On Friday the opening meeting of the two-day Scone Cup Carnival is headlined of course by the 2014 Scone Cup – betting tips and exotic selections for which are detailed below.
This year’s $200,000 Listed Emirates Park Scone Cup (1600m) features a final field of 17 acceptors, 16 assured of a run and one emergency awaiting a scratching.
Scone Cup betting is a tight affair with the Hawkes-trained Mecir the current $5.50 favourite following their last start fourth in the Group 3 Victoria Handicap (1400m) at Caulfield from April 19.
The recent Newcastle Newmarket Handicap winner is joined at single figures in the Scone Cup odds by three other runners.
Second favourites at $6 are fellow 58kg top weights Destiny’s Kiss and Prince Cheri coming off very different lead-up form.
Joe Pride’s Power Of Destiny five-year-old Destiny’s Kiss won at Warwick Farm on Anzac Day over the mile while Prince Cheri was last seen running a distant eighth over 1900m in a Rosehill Group 3 from March 22.
The other top fancy at $7 is then the horse who Destiny’s Kiss beat home on April 25, the John O’Shea-trained Wistful who backed up on May 3 to finish second again this time behind Doomben Cup hopeful Leebaz in the Group 3 Hawkesbury Gold Cup (1600m).
That’s who the bookies rate but should you stick with their selections or go for value from a longer priced hope such as Greg Bennett’s local hope Kaypers ($11) coming off a Randwick win from April 26 or even the Grant Allard-trained Loaded ($13) who was second in the same race last start.
#8 Wistful ($7)
Think there’s an upset on the cards from this in-form Tiger Hill mare, the four-year-old primed to beat home the boys after two close calls of late. Her form improved dramatically from some very average stuff earlier this prep when she went up to the mile at Warwick Farm last month to run under a length away second to Destiny’s Kiss. They then went to Hawkesbury for the Gold Cup and thrived over the 1600m again when beaten three quarters of a length by Leebaz. The winner that day races as the second favourite in Saturday’s Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) so Wistful surely is a chance here against an easier field staying on the 1600m especially from a gun gate two draw.
#9 Loaded ($13)
Flying Nicko six-year-old represents good value here as they get back up to a mile after their second over 1400m at Randwick last time out when defeated just a long neck by Kaypers who is shorter in the markets for this rematch. Before that they hadn’t raced since August of 2013 and so with a run under their belt again now this proven stakes winning miler should be fitter and ready for the challenge.
#2 Mecir ($5.50)
Current favourite and the money is steady. Definitely a chance even from the awkward gate (13) with James McDonald riding the Lonhro gelding who won over 1400m at Newcastle in a Group 3 two back before their fourth in Melbourne last time out. Going up to 1600m is the query here but they are consistent and love racing in Sydney so if they handle the distance and the weight will be right in the finish.
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change