THE STAR HANDICAP Tips (Race 3)
Randwick-Kensington Value Bet - Race 3 No. 7 Joigny
She was always going to take a few starts to get warm and following two very encouraging performances to begin the campaign, there's a nice platform for this five-year-old to build off now stepping up to the 1800m third-up.
Although finding the 1400m a little slick when resuming via Fillies & Mares Benchmark 78, Joigny was one of the eye-catchers late and was set a decent ask following that over the mile at Gosford where she again got home well and despite finishing sixth of nine, wasn't all that far away on the line (1.58 lengths).
Her racing pattern lends itself to settling off the speed, so generally she needs a bit to fall her way but in a suitable assignment and with her last wet track appearance resulting in a strong third behind Yonkers, a galloper who is rated well above anything in this field, this mare is capable enough.
MOET & CHANDON HANDICAP Tips (Race 4)
Randwick-Kensington Best Bet - Race 4 No. 4 Private Eye
On a tough Randwick-Kensington program for a standout, we'll go the way of this promising three-year-old from the Joe Pride stable who bolted in on a Heavy track at start two before being tipped out and returned with an excellent win at Gosford on December 2.
A half-brother to stable mate and multiple city winner Royal Witness, Private Eye's fresh performance was quite arrogant in the finish where he reeled in Dawn Too Good comfortably and went to the line under his own steam where he safely recorded the fastest of three 1100m contests on that program.
This is a very strong and competitive three-year-old Benchmark 64 but with the ability to handle to any surface and perhaps with a Magic Millions berth on the line here, he can continue to progress and providing they can run on, the wide gate shouldn't be a big concern for this powerful son of Al Maher.
LONGINES SPRINT Tips (Race 7)
Randwick-Kensington Next Best Bet - Race 7 No. 6 Monte Ditto
The drop in grade on Thursday is a much better option this son of Zoustar who although has a low strike rate, he is a galloper that comes right into this event if they're able to make ground out wide on this wet track.
With Benchmark 78 second placing's last winter, that form does suggest Monte Ditto is certainly capable enough and after being tightened for room early second-up this campaign, balanced up strongly over the concluding stages (at 33.40 was narrowly beaten for the fastest last 600m of that race by 81 rater Threeood).
Both of his career wins have come on soft tracks and his second most recent Heavy 8 attempt was a half-length defeat to a subsequent Benchmark 88 winner in Poetic Charmer, which reads superbly for this grade.