A diminutive field of middle-distance gallopers remain to face off for the 2016 Craven Plate win on Saturday as part of Epsom Handicap Day in Sydney, betting tips and the latest odds for the weight-for-age clash found below.
Two horses have scratched out early from this year’s $150,000 Group 3 APN Outdoor Craven Plate (2000m) leaving just five in the mix for Randwick Race 3 at 1:30pm (AEST) with #4 Raw Impluse (6) and #7 Bring Luck (3) out of contention.
Heading the updated Craven Plate betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au at an odds-on quote of $1.55 and firming is the John O’Shea-trained It’s Somewhat.
The Dyanformer six-year-old is down notably in class after his solid third to Australia’s Race Horse of the Year Winx in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) at the track a fortnight back and has winning form over the extra metres he’s over on Saturday.
The runners most likely to stop the Godolphin-raced It’s Somewhat from posting his first win since the Group 3 Neville Sellwood (2000m) over this distance at Rosehill in the autumn are the Chris Waller-trained Spiritjim ($3) and Hi World ($7).
So do the bookies have the order of the Craven Plate odds correct or do the roughie hopes Slow Pace ($20) and Pinstripe Lane ($51) stand any kind of chance of finishing in the money?
#2 Spiritijim ($3)
Going the upset with the Waller galloper who also comes off a George Main run having crossed fifth to his star stablemate as a $101 roughie. He was beaten under six lengths and set for an improved run off theat. The French import hasn’t won down under, but is a Group 2 winner in Europe and should be starting to get used to the Sydney way of racing now. The extra distance suits and he’s won over the meters before.
#1 It’s Somewhat ($1.55)
Odds-on and deserving of the price in a small field devoid of genuine class. His George Main placing was good and he’ll be peaking three runs in on Saturday from the inside alley with James McDonald replacing Tim Clark in the saddle. It’s been a while between drinks, but he’ll appreciate getting out over 2000m for the first time since he finished just over a length away third to Our Ivanhowe in the Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) in the winter.
#5 Slow Pace ($20)
Value place bet of the day is Kris Lees’ veteran nine-year-old who lines up for his 41st career run here. He’s had seven goes at Randwick for three third place efforts and won the Listed Wyong Cup (2100m) in the mud at the start of September. Comes off an 11th in the Newcastle Cup (2200m) when under six lengths off the winner Sacred Master. Could struggle at WFA with 59kg but he’s coming back in distance and in the mix.
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