Race 1 – 11AM PRECISE FIRE HANDICAP (1200 METRES)
Have been waiting patiently for 7. O’Tycoon to make his debut after trialling so well on three occasions. He looks a pretty straightforward colt off those three hit-outs, showing terrific gate speed before settling in front and then quickening at the finish. He has won all three of his trials, and with something still in reserve. Even the form through his trials has been subsequently franked. From the low draw, Rachel King should be the first to the fence and, if he runs up to his trials, he looks set to make a big first impression. 4. Kandos Cosmos clocked the fastest final 200m split of the meeting on debut at Canterbury when flashing home into second behind 1. Shalailed. That was despite being sent around at $81. Looks suited swapping Canterbury for Rosehill and he is big odds again.
How to play it: O’Tycoon to win.
Race 2 – 11. 35AM TAB HIGHWAY HANDICAP (1200 METRES)
3. Street Power was heavily backed last start at Randwick in a BM72 won by American President, but never looked comfortable on the heavy 10 surface. His two runs before that, in Country Championship qualifiers, where he was stretched to 1400m, had a lot more merit than they looked on paper. In this four-year-old’s two previous Highway Handicap runs he was second to Ten Bells, and beat Shelby Sixtysix and Casino Kid in the other. His form this time back is deceptive. Suspect he is going so much better than it suggests. Jason Collett jumps back on for the first time since that Highway victory in November. 5. Hardware Lane put it all together at Hawkesbury last start to put three lengths on his Highway rivals. There is a lot more depth in this, but we probably still haven’t seen the best of him just yet.
How to play it: Street Power to win.
Race 3 – 12. 10PM SCHWEPPES HANDICAP (1500 METRES)
Former Kiwi-trained three-year-old 2. Rangi Toa spent nearly a year on the sidelines before resuming at the midweeks in late April, and he held off all challengers. It was an impressive win given the context. He lumped 61kg, tackled 1400m fresh and had to make a beeline to the outside fence given the way the Kensington track played that meeting. He transitions now into Saturday company, but Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott couldn’t have found a more suitable assignment for him. He shapes to relish getting out to 1500m and there isn’t a lot of speed on paper, so Hugh Bowman should be able to run it to suit. 4. Elusive Jewel looks the obvious threat. Would be surprised if the winner came from outside of these two. John Thompson has her racing in career-best form.
How to play it: Rangi Toa to win.
Race 4 – 12. 45PM MIDWAY HANDICAP (1400 METRES)
2. Marnix has hit a real purple patch of form for Richard Litt. The four-year-old has hardly put a foot wrong since joining the stable. After stringing two midweek wins together in January he ran a luckless fourth behind Irish Songs at listed level in Canberra before running Kalapour to less than a length at Hawkesbury. That prompted connections to take aim at the Hawkesbury Gold Cup, despite still being a 74-rater, and he justified the market support, having been backed in from $41 into $21 late, to run on into sixth behind Kirwan’s Lane. He drops back to a BM72 now at Midway level. 4. Bazooka is a much better horse than his record of two wins from 25 starts suggests. His pattern often sees him find one or two better, which was the story for much of last preparation.
How to play it: Marnix each way.
Race 5 – 1. 20PM CANADIAN CLUB HANDICAP (2000 METRES)
3. Ting Tong comes back to three-year-old company after mixing it with older horses at his last couple. Most recently he ran fourth behind Hameron and Military Mission. Flooding home into third was Bonny Ezra, which won just seven days later at Scone. Prior to that, Ting Tong finished third behind La Chevalee on a heavy 10 despite being five weeks between runs. Back in fifth there was Diamil, albeit with excuses. It still serves to highlight the depth of the form around Ting Tong. 14. Awesome Wonder is by Galileo out of Nechita! That’s some pedigree. Formerly trained in Ireland, she hit the ground running in Australia, winning at Wyong first up over 1600m. There is obviously more depth here, but she’s untapped. 16. Kopangi bounced back second up after disappointing fresh and he sets up well third up out to 2000m.
How to play it: Ting Tong each way.
Race 6 – 1. 55PM FUJITSU GENERAL HANDICAP (1800 METRES)
The 1800m has become a pet trip for 9. Dhakuri: the four-year-old boasts a 6:4-0-1 record over the distance. Thought he did more than enough first up over 1600m at Gosford behind Solar Apex and Elusive Jewel. That should have him ready to go second up with Hugh Bowman going on. The gelding’s latest win, at the back end of last campaign, was over this same track and trip. In eight starts last campaign the son of Contributer won three of them and placed in a further two, so he has found a terrific level of consistency now. The each-way odds appeal. 6. Dynasties is the horse to beat, but she’s very well found, particularly given she now takes on some pretty seasoned older horses. Beating Gypsy Goddess last start and running third behind Espiona first up obviously reads well.
How to play it: Dhakuri each way.
Race 7 – 2. 30PM CITY OF PARRAMATTA LORD MAYORS CUP (2000 METRES)
4. Hopeful was causing his strapper and jockey Rachel King all kinds of bother at Hawkesbury three weeks ago in the yard, yet still produced a brilliant effort to run second behind Kirwan’s Lane. That looks a strong form reference for this with Olmedo and Atishu both running well since. That was Hopeful’s first run in Australia. The former French-based five-year-old had enough speed to win over 1500m on debut, but his past three wins before being transferred to Annabel Neasham were over 2000m, 2400m and 2250m, so he looks perfectly set up out to 2000m now second up after tackling the mile. 3. Aleas has improved each time he has stepped out this preparation, which culminated in a determined win in the Wagga Cup last start. This is a touch harder again, but he is still only 12 starts into his career and on an upward spiral.
How to play it: Hopeful to win.
Race 8 – 3. 05PM FURPHY HANDICAP (1200 METRES)
Like what we saw from 9. Mariamia at her first start for Joe Pride. The five-year-old mare just felt the pinch late when third behind Andermatt on a heavy 10 at Randwick. There was support for Mariamia in betting too, jumping $10 in what is a much deeper race than this. It was a BM94. The overall time was near five lengths quicker than 13. Sunborn’s Midway win so that ties in neatly, with Sunborn one of her key dangers. Mariamia drops back to BM78 level against her own sex here. It was only in February that she was collared late by Probabeel in a group 3 at Caulfield. When it rained it poured for 1. Lady of Luxury. After taking 11 starts to break her maiden, she went on to win another four from her subsequent nine starts.
How to play it: Mariamia to win.
Race 9 – 3. 45PM KIA HANDICAP (1500 METRES)
17. Mach Schnell failed as a $2. 80 favourite last start at Warwick Farm, but didn’t go a yard on the bottomless heavy 10 and pulled up slow to recover. Forget that. He had genuine excuses. Here he is just 10 days later so he has obviously taken no harm from the run and always wary when Joe Pride sets one up like this. The quick turnaround sparks enough interest already, then throw into the mix that the former Kiwi plummets in weight from 58. 5kg to just 51kg. He shoots up in grade but he is now hard fit and big odds due to his last start. 8. Night Of Power will be saved for one last crack at his rivals, which makes him hard to catch, but with the right breaks, he’s absolutely capable of rounding this field up.
How to play it: Mach Schnell each way.
Race 10 – 4. 25PM BOWERMANS HANDICAP (1200 METRES)
2. Rainbow Connection has more upside than any of these. Afully fit Rainbow Connection would probably blow these away. The query is how forward he is coming back from a tendon injury, which sidelined him for more than a year. Loved what he did in his first racing preparation, however. At just his third start, he powered to the line to finish third behind Ellsberg and Private Eye in the listed South Pacific Classic. He then ran Exoboom to half a length in the Hawkesbury Guineas at group 3 level. Even an80 per cent fit Rainbow Connection might be able to get away with this. 7. He’s A Hotshot has run two close-up seconds this time back. Had to double-check that it was indeed 10. El Buena that won a recent Rosehill trial. It was a brilliant piece of work.
How to play it: Rainbow Connection to win.
Tips supplied by Racing NSW.
Full form and race replays available at .
News, results and expert analysis from the weekend of sport sent every Monday. .