9 Best Roughies To Back This Spring Carnival

9 Best Roughies To Back This Spring Carnival



Whether you find yourself in the Birdcage, a backyard, or rooftop bar this Spring Carnival – ‘BossBook’ has you covered with weekly previews, racing tips, style guides, and more. Use Code: BOSSBOOK when you signup and make your first deposit at BossBet.

While every punter loves cheering home a certainty – and we certainly did in the case of Anamoe – there is something magical about finding something at odds (early & fixed) and getting them home. Like getting on a stock early, and watching it rise as your mates scramble to get involved, the greatest punting stories are about a winner identified as value rather than an odds-on favourite.

With a big week of racing in Sydney and Melbourne ahead, here is our list of best roughies to back with BossBet. (Odds correct as at Oct 26 4:49pm)

Coolmore Stud Stakes – Lofty Strike ($21)

This blueblood colt (pictured above), trained by Julius Sandhu, suffered his first defeat fresh in the Blue Sapphire Stakes when he tackled 1200m for the first time. However, I would argue that his run in defeat was as good as any of his wins at two. First-up since February on a deteriorating heavy track, he kept on solidly to finish third behind Grand Impact. The straight remains a query but in a year where the three-year-olds remain a fairly even group, he looks the type who can strike at odds in the Coolmore. And what a stallion prospect he would be if he did get the job done!

Empire Rose Stakes – La Crique ($3.10)

You might think I’m taking the mickey by having a $3.50 chance as my best roughie for this race. However, I believe La Crique should be close to odds-on and so shapes as a real value proposition currently. The top filly of her generation last year, she ran a game second in the New Zealand Derby when just finding Asterix too good at the trip. I think the mile to 2000m is her sweet spot and her win over Mustang Valley in the Arrowfield Stud Plate last time out was phenomenal. The form has been franked, too, with Mustang Valley taking out the Livamol Classic – also a Group 1 – so for me, she just has to turn up and she will be mighty hard to beat.

Golden Eagle – Hope In Your Heart ($31)

The Golden Eagle looks next to impossible but perhaps Hope In Your Heart can follow in the footsteps of Shelby Sixtysix in going from a Moruya victory to a big-race win in the space of a year. Hope in Your Heart was outclassed in stakes races as a three-year-old filly, although she wasn’t beaten too far in most of them. However, she’s found form now and is racing extremely well including a pair of Group 3 wins at her last two. There’s that old saying about mares in form and now that she’s hit her stride, perhaps she can fly home late in a race that looks certain to have tempo. 

Melbourne Cup – Knights Order ($21)

It does appear an even Melbourne Cup this year and most of the chances have been well found by the market. That said, Knights Order is racing extremely well and it is not often that you’d get a two-length Sydney Cup winner who has won a Chelmsford Stakes and been top four in the Turnbull Stakes and Caulfield Cup who is at that price. Class is the query but he will put himself in the race and any rain over the next week or so will only ensure that he is better suited. If it’s a heavy track, expect him to halve in price.

RELATED: 10 Horses Set To Dominate Headlines This Spring Carnival

The Big Dance – Wicklow ($15)

Earned his place in the inaugural Big Dance by finishing second to Cisco Bay in the Wildcard on Everest Day. However, he looks the one you’d want out of the race down in the weights as he’s likely to be flashing home late. If there’s one who can beat the big guns like Surf Dancer and Hosier, Wicklow looks your horse and it wouldn’t surprise me if he develops into a Doncaster Mile contender in the autumn.

VRC Oaks – Thinking Rain ($81)

It would be a considerable step up in distance for Thinking Rain to make it to the VRC Oaks but she will stay all day on what she has shown so far. Perhaps it might be worth waiting for entries for Saturday’s Wakeful Stakes before going all-in on Thinking Rain but if she is nominated for the 2000m feature on Derby Day, then there is every chance she will appear in the Oaks five days later. If she lines up, she will be much better than a $61 chance. Her effort to finish fifth in the Reginald Allen was solid given the work she had to do mid-race and the form has been franked since with that race’s winner A Lot More Love finishing third to Caulfield Guineas victor Golden Mile in the Callander-Presnell. A big Melbourne Cup Carnival awaits should she appear there.

VRC Champions Sprint – Levante ($18)

Top New Zealand mare who arguably should have won the Newmarket Handicap in the autumn. However, she ended up on the wrong side of the Flemington straight and it was a horse who she’d beaten across the Tasman, Roch ‘n’ Horse, who took the prize. She is three from three fresh, she’s won two from three on a wet track and she’s being aimed at this fresh. While Nature Strip, Giga Kick, and Bella Nipotina will dominate the headlines, she’s one who can fly under the radar like a thief by night. Make sure to keep her on side.

VRC Champions Mile – Bankers Choice ($26)

Another former Kiwi is Bankers Choice, who has been based in Australia since February. He is yet to win on this side of the Tasman but he did run sixth in a Doncaster and fourth in a George Ryder so the talent is there. His effort to run on into second from last behind My Oberon in the Crystal Mile suggests that he will be around the mark, even if he isn’t winning. Flemington should also suit him better too. He’s worth an each-way play.

VRC Champions Stakes – Mustang Valley ($26)

Champions Stakes Day could be a big day for the Kiwis if these roughies get up. The Andrew Forsman-trained Mustang Valley has been something of a surprise packet as a four-year-old, has not really stood out at three. She has been tested at Group 1 level at her last two starts, finishing a decent second to Empire Rose Stakes contender La Crique in the Arrowfield Stud Plate before unleashing a powerful effort to win the Livamol Classic. While that race might not have the same status as it did in the 1990s and 2000s when the winners included horses like Castletown, Veandercross, Solvit, Distinctly Secret, Xcellent, and Princess Coup (and Starcraft was beaten too!), it was still a strong performance and she deserves her chance against the best Australia has to offer.

Check out our BossBook Hub for spring racing betting and style tips as well as race day previews.

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