The Spring Carnival is just around the corner and South Australian racing fans will get a glimpse of some of the big movers and shakers looking to make their presence felt in Saturday’s Listed Tokyo City Cup and W H Wylie Handicap.
The bookies have been on the money in recent times with every winner in the last eight years saluting at single figure odds with an average winning price of $4.40.
Five of the nine runners who have accepted for the Tokyo City Cup are currently in single figure odds with Balaklava Cup sixth place finisher Charossa the favourite at $3.20 followed by last year's Melbourne Cup runner Muntahaa at $4.50.
Last Start Form
Three horses have won this race after contesting the Listed Balaklava Cup, however the only horse to win both was Bagman in 2013. On Saturday we'll see four runners come from the Balaklava Cup including the winner Brown Ben, along with Charossa, Tatoosh and Wasabi Bob.
Likewise, over the last eight years, there have been three last start winners including Bagman, Quayside and last year’s winner Moss 'N' Dale. This year only the Balaklava Cup winner Brown Ben and Pierrocity will head into this race as last start winners.
Who to Watch
All eyes will be on Lindsay Park's Irish import Muntahaa. He finished ninth in last year's Melbourne Cup and has plenty of class with multiple Stakes wins back home. While no doubt he'll be looking for further this campaign, he comfortably won a trial at Wodonga last week over the mile and looks primed for a first-up win here on solid ground.
Each Way Bet
Tony McEvoy has won this race twice. The first time in 2004 with Milanova and again in 2017 with Brown Ben. He and his son Calvin will saddle up Brown Ben who funnily enough won his first race in almost two years when he took out the Balaklava Cup. His last win before that? The 2017 Tokyo City Cup. He hit the line very well last Wednesday and is a huge chance to repeat a similar run here on Saturday.
Charossa can atone for his poor run in the Balaklava Cup and win here as the favourite. He was running well over 2000m across the border recently and the step up from the mile to 1800m will suit him nicely. Look for another favourite to salute here again on Saturday.
The Wylie has been a successful race for horses early in their preparations with two first up winners in the last six years, while two others have won third up. With five fresh horses here and nine of the thirteen with two or less starts to their name this prep, that looks set to continue here on Saturday.
Two of the last six winners have come out the Flying Sprint on Balaklava Cup Day. There are four runners following that same path here including the winner All Over Bosanova, runner-up Arrow Lane, along with Hussybay and Fancy Rumble. Interestingly the Flying runner-up has been the horse that's gone on to win the Wylie on both occasions which bodes well for John Hickmott's Arrow Lane.
Richard Jolly has won this race three times in his career and he'll saddle up two runners with his daughter Chantelle including Listed winner Karlovasi and the exciting youngster Schilldora.
Who to Watch
There will be plenty of interest surrounding the Kiwi import Gift of Power. The mare is now in the Anthony Freedman stable and will have her first Australian start here at Morphettville. She's a Group 2 winner back home over this distance and absolutely flies fresh. Any rain around will suit her perfectly.
Each Way Bet
It’s good to see Benz return to the track for the first time in 2019. He's a Group 3 winner over 1200m and if he's fit and healthy he's more than capable of running a cheeky race first-up. He’s at genuine each-way odds and will be handy for a long time up on the speed.
Soothing looks to be the best bet of the day here. The mare just missed Mizzy in her last start by 1.7 lengths in Sydney and that horse has since gone on to beat a quality Group 2 field last start. Since then Soothing contested a trial against genuine sprint stars in Classique Legend and Home of the Brave and was far from disgraced. She's two from two third up and will take a power of beating here.