The big day is only a fortnight away and with only a couple more chances available for the youngsters to earn qualifying prizemoney this is the current qualifying order for the career defining $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic.
Ardoyne Road – who I reckon would have won the race by panels – has been put away by trainer Tony Sears for a future program unannounced after having a gut buster in its amazing first up victory and not recovering fast enough for its trainer’s liking, and so on the current rankings the Snowden trained runner Bondi sneaks into the final spot, but it’s likely there will be some last minute surges from lower ranked entrants over the coming 10 days so if I were that horse’s connections I wouldn’t be confirming my hotel bookings quite just yet.
We have four Queensland-trained juveniles in the field at the moment – a colt, a gelding and two fillies –
Muncie is trying to sneak Pony Power into the field via the BJ McLachlan Stakes at Doomben on Saturday, but after an ordinary first up run the filly is at $46 in the early pre-post betting markets for the race and unless the former Magic Millions winning jockey can improve his horse markedly you’d have to say she looks like struggling to make the cut.
You never know though, and if I was Christopher my riding instructions would be to possie up the little girl about 5th or 6th with a soft sit and a suck along from barrier 6 with the aim of zipping home and snaffling at least the 8 grand prizemoney on offer for 4th.
If Pony Power can snag that and the cards fall the little legend’s way it may just well be just enough dough to leapfrog Bondi, the horse above her in the order of qualified entry whose connections are sitting pat and hoping that their colt’s $6 300 buffer over the Pony and those below will be enough to secure him a starting slot.
John Zielke appears to have abandoned all hope with the early season Doomben QTIS race winner Rosa’s Charm, and fair enough too for on her 13th of 14 first up beaten a dozen length in the Calaway Gal Stakes she’d be totally outclassed in this hot field.
Rosa’s done a good job in her first year of racing though, winning double her purchase price in the Doomben win at her 2nd start and landing some juicy bets at the $20 plus odds, so connections should be well pleased with her efforts despite missing out on a spot in the big one.
Crafty Clarrie Connors – who knows a wee bit and a whole lot more about training 2-year-old’s and qualifying the littlies for big ones – has taken my preferred soft route into the race of Skyray’s life and she will run in the Open 2YO New Year’s Day at Royal Randwick Plate run over 1100m at Sydney racing headquarters (gee it must be nice to be able to race on your State’s best track) on Saturday.
It’s unlikely Skyray, presently 4th in the betting market for the event, will win because he’s mup against some pretty stiff competition in the form of fellow higher qualified Magic Millions definite starters Legislation (my tip for the big one) and Secret Lady, but by my estimation if the cuddly trainer’s colt can run 3rd and pick up the place money of $8900 then it’s giddy-up and we’re off to the Goldie for connections.
The next one on the order of entry Orcein was nominated for both the Randwick and the Doomben races, with trainer Chris Waller heading up here for the BJ, which I reckon confirms my judgement about Legislation because he’s the colt that the Premiership winning mentor of Winx is traveling 1000 k’s to avoid.
Orcein needs to run in the first two to sneak into the field from Barrie 2 with the ion-form newfound Waller number 4 or 5 rider Matthew Cahill aboard the market suggests he will, with the classy colt favorite at $3.40 to win the race.
I’m in no position to question the decisions of a genius trainer like Peter Snowden, and don’t presume to, but gee with this fast-approaching pack closing in on me rapidly over the last furlong of the lead up to the $2 million race I would have been taking Bondi to the race day track for one more dip that’s for sure, just like the ever-astute Tony McEvoy has with his currently 15th placed but teetering on the edge colt Crockett, the current equal 2nd favorite for the BJ.
Have you ever wondered why Adelaide’s leading jockey – by panels – Jamie ‘Baby You Can Drive My’ Kah has been hanging around up here in Vegas so often since the State of Origin jockey series?
Wonder no more.
It ain’t for the sunshine and the sand and it ain’t because she’s got a boyfriend up here, it’s because she’s been riding Crockett in work and getting used to our tracks that’s why, and the fact that Jamie’s doing it means this horse is a real live chance in the Millions, and therefore almost a good thing in the BJ.
Trust me on this one, despite her youth Ms Jamie B.Y.C.D.M. Kah is one of the best horse people in the whole of the wide brown land – and as good a jockey as you will ever see (it’s all in her magnificent posture – watch the greats, they’ve all got it) – so if Baby You Can Drive My Kah’s prepared to pass up a dozen or two winners at home in order to ensure that her mount has every chance to win a $2 million race, then only an idiot would elect to ignore the obvious tip lit bright up in flashing lights.
Peter Robl has taken his girl Granny Red Shoes from Canterbury to Vegas and back to Randwick again on Saturday in a frantic attempt to get her a MM start and out of respect for his efforts I hope he does too, but she really needs to win or run second and cross her fingers to climb the mountain and up against Secret Lady and Legislation I for one just can’t see it happening.
Into the Abyss isn’t nommed again before the big one, so barring miracles or mass misfortune among its rivals misses out, just like her trainer John Thompson has since he got tangled up with Tinkler.
Sokudo’s the same, which tells me that the Snowden’s have learned from their burning out of Capitalist in its mercurial Magic Millions/Todman Second/Golden Slipper two-year-old campaign, and have mapped out a race program that they hope will take the half million dollar Breeder’s Plate winner to Golden Slipper victory with enough left in its tank to go on and take out the Coolmore too.
It’s a wise man who is prepared to admit that he’s made a mistake and learn from it, but Peter Snowden’s both one of the brilliant people in racing and one of the most modest so I’m not at all surprised and in fact take my hat off to him in admiration.
Who other than a Da Vinci of Snowden’s status would consider a Magic Millions-Golden Slipper-Eight figure syndication deal a failure? Take my word for it, if he was a painter this bloke would be training the Mona Lisa.
Native Soldier’s out, or will be anyway unless it becomes the only horse in Australia to survive a second coming of the Black Plague and one of it’s connections is a QC who finds a loophole to force Uncle Gerry to run the race regardless. Weir’s only about a half-length to a neck behind Snowden in the Steed Smartness Stakes, so you’d be a moron not to be looking out for this one in the VRC Sires Produce, or maybe even the Diamond, for that’s no doubt where the genial genius is targeting this patiently prepared colt’s Autumn prep.
Mark Newwham’s hoping for a miracle at Randwick and good luck to the nice young bloke too, and Gary Moore’s given up the ghost with Paquirri which means that he will place it somewhere beautifully later on in the season in a Listed or lower Group Class race that it will win, and that’s about all she wrote for the horses on the Order of Merit from 15 minus Ardoyne Road down.
Tomorrow we’ll look at them from 8 to 14.
Geez I wish Ardoyne road was running.