2017 Ladbrokes W.S Cox Plate – Preview and Tips

Ladbrokes W.S Cox Plate, Moonee Valley Tips 2040m

A small field of nine, with eight brave horses preparing to take on mighty mare Winx in the rich W.S Cox Plate. Will we see her emulate the great Kingston Town for a three-peat, or is an upset on the cards?

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A field of nine prepare to greet the judge this Saturday. Here’s how they will line up.

Ladbrokes W.S Cox Plate, 2040m, WFA, Saturday 28 Oct 2017

1 HAPPY CLAPPER (9), P Webster, D Oliver, 59kg, $26.00
2 GAILO CHOP (4), D Weir, M Zahra, 59kg, $19.00
3 HUMIDOR (8), D Weir, B Shinn, 59kg, $20.00
4 KASPERSKY (IRE) (2), J Chapple-Hyam, M Payne, 59kg, $91.00 SCR
5 FOLKSWOOD (GB) (5), C Appleby, K McEvoy, 59kg, $20.00
6 SEABURGE (1), D & B Hayes & T Dabernig, R Bayliss, 57.5kg, $101.00
7 HARDHAM (3), D Brideoake, L Nolen, 57.5kg, $151.00
8 WINX (6), C Waller, H Bowman, 57kg, $1.16
9 ROYAL SYMPHONY (7), T McEvoy, D Yendall, 49.5kg, $16.00

It’s only a small field, and that’s to be expected as wonder-mare Winx has scared every other decent horse away. I mean, why would they even bother right? Only an act of God would prevent Winx from joining the great Kingston Town as a three-time winner of the Cox Plate, and that surely must be an inevitability come Saturday. Every punter turning up is just there to witness history, and to give the Chris Waller trained champion a big cheer and a few claps. As it turns out, there are so many jockeys out with suspensions, many of them will come back into contention prior to Victoria Derby Day on November 4th, but many will miss this meeting.

Happy Clapper was a worthy and popular winner of the Epsom Handicap last start. He’s bumped into Winx a few times in his career and come off second best. A repeat dose is expected on Saturday, and he only concedes 2 kgs to Winx, but that won’t be enough. Hopefully he can run a minor placing. $26.00

Darren Weir has two runners, and both have had good preparations so far. Gailo Chop ran a slashing race to win the Caulfield Stakes last start. It was an on-speed race, and the track bias did help those horses up front and close to the rail. Moonee Valley is a slightly different proposition, and tactics will determine how the race pans out. Can the ‘Chop’ (or ‘Shop’, as it is pronounced) go with Winx with 600 metres to go? $19.00

The same can be said for Humidor, who would probably prefer the wide-open spaces of Flemington rather than the cramped confines of the ‘Valley’. I hope for Humidor’s sake he can keep his credentials intact before Cup Day, otherwise his odds might drift out. There’s a possibility of running a place, let’s wait and see. $20.00

The Irish runner Kaspersky had a running battle with Tom Melbourne in the Toorak Handicap last start, which didn’t help his chances any. Trainer Jane Chapple-Hyam has indicated during the week that a leaders frontrunning battle won’t be on the cards; instead jockey Michelle Payne will ride him much more conservatively. In his favour, he has run in top company back in the UK, but getting around the tight circuit of Moonee Valley might prove to be a little tricky. $91.00

The other European raider is the Charlie Appleby trained Folkswood, who led a merry chase in the Cranbourne Cup a few days ago. There has been some interesting talk from jockey Kerrin McEvoy about the tactics he might employ, to try and break up the Winx domination; and that a front-running ride a la Shamus Award might be on the cards. Then again, Shamus Award, as good as he was for winning two Group 1’s as a three-year-old never met a horse like Winx in his time, and I’d say the same applies to Folkswood. Just ask the connections of Highland Reel! $20.00

Two other runners that I wouldn’t give a chance in the race are Seaburge and Hardham. In a small field like this, they will be exposed. $101.00 and $151.00

Trainer Tony McEvoy brings the three-year-old Royal Symphony into the mix. The juveniles have had a fair bit of success over the years, but some of the ones who have won have been champions; such as Surround, Octagonal, So You Think and Red Anchor. I don’t believe Royal Symphony is anywhere near that class, but if Winx wasn’t in the field, then he would come into contention, purely based on his light weight of 49.5 kg. $16.00

So that only leaves one other horse: Winx. If Hugh Bowman can avoid traffic jams and have the mare handy on the turn, then it’s all over red rover. However, his last set of rides at the Valley on Moir Stakes night left a lot to be desired, especially his poor efforts on Lizzie L’Amour and Russian Revolution. Hopefully it’s not a case of repeat performances. As far as betting is concerned, I doubt Winx will be paying anything more than a $1.05. You’d be better off betting against her, but as a true Australian patriot, you won’t be doing that.. surely? $1.16


Winx, Folkswood, Gailo Chop

Best Roughie
Kaspersky $91.00

Best Value
Royal Symphony $16.00

WS Cox Plate – check the odds on William Hill

October 25, 2017 by : • No Comments

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