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By Darren Winningham | Thursday, February 18, 2021


This weekend we are in Caulfield for Melbourne where the track is rated “GOOD” and the rail is true for the circuit. The main feature races on an impressive card are the Blue Diamond Stakes and the Oakleigh Plate. A super meeting.

NB: As these selections were made prior to race-day please check for any changes to track conditions and for any scratchings on the day.

Race 1


3 – Wolfe
4 – Defibrilliate
5 – Blenheim Palace
8 – Dawson Diva

Race 2


5 – Itsourtime
7 – Oxley Road
3 – Valaquenta
2 – Conceited

Race 3


3 – Malicorne
5 – Impecunious
7 – Shojiki
4 – Safe Passage

Race 4


2 – Sovereign Award
1 – Perfect Jewel
6 – Neighbourhood
3 – Rich Hips

Race 5


1 – Khoekhoe
3 – Young Werther
11 – Butter Chicken
10 – Parure

Race 6 - The Futurity (Group 1)

Three amazing horses here.

Behemoth (1) and Probabeel (7) both resumed recently with some wonderful efforts. Hard to split the pair. Then you have Arcadia Queen (6) with William Pike to ride. Her recent trial was amazing - $6 is a wonderful price.

It would be a solid boxed trifecta here if you are gambling – box 1,6,7 for a result!


1 – Behemoth
7 – Probabeel
6 – Arcadia Queen
10 – Crosshaven

Race 7 - 2021 Blue Diamond – Group 1

Let’s start with the pre post favourite Enthaar (13) from the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace yards to be ridden by Mark Zahra. She pust her unbeaten record on the line in this Group 1 event and has drawn wide in barrier 14. I just think she will struggle to get a cruisy run from the barrier – plus I think the 1200 metres will be beyond her. I am saying she cannot win the race!

Arcaded (14) from Godolphin and James Cummings also has won two from two. I think he looks the goods here as he has drawn the rails and will just get a nice suck along behind these speedsters. Damian Lane and James Cummings are looking for their first Blue Diamond winner – I think that they will be hard to hold out.

General Beau (1) has been superb in every race start and ticks a fair few boxes … trained by Matthew Ellerton and Simon Zahra with Jamie Kah in the saddle. Is there anyone riding better than Jamie at present? She will be looking to get another Group 1 victory under her belt as she continues to dominate the boys in Victorian racing this season.

Do not overlook the Cindy Alderson runner Jigsaw (8) who will be ridden by Michael Walker. Walker looks for back-to-back Blue Diamond victories after winning the race last year on Tagaloa. This runner should be forgiven for his last start when he was forced to race wide, but still stuck to the task late. A nice barrier this weekend and given some luck he is going to be right in this finish.

Finance Tycoon (3) is fresh up after what looks like a failure in the Magic Millions and is priced at $51. He did beat the eventual Magic Million winner Shaquero in the lead up race to the Magic Millions and he has been freshened up for this race. He was forced to race wide in the Millions and really never got into the race. Watch for him to cause an upset in this feature race!


14 – Arcaded
1 – General Beau
13 – Enthaar
8 – Jigsaw
Rough chances – (3) Finance Tycoon & (5) Anamoe

Race 8 - Oakleigh Plate – Group 1

This is a tough race – anything can win – the handicap conditions can favour some up-and-coming sprinters.

I think that the race is adorned by an abundance of speed, so I have looked for a run-on horse. The one I have settled on is the Anthony & Sam Freedman trained Hanseatic (16). He loves Caulfield and always races well fresh, gets in on the minimum and has Damien Thornton aboard. The barrier is not ideal – barrier 18, but I expect hm to get back and come wide into the straight and charge at the leaders who will probably soften each the other up in the running.

How Womantic (11) is around $71 and second up this weekend – again this runner will appreciate the speed and gets in well with the handicap conditions. She is trained by Maher & Eustace and they know how to get their runners to peak for these big races.

In saying that their other chance is Anders (18) who has drawn terrible as well in barrier 17. Glen Boss will ride at the 50 kilograms – so he must have some respect for this runner. His recent trial was amazing, and he will be hard to roll with no weight on his back.

The Phillip Stokes trained Ancestry (6), who made an appearance over the 2020 Melbourne Cup, Carnival resumes here with a good hit out in a recent trial under his belt. Michael Poy has four rides for four wins on this gelding and I expect him to take up the lead from barrier 4. In saying that Anders (18) normally jumps well, and Boss may elect to go hard early and put some pressure on only carrying the 50 kilograms.

Prophets Thumb won here last start – has never not placed in all five starts at this course – keep safe.

Celebrity Queen (7) comes to Victoria after an unlucky summer carnival at home in Western Australia. William Pike will ride and there has been some solid support for this runner since the markets have opened. She won a recent trial and is undefeated first up in three efforts so I can see where the confidence is coming from.


16 – Hanseatic
6 – Ancestry
18 – Anders
11 – How Womantic
Rough chances – (7) Celebrity Queen & (12) Prophets Thumb

Race 9

The last race on a wonderful program.

Shared Ambition (8) from Waller Racing resumed with a gutsy effort over the mile at Randwick. He has an impressive winning record second up and loves Caulfield – a good way to finish the day at around $7.

Paradee (12) came of age over the Magic Millions Carnival with two awesome wins over this distance. She has always been a solid performer at this level. If she takes the form from the Gold Coast home to Victoria and Danny O’Brien has her ready for this race - watch out!

Homesman (3) has been the subject of a massive betting plunge since the markets have opened. They must expect him to run out of his skin first up – I am prepared to say he may struggle against these more seasoned runners first up.


8 – Shared Ambition
12 – Paradee
3 – Homesman
9 – Nonconformist
Rough chance – (11) Miss Siska

Jockey’s Challenge

It is a battle royal with many jockeys having a chance of winning – Glen Boss, Mark Zahra, Jamie Kah, Damien Oliver and Damian Lane. I may just tip Mark Zahra to pip Damian Oliver on this big day of racing!

Early Quaddie (races 2 to 5)

5,7 / 3,5,7 / 1,2 / 1,3 - cost is $24 to $1

Value Early Quaddie (races 2 to 5)

5 / 3,5 / 1,2 / 1,3 - cost is $8 to $1

Quaddie (races 6 to 9)

1,6,7 / 1,3,8,13,14 / 6,7,11,16,18 / 3,8,9,12 - cost is $300 to $1

Value Quaddie (races 6 to 9)

1,7 / 1,8,13,14 / 6,16,18 / 3,8,12 - cost is $72 to $1

Treble (races 7 to 9)

1,3,8,13,14 / 6,7,11,16,18 / 3,8,9,12 - cost is $100 to $1

More articles

The betting boards suggest that the Blue Diamond will go the way of the Maher/Eustace team (pictured above) with the favourite Enthaar ...
The betting boards suggest that the Blue Diamond will go the way of the Maher/Eustace team (pictured above) with the favourite Enthaar ...
... but James Cummings has a three-pronged attack in the Blue Diamond. I'm going with Arcaded

Racing photos: Darren Winningham
... but James Cummings has a three-pronged attack in the Blue Diamond. I'm going with Arcaded

Racing photos: Darren Winningham
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