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The Melbourne Review May 1

1 week ago

We raced at Sandown Hillside on Saturday and the track played to it's usual pattern - fair and even, perhaps a little advantage to be on or near the speed early in the day. We should see these races stand up to a degree in coming weeks. 

THE BEST WIN

DICE ROLL Race 5 Sandown

I was cautious about this French / HK import second-up off a very long break but all credit goes to trainer Nick Ryan who clearly had the horse in great form and nice and settled after that good fresh win at Caulfield. The market loved this bloke again, he was confidently backed and won as he liked - I know Ryan is eyeing off the Stradbroke, it's not the worst idea given the horse was G1 placed as a 3YO in France, keep an eye on him!

HORSES TO FOLLOW

1. GRAND PROMENADE (Sandown R4)

I'm a little surprised that the Maher - Eustace team didn't opt to back this bloke up into the Warrnambool Cup on Thursday but I suppose the lure of an automatic start through the Andrew Ramsdem is a pretty inviting prospect. John Allen had an absolute picnic in front here but the horse did carry top weight - I thought there was plenty of merit in the win, he'll get weight relief in the Ramsden too.

2. SIRCCONI (Sandown R5)

The old boy looked pretty round in the yard pre-race coming into the race fresh off a spell and only one jump out but he still ran really well here. He's obviously in to chase the Winter Championship, he might need another run before hitting winning form but he definitely goes into the book of horses to follow. 

3. NOVEMBER DREAMING (Sandown R6)

I'm going to give this mare one last chance this prep - although she drew an inside gate she never got the cover that she needs to perform to her best and was basically out in the breeze throughout. She was OK in the straight but you could tell she wasn't running truly enough, if she draws inside in a big field she could quickly turn her form around.

4. SPRING CHOICE (Sandown Race 8)

Troy Corstens was all about this horse getting to 2000m fourth run in so the fact that Spring Choice was able to snag this as a bit of an early prize is a great result for the horse and the team. He was dominant late in the race and if he holds together he should be able to win again out to 2000m.

5. APPROACH DISCREET (Sandown Race 8)

Coming through the same race as Spring Choice but not as fit as that horse was Approach Discreet who was described as being as fat as a pig first-up. He was really good fresh from the back of the field and then chimed in like a horse ready to win before he peaked at the 100m, stick with him third-up I would be surprised if he isn't winning a race like this.

THE MARKET SAID...

That QEYAADY (1st R1 $2.80 - $3.10) might be vulnerable stepping up in grade from its maiden win but the son of I Am Invincible made light work of that drift with a cozy all the way win thanks to a very good front running ride from Blaike McDougall. Keep an eye on Blaike over the winter months - he should be getting more rides in VIC during the off-season, he's a talent.