2023 Surround Stakes Runner By Runner Preview, Odds & Tips

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Thu 23rd February 2023


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The three-year-old fillies take centre stage in the Group 1 Surround Stakes, which kicks off a feature race doubleheader at Royal Randwick on Saturday. Named in honour of the lone Cox Plate winning filly, Surround, the 1400m contest, now worth $600,000, has brought together a very strong line up, headed by Godolphins last start Group 2 winner, In Secret.

She’s currently a $2.10 chance with Dabble off the back of that win, with Zougotcha the only one within cooee of her in the market at $5.00. Lightly raced filly, Sunshine In Paris, is on the next line at $9.00 and rounds out those in single figures.

However, we know with horse racing that anything can happen and there’s a host of well performed fillies in this race outside the favourite. So, we have dissected each of the horses’ chances for you and provided our horse racing tips! Read on below to find our runner by runner preview of the 2023 Surround Stakes along with The Shark’s best tips. 

1. In Secret (4) – $2.10F
Jockey – Hugh Bowman 56kg
Trainer – James Cummings

Was a bit tardy into stride first up here at Randwick, but was aided by a cool ride by Nash Rawiller and proved too strong for her rivals in the Group 2 Light Fingers. Gets to 1400m second up here which looks ideal and has come up with a peach gate. Bowman goes on for Rawiller who is suspended which is not a huge loss, if any at all, and she looks the one to beat again.

2. Fireburn (13) – $18
Jockey – Brenton Avdulla 56kg
Trainer – Gary Portelli

Dual Group 1 winner as a two-year-old who resumed in the Light Fingers behind In Secret. She got back with cover on that occasion and made steady ground to the line. The extra furlong is a plus here and with natural improvement can figure somewhere in the finish again.

3. Zougotcha (11) – $5.00
Jockey – James McDonald 56kg
Trainer – Chris Waller

Talented filly who really hit her straps last prep, claiming two Group 2’s and the Group 1 Flight Stakes here at Randwick. She resumed last prep with a comfortable win over In Secret and has trialled up well in preparation for her resumption here. If she can get a bit of cover from the tricky draw she can pose a big danger to the favourite.

4. Madame Pommery (6) – $19
Jockey – Brett Prebble 56kg
Trainer – Chris Waller

Group 1 1000 Guineas winner who really attacked the line well first up behind In Secret. She ran Zougotcha to a half length second up last prep here at this track/ trip and she’s drawn favourably in barrier six. Looks great each-way value at the double figure odds.

5. Sheeza Belter (9) – $18
Jockey – William Pike 56kg
Trainer – Peter & Paul Snowden

Showed plenty of early speed first up in the Light Fingers and held on ok to finish midfield. Not sure they’ll adopt the same tactics in this but the step up in trip should certainly benefit her. Her Randwick record is of some concern but she has the ability to be competitive nonetheless.

6. North Star Lass (12) – $19
Jockey – Tim Clark 56kg
Trainer – Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott

Sat wide without cover first up in the Light Fingers and showed a bit of ticker to be beaten just under two lengths. She’s a winner second up and here at Randwick and will no doubt be sent forward early from the wide draw. If jockey Tim Clark can obtain a couple of easy sectionals mid race she’ll be in it for a long way.

7. Revolutionary Miss (7) – $23
Jockey – Kerrin McEvoy 56kg
Trainer – Peter & Paul Snowden

Got back and made some good late headway, despite not having the clearest of runs, first up in the Light Fingers. She’s always shown plenty of ability and that run hinted she may be back somewhere near her best. Should get a nice run from the draw and the 1400m is no issue. Overs.

8. Sunshine In Paris (3) – $9.00
Jockey – Ryan Maloney 56kg
Trainer – Annabel Neasham

Went from winning a BM78, to running In Secret to a neck last start in the Group 2 Light Fingers. Ultimately has to step up again here but has done nothing wrong in her short career to date. Drawn to get a cosy run behind the speed and Ryan Maloney has the benefit of having had a ride on her now. Not totally convinced she will run a strong 1400m but looks one of the main hopes on paper.

9. Cinderella Days (1) – $26
Jockey – Sam Clipperton 56kg
Trainer – Joseph Pride

Led and gave a huge sight last start in the Light Fingers, only to be run down late and beat 0.6L. Will be looking to adopt similar tactics here from the rails draw and will most likely look the winner again early in the straight. The last furlong will be her biggest test.

10. Wolverine (10) – $61
Jockey – Dylan Gibbons (a) 56kg
Trainer – Kris Lees

Former Kiwi filly who was placed in the Group 2 Tea Rose behind Zougotcha last prep. Resumed, like many of these did, in the Light Fingers where she was trapped wide and copped a check late in the race. Extra furlong will help here but she may need one more before we see her best.

11. Ruthless Dame (8) – $13
Jockey – Tyler Schiller (a) 56kg
Trainer – Ciaron Maher & David Eustace

Won two from two her first prep, including the Group 3 Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes at Flemington before an eye-catching first up run behind Jacquinot at Sandown. Fair to say she probably wins that race in another two strides and Jacquinot has since gone on to claim Group 1 victory against the older horses. Her recent trial at Rosehill was solid and she looks a key contender here.

12. A Lot More Love (2) – $41
Jockey – Regan Bayliss 56kg
Trainer – Gerald Ryan & Sterling Alexiou

Made some late ground in the Light Fingers first up after an eye-catching barrier trial. Step up to seven furlongs is a big plus and she’s been competitive against the likes of Golden Mile and Matcha Latte, which bodes well for this. Not sure where she ends up from the low draw, as she likes to get back, but with some luck can run on into a minor placing at big odds.

13. Razeta (5) – $41
Jockey – Chad Schofield 56kg
Trainer – Kris Lees

Got back and held her ground first up in the Light Fingers. Another who will appreciate the rise in trip and has come up with a good barrier. Only has to find a couple of lengths to be very competitive here and may represent some good value.

Final Word

Despite In Secret having a vice grip on the market, this year’s Surround Stakes looks a fairly even race. Only three lengths covered the majority of the field in the Group 2 Light Fingers, which is the key form reference here, and there were some tidy runs in that race.

One of those runs I speak of was Revolutionary Miss. She got back and made some good late ground, despite not having the clearest of paths late, to be beaten just 1.5L. That run suggested she has come back in good order and the 1400m suits from the good draw. She started $4.60 in the Group 1 Blue Diamond as a two-year-old, where was beaten a whisker and finished second in the Group 1 1000 Guineas last Spring. Suggest more a place bet but looks big overs.

In Secret the danger. She was slow out but still proved too strong in the Light Fingers, despite the narrow margin. She’s drawn sweetly here second up and ran second in the Group 1 Golden Rose at her only go at seven furlongs.

The Chris Waller trained Madame Pommery is another who looks good each-way value in this race. She also was good from the back first up in the Light Fingers and will appreciate the step up in trip.

Her stablemate, Zougotcha, resumes after an impressive preparation which saw her go three from three and take out the Group 1 Flight Stakes. She must be respected, as must Ruthless Dame who comes through different form lines and looks a good hope. She chased home Jacquinot in good style first up but comes into this second up off a long break which is a query.

Surround Stakes TipLogo

7. Revolutionary Miss – Each-way ($23/$5.00)

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*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.