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Australian Racing: Samedi bids for Traralgon success

There are nine meetings set to take place on Sunday with Nowra, Werribee & Traralgon all set to stage their Cup races.

Race 6 Traralgon

Samedi @ 4.40

Race 7 Nowra

Aristonous @ 4.20

Race 7 Werribee

Keats @ 3.20

Samedi goes for Traralgon glory

The bet365 Traralgon Cup is due to take place over 1900m on a good 4 surface.

Ten runners are expected to line up for the race, with top weight Midnight Blue expected to have his supporters dropping in grade having performed well in Listed company last time.

That Listed effort came in the Bet365 Seymour Cup over 1600m when racing on a soft 5 track at Seymour in October.

The seven-year-old raced from off the pace prior to finishing fifth, beaten just under four-and-a-half-lengths, having jumped at triple figure odds that day.

The Mark Walker-trained gelding should appreciate the drop in grade here, however, SAMEDI is preferred for the in-form Charlotte Littlefield team.

Littlefield can boast a 50% strike-rate from her six runners in the last 30 days and her representative lost out narrowly when runner-up in the 2000m Bet365 Mortlake Cup at Mortlake early last month.

That Mortlake effort came when attempting to make all on a good 4 track and he has a good barrier four off the rail should connections wish to employ similar tactics here.

The 4.40 pick is a winner already this spell having won on soft going over 1760m at Geelong in October and he is taken to deliver career win number six.

Nowra success awaits Aristonous

The Nowra Cup comes up as the seventh race on an eight-race card at the New South Wales venue, with a field of 12 set to go to post for the 1600m handicap event.

A soft 7 track is expected, with Clear Choice expected to have his supporters following a good run of form this spell.

The four-year-old has yet to finish outside of the first two in four outings this season, with those efforts including a head victory in a 1500m Benchmark 72 handicap at Rosehill November 15th.

The gelding lost out by a narrow margin when runner-up over 1550m at Canterbury nine days later, however, he didn’t convince in two starts at this trip earlier this year.

Alysha Collett’s mount usually tracks the speed and with that in mind barrier ten is a negative here and it can pay to look elsewhere.

Annabel Neasham’s ARISTONOUS is the pick here having shown a liking for wet tracks in the past including when racing in his native France in 2022.

The 4.20 five-year-old recorded victories on his first two starts for the Neasham stable including when winning by half-a-length on a Soft 5 track at Randwick in June.

That Randwick success came in a Benchmark 72 handicap and he acquitted himself well over further in two subsequent starts, including when third over 2400m at Rosehill in early August.

The son of Saonois has won first up in the past, while jockey Heavelon Van Der Hoven has won on the pick in the past having been on board for the previously mentioned Randwick triumph.

Keats look like poetry in motion

In the feature race at Werribee, the 1600m Werribee Cup, the seven-year-old KEATS takes the eye for the Gavin Bedggood stable.

The gelding has shown good form in two starts since resuming, including when runner-up in the Listed Sale Cup over this trip on a good 4 track at Sale when resuming at the end of October.

The 3.20 selection was freshened following that effort and went on to place third in the Group 3 Eclipse Stakes over 1800m at Caulfield last weekend.

That Caulfield effort came on a soft 6 track, so any softening of the going will prove no issue and with Linda Meech up he looks capable of registering his first win in over a year.

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