HANKS KITCHEN CLASS 1 SHOWCASE HANDICAP Tips (Race 2)
Grafton Roughie - Race 2 No. 15 Writeoff
The first emergency gets a start in this 1400m Class 1 and now finally drawing a gate in what is the weakest assignment she's faced this campaign; this mare can run a race at big odds on Thursday.
An ex-Victorian who won at her second start for trainer Warren Gavelock last spring, Writeoff was competitive in her next two outings, including one at Provincial level before being tipped out at the end of October.
The 1000m first-up was a little sharp, but it was a fair return at Port Macquarie and following a second-up attempt via a Provincial Class 1 where they smashed the clock, she got home fairly at Lismore while they can settle a few pairs closer here from gate three.
SKY RACING INTERNATIONAL MOTHER'S GIFT Tips (Race 3)
Grafton Best Bet - Race 3 No. 6 Hard Labour
Stringing four wins together and going from Maiden level to BM72 grade in the process last year was this mare from the powerful Toby & Trent Edmonds stable, who with a drop in grade now third-up, is looking to bounce back to the winner's stall.
By All Too Hard and out of the dam Laynlow, a daughter of dual Group One winner Victory Vein, the plan would've been set on black-type for with Hard Labour in winter and while she was a shade under par twice, she should've finished closer on both occasions.
Beaten by stakes class runners each time and freshened-up now, the blinkers now go on this four-year-old, a gear change that was in effect via a June 22 trial at the Gold Coast where she worked home strongly under a hold.
CORBETT EARTHMOVING PTY LTD BIG MAIDEN SHOWCASE HANDICAP Tips (Race 5)
Grafton Value Bet - Race 5 No. 15 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 has 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.
He was impressive in a trial last August and on May 29, was well looked after late at Coffs Harbour in a field that included Tycoon Street, Sawtell and Furphy, who have won a dozen races between them while all three were pushed out in that heat.
THE MACLEAN HOTEL GRAFTON CUP Tips (Race 7)
Grafton Feature Tip - Race 7 No. 6 Berdibek
Trainer John O'Shea won the Ramornie Handicap on Wednesday with Southern Lad and he gets a great chance to take out the feature double on Thursday with this striking grey who has been near on faultless in preparation for this 2350m feature.
After an even first-up effort in the Scone Cup, Berdibek was completely luckless second-up at Rosehill and although not at home on a Heavy 8 compared to Stockman, those two were clearing out from the rest of the field in the McKell Cup (fastest last 600m/400m).
With many stayers well exposed this time of the year and ticking over with a run last Saturday with 66kg to top him off perfectly, Berdibek is set for this feature and is projecting towards a peak performance in the 2021 Grafton Cup.