Winning Form brings us their best bets and tips from Scone, Australia on Friday 24 September 2021.
Best Bet: RAOUL (Race 5)
Value Bet: JOEY’S CHANCE (Race 8)
Jackpot (race 5 – 8)
There are six unraced runners in the field, so as is always the case in these types of races, a keen eye should be kept on the betting markets to get some indication as to whether the connection believes that they can win first time out. Any betting support for a runner or runners should be respected. However, they would have to be good to beat the day’s best bet, RAOUL who has finished second once and third twice in his last three runs, the latest over 1300M, just over three lengths behind the winner, after jumping awkwardly, but finishing off his race strongly. The form of that race has stood up well with three runners out of that contest subsequently winning. He returns from a 25-week break, but did finish second in his only barrier trial to showcase is well-being. He will have to negotiate draw twelve, but he may well prove to be difficult to topple today.
A 4yr old and a 3yr filly could chase him home, with the slight preference going to TOP CRITIC, how is seldom far off the action. She stayed on well when finishing third last time out over five furlongs, just under a length and a half back from the winner and the form of that race has been franked. She gets a kinder gate four and has her first run for her new stable, but has won a barrier trial for the yard. If fully settled into her new surroundings, she could emerge as the biggest danger to the top choice.
MISS MILTON is drawn one outside the latter and has only had the two runs to date, but showed the expected improvement to finish third over this c&d last time out, just over a length adrift of the victor. She was hampered at the start that day and then only saw daylight at the 200M mark before ending off her race strongly. She has her first run since a shorter 19-week rest and has not had the benefit of a barrier trial, so her fitness will have to be taken on trust, but nevertheless, she should be involved in the finish.
LOVERSFIELD is a 3yr old filly taking on the boys, but she has only had the three runs to date, finishing third on debut, second in her penultimate outing and then having that consistency rewarded by winning by one and a half lengths last time out over six furlongs, this despite being bumped at the start and turning five wide into the home stretch. The form of that race has been franked and whilst facing a wide draw eleven, she should give the males a good run for their money.
HEIGHTS won by 1.8L when making his debut over six furlongs and could be just about anything. He came three-wide into the straight on that occasion but will have learnt from that experience and with the natural improvement that can be expected, and from a handy gate five, he should be right up there when they hit the line.
FREEDOM SQUARE has solid form lines to his credit and was bumped and carried wide between the 1000M and 700M marks before ending up in fifth place last time out over six furlongs, one hand a half-length back from the winner. He was returning from a lengthy 48-week absence that day and although drawn the widest of them all in gate eighteen, he should be doing his best work late.
HARLEM GROOVE had finished close up in his two runs prior to winning his last start by a neck when stepping up to 1300M at this track. He was slow away that day, but made good late progress to collar the frontrunners in the shadow of the post, suggesting that the extra ground on offer today will be to his liking.
FREE RIDER jumped awkwardly and never obtained a clear run down the home straight before finishing third last time out over 1300M, just under a length behind the winner. He is drawn one outside the top choice and with better luck in running here, he should keep the top pick honest.
AMERICAN SALUTE has finished closer to the winner in each of his last three outings, the latest when third over 1300M, just under a length off the winner. He had to be held up between the 400M and 250M marks on that occasion and only got a clear run at the 150M pole, before hanging out over the closing stages, so he could be considered an unlucky loser. He jumps from gate seven and should be included in all bets.
The day’s value bet, JOEY’S CHANCE has finished third in his last two starts over five furlongs at this venue, the latest when 1.3L back from the winner after being slow away and coming three-wide into the home stretch. He was then denied a clear run at the 100M mark and should have finished closer to the winner as a result. He faces a wide draw ten but does have his peak run after returning from a 21-week break.
CEASEFIRE returns from a similar 21-week absence, but he has finished third in both his barrier trials to prove his fitness. He missed out on his hat-trick when finishing seventh in his last outing over six furlongs before the break, 3.2L behind the winner. He is drawn one inside the former and should be right up there in the firing line.
FOXSTORM is in turn drawn one inside the latter and has posted two seconds in a row, the latest over today’s trip, just a head back from the winner. He has his peak run since returning from a 26-week rest and will be hoping to go one better here.