Sweet In Defeat: Happy Valley (M62)

Clint Hutchison

Hutchi's Honkers Principal Analyst


Happy Valley had a turf track presented in GOOD condition with the running rail set in the “C” position.

RACE 1: C5 - 1650m
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was decent early here and it set things up nicely for those that sat midfield or worse. V Chevaliers was a play for us and went desperately close, he is very near to winning. This race rated pretty well for a Class 5, so I expect the form to hold up well enough. The winner Humble Steed clearly appreciated coming up to the mile and he might be competitive in a weak Class 4 with a light weight.

RACE 2: C4 - 1200m
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was very slow here and it was a sprint home, and rated more like a Class 5. That said, Compassion Spirit produced the 3rd-best final-200m (10.96) of the meeting and it was a soft win. He should be hard to beat again. The runner up, Yee Cheong Pegasus was excellent (final-200m of 10.68 was a meeting best) and I’d be happy to follow him next time. As a collective though, maybe not a reliable race but there a couple of nice horses in it.

RACE 3: C4 - 1650M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was solid early and from the 800m, they started to slow. This race didn’t rate very well overall and I have some questions around the strength of the form. Lasting Friendship was pretty good and considering he posted a race-best final-200m, might be one to consider when he comes back here, but overall, I’m not convinced about the form out of this race.

RACE 4: C4 - 1200M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

Note: “Shanghai Master didn’t feel “comfortable” in his action on his way to the start and then during the race”, so there was a genuine excuse there. Of course, it didn’t help those who backed him! The pace was even ovreall and the race rated closer to standard after adjustments. It didn’t rate very well in the context of the night and with a well exposed $39 winner Sky Treasure, that is probably reflected. 

RACE 5: C4 - 1200M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was fast but California Rad stole a break and did enough to hang on. Once again, it rated about the norm for the grade after adjustments for a reasonably quick track. The wide draw was costly for Super Lucky who ran to his usual mark. California Rad had quite an arduous campaign mid-season and clearly appreciated the freshen-up. I’m not sure there was much else to take from the race. 

RACE 6: C3 - 1200M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was solid through this event and the race rated well, the second-best on the card. Whiskey Neat (SID) might be an interesting runner when he next steps out. He was $102 in the market and had shown nothing, and isn’t far from a drop in grade. His final-600m (33.68 5th-best at meeting) was excellent off a solid tempo and I’ll be having something on him next time, and should he not figure, certainy when he drops a grade. The winner Beauty Spark was sound-enough.

RACE 7: C3 - 1650M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

A very slow pace was set early before they ramped it up delivering a strong pace over the final-800m, so it was a lovely set up for the winner Sunshine Warrior. He is now two from two over the track and trip and looks well suited at the Valley. But it was quite a messy race overall in behind him, and there were some unlucky runs in it like Best Alliance, with Jolly Honour and Super Fast being severely hampered in teh stragiht, so it’s a bit hard to get a real guide outside the winner. 

RACE 8: C3 - 1200M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

The pace was genuine here and this race rated well, and overall the race-shape suited those around midfield, and from that perspective, Shamport was very good. He hit the line with some strong sectionals and this performance suggests that although he has won three races this season, Class 3 is not beyond him and he can win again.

RACE 9: C2 - 1800M
Course: TURF "C"     Going: GOOD

A great finish and the ride on Dances With Dragon given the lack of pace through the first half was spot-on. Overall this race rated well. Righteous Doctrine was strung up in traffic and a victim of circumstances. He can be followed again, makes the SID file, as he is versatile and importantly the form should stack up. 

Sweet In Defeat "Black Bookers"

  • Whiskey Neat

  • Righteous Doctrine