Myer Classic 2016 race preview and tips

27 October 2016 10:41 AM

Race six on Victoria Derby Day is the Group 1 Myer Classic. Formerly known as the Empire Rose Stakes this 1600m race is held under weight-for-age conditions for fillies and mares. In 2015 Politeness ($19) took the prize after sitting three deep with cover towards the rear of the field as they turned for home, she glided up to the leading horses at the 200m mark, and went on to beat Fenway ($26) and Azkadellia ($11).

Expecting a moderate tempo at best here with no apparent leaders amongst this lot. With that in mind it will be a challenge for those at the tail of the field to have a crack at them in the concluding stages. A bit worse than mid-field is as far back as I would want to see my horse in this race if pace is moderate to slow.


Form Analysis

Betting Odds Myer Classic 2016

1. First Seal showed punters what she is capable of when finishing too strong for the in-form Tycoon Tara in the Tristarc carrying 58.5kg. First time racing at Flemington but it should suit her nicely. The one to beat.

7. Don't Doubt Mamma. Her win in the G2 Stocks has been franked with runner-up Kaniana going on to win last week. She has a strong record at Flemington. Go well.

10. Dixie Blossoms winner of the G2 Angst a few weeks back at Randwick with fast closing sectionals, and finished 2 lengths behind Tycoon Tara over 1400m from barrier 10 at Rosehill before that (First Seal ran third). Top chance.

14. Whispering Brook. Her third 1.2 lengths behind Global Glamour rates well but has history against her with three-year-olds yet to win this race.

4. Danish Twist hasn't raced past 1400m but looked like she will relish the extra distance on her last start when flying home off slow pace to finish 1.9 lengths fifth behind First Seal. She was very sharp first-up when a close third to Takedown at Randwick. Has the magic man on board and has solid claims.

12. Euro Angel good win at her recent outing in the Ladies Day Vase. Strong record at Flemington. Competition goes up a notch here but certainly not without claims.

5. Heavens Above finished 1.7 lengths behind Hauraki in the Epsom. Before that she didn't jump well and settled backward when 3.5 lengths behind Tycoon Tara on a leader biased track. Expect her to go to rear of the field from barrier 15.

15. I Am A Star is one of the two fillies contesting the race. Her third in the Classic last week rates her close to Cox Plate place-getter Yankee Rose. Her 1000 Guineas second also rates strongly against the fillies. Needs to step up to mare class here. Consider.

1. Rising Romance surprised most punters when she was runner-up to Black Heart Bart in the Memsie. Following that run she sat third and then didn't go on with it in the Makybe Diva at Flemington over 1600m. Then didn't recover from a poor start in the G2 Stocks. Some chance at her best.

8. Serene Majesty also comes out of the Ladies Day Vase finishing 2.8 lengths fourth. Didn't fire before that in races with form lines that align with this race.

9. Pearls. Rates well with recent finishes close to First Seal and Tycoon Tara. She finished 0.7 lengths fourth behind Speak Fondly in fillies grade in the G1 Coolmore Flight Stakes over the mile at Randwick last year. Test here to see if she gets the distance at this level. Not saying she can't do it.

6. French Emotion has merit on her run in the Tristarc when finishing 2 lengths behind First Seal. 1600m is the unknown however. Her only run at the distance was inconclusive.

11. Denmagic was thereabouts behind First Seal and Tycoon Tara at recent outings. Finished a close second in the G2 QLD Guineas but this is harder.

13. Pure Pride put in a good effort to finish runner-up behind French Emotion. Didn't place in an easier race over the mile. Tougher assignment.

3. Zanbagh had some excuses at her recent outing when she ran wide without cover finishing 4.2 lengths behind Dixie Blossoms over the mile. Disappointing first-up over 1400m. Hard to have.



The Verdict

It's hard to go past First Seal here. Speed maps suggest she will get a mid-field settling position with predicted moderate pace on up front. Dixie Blossoms presents as her toughest opponent. She too will be looking to settle around mid-field from barrier 6. Outside of these two I like Pearls and I Am A Star as best positioned to cause an upset. There's no doubt that Pearls rates up to this lot. The mile is the only question mark for mine but I think that she has it in her at this level now. I Am A Star makes plenty of appeal as a three-year-old but has history against her.

1st First Seal

2nd Dixie Blossoms

3rd Pearls

4th I Am A Star

Suggested play here is 20 units to win First Seal and 10 units to win Dixie Blossoms, with all these four in your quaddie.


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Mike Steward.