Monday, May 05, 2008

Autumn Racing Carnival – a review

Last weekend’s racing at Randwick marked the end of the autumn racing carnival. It certainly seemed to go on forever, but at the same time demonstrated a remarkable recovery from the Equine Influenza crisis of spring last year. As I am in several tipping competitions on the Racing & Sports web site, it was hard to come up with winners each week, but I seem to have acquitted myself quite well nonetheless. If you’ve been following my previews, and taken note of my predilection for certain horses, and placed bets accordingly you would have at least made a modest profit.

Last Saturday, the results of the Group One races were mostly predictable if one studied the form, except for the Queen Elizabeth Stakes, where the rank outsider Sarrera caused a boilover. Tuesday Joy, the favourite, only managed to come third. Sebring failed to win the Triple Crown, being narrowly beaten in the Champagne Stakes by Samantha Miss. However No Wine No Song won the Sydney Cup and Racing to Win the All Aged Stakes as expected.

Overall it was an interesting season of racing and it was thrilling to see some new stars of the turf emerge to engage racing enthusiasts’ interest in spring. Weekend Hussler of course was the standout performer. It will be fascinating to see if he can continue his winning ways in the spring and in the years to come. He’s only three years old so no doubt maturity will add to his already outstanding abilities. He may well become a giant of the turf, and match the achievements of such former champions as Kingston Town, Might and Power and Tulloch.

As well as the Hussler, several other horses caught my attention this autumn. Let’s not forget Light Fantastic who remained unbeaten after a short and brilliant debut season, or Augusta Proud who found the going in the Slipper a bit much, but won six races in a row prior to that. There’s also Sebring, Tuesday Joy, Zarita and good old Apache Cat who will be competing over the Brisbane winter carnival which hopefully, if he wins, will establish him as the top sprinter for the year.

We won’t see former grand performers Miss Finland, Divine Madonna, Gold Edition, Dance Hero or Desert War racing again, but there will be plenty of other runners to maintain an interest in the sport come the springtime.

I don’t know if many people read my racing posts, but I have enjoyed writing them for my own reasons in that I can refresh my memory of the season by reading through each entry in chronological order, should I so wish.

Cat Politics blog is two years old today and I must admit I still find blogging thoroughly stimulating. My writing has improved, I think, and I find it much easier to string sentences together these days than I did before I started blogging.

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