Aussie News - October 22
Star Kiwi mare Our Princess Tiffany dominates betting to make it two-from-two in this Aussie raid at Melton tomorrow (Friday) night.
Now in the care of Dean Braun, the mighty mare blitzed a similar field at Melton last week and should only be better suited by the stretch from 1720m to 2240m for this week’s Group 3 Angelique Club Pace.
It’s one of a string of features at Melton, including the two Tatlow Stakes’ for juveniles which are dominated by Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin.
Stewart has eight of the 13 (including the emergency) in the fillies’ race, headed by $1.85 favourite Ladies In Red from gate five.
Stewart and Tonkin have six of the 13 in the colts and geldings where Act Now is $2.15 favourite, but Major Moth ($7 into $3) and Beyond Delight ($5 into $4) have been well-backed.
There’s also been a big betting move in another of the Melton features with Mick Stanley’s Iolanta crunched from $9 into $2.30 from gate five in the Argent 3YO Fillies’ Classic.
Kiwi interest in that race sits with Victoria Oaks winner Dr Susan, but she’s got the task ahead as a $8.50 shot from outside the back row (gate 13).
Another highlight of the card will be the True Roman Trotters’ free-for-all where glamour mares Dance Craze (gate six, $2) and Red Hot Tooth (five, $2.80) dominate the betting.
X X X
It is the dream clash Aussie trotting fans have been waiting for.
The superbly-bred and brilliant Elite Stride taking on the history-making Pink Galahs and it happens for the first time in a heat of the Victoria Trotters’ Derby at Maryborough on Sunday.
Elite Stride heads into the race with 10 starts for nine wins, a second and some mesmerizing performances already under his belt.
But it was less than two week’s ago when Pink Galahs – who boasts 11 wins from 17 starts herself – upstaged Australia’s best open-aged trotters to win the Group 1 Bill Collins Sprint.
Despite that, Elite Stride will be a warm favourite on Sunday because of his stellar record and better barrier – he’s drawn three and Pink Galahs has gate five.
Some may have preferred they didn’t clash until the Derby final, but having them come together in the heat only adds to the intrigue of the final for mine.
The most fascinating runner by far in the other Derby heat is Tim Butt’s French import Holzarte Vedaquais.
The colt raced nine times in France for four wins and five placings and has the pole in by far the weaker of the two heats with Anthony Butt to drive.
He clocked good times when a 5.5m second to Elite Stride in a recent Melton trial.
NSW visitor Gimondi (gate four) and talented locals Cover Of Darkness (five) and Is That A Bid (three) look the other key runners.
X X X
The comeback of former Kiwi pin-up pacer Turn It Up continues at Albion Park on Saturday night.
There was so much to like about his late-surging third to Colt Thirty One after storming home from last at Albion Park two weeks ago.
That was his first outing for new trainer Vicki Rasmussen and his first start since winning the Harness Jewels 4YO final back on June 1, last year.
Turn It Up’s got the outside front row (gate seven) to overcome, but there’s no Colt Thirty One this week and he’s certain to be a lot sharper for that first-up run.
X X X
The clash of star stablemates Vampiro and Mighty Conqueror headlines the Gloucester Park card tomorrow (Friday) night.
Chicago Bull and Shockwave have the night off, so Vampiro, who ran a terrific third to that pair last week, gets his chance,
Vampiro, with Colin Brown to drive, gets the pole, looks the leader and is a $1.35 favourite.
Mighty Conqueror, just second-up from a long spell, has the outside draw (gate nine) to overcome and will probably still be improved by whatever he does this week.