Defending champ Howmuchdoyouloveme may have a big weight and wide gate to overcome but the bookies are taking no chances with the Tina Cotsiopoulos-trained galloper opening narrow favourite in the 2013 Ramornie Handicap odds for Wednesday.
The first major of the two-day Grafton Cup Carnival the $150,000 Listed Crowe Horwath Ramornie Handicap (1200m) features a final field of 15 hopefuls, Howmuchdoyouloveme to wear the number one saddlecloth.
Coming off back-to-back stakes wins at Eagle Farm over a number of these same rivals including River Lady in the Group 3 W.J. Healy Stakes (1200m) on June 22, the Written Tycoon four-year-old is in flying form.
They need to be however if they are going to make it three on the trot and score their second successive Ramornie Handicap title after winning the race by four lengths last year.
Twelve months ago the then Con Karakatsanis-trained sprinter carried only 54kg to victory.
This year they’ve been lumped with the 60.5kg topweight, a half kilo more than their WJ Healy Stakes winning weight.
Two back they jumped from barrier 16 of 17 to win the Listed Lightning Handicap (1000m) and also were out wide in 11 of 11 for the Healy.
They get no barrier relief for Wednesday either with gate 10 of 15 to overcome but remain the early favourite paying $4.20 in the Ramornie Handicap betting markets.
Hot on their heels at $5 is then Big Bonanza ($5) on the 54kg minimum with Peter Robl to ride.
Don Robb’s versatile Stratum five-year-old was impressive in the mud at Rosehill last start on July 1 when winning over 1200m by three lengths, the distance specialist also boasting good form on firmer tracks.
In a wide open market there is four other single figure Rarmonie Handicap fancies with:
#7 Pentasia ($8) – Pentire mare first-up winner of the Listed Chief De Beers (1110m) at Doomben in May, was a credible fifth to Howmuchdoyouloveme in the Lightning last start, goes well fresh so will appreciate the break between runs and will also appreciate getting up to the 1200m
#3 River Lad ($8.50) – Natalie McCall’s Sunshine Coast-based gelding comes off a string of very good runs including a stakes win in the Bribie Handicap at Eagle Farm, beaten by Howmuchdoyouloveme in their last two including by just a neck in the Healy, out to turn the tables getting in with 57.5kg (half a kilo less than last start)
#2 Adebisi ($9) – Desleigh Forster-trained Brisbane galloper was injured last start when 15th (of 16) in the Bribie Handicap behind River Lad, a race they won 12 months ago, has recovered and ready to bounce back at Grafton looking to recapture their Group 3 Rubition Stakes winning form from earlier in the year
#11 Soledad ($9) – Commands four-year-old from the Sydney stables of Peter Snowden, hasn’t raced since a close third at Kembla Grange back in March, carried 58kg then so will love the 54kg and barrier five (Kerrin McEvoy) for just their second ever black type assignment
Other hopes at longer odds after an upset then include Tamworth galloper Border Rebel ($11) with barrier one which produced last year’s winner and the Rob Heathcote-trained veteran Gundy Son ($14).
See below for the complete 2013 Ramornie Handicap betting odds, prices courtesy of bookmaker.com.au – our number one recommended and trusted sportsbook!
2013 Ramornie Handicap Odds
Grafton Race 7 – 3:41pm (AEST) – 10/07/2013
|3||RIVER LAD (3)||8.50|
|4||YOUTHFUL JACK (6)||26.00|
|5||BORDER REBEL (1)||11.00|
|6||GUNDY SON (11)||14.00|
|8||CELTIC DANCER (4)||34.00|
|9||WAR ENDS (12)||34.00|
|10||BIG BONANZA (7)||5.00|
|13||SKATING ON ICE (2)||31.00|
|14||IDEAL POSITION (14)||41.00|
|15||PRIVATE EXPRESS (9)||81.00|
*Fixed Win odds provided by bookmaker.com.au and subject to change