Tomorrow the major New Year’s Day race to kick off Group racing in 2015 is the Perth Cup in WA, betting tips and selections for the handicap classic detailed below.
A bumper field lines up in the latest edition of the $500,000 Group 2 Golden River Developments Perth Cup (2400m), the favourite in the capacity 16-starter line-up being Real Love in barrier five.
Lark Hill trainer Adam Durrant prepares the four-year-old Desert King mare who pays $2.40 as the red hot favourite in the latest Perth Cup betting odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
She’s twice placed at Group level over this distance during the autumn when runner-up in the WA Oaks and third past the post in the WATC Derby.
Thursday she runs from a nice barrier five draw with the state’s number one jockey William Pike in the saddle again, Real Love shooting for her third straight win.
Two back she won the Group 3 Queen’s Cup (2200m) by a tidy margin then on December 20 she held off the Oaks winner Balmont Girl to win the Listed WA St Leger (2100m) by a half-length.
The other big players in the Perth Cup markets this season then include Grant Williams’s WATC Derby winner Respondent ($8.50) on the 54kg minimum along with the favourite, market mover Red Blast ($9) coming off a CB Cox Stakes second for trainer Daniel Morton and the Paula Wagg-trained Balmont Girl ($9) with a big 57kg allocation and barrier 15 to overcome.
So will the Perth Cup favourite get the job done?
Or is there value to be found tipping an upset Perth Cup result on January 1?
#13 Real Love ($2.40)
She’s short in the markets but really is hard to see Durrant’s in-form mare get beaten here. She’s out to become the third mare in four years to win the Perth Cup following the success of Talent Show (2013) and Western Jewel (December of 2011, no Perth Cup held in 2012). Has form over the distance, has beaten many of these before in lead-up races, should get a gun run from her nice barrier with top jockey Pike in the saddle, has won her past two on the trot including the Group 3 Queen’s Cup by 2.5 lengths and drops 2kg to 54kg off her WA St Leger win last start with 56kg. Lots to like.
#14 Red Blast ($9)
Money is coming in for Red Blast who has claims here on the back of the Universal Prince gelding’s second in the CB Cox Stakes. The form of that race could hold up as it was won by Railway Stakes champ Elite Belle and even the owner of Real Love (Bob Peters) isn’t sure if his mare would have won that race. Red Blast was under half a length off the winner in the Cox Stakes and is on the improve, he also has form up to 2300m and with the light weight (54kg down from 59kg under WFA) and a nice mid-field draw he could surprise.
#15 Respondent ($8.50)
WATC Derby winner from autumn is proven over the distance and beat Real Love home that day. The now four-year-old Haradasun gelding’s form this time in has been hit and miss but what he showed when third, beaten only half a length, in the WA St Leger last start suggests improvement. He drops four kilos here down from 58kg to 54kg so meets Real Love level in the weights instead of with two kilos more which could prove the winning advantage.
Get behind our Perth Cup 2014 betting selections, or lock in your own tips, online now at Ladbrokes.com.au where quoting the code BETBONUS when you make your first deposit will have you investment matched dollar for dollar up to $250 as a bonus bet for the New Year!
*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change