Punters are counting down the hours until Perth’s richest race, the 2011 Railway Stakes, takes place at Ascot this Saturday and to help our readers place the winning bets on this iconic mile showdown below we have the latest betting markets and our exclusive Railway Stakes tips.
Set to run as Ascot Race 8 at 3:45pm (local time) the $1 million Carlton Draught Railway Stakes (1600m) features a capacity field of 16 starters plus two emergencies with the markets led by the explosive Ranger at $3.60 through Luxbet.
Although the favourite, $3.60 still looks a very nice price on Grant Williams’ rank galloper who is undefeated this season.
Three wins over 1400 metres since resuming in early October, Testa Rossa five-year-old Ranger was last seen scoring a commanding two length victory over a class field in the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes (1400m).
Dropping back from 59kg last start to 56kg on Saturday, Ranger has the right weight, record, form, hoop (William Pike) and draw (barrier six into five with emergencies out) to salute for the punters and become the 2011 Railway Stakes winner.
Ranger remains steady in the Railway markets at their $3.60 quote through Luxbet but there have been a number of other market movers most notably Kincaple backed in from $21 to $12.
The now Mark Reed-trained Pentire six-year-old, formerly prepared by Jim Conlan, has been in career best form in the second half of this year winning four of their six starts since July and running second in the other two.
They come into the Railway on the back of a strong win in the Kalgoorlie Cup (2300m) on September 17, but how that form will stack up against this field is a query as is the step back from 2300 metres to the mile.
Still they have a solid record at the track, five wins and a second from seven starts, and are undefeated first-up making them an interesting selection.
Following Ranger in the markets at single-figures are Gino Poletti’s in-form Bradbury’s Luck four-year-old Luckygray ($5.50) and the Roger James-trained Kiwi He’s Remarkable ($6), while Neville Parnham’s reigning Kingston Town Classic hero Playing God has drifted out from $8.50 to $10 and visiting Melbourne mare Avienus is next at $12.
2011 Railway Stakes Tips – Ascot Race 8 Betting
1st: #3 Ranger – $3.60 Luxbet
Ranger really is hard to go past for this looking at all the form facts and stats. Their recent runs have being outstanding, as have their sectional times suggesting the mile fourth-up will be ideal. They are also one of only four horses in this field to have won at the track and distance before and they are the favourite for a reason.
2nd: #11 Luckygray – $5.50 Luxbet
One-time favourite now second elect, Luckygray ticks nearly all of the boxes and it was hard not to back them for a narrow upset. The only reason we hold off saying they will win is that the Group 3 Asian Beau Stakes (1400m), which they won by an easy three and a half lengths last start, was their initial grand final and winning the Railway Stakes as an afterthought is tough. Still if you fancy an upset this is the horse to get on as they have the best Win Rate of the field (75%) and Place Rate (87.50%) and the form is right as the Asian Beau Stakes – Railway Stakes double has been completed by two horses in the past decade with Gilded Venom (2008) and El Presidente (2007). Remember though they are drawn wide in a big field and are only a slight horse (racing weight around 440kg).
3rd: #9 He’s Remarkable – $6 Luxbet
It wouldn’t be the first time the top three favourites finish in the exact order of the odds. He’s Remarkable will relish the firm track here, Ascot currently a Good (3), but just not sure the rails draw is right for them. Win over the Flemington mile last-start was an eye-catcher but again, they haven’t been set for this race all along and only went in this direction after failing to gain a run in the Emirates Stakes. They are the right age as four-year-old, however, with 4YO’s dominant record in the race.
4th: #16 Westriver Kevydonn – $13 Luxbet
Lots to like about this Danetime six-year-old who, like the favourite, comes off three straight wins at Ascot most recently the Group 3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m) last Saturday. They jumped from barrier one then and get gate two on Saturday and are on the 53kg minimum.
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