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We have studied the form from all races across the country for Saturday, February 26, and provided our best horse racing tips.
It has been one eye on the form guide, one eye on the weather bureau site for punters this week as torrential rain continues to hammer the greater portion of the eastern states.
Cancelled and postponed meetings are about the last thing punters or racing administrators need as the Autumn carnival ramps up but in an ironic twist of fate, it could be the ‘bleak city’ of Melbourne that saves the day.
A good track rating and a good forecast for a card that features three Group 1’s and six more stakes races is the highlight of the day whilst Sydney has two G1’s of its own although there has to be some question marks over that meeting going ahead let lone being completed given the forecast, so we are certainly looking for mudlarks there.
We have made five selections in total and are confident that we have found you some winners! So, read on below to find our best horse racing tips for this Saturday, February 26.
Caulfield, Race 1 – 5. Mars Mission ($3.20)
No doubt this is his toughest assignment to date but we think this promising colt is certainly up to stakes grade and quite possibly destined for greater honours.
MARS MISSION – successful ✅@HawkesRacing and @JyeMcNeil are building some partnership together! They combine with a very nice horse to win the Happy 95th Birthday Horace Gelder Handicap! #LoveTheValley pic.twitter.com/AyGTCzza8o
— Moonee Valley Racing Club (@TheValley) February 11, 2022
He has been bomb proof this time in and there is already considerable interest in this son of Deep Field as a stallion prospect.
Could not have been more impressive last start and he is drawn to suit in a small field here where McNeil stays on board. He’ll either be outside the lead or in the one out one back position here and we expect him to put them away convincingly when produced.
Caulfield, Race 4 – 3. Mokulua ($17/$3.90)
Not only does she dodge the heavy track in Sydney but she also dodges the likes of Espiona, Fangirl and Jamaea who will fight out the Group 1 Surround Stakes.
Obviously it was hard not to be impressed by Argentia’s win first up but she drew the extreme outside there and was jagged back last to come with one run on that occasion and whilst she gets the other end of the pineapple here, it may not be to her liking given her racing pattern.
With that in mind, we have looked for something to take her on, and this filly is already a winner against her own age and sex at Group 2 level and is impecabbly bred by champion sire Redoute’s Choice out of a Caulfield Cup placegetter.
They looked content to go back and find a horse to take them into the race first up and whilst getting on the back of Fangirl was the right move, she was left a little flat footed when she quickened over the 1200m and she had spent a little gas early in the run when she was quite keen in transit.
That Sydney form around that crack bunch of fillies is exceptional and it may well prove a master stroke by master horseman Clarry Conners to dodge them and target this Group 2.
Excellent each-way value.
Randwick, Race 5 – 9. Quantico ($4.40)
*This horse has since been scratched.*
If he was going around on a dry surface he would be very close to even money so we are rolling the dice here and hoping he gets through whatever you want to call the surface that we’ll see at Randwick Saturday if the forecast stays on point.
Plenty will be quick to judge him on the fact he’s never seen a heavy and is 0 from 2 on the soft but it is worth noting both of those runs came early in his career, and were the final runs of his campaign.
He’s not only a much more furnished individual now as he showed us last time in, but if his most recent trial is anything to go by, he is one of the country’s top sprinters and you would only need to look at the first up runs of stablemate Lost and Running and the Price fillie Jamaea who came out of that trial to founder that belief.
He’s got to get through the heavy ground, but so do the rest of them, and he’s the best horse in the race.
Caulfield, Race 6 – 1. I’m Thunderstruck ($4.00)
‘Moving day’ is a term professional golf fans are familiar with, and with the five million dollar All Star Mile just three weeks away, we are going to apply that logic here to this year’s Futurity Stakes.
Whilst this handsome son of Shocking has a long campaign ahead of him, you would certainly think connections, along with All Star Mile voters are going to want to see him put his best foot forward here.
The opportunity to secure the first #AllStarMile wildcard is on offer for 7/8 runners lining up in the G1 Futurity Stakes tomorrow with I’m Thunderstruck already in by way of public vote🤲🎟
— The Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile (@allstarmile) February 25, 2022
Although this race doesn’t hold the purse of the All Star Mile, or carry anywhere near the prestige of the Doncaster Mile, his two big targets this Autumn, Group 1 races are not easy to come by but this looks no harder than what he lined up in a fortnight ago and he ticked a lot of boxes there.
The big difference here is that with a number of speedsters coming out of the Australia Stakes, there looks to be a genuine tempo here, and all being well, the Caulfield straight will resemble something closer to a well manicured racecourse this week rather than the main runway at Tullamarine airport.
He gets both of those, he just wins! Best of the day.
Caulfield, Race 8 – 1. Wild Ruler ($8.00)
A few suspect characters here and a couple of new kids on the block makes for an interesting race, but this bloke has top weight for good reason.
Split Nature Strip and Trekking first up last prep which reads rather well when you line it up against the new kids on the block, and he franked that with a Group 1 Moir Stakes win the start after that which, although there are a couple of other G1 winners here, consistency has been those horses major downfalls.
This fellow hasn’t exactly rounded his preps off all that great either but he does go like a bomb fresh and if his first up record isn’t enough to speak for itself, the littering of Isotope form on the page, particularly the Arrowfield Stakes win is about as good as you’ll get outside of the very top echelon of sprinters.
If she were in this she would most likely be on the second line of betting and the fact he even earnt an Everest slot, beaten 10L, is more than most of these will get to achieve.
Expect it will be an absolute carve up in front with this entire showing his quality and asking the tough questions of the speedsters late.
Great value at close to double figure odds.
Best Bet – 1. I’m Thunderstruck (Caulfield, Race 6)
Next Best – 5. Mars Mission (Caulfield, Race 1)
Best Roughie – 3. Mokulua (Caulfield, Race 4)
*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of Sportsbet.