Race 1 – 12:39PM FREE ENTRY TO BELMONT PARK HANDICAP (1400 METRES)
Like the looks of LA VINA stepping back up to 1400m. Has run into some very smart types at her past two Saturday outings and while BEAT THE BRO will take some beating, this does look a much easier assignment. La Vina has the capacity to work forward from the draw and control proceedings from there. Beat The Pro caused a upset first up at Pinjarra 25/06 when knocking off the $1.35 fave Giant Leap. Gets to stalk his rivals from this low draw and the way he attacked the line last time was impressive. NATIVE CHIMES has to be considered on the quick back up, while MISSALFIE is next best.
Suggested: 2. LA VINA win.
2. LA VINA
1. BEAT THE BRO
6. NATIVE CHIMES
Race 2 – 1:14PM PENINSULA DINING ROOM PLATE (1000 METRES)
Locking in an early double for the red-hot Lindsey Smith yard with debutante MORE. Has done enough at trials to warrant respect, with the form around her (especially Lark Hill 24/02 trial) really stacking up. Gets a sweet run from a low draw with the cutaway in play, and expecting her to make her presence felt. The race-experienced JANAURA deserves to have plenty of admirers and this doesn’t look as strong as the field she faced when a $5 chance last start. Will appreciate the cutaway also. VIC import SHIRL’S DREAM is an interesting runner at his WA debut, while no surprise to see first-starter TABELLA run a cheeky race.
Suggested: 9. MORE each way.
1. SHIRL’S DREAM
Race 3 – 1:49PM TABTOUCH BETTER YOUR BET PLATE (1000 METRES)
Found it hard to split GUARDED and CONTINUANCE, and eventually opted to side with Guarded. Have a bit of time for this fellow and he threw a couple of races away last prep, but the stable has had him gelded since, so expecting him to return a much more switched on racehorse. Liked both lead-up trials and he has the class to overcome the outside alley and salute first up. Continuance will obviously take a stack of beating and Pike going on appears the cheer on top. KIPITAKI has shown enough at trials to be considered a contender on debut, while first-upper AGENT KENSINGTON ran some big races against some types last prep.
Suggested: 1. GUARDED win.
5. AGENT KENSINGTON
Race 4 – 2:24PM SCHWEPPES MAIDEN (1000 METRES)
This is a tricky one and wouldn’t surprise to see something rough win, but SOUND AWAKE should be giving this a nudge. Competed well behind She’s Enchanted on debut and her follow-up 1200m as a $4.40 chance was solid also. Form appears to stand out and surprised if she doesn’t finish top three again. GINGER MACK may surprise a few first up. Produced some bold results last prep and does run for 3kg claimer Kristy Bennett. Debutante UNIVERSAL ANGEL is the x-factor runner, with Pike and Team Williams having to be respected at all times, while a race fit TOVARICH continues to knock on the door.
Suggested: 8. SOUND AWAKE win.
8. SOUND AWAKE
3. GINGER MACK
9. PETITE LA FEMME
*Numbers amended after scratchings
Race 5 – 3:00PM QUAYCLEAN HANDICAP (1000 METRES)
Another open race to assess and narrowed it down to Lou Luciani-trained first-uppers SEMIGEL and BEDOUIN BELLE, with a slight lean to Semigel with Pike on board. Finished off his previous campaign with some really consistent results, relishing being restricted to short course events. With a patient ride from the high draw and with the cutaway in play, Pike can weave his magic. A fresh Bedouin Belle is always a threat at this level and a rain-affected Belmont really should suit her, while GUNFLINT and WEST FIFTY FOURTH figured prominently in the finish of a similar event to this last start.
Suggested: 5. SEMIGEL win.
2. BEDOUIN BELLE
3. WEST FIFTY FOURTH
Race 6 – 3:35PM MRS MAC’S HANDICAP (2200 METRES)
Lindsey Smith is setting her a decent task, but QUEEN TAKES KING looks as though she might be up to it. Caught the eye when resuming over a mile at Pinjarra 25/06 and from gate one with Pike in the saddle, she shouldn’t be wasting too much fuel in transit. Taking on some seasoned campaigners, but Queen Takes King may have an edge in class. Though the run of BEANIE last start was huge and he should’ve gone close to winning. Paul Harvey going on is significant and he’s right in the mix. FROSTY HEART was too good in a similar event last start and he can win again, while SMOKING BARREL tries hard and won’t be far away.
Suggested: 9. QUEEN TAKES KING win.
9. QUEEN TAKES KING
8. FROSTY HEART
*Numbers amended after scratchings
Race 7 – 4:15PM IRON JACK HANDICAP (1700 METRES)
Most will be tossing up between AL MAHALO and HOOLAHOOPS, and thinking Al Mahalo is the one. Has launched late into the finish from difficult running positions at his last two and gives the impression he’ll thrive rising to 1700m. Tempo looks suitable and he’s going to take some holding out. Hoolahoops is perhaps coming through stronger form races, but may have to come from behind Al Mahalo, which won’t be easy. Still looks very hard to beat. CHIEF ARCHER was brave last start when covering plenty of additional ground, while SAFETY BAY continues to race consistently.
Suggested: 1. AL MAHALO win.
1. AL MAHALO
4. CHIEF ARCHER
9. SAFETY BAY
Race 8 – 4:55PM FURPHY HANDICAP (1700 METRES)
Nice race for LAUFEY to step out in after a let up. Returned from a lengthy absence in the autumn and ran some mighty races against much better opposition than this, and was a bit stiff not to win at least one of his last two Ascot outings. Likes to settle midfield or worse, so the cutaway rail ensures Pike can ride him to advantage, and with an uninterrupted run Laufey should be too good. THE ESCORT was big when three wide/no cover the entire last start. Gets 3kg off thanks to Madi Derrick. Get back/run on type BEAT THE BELL is racing well and should be charging late again, while no surprise to see ASTRONOMITE improve after a stable change.
Suggested: 4. LAUFEY win.
5. THE ESCORT
8. BEAT THE BELL
**This edition of #TheLegUp by @thoroheadsWA originally published at 7:00am on Tuesday 7 July 2020