2022 The Everest winner Giga Kick is looking to cement his name among the country’s top sprinters when he returns to Royal Randwick in the coming weeks. After two impressive trials post-spell he’ll run the Group 2 Challenge Stakes tomorrow, followed by the $3m Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes at Royal Randwick on April 1. Trainer Clayton Douglas admitted Giga Kick was unlucky to run 5th in the Darley Champions Sprint last spring so he’s got a point to prove as tomorrow’s favourite (#8 Giga Kick $2.40 on BossBet) when he jumps alongside the likes of #1 Eduardo ($4.80) and #3 Remarque ($4.40).
James McDonald will look to make it four in a row aboard #8 Imperatriz ($1.90) in the Group 1 Furphy Canterbury Stakes before riding #3 Aft Cabin ($2.60) who remains the favourite in the Group 1 Randwick Guineas, ahead of #2 Osipenko ($4), #4 Zou Tiger ($6), and #5 Matcha Latte ($8.50), despite all three of them beating him in the Hobartville Stakes. #1 Jacquinot ($2.30) and #2 Elliptical ($6.50) are surely the quinella bet in the Group 1 Australian Guineas at Flemington.
Another day of epic gallops is upon us – here are my Randwick Guineas race day tips.
Will be shocked if double figures are there on the day for Hezashocka. Loves it here at Flemington, flies fresh and looked really impressive in a recent jumpout. The negative (potentially) is the wide draw but it could actually set up OK for him if he’s able to get into the right spot. My hope is that he might be able to end up in the three-wide line with cover in about sixth or seventh and if so he will be hard to beat from there.
The New Zealand Derby is a great betting race each year. The money is sure to come for Sharp ‘n’ Smart who does appear hard to beat, but this son of Shocking looks capable of mixing it with the big guns. He went to the line untested over a mile two back, finishing equal 10th but worth a lot more than that run suggests, before showing plenty of promise with a nice win over 2100m last time out. I am sure he will be a two-miler in the years ahead, maybe even a Melbourne Cup prospect eventually, but he can get into the placings here at a decent price.
It’s not quite the $301 that Lunar Fox was at when he won the Guineas a couple of years ago, but Japanese Emperor is still capable of causing a huge shock in this race this year. He was tremendous on debut at Sandown last year, sweeping home from near last. Like many, he struggled on a shifty surface in the Caulfield Guineas Prelude and then was just fair first-up in the Autumn Stakes. I think being ridden quieter here may suit and he should have more pace to run at. It will be tough to beat the likes of Legarto and Elliptical but take them out and it’s a wide-open affair.
It’s very rare to see Hong Kong’s champion jockey partner with one of Sydney’s most powerful stables. The last time they combined was when Purton returned from Hong Kong to ride Peggy Jean in the 2015 Tattersall’s Tiara, finishing eighth. On Saturday, they will combine with Empire Of Japan in the Todman Stakes and Tycoon Evie in the Wenona Girl Quality at what will be Purton’s first return to Sydney – at least to ride – in five years. Certainly looks like a partnership worth following this autumn.
Head to BossBet to get in on the action. Happy punting folks.