Wednesday racing kicks up a gear this week as focus shifts south towards the Apple Isle, and 2021 Launceston Cup Day!
The time-honoured Cup headlines a ten-race program dripping with talent and I’ve previewed the lot below.
Merv Decides went close to breaking his maiden on Hobart Cup Day and can break through on Wednesday.
The Decides gelding has placed at each of his three trips to the races so far, including his last-start effort behind Fighting Frank.
Fitter fourth-up, this looks his opportunity.
Boris The Blade has improved for two starts since debuting and is ready to win on Launceston Cup Day.
The Squamosa gelding raced greenly on debut and clearly needed it, but returned a far better effort to fill the minors over 1200m last time out.
He’s drawn to receive a lovely run in transit and on exposed form, looks the one to beat.
Blushed hasn’t been seen at the races since August, but this is a decent drop in class from what she is used to contesting, and she can make a winning return.
The Jabali filly has only made four appearances at the races since debuting, but filled the minors on debut and broke her maiden before stepping out in Listed company during her debut prep.
She’s drawn and weighted well and will take plenty of beating.
Julius is another horse that will resume on Launceston Cup Day with genuine claims on winning.
The Time For War gelding stamped himself as a runner to follow when he debuted for consecutive wins at Devonport last winter, but he was sent to the paddock after failing to fire behind Galenus here in October.
He has a class edge over the lion’s share of his rivals this week and I’m happy to stick with him.
Warrior Prince has returned some typically nice efforts since resuming and the 3YO Classic shapes as a terrific target for him.
Having placed behind some good ones at his first two starts back, the Artie Schiller gelding was simply forced to do too much work in the Tasmanian Guineas last time and tired late.
He looks to be at peak fitness for this contest and should relish the drop in class, and trip.
Liffeybeau has been excellent this prep and is up to winning again on Launceston Cup Day.
The Magnus gelding has been a great horse throughout his career, but there is a genuine case to be built for him finding career-best form this time, and he has won three of his last four starts.
This is a rise in class, but I can’t find a reason why he won’t be in the finish again.
The Hobart Cup was probably a bridge too far distance-wise, but Mandela Effect is undoubtedly at his best over a mile and I’m expecting him to bounce back in the Mowbray Stakes.
The Turffontein gelding has been a typically consistent performer this prep and placed at each of his four starts prior to the Hobart Cup, three of which at Listed grade.
We know how good he can be under the right conditions and I think that he’s the one to beat.
Still A Star hasn’t been seen at the races since February last year, but she is an above-average athlete and can make a winning return in the Group 3 Vamos Stakes.
The Toronado mare has had twelve starts for seven wins and five second placings, and won each of the Tasmanian Guineas, Launceston Guineas and Tasmanian Oaks last time in.
Given that she has been set for a hopeful appearance in the All-Star Mile, I would think she’d be quite wound up for this race and I’m happy to have her on top.
The Risk Factor is seeking a third-consecutive win in the last on Launceston Cup Day and looks well placed to pull it off.
Regardless, the $1.60 available at publish is far too short for me and I am happy to pull stumps early.