Race 1 (1400m) Maiden
It's not clear at all who leads the small field. Tactical. ZARZOU (1) is ex Chris Waller and is back after 13 days for trainer Annabel Neasham (formerly with Maher- Eustace - Sydney). Races at peak and has been close-up the last three at the provincials. Back 100m won't worry and he should probably win. Having said that WANDONNA (2) missed a half-length at Moruya in a promising initial showing for the new yard (Dryden) and her peak figures more than stack up. She might be the one to lead and is clearly a danger. GREY MANTRA (3) needs to lift to another level but will be fitter and ran favourite the latest. LA VALKYRIE (4) is in a good local yard and can improve into a first-four slot. BET: Leaning to Zarzou in what looks a two horse race.
Race 2 (1000m) BM65
A solid tempo with Revolver likely to lead the small field. GALAXY FORCE (1) improved sharply winning a strong form race at Wagga at 58 level and then went to Randwick and was well beaten at 50-1. The Albury galloper comes to peak now and gets the handy 3kg claim for Scott who saluted on him at Wagga. Not past-the-post but he's city-placed and has upside. FAT GECKO (7) resumes and interests. His best figures stack-up and a winning rider (Costin) is re-united. The Magnus 4yo gelding gets the blinkers again and is likely to come back further improved. ELENARA (6) is better than the last two efforts suggest. The initial runs this campaign read well and she's likely to show more on a better surface. 2x winning rider Lever is re-united. REVOLVER (4) is right up to this at best and was wide here resuming. May need one more but McDougall is a key booking and he's won on him. BET: The late market will be interesting. Galaxy Force is the most likely.
Race 3 (1400m) CL1
Expecting Forged In Stone and Arctic Thunder to take up the running and set a positive tempo. ARCTIC THUNDER (4) came off a string of placings to impress winning here on debut. Prevailed in a two-horse war and was very strong through the line. She's in good hands and looks capable of going on with it. CANYONERO (1) has been knocking on the door at the provincials missing a lip at 64 level before pulling up with an issue the latest. Draws for a soft run and could surprise at an each way quote. ASTROBLEME (5) also presents as a value chance for a canny local yard. Deserved the Maiden win on the heavy before the near miss at Moruya after a slow start. Peaks with the form hoop riding first time and keep very safe. IN MY WALLET (6) was a bit new but still won the Wagga Maiden in impressive fashion and won't have to improve much to be a genuine contender for the popular Canberra barn. BET: Sticking with Arctic Thunder.
Race 4 (1600m) BM60
No noted leader. Eaglehawk, Temoin Chaud and Axion will race handy. TEMOIN CHAUD (5) put two wins together at the back of the last campaign. Didn't have much luck resuming at Randwick before doing his best work late here 12 days ago beaten 2.2L. She looking for the mile and should be winning today with 2x winning rider McDougall sticking for the Olive yard. EAGLEHAWK (3) is also third-up and presents as the danger. Was just okay against the above as favourite following the lip defeat at Queanbeyan first-up. He's definitely looking for longer and the 2kg claim brings him right into it. VIA CONDOTTI (8) has just missed the last two enjoying the dryer conditions. This is a bit tougher but he comes to peak and will see it right out. BUCKLE UP BABY (2) has been travelling more than the Leyland brothers but is capable of making the finish. TRYING (1) can be trying but is back in grade and can pop up when least expected. BET: Hard to go past Temoin Chaud.
Race 5 (2000m) CL1
Keen battle for the lead with High Advice, Mohahna and Accellar Raider all prominent. MOHAHNA (2) came to the mile and turned the form around winning the CL1 here by 2.3L given a sweet ride. He's ready for the middle distance and can salute again with Ward replacing McDougall. The latter sticks with HIGH ADVICE (1) who presents off two placings at the mile. He's also racing at the 2000m first time but expect him to run it right out reaching peak. SINGING DIXIE (6) caught the eye late placing behind Mohahna running her best race. She gets in light with the 2kg claim and can't be ruled out over the longer journey. JOPHIEL (3) is busting to win and was just beaten 11-days ago at Wagga this distance with McDougall aboard. ZAKALICIOUS (8) is an ex Victorian back after 20-days for the Litt yard and the late market will say with her. BET: Expecting the two top selections to fight this out. Going with Mohahna.
Race 6 (1300m) BM70 — Federal
Solid tempo with several going forward and Supplyzing finding the lead. Another very competitive Federal at 70 level. CLEARLY REGAL (6) is lightly-raced and missed a nose resuming in the CL3 at Randwick and then things didn't go his way the same grade and venue back to a shorter sprint and forgiving that. He should be able to find a good spot and third-up this looks winnable. No knock on OUR FINVARRA (4) who belted home to win the corresponding event at the last meeting as a well-bet favourite. Is in a purple patch of form and Penza will give him every chance from the low gate. EXPRESS COURIER (1) resumes for the sharp yard off two wins over a middle distance with the latest this grade. Usually needs a run or two but McDougall's booking suggests he may be more forward this time around and the late market will tell. MNEMENTH (9) with the 6kg weight drop and MOOKAREENA (10) resuming are others with claims. BET: A sense of timing about Clearly Regal and he gets the nod.
Race 7 (1200m) Maiden
Devoid of serious early pace. Dancin' Til Dawn races handy and might lead from One Man Band. SUPER ONE SUSIE (12) resumed at Group level her first campaign and raced twice in the city when last in work rating well off the 2.8L defeat at Canterbury. She's prepared for this with two city trials and McDougall's booking suggests the filly is ready to rumble. Draws the rail and should get every chance. ONE MAN BAND (1) found the mile a step too far at Albury third-up, but just missed the two before at this distance range and peaks for the sharp barn. He should ride the speed and will be right in the finish on a drier track finding his best form. DANCIN' TIL DAWN (10) is a lightly-raced improver and Cahill's booking is a lead with the Gardner yard. She can make quick improvement without surprising. THE BANJO (3) is a former Victorian who didn't have much luck resuming as a gelding for the new yard off a very long break. If he could get near his synthetic figure delivered at the back of the first preparation he'd be very competitive. BET: Backing Super One Suzie if the betting holds up.