Racing & Sports expert selections.
RACE 1 - SEETHING CHUCK (7) tackled a Bm74 last start and wasn't disgraced, beaten just two lengths over 1900m at Kempsey. Not a great deal of depth to this field so he looks a great chance to win for the second time in four starts. JAMES BARRIE (1) comes here following a comfortable win over this distance at Queanbeyan a fortnight ago. Only third-up today so there should be some improvement to come. Leading hope with the same weight as last time against similar company. CASINO BEAR (5) broke his maiden last time out over 1400m at this track. Big step up in distance but worth the gamble. NO RESPECT (3) found the 1450m at Kempsey and bit sharp last start and he couldn't quicken when required. Fitter now and out to a more suitable journey so worth another chance. CANDY KISS (8) was outclassed at Newcastle last time but can compete at this level.
RACE 2 - UNCLE SMOKEY (8) went close when resuming two starts ago then blew the kick before working home well for fifth last time out over 1400m at this track. Perfectly placed out to the mile at this stage of the prep and gets his chance to break through. BOYS CRY (2) is yet to salute in 22 starts but is racing well. Travelled on the pace all the way when beaten under a length at his latest outing over 1450m at Quirindi. Will be hard to peg back with a soft run likely up on the speed. POWER TO DECEIVE (7) backs up eight days after a modest fourth over 1400m at this circuit. Cherry ripe after three runs back and might be looking for this distance now. BEST OF MAHER (1) appreciated the step up in trip and ran a better race at Muswellbrook in a Class 1 recently. Major player back in maiden company. DECLUTTER (4) could find the frame at huge odds.
RACE 3 - OVEREXTEND (6) is back from a 24-week spell. Opened last prep with a tough win over this distance at Muswellbrook which was the high point of the campaign. Went well in a recent Scone trial so he looks set for another bright return. ZAKOR (1) led an open class field into the straight here at this trip recently but succumbed late and was beaten just under three lengths. Will be tough to reel in this time back in a Benchmark race. IN A STEP (2) is on a six-day back-up after just missing out in a thrilling finish at Newcastle. Has placed three in a row and loves Taree so leave her out at your peril. Distance specialist ADAMDEEANT (4) wasn't beaten far here last start in open company. Must be respected coming back in grade. SLICE OF HEAVEN (7) comes here off an eight-week freshen-up. Always hard to beat in these sharp sprints.
RACE 4 - DORASKAYA (9) returns after a 20-week spell. Best effort last prep was a 1.6 length second at Gosford over 1900m. Will be better over more ground but a couple of nice recent trials suggest a sharp first-up performance is on the cards. OAKFIELD MAMSELLE (1) is back for a second campaign off a 19-week lay-off. Closed well to get up for second on debut over 1150m at the Beaumont track so she does come to hand quickly. Must be respected. TRUE COMPANY (8) was in the market but failed on debut a month ago over 1200m at Scone. Worth another chance with the blinkers going on. THEDAYTHEMUSICDIED (4) has been about the money at both runs this prep and should appreciate the step up in distance. GIGI FILLE (5) resumes. Didn't do much in the maiden prep but kicks off in a much easier race this time around so worth monitoring for market support.
RACE 5 - NEWSBEAT (4) settled well back then stoked up late and was only beaten 2.6 lengths last start over 1100m at Gosford. Meets a far weaker maiden field this time and over an extra furlong he looks very tough to hold out. THOUGHT CRIME (12) went back from a wide gate and made no impression last time out over 1250m at Kempsey. Ran a nice race when resuming at Grafton the start before so he deserves another chance. SISSEROU (5) is a first starter by Winning Rupert from a Catbird mare. Has won his last two trials in good style. The dam has produced six winners from seven foals and he looks set to add to the tally. Big chance in a weak race. THE FAVORITE SON (9) ran a cheeky race first-up. Back a little in trip and is sure to be handy for a long way. ILOVENEWS (2) is a first starter who trialled okay at Hawkesbury recently. Betting watch advised.
RACE 6 - ISLEDON (5) led all the way to record a very soft win in a similar race to this two starts ago. Stepped up in class and distance last time out at Scone and struggled. Big chance back in her right race with the help of an ideal draw. PICCOLO PONTI (8) has savaged the line at both runs this prep, the latest effort an eye-catching third over this trip at Kempsey when beaten under a length. Open to further improvement and she is sure to play a major role. LUCK APLENTY (13) met with interference at her most recent appearance so the effort to finish fourth over this course and distance was full of merit. Ready to peak after two runs back from a spell. PRESS LIGHTLY (3) failed over the mile last start. Has two wins and two placings from four runs at or around this distance which is hard to ignore. MISS ARIZONA (2) appreciated the drop in grade and returned to form last time. In the mix again.
RACE 7 - EDGE OF MIDNIGHT (7) went back from a wide gate then made nice inroads late to get up for third last start over 1200m at Quirindi. Holding his form well deep into the prep and in this slightly easier race he is a great chance to score. OCTOBER REVOLUTION (1) is back from a 14-week break. Consistent performer last prep who boasts a decent record here at this distance. Perfectly drawn so a big first-up run looks on the cards. BEAR'S A STAR (6) was too bad to be true here at this trip last time out after an encouraging third when resuming the start before. Lightly raced and deserves another chance. GOLDEN HONOUR (8) raced back in the field and wide before winding up strongly to grab third here at this distance eight days ago. One to watch for late in the piece again. OBELIUS (10) is going well in weaker races. Capable of a top-four finish.