Sydney Specials: Randwick - Saturday, 4th February 2023

Two of the most promising horses from the Spring resume on Saturday with the Group 3 Eskimo Prince Stakes featuring some classy three-year-olds.

Found this week incredibly tough, with this time of year generally throwing up multiple instances of the limited but fit horse against the resuming class with bigger targets.

The market has sided with the former in Race 6, pushing Banju (and his 111lbs) into favourite over Soulcombe, who looks like he could win just about anything over 2400m+ this year. Fascinating stuff, but very tricky.

Aft Cabin vs. Zou Tiger is also fascinating. I'm a big fan of Aft Cabin and firmly believe he would've won the Caulfield Guineas had he been there, but one soft trial against Zou Tiger with three hit outs, map advantages and a hungry, strong Tom Marquand would have me leaning his way.

Nevertheless, I've had to cast the net wider for my best bets this week and have landed on two around the each-way mark.

Race 5 looks a fairly nondescript benchmark 78 over 6 1⁄2 f, the distance being the biggest query for Rupertaar. If this were 6 f or even 5 1⁄2 f I'd be keener, but she looks to find a fairly soft tempo and a good map from the gate.

She worked home well in the Magic Millions Syndicate and will obviously find this much easier, yet her rating prior of 96 here was actually a couple of pounds better than last start.

Plenty adaptable, Jenny Duggan should find this straightforward enough and the apprentice is actually returning a healthy 159% ROI this season.

The other is in the last, and there should be no qualms about the jockey here with J-Mac engaged to ride perennial 'non-winner' Sacrimony in the last.

He's found one or two better at all four runs this time in but his ratings profile has been rock-solid and I think he strikes the thinnest race he's seen all preparation.

For a basic form tie-in, he smashed Liberty Sun home when they met two back, with that horse since running a 2.2 length fourth to Diamond Dealer who is 6-1 here.

Drawn a middle gate, he's shown he is able to settle forward of midfield, and they have been attempting intent with him of late. There are none better than J-Mac in executing that intent and I think this is his race.


Race 5 #3 Rupertaar @ $6.5

Race 10 #7 Sacrimony @ $5

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