The Melbourne Mail: Flemington - 14th May 2022

Alongside Group One racing in two states, Flemington kicks off its Winter Series on Saturday. Big fields, open markets and a Melbourne Cup berth up for grabs- what's not to love?

Flemington has a distinct Winter feel about it this week, with many of the series kicking off, including the Mahogany Challenge, the Leilani, the Silver Bowl, the Winter Championships and the Santa Ana Lane Sprint Series. Throw in a ballot exemption race for the Melbourne Cup with just two of the field officially rated 90+, and the memory of the Melbourne Autumn has all but faded.

The Andrew Ramsden (2800m) is of course that ticket into the Melbourne Cup, although any winner would surely start triple figures come November, with solid but by no means star stayer Warning heading the field. The market seems to have this about right, with Splendiferous coming up favourite on the quick backup after posting a strong figure last week at Morphettville.

Through Irish Eyes for the all-conquering Ciaron Maher & David Eustace stable will relish a genuinely run 1 3⁄4 m which looks probable with a few that like to lead and although he failed in this race last year, he strikes a much weaker edition and is tracking along nicely.

He closed off strongly at Caulfield last time out in a strongly run race, edging out Warrnambool Cup winner Witchachar Star for second and that looks an ideal set up to throw up a peak performance on Saturday at with better than even money being shopped for a place. 

The best of the day however comes up in the subsequent race, with the Lindsey Smith trained Triple Missile looking well placed in heat 1 of the Winter Championship Series if he can sneak his way in as first emergency. Having produced Reykjavik to win in 2019, Smith would have to be pleased with what he saw from Triple Missile at his east coast debut, closing off strongly for a one-length fourth in the Wangoom at Warrnambool.

Ahead of him were no slouches and he looks ideally placed second up at Flemington. His ratings in the past year make him very hard to beat here, including a listed placing over this trip when favourite behind Kissonallforcheeks, which we know stacks up in Melbourne.

Down in the weights, a nice draw and genuine tempo on paper all point to a big run by Triple Missile and he's clearly the one to beat for mine with around 3-1 being shopped. Surely Uncle Lindsey scratches stablemate Great Again on a firmer Flemington surface and allows us to fire a few missiles of our own.



Bet Of The Day: Race 8 #17 Triple Missile @ $4.00

Each Way Play: Race 7 #8 Through Irish Eyes @ $6.00/2.15

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