke! He was headed by some margin by Reflect The Stars and I doubt Caulfield suited his style of racing but he just kept fighting and responding and found bucket loads over the last 250m. I loved the effort, he might be a very good stayer in the making.

R4 WESTERN SUN: I loved this win and this raw talent has more improvement to come on the face value and times of this performance. Even though the lead pack got a mid-race breather Western Sun had plenty of kick left when asked to go and win the race and win it he did - he blew this lot off the park and was soft late home in a very slick 400-200m section. He beat a filly with Group race form, I think we can trust the performance.

HORSES TO FOLLOW

R1 SKIDDAW (4th): This bloke was second-up and still in need of a run to tighten him up to race winning fitness but he performed really well. He was sitting up on a moderate tempo but he gave a good kick when asked, he just tired a little late over the last 150m. Typically we've seen him improve into a prep in the past, I expect more of the same this time around.

R5 SECRET BLAZE (2nd): The slow tempo set by the leaders in this race didn't make it easy for Secret Blaze but his times between the 600m-200m were very good and he was strong enough through the line chasing a winner which basically controlled the race from start to finish. He will be winning soon in similar grade.

R5 GALLIC CHEIFTAIN (7th):A bit of a hidden good run here. He was last and ridden up when the sprint went into the race and he struggled a little but was picking up late and was home in 11.97 which was the third fastest last 200m of the race and by a bare margin. The winkers/blinkers will be applied when he is ready to win, it could be as early as next start in something like an Easter Cup...

R6 STARDAYZ (7th): This filly is probably not up to a race like this but back to a BM70-78 3YO fillies or 3YO race she is more than capable of landing another win. Run off her legs early but was steaming up late and her action looked good.

R8 SCARLET DREAM (2nd): We all saw this mare charge up along the inside and nearly nab Guizot first-up. Best of the day closing splits as you can imagine and she was racing 400m short of her best winning distance range. She didn't come up in the spring but her 3YO campaign was very good, she might really hit form quickly as an autumn 4YO and I want to stay on the right side of her!

R8 GOLD FIELDS (5th): Gold Fields was second up into this race and he should be ready to rock and roll in a similar contest next time, ideally to G3 level so he can get some weight relief. He really struggles when he's up the top of the handicap but if he can somehow sneak into a decent race with 56-57kg's on his back he's going well enough to win. Weights are crucial with him!

R9 BATTLE STORM (7th): I had some mail that this horse might need the run and he certainly looked and raced that way. In saying that, he was very good under 62kg's and will be better for the outing, I think we can follow him with confidence second-up over 1000m-1100m in slightly better company.