Here’s a look at the Underwood Stakes and Group races for today’s Caulfield meeting.
The Danehill Stakes down the “straight six” (1200m) at Flemington, won by Encryption, supplied the lead-up for several of the key players.
Tavisan wasn’t comfortable racing near the outside fence, yet still battled on well for third. Will race on speed and give them something to catch.
Two runs from a spell have been good from Thorondor. Latest made ground late for 2nd to Encryption. Has a good draw and should find a nice spot in the run.
Declarationofheart didn’t threaten, but did best work the last 400m when 4th to Brutal at Flemington (1400m). Probably looking for a mile. Big chance this race will be run more up tempo and will suit.
Long Leaf was not at home in heavy Rosehill last start, previous run here was huge. Blinkers go on and 1400m ideal. Stablemate Good ‘N’ Fast finished of late for third to Brutal latest.
Godolphin colt Wagner won two at Canterbury, latest against older horses, back to own age here.
Best: Long Leaf. Dangers: Declarationofheart, Tavisan.
El Dorado Dreaming is class runner with G1 win in AJC Sires Produce (1400m). This first start as three-year-old, has had three trials to prepare and looked good in all.
Unbeaten Smart Melody blew them away last start at Flemington down the straight (1100m). Little query out to 1400m, but her dam, Sweetest Melody, won at 1800m.
Music Bay chased home Smart Melody, tired late and will be fitter for the run
Thrillster has been in the money all five starts. Outside alley a concern.
Best: Smart Melody. Dangers: El Dorado Dreaming, Music Bay.
Grunt disappointed in two runs this track then powered away to win the G1 Makybe Diva at Flemington. Horses for courses and this isn’t his, especially at the odds.
Humidor scored nice win first-up and then not disgraced latest in the Makybe Diva (1600m). Did his best work late and out to a more suitable trip here, yet prefer slightly longer.
Homesman found the line well at the Valley in G2 Feehan, fitter for the run and extra distance in his favour. Winner here only start.
Invader Blair House has first Australian start. Smart and stable already produced Jungle Cat for G1 win in the Ruperte Clarke.
Comin’ Through had a wide run in the middle part of the Makybe Diva. He only wound up the last 200m and there was a lot to like about the way he closed out the race.
Best: Comin’ Through. Dangers: Grunt, Humidor.