O'BRIEN ELECTRICAL & PLUMBING COUNTRY MAIDEN SHOWCASE PLATE Tips (Race 2)
Coffs Harbour Next Best Bet - Race 2 No. 1 Ambridge
There's clearly an opinion of this gelding, a runner that was heavily supported on debut at Coffs Harbour ($10.00-$4.80) following some strong work at the trials against more experienced opposition, but he had to settle for fourth in that June 18 event.
While he didn't exactly smash the line over the 1000m, Ambridge worked home fairly in a race mostly dominated by the on-speed runners and as an inexperienced galloper in traffic, it was certainly a pass mark, especially given he got further back than anticipated.
We were with him at a good early price on Grafton Cup Day in 'The Big Maiden' which he probably should've won (held up at key stages) and although drawn out a little, the extra trip on Thursday is a positive.
LLOYDS AUCTIONEERS COUNTRY MAGIC MERV MERCER SHOWCASE MILE - CLASS 2 HCP Tips (Race 3)
Coffs Harbour Value Bet - Race 3 No. 5 Four Egos
Barring the debut performance over 1000m which is too sharp along with a Heavy 10 defeat back in December, you won't find a bad run from this gelding over his 16 career starts and he now steps up to the mile for the first time via this Class 2.
In order to help Four Egos run this extra journey out, trainer Ross Stitt has opted to take the blinkers off now and going off a few performances this campaign where has tended to overdo it in the run, this is positive gear change on a fit galloper.
This trip for the first time is still an obvious query, albeit his breeding suggests it's no issue (by Casino Prince and out of a mare that won over 2000m) and the win two starts back when sitting three-wide the trip over 1400m at Grafton was a strong effort.
GRANT BASTIAN MEMORIAL BENCHMARK 66 SHOWCASE HANDICAP Tips (Race 4)
Coffs Harbour Roughie - Race 4 No. 9 Salad Dodger
While he does seem to be jumping away a little cleaner this preparation, this gelding is always going to need luck with his racing pattern hence his price, however, coming back to a Benchmark 66 on Thursday, he does have top three/four claims.
A galloper that won with a similar impost in this grade in January last year, Salad Dodger competed in some handy races over his next campaign which included a Benchmark 88 tilt in town where he was outclassed, but certainly not disgraced.
From a wide gate and settling too far back as a result in a bid to qualify for the 50k Dan Baker Sprint (Race 8), there were excuses in his midfield finish on July 24, but his two prior runs were both good in the same grade he finds himself competing in here.
CARLTON DRY COFFS HARBOUR CUP Tips (Race 7)
Coffs Harbour Feature Tip - Race 7 No. 2 Luncies
Winning four of six starts before coming to Australia is this son of Ifraaj who is now under the care of trainer Kris Lees, who tipped him out following a nice win on Hawkesbury Cup Day, although he didn't necessarily beat a great field in the process.
Luncies made his Australian debut in a Benchmark 88 over the 1550m at Canterbury and that performance was a pass mark in an event where the form did start to stack up, with the rise in trip and drop in grade clearly the catalyst for the victory that followed.
The five-year-old was forward in his recent trial win and with any improvement in now his second campaign down under, which is very common for ex-Europeans, then class may just get him there in the Coffs Harbour Cup in a field that does have a long tail to it.
COFFS HARBOUR TOYOTA DANIEL BAKER SHOWCASE SPRINT Tips (Race 8)
Coffs Harbour Best Bet - Race 8 No. 4 Hellenism
Back in grade after dropping out late in a Metro 72 second-up off more than 12 months off the scene, this lightly raced mare proved too classy in a Rosehill Highway on July 3, spotting 4kg to the placegetters and on a Heavy 9, I don't think she was completely at home.
The form from her first-up second to Mirra Vision (bolted in via a Benchmark 88 last Saturday) in a race that included Starla (Metro 78 winner last start), is starting to stack up strongly, especially when compared to the country gallopers she's up against here.
Hellenism arrives off a Listed Ramornie attempt, where the daughter of Helmet certainly wasn't disgraced when beating home multiple stakes class gallopers and off current form while carrying just half a kilo over the minimum for this, she's clearly the one to beat.