Paul Joice analyses the entire Spring Champion Stakes meeting

Paul Joice - Monday October 9

There was plenty to analyse out of Spring Champion Stakes day at Randwick and Paul Joice has done all of the hard work so you can find the future winners.

Ace High is the 2017 Spring Champion. Photo: Steve Hart

Race 1 - Brmm Benchmark 78 Handicap (1400m)

1st - Goodfella ($10)
2nd - Our Mantra ($6) - 0.2 lens
3rd - Sparky Lad ($4.5 fav) - 0.7 lens
Then Followed: Coral Bay ($31), Cabeirian ($7), Regent ($4.75), Charlie Chap ($61), Molten ($21), French Tune ($4.5)



Analysis: He looks like hard work Goodfella . Took plenty of early riding to muster the pace to work across and sit three wide no cover. Jason Collett was at him again approaching the turn and he forged to the front. The challengers came at him but the son of Snitzel kept fighting. Under the topweight of 59.5kg and after doing all of the work in the run – it was a big win. He's just hard work. Our Mantra was ridden cold and attacked the line. Sparky Lad enjoyed the run of the race and loomed to win but peaked on his run. Regent was reported to have got his tongue over the bit. French Tune had a poor post race recovery – so did punters that took the $4.50.

Money Trail: Sparky Lad was backed into favouritism from $5 into $4.40. Regent got the blows from $3.50 out to $4.80 and raced accordingly. Goodfella was $9 out to $10.

My Tip: Sparky Lad had every chance but wasn't good enough.

Blackbooker: Has to be Goodfella . Needs an aggressive ride but proved he can do the hard yards at both ends of his races. Has been a slow learner but seems to be getting there.

Race 2 - Iga Liquor Benchmark 90 Handicap (2000m)

1st - Alward ($3)
2nd - Up 'n' Rolling ($1.53 fav) - 1.8 lens
3rd - Veladero ($8.5) - 2.6 lens


Analysis: The race was certainly interesting with Veladero leading the Chris Waller trio at a solid tempo. The race developed into a staying test from the 600m mark and under that scenario Alward proved much too tough. Every chance for the other two.
Money Trail: Up 'N Rolling was expected to win. Firmed from $1.60 into $1.55. Alward was the second pick – solid at $3.10.

Blackbooker: Looking further ahead into spring Alward is the one to stick with. He looks certain to get 2400m whereas the other two are unlikely to reach that mark. Perhaps Up 'N' Rolling will be a better miler.

Race 3 - Adina Apartment Hotels Benchmark 85 Handicap (1600m)

1st - Interlocuter ($2.38 fav)
2nd - Mapmaker ($4) - 2.8 lens
3rd - Impavido ($6.5) - 2.9 lens
Then Followed: Hogmanay ($7.5), Darci's Affair ($16), Spring Tycoon ($15), Waltzing Willie ($101), Goodwood Zodiac ($21)



Analysis: Favourite backers never had any serious cause for concern this time with Interlocuter . Ridden confidently by Tye Angland, the impressive looking five-year-old trailed the speed before bullocking his way out on the turn. The race was all over from that point. Mapmaker had no luck from the outside gate. Couldn't cross so drifted back then had to make a wide run. Impavido closed off well but had every chance whilst Hogmanay was supposed to lead but missed the start – which he does from time to time.

Money Trail: Punters were cheering Interlocuter which was backed from $2.45 into $2.40. Mapmaker was considered the only danger – he firmed from $4.60 into $3.90.

My Tip: When you declare short-priced favourites they need to win – this one brained them.
Blackbooker: No prizes for following winners but I will definitely be sticking with Interlocuter – he's a serious horse and already proven over a trip.

Race 4 - Tab Highway Class 3 Handicap (1600m)

1st - Bronzed Venom ($13)
2nd - Cascata Rossa ($2.25 fav) - 0.4 lens
3rd - Dia De Reyes ($8.5) - 1.2 lens
Then Followed: Confidential ($21), Sovereignaire ($26), Halberd ($41), Red Knot ($9), Exacting ($26), Schedule ($4.25), Kiss In The Dark ($67), Verbal ($101), Friskee One ($51), Paleface Ali ($101)



Analysis: Dia De Reyes missed it by three lengths – he does that! Favourite Cascata Rossa had every possible chance but was gunned down by stablemate Bronzed Venom . Brenton Avdulla smothered this five-year-old up in the run and managed to weave clear between the 400-200m. If you want a hard luck story, look towards Sovereignaire . Box-seated to the turn but couldn't get out of a pocket until it was too late.

Money Trail: Not much changed in the final 30 minutes of betting. Favourite Cascata Rossa was rock solid at $2.30. Bronzed Venom $12 out to $13 whilst the third of Matt Dunn's trio Dia De Reyes was solid at $8.50.

Blackbooker: Sovereignaire is ready to win a race. Not sure where but either another Highway or a country/provincial Benchmark 70. 

Race 5 - Bowermans Office Furniture Open Handicap (1400m)

1st - Sir Plush ($2.25 fav)
2nd - Mighty Lucky ($11) - 0.8 lens
3rd - All Our Roads ($13) - 1.2 lens
Then Followed: Souchez ($12), Got Unders ($31), Duca Valentinois ($12), Shillelagh ($10), Pajaro ($21), Invinzabeel ($15), Burning Passion ($8)



Analysis: Sir Plush found the lead without having to do too much work and it was all over from there. Bjorn Baker has him high-flying and with 53.5kg he was simply too slick. Mighty Lucky every chance and fought bravely. All Our Roads caught the eye at his Australian debut whilst stablemate Shillelagh struck some traffic problems down the straight and should have finished closer. Burning Passion failed after racing outside the lead – will be spelled. Duca Valentinois raced wide and peaked on his run – will strip fitter.

Money Trail: The market was the best guide here. Sir Plush hammered from $3 into $2.25. Plenty of easers and they ran accordingly. Burning Passion $5.50 to $8, Got Unders $20 to $31, Pajaro $11 to $19, All Our Roads $9 to $14.

Blackbooker: Mighty Lucky tends to win a race or two each campaign and he's going as well now as ever. Looking for the mile now and can win up to 2000m. 

Race 6 - Polytrack Roman Consul Stakes (G2) (1200m)

1st - Viridine ($2.25 fav)
2nd - Single Bullet ($5.5) - 2.0 lens
3rd - Beau Geste ($4.75) - 2.3 lens
Then Followed: Albumin ($11), Shudabeen ($41), The Mighty Fed ($61), Chauffeur ($6.5)

Analysis: Viridine simply too good. Remains undefeated from four starts and likely to continue winning after showing superior acceleration when it mattered. Wasn't suited in a slowly run affair cluttered-up along the rails, but he took an inside split topping the rise. Single Bullet every possible. He was getting tired late so definitely needs it easier. Chauffeur missed the start then raced wide and keen in a slowly run affair. Had excuses. Beau Geste was wide and stuck on well, but he's not at the same level as his stablemate. Albumin hit the line after settling last in a slowly run affair. There is a race for him somewhere.

Money Trail: The market was spot on again. Viridine all the rage firming from $2.40 into $2.25. Stablemate Beau Geste was $6.50 into $4.80. The big drifter was Chauffeur $4.40 out to $6.50 whilst Single Bullet also eased from $4.20 to $5.50.

Blackbooker: Viridine the obvious but keep an eye out for Albumin turning up in something winnable. A suitable 1300 or 1400m event.

Race 7 - Moet & Chandon Spring Champion (G1) (2000m)

1st - Ace High ($3 fav)
2nd - Tangled ($5.5) - 0.1 lens
3rd - Sully ($8.5) - 1.6 lens
Then Followed: Sanctioned ($4), Astoria ($10), Dissolution ($13), Colesberg ($61), Coral Coast ($26), Surprise Bullet ($51), Langley ($31)

Analysis: Ace High held a strong hand by going forward and making his own luck. That proved the difference with runner-up Tangled finding some traffic approaching the turn before charging home along the fence. Sully over-raced early with the blinkers on first time. He then had trouble getting out in the straight and once clear wanted to lay out under pressure. Still clocked the fastest final furlong of the race at 12.29 secs. Talented! Sanctioned chased gamely after being ridden stone cold whilst stablemate Astoria endured a torrid run for Glyn Schofield. Three wide the trip facing the breeze – not pretty if you had backed him. Tye Angland broke the whip rules (four more than permitted) and was slapped with a $4k fine.

Money Trail: The money trail was a bit off this time with Ace High easing from $2.60 out to $3.10 in the final 30 minutes of betting. Sanctioned was the one they wanted – trimming-up from $4.80 into $4.

Blackbooker: Tangled is a son of Snitzel but he's racing as though he may get a Derby trip. Sully is arguably the most talented horse out of this race – but his racing manners are dreadful. Maybe another six months for him.

Race 8 - Mostyn Copper Group Angst Stks (G3) (1600m)

1st - Dixie Blossoms ($2.75 fav)
2nd - Daysee Doom ($4.75) - 0.8 lens
3rd - Zenalicious ($17) - 1.6 lens
Then Followed: Savapinski ($21), Denmagic ($51), Dawn Wall ($8), Shazee Lee ($81), Perfect Rhyme ($26), Imposing Lass ($9), Hetty Heights ($26), My True Love ($12), Mariquita ($81)



Analysis: This was run at a genuine clip which made it a tough mile for the mares. Dixie Blossoms was the best miler and under the set weights and penalties scale was always going to prove the one to beat. Kerrin McEvoy timed his run to perfection. Stablemate Daysee Doom had to do some early work from the outside gate but Andrew Adkins found a handy trailing position. Good ride for second prize. Zenalicious hit the line hard but her final 600m (34.72 secs) was still a touch slower than the winner's 34.69. Dawn Wall disappointed, Shazee Lee found trouble in the straight whilst Savapinski stuck on bravely considering she was racing well out of her grade.

Money Trail: Punters were back on track here with Dixie Blossoms backed from $3 into $2.70 in the final 30 minutes of betting. Dixie Blossoms was as much as $4.60 on Thursday. Stablemate Daysee Doom drifted as a result – she opened at $4.20 before starting at $4.80.

My Tip: This looked the idea race for Dixie Blossoms and that's how it turned out.

Blackbooker: Dixie Blossoms likely heads to the Myer and she'll run well. She's a dead-set miler. Keep an eye on Savapinski . She has a plethora of options being a Benchmark 73 mare.

Race 9 - Metropolitan Benchmark 80 Handicap (1200m)

1st - Chalk ($13)
2nd - Redouble ($3.75 fav) - 0.5 lens
3rd - Firsthand ($6.5) - 0.7 lens
Then Followed: Piracy ($4), Savvan ($15), Calabasas ($12), Love's A Fantasy ($31), King Darci ($21), My Country ($26), Art D'Amour ($51), Just Dreaming ($17), He's A Given ($101), Ebenos ($41), Colosseum King ($101), Tudor ($61)



Analysis: Carrying 50kg is always a plus and when the 3kg apprentice lands fourth in the one-one – things are looking good. Chalk made the most of the featherweight and charmed run. Redouble backed-up a strong trial with a brave first-up run. He was gelded and had a stable change during his spell. Firsthand will strip fitter after closing off late whilst Savvan screamed home from last. In fact, Firsthand (33.81/11.70) and Savvan (33.87/11.61) were the only two runners at Randwick on Saturday to break 34 seconds for the final 600m.

Money Trail: The market flipped in the final 30 minutes of betting with Piracy wobbling from $2.70 to $3.90 whilst Redouble firmed from $5.50 into $3.70 favourite. Savvan was specked from $31 into $15 whilst eventual winner Chalk was on the drift from $9 out to $13.

My Tip: Piracy had race fitness on his side and had every chance in the run. Not quite up to this level.

Blackbooker: You can follow a few out of this race but Savvan is on top of my list. Eye-catching return and has strong second-up stats.

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