Saturday 15th August Washup: What Did We Learn?

It was a tough late-winter day for punters at Caulfield, with double figure chances taking out two of the three Group events, a puzzling P.B. Lawrence moving forward, though we may have seen a star in the last…

The Vain Stakes (1100m)

The Snowdens’ Rulership was all the rage in betting, firming from $3.10 and jumping at $2.40, with punters obviously impressed with his map and how the track was favouring those in the forward half of the field.

The Blue Diamond Prelude winner was grabbed by ranting about 200m out, but the Corstens’ colt couldn’t make it 2/2 for viral text message tips for the week, being swamped by winner Our Playboy, who motored wide without cover the trip.

Hydro Star was plain but never really had a chance, swinging into the straight last and 7-wide, and having to deal with the worst part of the track.

The Quezette (1100m)

Most people in the racing world recognise Damien Oliver as one of the best (if not the best) jockeys going around, but filly Parlophone obviously doesn’t like his work, attempting to buck the champion rider all three times he’s had the ride on her.

She did so again on Saturday, last out of the gates and never having a chance with so many lengths to make up. Bella Nipotina jumped well and was given a great ride from Michael Rodd, and she did it easily in the end.

Agreeable and Aquagirl had merit in their runs and look like you could follow them, but this crop of fillies isn’t very exciting overall.

The Regal Roller (1200m)

Mark Zahra has given Viridine an absolute peach here, in what was probably ride of the day. It was an impressive win, beating the more classy returning runners with 62kg, with the winter fitness edge coming in handy.

Age Of Chivalry returned well and was only beaten by 0.1L, which bodes well for his spring. Begood Toya Mother was forced to lead, ran solidly, and will benefit from the pipe opener.

The P.B. Lawrence (1400m)

The P.B. Lawrence can always be a tough one for punters to bet into with confidence, seeing spring stars return fresh against seasoned, fit, winter types.

This year’s running was no exception, with the returning crop largely plain, including WA duo Arcadia Queen and Regal Power, as well as Mystic Journey. None impressed, though all should be given the benefit of doubt with far bigger fish to fry later in the spring.

Sircconi fought bravely and was unlucky to go down, with Savatiano getting the job done by 0.2L. Kings Will Dream ran on nicely to place, and will be right in play later in the spring over the mile and a half.

Pikey in the last… in Melbourne?!

Cult figure William Pike pulled out a trademark last gasp win in the shadows, something that punters are used to seeing out west.

Bob Peters said that Showmanship was the most forward of his three runners on the day, and he certainly wasn’t wrong, with the talented gelding having plenty of ground to make up in the worst part of the track. He never looked completely comfortable and still managed to win in style, and looks set for a big campaign.

Spring Types in Sydney

Hawkes sprinter Masked Crusader returned in good order, finishing second behind smart Godolphin mare Varda after a 12-week spell.

Favourite backers would no doubt be disappointed the easing $1.90 favourite couldn’t salute, but the run was full of merit, and with added fitness certainly looks set for a big spring assault.

Punters were enamoured with Farnan’s trial on Friday, but North Pacfic fired a warning shot in the Up And Coming Stakes (1300m), making light work of Smart Image, Yardstick and Holyfield. It was a massive sustained run, and this group of three-year-olds looks a fun crop to watch as they head to the Golden Rose (1400m) on September 26th.