2022 Doncaster Mile Runner By Runner Preview, Odds & Tips

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Fri 1st April 2022


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The Group 1 Doncaster Mile is, as its name suggests, a 1600m race worth $3m. Run at Royal Randwick, the handicap feature is regarded as Australia’s best mile race, and is the headliner on day one of ‘The Championships’.

First run way back in 1866, the Doncaster is a race rich in history and has been won by some of the best thoroughbreds to step hoof on turf. From Winx, More Joyous and Sunline in recent years, to Super Impose, Gunsynd, and Tobin Bronze, the list goes on and on. Last year’s winner Cascadian lines up again here, to try and make it back-to-back wins in the race.

As we look at the market for this year’s ‘Donny’, Dabble has in-form mare Forbidden Love favourite at $4.60, ahead of Golden Eagle winner I’m Thunderstruck at $5.00. At this stage 3YO Converge is the only other runner in single figures at $8.50.

However, we know with horse racing that anything can happen and a capacity field will greet the starter here. So, we have dissected each of the horses’ chances for you! Read on below to find our runner by runner preview of the 2022 Doncaster Mile along with The Shark’s best tips. 

1. Cascadian (18) – $26
Jockey – James McDonald 56kg
Trainer – James Cummings

Winner of this race last year, who is racing well this campaign. His last start 5th in the All Star Mile was very good, where he made up many lengths late in the race. Draws a bad gate, but will snag back anyway, and should be strong late.

2. I’m Thunderstruck (8) – $5.00

Jockey – Hugh Bowman 55.5kg
Trainer – Mick Price & Michael Kent Jnr

Golden Eagle winner last Spring, who hasn’t had much go his way this prep. Finished 2nd in the All Star Mile last start, where he made up good late ground, and should be suited here at Randwick. Has a good record in the wet, including a heavy track win, and looks one of the main chances from the good draw.

3. Private Eye (22) – $15

Jockey – Regan Bayliss 54kg
Trainer – Joseph Pride

Won the G1 Epsom Handicap last Spring at this track/distance. Two runs back this prep have been good in unsuitable races, and will appreciate the Randwick mile here. If he can overcome the horror draw, he’s a good chance here third up. 

4. Dalasan (5) – $41
Jockey – Chad Schofield 53.5kg
Trainer – Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas

Hasn’t done much since finishing 3rd in last year’s Epsom Handicap. Drawn a nice gate and usually races well at Randwick, but his two runs back this prep, both on heavy ground, have been fair and it’s hard to see him winning.

5. Lighthouse (23) – $16
Jockey – Damian Lane 53kg
Trainer – Ciaron Maher & David Eustace

In-form mare who was brilliant last start winning the G1 Coolmore Classic at Rosehill. Handles all conditions, but has a huge hurdle to overcome from gate 23. Hard to be confident from the draw, but she’s flying and would be a winning chance if she had drawn in closer. 

6. Laws Of Indices (4) – $31
Jockey – Tommy Berry 53kg
Trainer – Annabel Neasham

Former Irish galloper who ran well in the G1 George Ryder last start. Untried over a mile, and his wet form is hit and miss, but from the good gate he should get every chance. Not without a hope.

7. Ellsberg (6) – $14
Jockey – Tim Clark 52kg
Trainer – Gerald Ryan & Sterling Alexiou

Consistent horse who was just outgunned last start in the G2 Ajax Stakes. Finished a close 2nd in the G2 Villiers this track/distance last prep. Drawn well and loves the wet, and should be in it for a long way from the soft draw.

8. Inspirational Girl (19) – $26
Jockey – William Pike 51.5kg
Trainer – Danny O’Brien

Got back in a slowly run All Star Mile last start, and was good to the line. First go in Sydney (clockwise track), and first go on the heavy. No doubt she’s good enough, but from the wide gate, and with a few question marks here, it’s hard to put her on top.

9. Hungry Heart (11) – $61 – Scratched
Jockey – N/A 51.5kg
Trainer – Chris Waller

Not sighted since her first up run in the G2 Apollo Stakes, where she finished a nice 4th. Prefer her on top of the ground, which is why she hasn’t been at the races for 7 weeks, and unlikely to get favourable conditions again here.

10. Icebath (9) – $16
Jockey – Fred Kersley 51.5kg
Trainer – Brad Widdup

Runner up in this race last year, who ran ok in the All Star Mile last start. Likes the wet, draws well, and with 51.5kg on her back, is capable of returning to her best form here. Chance at odds.

11. Sky Lab (1) – $81
Jockey – Kathy O’Hara 51.5kg
Trainer – Paul Perry

Dropping back from a couple of G3 2000m runs, where she was just fair. Is a winner at the Randwick mile, and should be rock hard fit, but may need to find a few lengths on her recent efforts.

12. Kissonallforcheeks (7) – $26
Jockey – Alysha Collett 51kg
Trainer – Daniel Morton

WA mare who was brilliant last start in G3 company at Flemington, where she spaced her rivals. Wet track may be some concern, but from the good gate is capable of measuring up.

13. Numerian (2) – $71
Jockey – Robbie Dolan 51kg
Trainer – Annabel Neasham

Former Irish galloper who was good first up at Flemington in weaker grade. Has won in the heavy, but steps up in class here. Would like to see how he goes here.

14. Hilal (16) – $61 – Scratched
Jockey – Brock Ryan 50.5kg
Trainer – Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes

Talented colt who has been racing well this prep without a win. Finished 3rd in the G1 Randwick Guineas two back on heavy ground. A repeat of that would see him competitive here.

15. Brutality (17) – $23
Jockey – Jay Ford 50.5kg
Trainer – Joseph Pride

Beat a good field last prep in the G2 Villiers at this track/distance. Backs up from Monday’s Doncaster Prelude, where he ran ok. Drawn wide which makes it tricky, but loves the wet. Will be there abouts. 

16. Forbidden Love (14) – $4.60F
Jockey – Jamie Kah 50kg
Trainer – Richard & Michael Freedman

Last start G1 winning mare who is in a purple patch of form. Has made mincemeat of her rivals this prep, and is a deserved favourite here. Finished 7th in this race last year, but is going far better this time round, and relishes the wet. Will roll forward from the tricky alley, and has to be considered the one to beat.

17. Just Folk (10) – $21
Jockey – Dean Holland 50kg
Trainer – Josh Julius

Underrated gelding who was a good winner of the G2 Ajax Stakes last start. Prior to that wasn’t far away in the G1 CF Orr. Has won over a mile, and is unbeaten in the heavy. Don’t overlook.

18. Kiku (20) – $61
Jockey – Linda Meech 50kg
Trainer – Chris Waller

Just missed in Monday’s G2 Emancipation Stakes at Newcastle. Was good from the back prior to that in the G2 Ajax Stakes. Likes the wet and has a good record at the Randwick mile. Will find this harder, and draws wide, but can run into some minor prize money.

19. Mr Brightside (21) – $15
Jockey – Craig Williams 50kg
Trainer – Ben & JD Hayes

Lightly raced 4YO who has a good record and was good last start in the All Star Mile. Like many of these, the barrier doesn’t make his assignment any easier, but has to be respected on recent form.

20. Converge (3) – $8.50
Jockey – Rachel King 49.5kg
Trainer – Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott

Completely outclassed last start in the G1 Rosehill Guineas behind Anamoe. Drops back to the Randwick mile here, where he was brilliant winning the G1 Randwick Guineas two back. Drawn well, will be rock hard fit, likes the wet and has no weight on his back. Ticks a lot of boxes. 

21e. Bankers Choice (15) – $17
Jockey – Teodore Nugent 50kg
Trainer – Michael Moroney

Kiwi galloper who has been super in both Australian runs. Hit the line well last start in the G1 George Ryder, and should appreciate getting to the Randwick mile now. Stable is flying, and he has a good heavy track record. Will be more than competitive if he gets a run.

22e. King Magnus (12) – $91
Jockey – Brock Ryan 50kg
Trainer – Robbie Griffiths & Mathew de Kock

Cranbourne Cup winner who has found it hard to find form this prep. Looks unlikely this race will be the turning point, but he does love it wet.

23e. Ironclad (24) – $71 – Scratched 
Jockey – Linda Meech 50kg
Trainer – Will Clarken

Beat a good one first up in the Listed Matrice Stakes in Adelaide. Has a good record at the mile, but the wet track is a question mark. If the wet tracks doesn’t bring him unstuck, the outside gate might.

24e. Our Playboy (13) – $61
Jockey – N/A 50kg
Trainer – Mick Price & Michael Kent Jnr

Ran 2nd in Monday’s Doncaster Prelude at Newcastle. Loves the mile, and the wet, but looks unlikely he’ll gain a start here. If he does, he can measure up and figure in the finish.

Final Word

Well, what a race we have on our hands here. It’s not often the Doncaster field disappoints, and it’s certainly not the case again this year. Looks as though we will be on another heavy track, and that will certainly play into the hands of the favourite, Forbidden Love.

It’s hard to knock her form this prep, winning three on end, including two G1’s. The query would have to be whether or not she can run a strong mile in these conditions, but going off her last start George Ryder win, it seems she will have no trouble doing so.

I’m Thunderstruck looks as though a win is near after his last start 2nd in the All Star Mile. The Randwick mile should suit, and he’s drawn perfectly in gate 8.

The other runner in the market, Converge, is dropping back from 2000m last start, where he finished a brave 2nd to Anamoe. The mile looks more his go, and a repeat of his Randwick Guineas win, would see him hard to beat here.

Of the runners at odds, last year’s winner Cascadian was good from the back in the All Star Mile, and can finish strongly again here. Ellsberg is honest, and is drawn to get a nice run on speed. 

Icebath is capable of running an improved race under these conditions, as she did in last year’s Doncaster, and Just Folk was good winning the G2 Ajax last start, is unbeaten in the wet, and is also drawn well. If Bankers Choice gains a start, he is a big chance with 50kg on his back.

With 24 in-form horses and a wet track, this year’s Doncaster looks like a hard race to find the winner, let alone be confident about it. I’ve settled with I’m Thunderstruck. He’s drawn to get a good run behind the speed, is 1 for 1 on heavy ground, and on his day possesses a lethal turn of foot.

Bowman knows what it takes to win a Doncaster, after he won it in 2016 on the great mare, Winx, and he also knows this horse well. The duo won the Golden Eagle last Spring, and a repeat performance would see them very hard to beat again here.

Best Doncaster Mile Tip: 2. I’m Thunderstruck – Win ($5.00)
Next best: Quinella – 2, 7, 10 (cost $3 for 100%)
Doncaster Mile numbers: 2-7-10-21

If you need more news, information and tips, head over to our Doncaster Mile page for all your punting needs!

*Odds correct at time of writing, courtesy of Dabble.

Tom has had a passion for the racing industry from the time he could talk. Wether it was at school, on smoko or in his own spare time, he always had his head in the form guide.He has worked hands on in the industry for years for some of Australia’s most highly regarded trainers. As a track rider, he has put the polish on some of the best horse flesh to grace the turf in recent years including the grey flash, Chautauqua, Golden slipper winner, Mossfun and sprinter-turned-sire, Deep Field to name a few.Tom has recently hung up the boots to focus solely on his punting and tipping services. With the objective of finding plenty of winners and value in the marketplace, you’ll be sure to have a fat wallet following his feature race previews.