John O’Shea will know where to send promising three-year-old Sea Of Life this autumn after Wednesday’s race on the Kensington track at Randwick.
The Sebring gelding will be shooting for three wins on the trot when he runs in a Benchmark 70 Handicap (1800m) after surging from the back half of the field to triumph last time at the track over 1550m.
“We’re just bringing him along steadily and hoping he continues to improve,” O’Shea said. “He’s doing a good job. We’ve always had a nice opinion of him. That was evident by the races we ran him in as a two-year-old.”
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Trainer John O’Shea could target the Rosehill Guineas with Sea Of Life. Picture: AAPSource:AAP
Sea Of Life will be ridden by Robbie Dolan for the first time. O’Shea is using Dolan’s 1.5kg claim so his gelding doesn’t lug 60kg.
Dolan will ride him quiet to give him the best possible chance of running out a strong 1800m.
“It (trip) is always a challenge and the gate is not advantageous but he’s got to see where he fits in,” O’Shea said. “I think he’s better ridden quietly as we rode him the other day.”
O’Shea has Sea Of Life nominated for the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas and will run him in that race if he earns it. Either way, he will be racing on a Saturday soon and Wednesday is the audition for which race he’s aimed at over the carnival.
“We’ll get through Wednesday and that will define where he’ll end up,” the trainer said. “If he was to win then we’d given consideration to going to Rosehill (Guineas).
MATT JONES’S TOP PICKS
BEST BET: BETCHA FLYING (Race 6, No.9)
She races over the right distance first-up and drops back in grade. She’s a stakes-class horse and should be very hard to beat here.
NEXT BEST: SEA OF LIFE (Race 7, No.4)
He’s flying at the moment and if he can go on with it here he might find himself in a Group 1 race this autumn. He’s got a great turn of foot.
BEST ROUGHIE: KINANE (Race 3, No.1)
He’s having his first start for the Chris Waller stable after a second placing on debut in Victoria where a number of horses that he beat went on to win races.
LATEST BETTING: TAB FIXED ODDS
Race 5: 2, 5, 6, 8
Race 6: 4, 6, 7, 9
Race 7: 4, 6, 10
Race 8: 4, 5, 7
TRAINER TO WATCH
JOHN THOMPSON has a few good winning hopes with Grand Piano leading the charge. Laila de Vega and Haven will race strongly, too.
JOCKEY TO WATCH
KERRIN MCEVOY has a few good rides that might start be flying under the radar like Nimalee, Cyber Intervention, Starla, Dalaalaat and Montserrat.
SCROLL DOWN FOR MATT’S EXTENDED PREVIEW & TIPS
Kerrin McEvoy could ride a few winners at good odds at Randwick. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
“If he wasn’t to run the trip we’d freshen him up and come back for the Carbine Club (1600m), so this race will let us know where his future lies.”
Brooks Battle is O’Shea’s other runner on the card in a two-year-old race over 1100m to start the day. She’s on debut off one trial when running third over 900m. She was ridden back and showed good development in going through a gap to finish off in nice fashion.
O’Shea’s main man James McDonald rides the Hinchinbrook filly and she should get a cushy run in behind the speed from barrier four.
“She’s a nice filly,” O’Shea said. “She’s a big filly who would probably prefer 1200m but 1100m on her home track is not far to go.
“She’s a really genuine filly and we quite like her. If she ended up going around in a nice race later in the carnival over a bit further I wouldn’t be surprised.”
Meanwhile, O’Shea is sweating on the weather before Saturday’s Randwick Guineas meeting.
Rain is predicated all week in Sydney and Killer Instinct (Aspiration Quality) and last-start winner Intrepidacious (Fireball Stakes) want the wet weather to miss Randwick.
O’Shea has a good opinion of both horses.
“They’ll race as long as it’s not too wet,” he said.
“Intrepidacious loves good ground so we’ll just have to wait and see how the track comes up. Both horses ate in good form and I think they both have bright futures.
Meantime, Nash Rawiller returns from suspension just in time to ride Epic Dan again for Warwick Farm trainer Greg Hickman on the Kensington track at Randwick.
Nash Rawiller returns from suspension at Randwick on Wednesday. Picture: AAPSource:AAP
The champion jockey rode him to victory last start at his home track and the pair are trying to go back-to-back in a Benchmark 70 Handicap (1250m).
Rawiller used his initiative on the seven-year-old last start and took him to the lead in heavy conditions to beat Intrinsic by two lengths.
“It was a really good win last time and he’s going into this in a similar spot, so I’m happy sending him to the races,” Hickman said. “I don’t know if he likes a bog but he won’t mind the sting out of the ground. The weather won’t matter.”
Hickman will let Rawiller ride his own race once again after he would have surprised a few by driving Epic Dan forward last start after racing back at his previous three runs.
He may just do it again today from barrier nine if he steps away swiftly.
“There was no plan to lead last start. He just jumped well and Nash rode him how he felt and he just kept rolling. The sectionals were reasonably slow and the race suited him,” Hickman said. “You don’t need to give those guys too many instructions. He’ll just do his own thing and ride the horse to how he’s travelling.
“Nash will ride him how it presents itself.”
Meanwhile, Hickman will trial his star horse Pierata on Thursday at Warwick Farm before his first-up run in The Galaxy. He will then run in the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 All Ages Stakes (1400m) before likely being retired to stud.
“He needs to trial. We have to. I’m happy with him and he’s bigger and stronger this time in,” Hickman said. “He’ll go to The Galaxy first-up. It would be nice if he came out and won three-straight.”
Sky Racing news update 3rd March 2020
Sky Racing news update 3rd March 2020
MATT JONES’S INSIDE MAIL
RACE 1 (1.35pm)
Brooks Battle showed she is ready to go to the races and do things right after a nice third placing in a trial and might start over the odds despite wanting a little further than 1100m. James McDonald rides, too, so that’s a big plus. Reignite settled last in his trial and after a little shake he went past five runners to finish it off well. Miss Canada went down narrowly to Nitrous on debut and it’s gone on to run second in a Listed race. She can give a good sight. Doubtland will have the last crack at them.
BET: BROOKS BATTLE to win.
RACE 2 (2.10pm)
Plaquette is so consistent and fit which puts her in the frame once again as long as she can get away cleanly this time. Shout The Bar had plenty of grounding ahead of her debut win. The best part of it was the last 50m where she just got stronger to the line. Dalaalaat was sent to a Listed race on debut so the stable obviously has a big opinion of him. A last-start kill in the bush will lift his confidence. Just Field is another horse who needs to jump better from the gates to be a chance here. Haven looked quite good in a barrier trial and isn’t out of this on debut.
BET: SHOUT THE BAR to win.
RACE 3 (2.45pm)
If Reaching runs she’s going to be hard to beat. She produced an eye-catcher first-up and the extra ground is perfect. Cape Leonard also wants more ground and she is a real trier. Kinane is first-up for a new stable and probably could have won his trial if he was allowed to. The form out of his only Melbourne start is very good and the trip fresh is also ideal. Stablemate Dancing Gidget has the form this time in to get a win. She’s going to come home hard late.
BET: KINANE to win.
RACE 4 (3.20pm)
Mirra Vision should start this time after getting a better gate. She’s looking to stay undefeated and is obviously being placed to keep winning. She has an attractive racing pattern. Mayaaseh got within half a length of Akari last preparation and she proved on the weekend she was a genuine Group 1 horse. Starla always has to be considered while Avon River made up good ground first-up at a track where it’s been hard to come from behind and win this summer and she’s won on the Kensington track before.
BET: MIRRA VISION to win.
RACE 5 (3.55pm)
Hilo competes as a gelding for the first time after running well in Listed and Group races last preparation. He showed in his trials that he’s going to be a better horse now and this is a good starting point for him even though it’s a little short of his best trip. Famous should go well again fresh is this grade and gets an inside draw to help he be prominent in the run. Epic Dan won’t mind some rain and is in good form while Montserrat is a horse on the rise for Godolphin. Kavalmo only has a win and no placings from five starts but is much better than that.
BET: HILO to win.
RACE 6 (4.30pm)
Betcha Flying could have nearly won all three races last preparation, including two Listed events, and she’s going to be better at this trip first-up, so that fresh record can be improved. Re Edit wants further but can still do something here because she goes so well first-up and she has the top stable/jockey combination behind her. Give The Bald Eagle another chance after a luckless fresh run while Cyber Intervention is in form but might be suspect second-up but likes the wet.
BET: BETCHA FLYING to win.
RACE 7 (5.05pm)
If Sea Of Life is going to get to a Rosehill Guineas, he needs to pass this 1800m test. He’s flying at the moment and can no doubt keep winning, although the gate is against him. He beat Come Along well last start and they meet again here. Come Along will be better over the longer trip but Sea Of Life beat him well last time and he can only turn the tables if he proves to be a better stayer. Nimalee is a tough filly and might even lead this race and pinch it. She’ll be hard to get past. Castel Sant’angelo is an improver second-up but still wants further.
BET: SEA OF LIFE to win.
RACE 8 (5.40pm)
Deference is knocking on the door, is third-up here and is primed to go better than her two previous placings. Grand Piano is now a gelding, which can only improve him after a very good preparation last time in when almost winning a Saturday race. Witherspoon drops back in grade and a little rain won’t hurt her chances and she won here two starts back. Maroch produced an eye-catcher last time and his followers that day won’t drop off now.
BET: Quinella 4, 5.
Originally published asRandwick tips: Guineas on radar for rising Sea
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