The big news internationally is that racing is making a comeback.
It was a case of ‘Vive la France’ as racing resumed at Longchamp in France, much to la gaieté of punters.
In England, racing is expected to resume in June, with the prospect of the Group 1 Two Thousand Guineas being run at Newmarket on 6 June. The Epsom Derby is likely to run in July.
In New Zealand, horses have returned to work, with thoroughbred racing to resume on 3 July.
And here in Australia, weekend racing will focus on the $400,000 The Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville as part of the last leg of the Adelaide Carnival.
In Queensland, racing shifts to the Gold Coast for the state’s premier winter meeting, which features the $125,000 Group 3 Gold Coast Guineas (1200m, for three-year-olds), the $125,000 Group 3 Ken Russell Memorial (1200m, for two-year-olds) and the $85,000 Listed Silk Stocking (1200m, for fillies and mares).
In Sydney, the Scone meeting that features the Group 3 Dark Jewel Classic and three others Listed races has been moved to Rosehill.
The Morphettville track surface was rated a soft 5 on Thursday, but it should improve with the fine weather expected on Thursday and Friday, as predicted by the Bureau of Meteorology.
On the Gold Coast at the Southport racetrack, the track was listed as a good 4 on Thursday. The odd shower may arrive over the next two days, but the track should remain in the good range.
The return to Rosehill for the Scone meeting in Sydney sees some rain about on Thursday and Friday. The track was rated good 4 on Thursday morning, but keep an eye on the rainfall and the prospect of a downgrade.
Flemington is the focus in Melbourne. The track was rated a soft 5 on Thursday, and it’s expected to continue to improve under dry skies. In Perth, at Ascot, they will race on a good 3 track.
SILK STOCKING: TOUCH OF CLASS WITH MULTAJA
Quality mare Multaja may have the edge on the local stablemates Niedorp and Krone in the Silk Stocking at the Gold Coast racecourse. Multaja raced until late into 2019, before having a break. Trainer James Cummings then set her on a mission for the Queensland carnival, and she looked impressive when she resumed with a strong-finishing fifth behind Sweet Scandal in the Group 3 Hawkesbury Crown (1300m) on 25 April. Cummings has kept her fresh and Robbie Fradd takes the ride – she might be too good for the Silk Stocking field.
Niedorp and Krone are both trained by leading Queensland trainer Tony Gollan. Niedorp is a three-year-old filly who has won her past two starts in restricted grade at Doomben and she’s drawn very wide around the tricky Gold Coast track, while Krone comes north for this carnival from the Mick Price and Michael Kent stable.
Silk Stocking tips: Multaja has the class edge and looks value to beat ex-Victorian Krone, who last year won the Listed Darby Munro Stakes at Rosehill in Sydney. Happy to back both of these.
GOLD COAST GUINEAS: HIGHTAIL IN A SOLID FIELD
A solid field of three-year-olds is lining up for the Gold Coast Guineas (1200m), headed by the exceptionally fast local The Odyssey, Sydney colt Hightail, the 2019 Magic Millions winner Exhilarates, the Waterhouse-Bott colt Bellevue Hill, and the up-and-coming Command’n’conquer from Toowoomba.
Hightail, from the powerful Peter and Paul Snowden team, was impressive in winning on 2 May on the Randwick–Kensington track at his first run since finishing fourth behind Alligator Blood in the Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) on the Gold Coast in January. Before that he won the Gosford Guineas. Ryan Maloney takes the ride, making Hightail the one to beat.
Exhilarates finished a game third behind Alligator Blood in the Magic Millions Guineas and hasn’t raced since. The filly is a class act and her love of the Gold Coast track means she’s also a danger.
The Odyssey will set the pace and it will be a solid tempo, setting the race up for the late closers.
Gold Coast Guineas tips: Choose Hightail at these odds with the saving bet on Exhilarates. Garibaldi should get the cosy run behind the solid pace, so have a speck on him at the good odds.
DARK JEWEL STAKES: AMANGIRI WILL BE HOT AT ROSEHILL
The Scone meeting has been moved to Rosehill and the hot tip to win the Group 3 Dark Jewel Stakes (1400m) is the top-weight mare, Amangiri, to be ridden by Tommy Berry.
She has been heavily backed since the Sportsbet Dark Jewel Stakes betting market went up, and she should get a cosy run behind the pace and win again. The danger could be Delectation Girl, to be ridden by Hugh Bowman.
Dark Jewel Stakes tips: Definitely Amangiri.
THE GOODWOOD: A CRACK FIELD OF SPRINTERS
The Group 1 focus is final meeting of the three-week Adelaide Carnival, featuring the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville. It has attracted a crack field of sprinters.
The 2018 winner Santa Ana Lane has the talent to bounce back from recent dull efforts to beat the local star Gytrash and the Sydney sprinter Trekking, but we’re happy to back the three of them for a profit on Sportsbet’s The Goodwood betting market.
The Goodwood tips: Bet on Gytrash and Santa Ana Lane with a saving bet on Trekking. For those looking for odds, try Zoutori.
Race 1, number 9: Mrs O’Malley (trainer Enver Jusufovic)
Jusufovic has the best strike rate of any Victorian trainer in the top 35 on the trainers’ premiership table, and this mare gets in well with the claim for in-form apprentice Lewis German. Mrs O’Malley is a lightly raced mare who has been firming since markets on race 1 went up on Thursday.
Race 6, number 2: King Of Leogrance (trainer Danny O’Brien)
The Andrew Ramsden is run over 2800m, with the winner getting a golden ticket in the Melbourne Cup field in November. Adelaide Cup winner King Of Leogrance comes up against the Warrnambool Cup winner Too Close The Sun and the very promising Dark Alley. The King has the class edge.