The Clarence River Jockey Club’s premier event runs this afternoon with the Grafton Cup 2015 lighting up the track, betting tips for the handicap clash detailed below.
Due to run as Grafton Race 7 at 3:55pm (AEST), the $150,000 Listed Blanchard Haulage Grafton Cup (2350m) originally drew 16 final acceptors.
Two scratchings however leave a field of 14 with the Chris Waller-trained Gosh (10) and David Vandyke-trained Maurus (13) both officially withdrawn.
Grafton Cup betting at Ladbrokes.com.au is led by the Ciaron Maher-trained Kapour ($3.50) from Melbourne, the five-year-old import coming off a big four and a half length win in the Listed Winter Cup (2400m) run on a Heavy (8) Rosehill track on June 27.
The next best two hopes in the Grafton Cup odds are Gai Waterhouse’s widely-drawn top weight Bonfire ($5.50) with work to do but good lead-up form and class, and Waller’s rails-drawn Reigning ($6) who won two back before a third in the wet last Saturday.
So do the bookies have it right or is there an upset Grafton Cup result on the cards from the likes of market mover Shoreham ($13 into $7.50), Banca Mo ($9) with the outside alley to overcome or recent Ipswich Cup winner Danchai ($9) to be ridden by Hugh Bowman from a nice gate two draw?
#5 Danchai ($9)
Going for value and really rate the lead-up form of Waller’s Authorized six-year-old who beat Banca Mo home in the Listed Ipswich Cup (2150m) two back before running third to Kapour and Bonfire, who he faces again, in the Winter Cup. Gets a chance to atone and think he can on a firmer track with the same weight (55.5kg) and a gun gate two draw. He will be excelling on the dry course and will box seat from the barrier making him a livewire hope at a nice price.
#7 Reigning ($6)
Backing the remaining Waller stablemates to run the quinella here with another in-form hope, Reigning, also coming off a win then a third. He is drawn one inside of Danchai with barrier one and Glyn Schofield riding, so they can go up through the field together. Carries 54.5kg, a really nice weight for this Choisir gelding who had 57kg last Saturday when a Heavy (8) track saw him finish third (beaten only a length) to Sir Mako over 1900m at Rosehill. Has only won over 2000m but think he can handle a bit of extra distance if the race is run right.
#13 Archean ($21)
So many chances to fill the placings but adding real value to the trifecta is this Vandyke-trained four-year-old. Has won three of his nine starts to date including a 1900m BenchMark 70 last time out at Canterbury. Had 58.5kg on his back that day but drops right down to the 54kg minimum for this class rise. Needs to handle tougher rivals and extra metres but is over the odds for sure.
Whether you’re backing or sacking our Grafton Cup 2015 betting selections, make sure you get the guaranteed best price online through Ladbrokes.com.au who are also offering a Bonus Bet for 2nd or 3rd in Grafton Race 7 this afternoon!