Weighing In with Nathan Exelby 10-05-2021

Well known QLD media man NATHAN EXELBY is a constant at the track in the ‘sunshine state’ and he has a full wrap of last weekend’s action, plus the horses to follow and tragedies beaten.

 

HOLLINDALE STAKES DAY

A FIELD touted as the best Hollindale Stakes ever assembled turned into a one-act affair as the heavily backed ZAAKI confirmed his arrival as a serious middle-distance player in Australia. Punters were also spot on in the other feature of the day, with MARBOOSHA easily overcoming a wide gate to take out the Gold Coast Guineas.

 

TOP 3 TO FOLLOW

  • CELLARMAID - She bumped into a horse that relished the conditions (replay above), but she continues to come along well this prep. Ready to win in similar grade now.
  • GOOD SOIZE - The Bracelet is not always the best guide for the Oaks, but she’s the one from this race that looks likely to relish getting to 2200m at Eagle Farm.
  • ZAAKI - Even with MUGATOO and SIR DRAGONET added to the mix, Zaaki now looks a Doomben Cup standout. This was a totally dominant display over a good field and the $4 with TAB looks fair enough at the moment.

 

PLEASE FORGIVE ME

  • OLYMPIC CLASS - He looked a suspect favourite stepping up so sharply in grade and he failed to flatter. Can bounce back in his right grade next time.
  • MISTER LARABEE - This came up very quickly for him. Jock said he wasn’t comfortable in the ground. Another who would be suited by a drop in class, but longer term, don’t wipe him as a good prospect.

 

RIDE OF THE DAY

JAMES McDonald, GRACE AND HARMONY/Zaaki: Rode the track beautifully on both of these. Happy to be a little wide for the sake of both travelling comfortably and from their poor draws, landing in good spots. Got to the best part of the track on both.

 

Check out the latest TAB markets here.

 

THE BIG WINNER

SUBTERRANEAN ($10) became the longest-priced winner of the day when he gained the judge’s verdict in the Ken Russell Memorial, foiling a confident move for RANCH HAND ($2.05) in a deceptive finish.

 

THE BIG ‘GOES’

PUNTERS were on the mark for most of the day at the Gold Coast.

Opening race winner, I COULD DO BETTER ($4.20), was served up around double his starting price earlier in the week.

Cup winner ALAKAHAN ($4.80) was also at bigger odds, as were Goldmarket hero BALLER ($6.50) and Bracelet winner Grace And Harmony ($5).

Marboosha ($3.10) was singled out by punters in what looked a tricky Guineas before Zaaki ($3.60) was the subject of a massive go to usurp AVILIUS as favourite ahead of the Hollindale.

The only real misses by punters were Ranch Hand ($2.05) in the Ken Russell, and MAUI GIRL ($4.60), who failed to fire a shot in the Silk Stocking after being backed into favouritism from a morning line double figure quote.

 

TAB MARKET MOVERS

DOOMBEN CUP (May 22)

  • Zaaki $8-$4
  • Fifty Stars $13-$8
  • Brandenburg $17-$13
  • Melody Belle $8-$13

QUEENSLAND DERBY (May 29)

  • Explosive Jack $8-$5
  • Let’s Karaka Deel $21-$8

BRC SIRES (May 29)

  • Subterranean $51-$15
  • Ranch Hand $15-$11

STRADBROKE HCP (June 12)

  • Ayrton $5-$4

 

Check out the latest TAB Futures markets here.

 

RACING TRIVIA

1-WHO was the last Ken Russell Memorial winner to go on and win the G1 J.J. Atkins later in the carnival?

2-NAME the last two horses to complete the Hollindale Stakes/Doomben Cup double in the same year.

 

FROM THE STEWARDS ROOM

THE mood of punters who were on Ranch Hand wouldn’t have been improved by the suspension handed out to Nash Rawiller for over-use of the whip on Subterranean. He was outed for eight meetings for using the whip 17 times in the race – three more than the permitted threshold.

SIMPLY FLY (Race 7) showed signs of mild thumps post-race

KISUKANO (Race 7) bled from one nostril. Needs to be scoped before racing again.

Ryan Maloney forfeited several rides, including I Could Do Better, after being unable to make the respective weights. Stewards took no action because there were “issues with the jockey spa.” Brad Stewart also missed a ride owing to the same reason.

 

WALKING THE TRACK

GIVEN out as a Heavy 8 in the morning, it was quickly upgraded to a Soft 7 after the opening event. Noted wet track duffer SUGAR BOOM ran well enough in the Bat out of Hell (Race 2) to suggest it was on the improve. It played as a typical Coast track, with riders wanting to get away from the inside from the get-go, but it was a day where you could be on speed or make up ground pending tempo.

 

WHETTING THE APPETITE

EXPLOSIVE JACK and AYRTON franked their spots atop Queensland Derby and Stradbroke betting with their respective wins at Morphettville and Caulfield.

Explosive Jack lends a huge amount of historical significance to the Derby if he can add it to the three Derbys he already has locked away.

Ayrton remains a fascinating Stradbroke favourite, as he will be trying to win the big sprint with just four runs under the belt, should he claim the Fred Best Classic and earn himself a spot in the field at his next outing.

 

RACING TRIVIA ANSWERS

1-Sizzling (2012)

2-Streama (2014) and Metal Bender (2010)

 

Catch Nathan Exelby on The Playbook every Thursday night on Sky Thoroughbred Central (Ch528). Nathan also appears on Sky Thoroughbred Central’s weekday coverage, RadioTAB’s Saturday morning preview of Queensland’s feature meeting and the Brisbane Racing Club website and social media platforms.

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