Group one racing returns to Moonee Valley at night with the $1 million Manikato Stakes running this Friday.
It’s the first of two consecutive meetings at Moonee Valley, with the Cox Plate running on Saturday, and what an entrée of racing we have in store.
The eight-race card is complete with good quality races and punters also get another night meeting to bet on. Canterbury has its first night meeting of the season and it will be a nice two-track attack for punters this Friday night.
Moonee Valley free tips & form
Race 1. (18:30) MSC Signs Handicap (2040m)
Dodging Bullets is a six-year-old gelding which ran well at Caulfield earlier this month.
The Dash for Cash gelding settled just behind the pace and battled on well for second behind Odeon. That form should be good enough to win at this level and there’s a lack of form with its opposition.
Craig Williams might be a touch down on form to start the spring carnival, but he shouldn’t have any traffic problems from barrier three in a small field.
Race 3. (19:30) Sweeney Real Estate Agents Handicap (1500m)
Fox Hall is the only last start winner in the field of 10 and that form looks more than handy for this.
The Tony McEvoy-trained gelding scored a 2.25-length win at Cranbourne on the night racing circuit last start and he’s only going to get stronger with more fitness under his belt this season.
McEvoy is training in wonderful form this year and the son of Foxwedge looks another nice type for the Flemington-based stable.
He hasn’t had any experience racing at Moonee Valley, but winning experience at Cranbourne is very similar.
Race 4. (20:00) Mitchelson Wines Handicap (1000m)
Madeenaty is speed personified, but she won’t be winning here if she jumps like she did last start.
The Lindsay Park-trained three-year-old has the most experience in this field and she has competed in races at the highest level, but she needs to jump on terms with them.
She missed the start on this track last start and it cost her the win. Barrier nine isn’t going to help here, but if she can lead then she will be awfully tough to beat.
She finished close up behind Crown Witness and Pariah this season, and that form better than her oppositions here.
Race 6. (21:00) The Emerson Handicap (2040m)
We were confident with the chances of Smart As You Think last start at Cranbourne, but she had no luck in running and she did well to finish second.
The four-year-old has won only one start from 17 attempts, but she’s better than you think. She finished third in the SA Classic over 2500m and she has since finished fifth behind the likes of Mr Sneaky and Sword of Light.
Her fourth in the Stocks Stakes was that of a runner going well and with any luck in running, she should be hard to hold out over the concluding stages.
Race 7. (21:30) Manikato Stakes (1200m)
Vega Magic is the form runner of this race after running second in The Everest last start.
The Hayes/Dabernig-trained five-year-old is a nine-time winner at this distance and he arguably would have won The Everest with a touch of luck.
He has won 12 of his 18 starts in an amazing and underrated career to date. The former Perth sprinter has grown another leg since arriving in Melbourne and The Goodwood winner looks to go from strength to strength.
This is a hot field, but Everest winner Redzel won’t be there and if Vega Magic can handle running around Moonee Valley, he looks a very nice bet.
Canterbury free tips & form
Race 1. (18:15) Fastlane Karting Maiden (1100m)
Punters should always respect a Godolphin debutante, especially one which has winning trial form.
The Exceed And Excel filly scored a narrow trial win at Randwick to prepare for this where she defeated race-rival Sangita close to the line.
Betting will tell punters all they need to know with Elessedil, but we’re expecting its odds to be on the shorter side.
Race 2. (18:45) Bondi Pizza Handicap (1200m)
We’re going for an early Godolphin double with Savatiano in the second race of the night at Canterbury.
The James Cummings-trained three-year-old daughter of Street Cry started her career with an eighth in the Widden Stakes before taking on tough company at Randwick.
She ran second behind Invader before running fifth in the Sweet Embrace. She was then spelled before coming back in fine order last start when winning at Warwick Farm.
The half-length win showed plenty of fight and the confidence should be up with her now that’s she has broken through.
Race 5. (20:15) Fogo Brazilia Handicap (1550m)
Intueri scored well for us last start and we’re repaying the faith once again.
The Hawkes-trained four-year-old finished over the top of them at Canterbury earlier this month and he had plenty in hand.
His form prior to that win included battling performances behind Malahat, Awoke and Fragonard – all of which could likely win this race.
This race is no harder than his last start and he’s weighted to perfection again with only 55kg on his back.
Race 6. (20:45) Harry’s Tempe Handicap (1100m)
Most of the attention will be with the James Cummings-trained Revenire, but To Excess should represent value.
The Tracey Bartley-trained four-year-old has won five of his 10 starts and he comes into this having won easily at Warwick Farm last start.
The Wyong-based runner won by 1.3 lengths in a dominant victory and his form prior to that win already included a three-length win at Kembla to kick off this preparation.
His only defeat this time in came behind Latin Boy, which strung multiple wins together and we think punters might get a nice price for this runner come Friday night.
Race 8. (21:45) Wrapt Freight Handicap (1900m)
Punters were disappointed with the run of Tumultuous last start, but it was better than it indicated.
The Chris Waller-trained four-year-old finished third at Warwick Farm, but the race wasn’t run to suit and things are expected to go better this time around.
There are big expectations for this runner and he should get every chance to win from an inside barrier.