Rafaello To Hit The Spot

 Jul 23 2016

Trained by Patrick Shaw the son of Oratorio has won four of his 13 starts including three minor placings.

An impressive winner at this course and distance two back Rafaello went on to finish fifth behind Nova Strike last start over 1400m.

Since given three weeks between runs, Rafaello was given a solid trial in the lead up and should appreciate the drop back to 1200m.

In eight attempts over this trip, Rafaello has won four including two minor placings.

Tried in far tougher company during the 3YO series, Rafaello was clearly no match for Debt Collector however many will argue he simply didn't see out the trip.

In five attempts beyond 1200m, Rafaello has only placed once and for the majority was never in contention.

Conversely Rafaello's form over the shorter trips is very good and leaves him well placed down in the weights.

Leading rider Nooresh Juglall links back aboard and enjoys a great affinity with the three-year-old having been aboard at all of his career wins.

 In the small field there doesn't appear a great deal of speed engaged with White Hunter, Flak Jacket and Rafaello the likely front-runners.

As a result the wide draw shouldn't concern Rafaello as he is expected to simply roll forward and enjoy a lovely run in transit.

When assessing Timeform weight adjusted ratings, Rafaello's latest victory at this course and distance leaves him well placed and a repeat should see him very hard to beat.

The Michael Clements trained Knight Wager has failed to salute the judge this time in but continues to race well and looms as a major threat.

Coming out of the same race as Rafaello last start, Knight Wager finished ahead of the latter and with Michael Rodd back aboard he is expected to make his presence felt.
In six attempts aboard the five-year-old, Rodd has won three including one minor placing.

The drop back to 1200m is a slight query however he was won twice over this trip and with three weeks between runs he should be fresh enough to perform well.

Against Knight Wager is the lack of obvious tempo, a noted backmarker it is unlikely he will get the race run to suit and hence could be left with too much to do.

However Rodd will be well aware of this and should look to put Knight Wager into the race sooner rather than later — if up to his best form he is sure to be very hard to hold out.

The Shane Baertschiger trained Flak Jacket failed to fire last start but is far better than that and is worth another chance dropping back in trip.

A winner of four of his 29 starts, he admittedly hasn't done a lot of winning but has placed on a further 11 occasions and is rarely far away.

In 21 attempts over this trip he has placed in 11, including three wins.

From the inside draw he is sure to be right on-speed and should prove hard to get past in the straight.

Of the rest the Bruce Marsh trained Laser Storm appears the next in line.

On debut for his new stable the son of Lucky Owners hasn't been seen in 222 days and has been given three trials in the lead up.

At his best he is more than capable and while likely to be better for the run he shouldn't be too far away.

Good luck and happy punting.


Gary Crispe - Racing and Sports

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