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Group 1 racing returns to Perth for the first time in 12 months in the form of Saturday’s Railway Stakes 2017, a comprehensive form guide analysis and betting preview on the mile classic detailed below.
Running as Ascot Race 7 at 5:00pm (local time), this year’s Group 1 $1 million James Boag’s Premium Railway Stakes (1600m) features a capacity field and it is a tight affair in the top half of betting.
Current narrow favourite at Railway Stakes odds of $6 through Ladbrokes.com.au is the Chris Waller-trained Tom Melbourne who has run second in five of his six lead-up runs this prep.
The latest of those was a close effort at Flemington on Derby Day in the Group 1 Kennedy Mile (1600m) and the bookies are suggesting from barrier one with Damien Oliver aboard this weekend the seven-year-old can finally be first past the post after a frustrating run of seconds for connections.
Classy local Scales Of Justice ($6.50) is back to defend his title after winning last year’s Railway Stakes and is out to atone for a scratchy third when the narrowly beaten favourite in the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) in the lead-up.
Darren Weir’s five-time Group 1 champ and former Perth galloper Black Heart Bart ($6.50) is the other best in betting, but needs to make history with the 59kg top weight on his back.
Below we take a full look over the Railway Stakes 2017 form guide, betting history and statistics to uncover any value in the markets that could be found in the likes of last year’s WA Guineas winner Variation ($11) or Lee Steere Stakes winning mare Silverstream ($16) in the outside alley.
2017 Railway Stakes Form Facts & Betting Stats
- Last year’s Railway Stakes winner was the Lindsey Smith-trained Scales Of Justice (2016) who came off a lead-up win in the Group 3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m), jumped from barrier 8 (of 16) carrying 53kg to a 2.75 length victory with Douglas Whyte aboard the $8.50 shot
- #2 Scales Of Justice returns to defend his title this year drawn barrier 13 (possibly into 10), Whyte back in the saddle, carrying 4.5kg more than last year with 57.5kg looking to be the first back-to-back Railway Stakes winner since Tudor Mak (1966-67)
- Along with Lindsey Smith the other previous Railway Stakes winning trainers (since 1983) with a runner on Saturday are: Chris Waller with #3 Tom Melbourne ($6) and #8 All Our Roads ($16); Adam Durrant with #7 Silverstream ($16) and #10 Disposition ($61); Grant Williams with #9 Cosmic Storm ($26) and second emergency #18e Royal Star ($26); and David Hayes with #15 Sovereign Nation ($15)
- Along with Douglas Whyte the other previous Railway Stakes winning jockeys (since 1983) with a ride this weekend are: William Pike on #7 Silverstream, two time champion jockey Patrick Carbery on #14 Pounamu ($17) and fellow dual winning hoop Craig Williams on #8 All Our Roads
- Three of the six Railway Stakes winners from 2011-2016 came off a lead-up win
- The last start winners in the 2017 Railway Stakes field are: #7 Silverstream (Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes, 1400m, Ascot, 11/11/2017), #11 Gatting (Listed Ascot Gold Cup, 1800m, Ascot, 11/11/2017) and #14 Pounamu (Group 3 Asian Beau Stakes, 1400m, Ascot, 04/11/2017)
- #14 Pounamu is out to do the Asian Beau Stakes – Railway Stakes double for the first time since Luckgray (2011)
- The Lee Steere Stakes has produced six Railway Stakes winners since 2003 with Belle Bizarre (2006) the only one to do the double
- #7 Silverstream chases this season’s Lee Steere Stakes – Railway Stakes double
- Along with the winner Silverstream the other Lee Steere Stakes graduates backing up in the Group 1 rematch this weekend are: Great Shot (2nd), Scales Of Justice (3rd) and Disposition (5th)
- Last year’s winning barrier (8) has produced five Railway Stakes winners (since 1983) and is drawn currently by #1 Black Heart Bart but barriers will shift depending on the emergencies: #17e Tradesman (9), #18e Royal Star (17), #19e Bollywood Blitz (2) and #20e Tonkatuff (7)
- Since 1999 just two favourites in Railway Stakes betting have saluted for the punters with: El Presidente (2007) and Luckygray (2011)
- #3 Tom Melbourne ($6) is current Railway Stakes favourite in 2017 looking to break the hoodoo
- In the past decade six of the 10 Railway Stakes winners jumped under $10 in betting
- The single-figure hopes in the 2017 Railway Stakes odds are: #3 Tom Melbourne ($6), #1 Black Heart Bart ($6.50), #2 Scales Of Justice ($6.50) and #4 Supply And Demand ($9.50)
- Since 2005 three mares have won the Railway Stakes with Elite Belle (2014) the most recent; the mares in the mix this year are: #7 Silverstream, #9 Cosmic Storm and the second emergency #18e Royal Star
- Four, five and six-year-olds have dominated the Railway Stakes results over the past 30 years
- #1 Black Heart Bart, #3 Tom Melbourne and #13 Observational ($41) are out to be the first seven-year-old Railway Stakes winner since Wiloughby (1998)
- Lightweights have dominated the Railway Stakes results in the past three decades with only two carrying more than 55.5kg since 1983 with Sniper’s Bullet (56.5kg in 2009) and Luckygray (58kg in 2013)
- The top weights in the Railway Stakes 2017 are #1 Black Heart Bart (59kg) and #2 Scales Of Justice (57.5kg)
- #1 Black Heart Bart has a further hoodoo to overcome with no Railway Stakes winner having carried more than 58kg to victory since Tudor Mak (61kg) for his second in 1967
- The highest Win Rate of the field belongs to #12 Material Man (63%) followed by the second emergency #18e Royal Star (50%), #2 Scales Of Justice (45%) and #9 Cosmic Storm (44%)
- The best Place Rate of the field belongs to #2 Scales Of Justice (95%) followed by #16 Variation (94%), #12 Material Man (81%), #4 Supply And Demand (79%) and #6 Great Shot (78%)
- The confirmed starters with the best winning record at the Ascot track are: #14 Pounamu (15: 7-4-1), #1 Black Heart Bart (20: 6-6-2), #7 Silverstream (20: 5-3-1), #11 Gatting (10: 5-2-1), #2 Scales Of Justice (8: 4-3-1), #9 Cosmic Storm (10: 4-2-1), #16 Variation (7: 4-1-2), #6 Great Shot (11: 2-5-1) and #10 Disposition (10: 2-3-0)
- The confirmed runners with the best winning record over the mile distance (1600m) are: #9 Cosmic Storm (4: 4-0-0), #12 Material Man (4: 4-0-0), #2 Scales Of Justice (3: 3-0-0), #16 Variation (3: 3-0-0), #6 Great Shot (3: 2-0-1), #8 All Our Roads (9: 2-4-0), #14 Pounamu (9: 2-3-1) and #13 Observational (8: 2-1-0)
Stay tuned for our insider Railway Stakes 2017 betting tips, checking out the comprehensive form guide courtesy of Ladbrokes.com.au below in the meantime.
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