Sydney Specials: Randwick – 6th of July 2024

Back at Randwick this week with the Winter Stakes headlining the card.

FENGARADA winning the Tile Importer Handicap at Sandown in Melbourne, Australia.
FENGARADA winning the Tile Importer Handicap at Sandown in Melbourne, Australia. Picture: Racing Photos

Good result last week in Sydney with Highlights just that, winning at $19, and we look to roll that into Saturday where the Winter Stakes provides the feature.

Highlights takes on stablemate Iknowastar in the feature but the prices look more or less correct there. Perhaps the case could be made that Highlights is a bit big again ($9.50 vs $2.50) but we'll take our winnings and move onto the last race on the card.

I was keen on Pure Alpha last week and he was well supported in early betting before being scratched, leaving the race for Elouyou to win well.

Pure Alpha comes up here in a 1400m benchmark 78 and looks a horse on the up who can measure up nicely in this grade. He's never missed the quinella from four starts to date, running a new peak rating of 99 on the R&S scale at the midweeks last start, with the sectionals suggesting he could've rated even higher.

That was on a heavy 8 so there are no concerns with the surface, and that sort of rating already has him one of the hardest to beat, while also offering plenty more upside.

The wide draw for Waller is of some concern, but he's got too much pace to go back, leading throughout at his second start despite drawing barrier 7/9, and settling 4th on resumption from barrier 10/14.

Think he's clearly the horse to beat and getting nearly $3.50 looks a very fair gamble.

For the each-way play, we're rolling back to Race 5 where I think the Victorian visitor Fengarada can improve sharply onto a heavy track. He resumed off an 18 month, injury enforced layoff on a soft track over 1700m at Warrnambool and hit the line nicely for second.

He was poor last start on a good track at Sandown in a Bm100, but Pudding got to have his cake and eat it too, getting away with ridiculously slow fractions in front, and a sit-sprint on a good track, second-up from a long spell was about the worst scenario for Fengarada.

Last campaign he ran to a peak rating of 100 when winning the Moe Cup on a heavy 9 surface, and the first up run at The Bool suggested he's on track to at least get back to that sort of form, which has him right in the finish here.

Notably, the concussion plates come off (they were off first-up, and on at Sandown), and if the track stays in the heavy range, he can certainly make his presence felt.


Bet of the day: Race 10 #10 Pure Alpha at $3.40
Each-way play: Race 5 #1 Fengarada at $14/4