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All-Star Mile: ‘a big three and a couple of half chances’

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Online article from 'racenet'.
Online article from "racenet".

Timeform Australia handicapper Adam Blencowe has declared the realistic chances are limited in Saturday's $5 million All-Star Mile at The Valley.

"It's a good race but as it was in the first two years, it is thin for chances," Blencowe said.

"As I see it there is a big three and a couple of half chances.

"They're talking around 20 mils (of rain) right around All-Star Mile time. What time that actually hits will matter."

Race favourite Arcadia Queen is under an injury cloud after presenting 2 out of 5 lame on Friday.

Blencowe says all things being equal, the West Australian star is a worthy favourite.

"If you go back to her three-year-old days, she ran 121 (Timeform) showing ludicrous sustained speed," he said.

"At that point she's got all the bits and pieces to be the best horse in the country.

"When she rounded up Russian Camelot that day in the Caulfield Stakes, that sustained speed was back.

"That's her big weapon and there is no bigger weapon for a racehorse. She can run really fast and sustain it, she can run these big 600 and 800 metre bursts.

"The speed she has gives Pike the luxury of riding the horse rather than the race. That's big for a jockey.

"If the race is run on quick ground, I don't think they can live with her, she's just too good for them."

The other high-class mare Probabeel is also one of the genuine chances according to the astute form student but he can't have her above Arcadia Queen.

"Probabeel has come back better than ever and she was awesome in the Futurity but I do feel like Arcadia Queen now is a coiled spring, just ready to explode off her last run whereas Probabeel may be able to improve again but it's a maybe," he said.

"I reckon it was the best run of her life in the Futurity, must have a hope but I just think Arcadia Queen has another gear which Probabeel doesn't have."

Russian Camelot is the last of the winning chances but Blencowe says he needs the rain to arrive before the race to put the odds in his favour over the two mares.

"He's a ripper, how do you not love a horse that fronts up for everything and has a go at everything," he said.

"He's a bloody good horse and the thing about him is he's had all this good learning.

"It's one of my little things about Australian racing. I don't know why we don't see horse horses tested like they have with Russian Camelot.

"The best way for a horse to learn how to be a Group 1 horse to run in good Group 1s. I mean, if you want to learn to read and write, give them a pen or a book.

"It's not that I think he's a wet tracker but it's more me thinking he needs the rain to stitch Arcadia Queen up."

Arcadia Queen is an easing $3.90 favourite over Probabeel at $4.20 while Russian Camelot is the real firmer, into $6 with

Blencowe says if the rain arrives pre-race and conditions deteriorate two other horses come into calculations somewhat although he would be surprised if they were to beat all three of the horses he regards as winning chances.

"Mugatoo was terrific in that Cox Plate but he still didn't beat Russian Camelot home," he said.

"Mugatoo went into the Cox Plate off a Metrop and Russian Camelot went in off a sit and sprint so if Mugatoo couldn't beat him there, I reckon you're not as good as Russian Camelot.

"Then if it rains the Cox Plate is the main reference and the dirty dragon (Sir Dragonet) is some sort of hope although I think he needs 40 mils rather than 20.

"He needs it up to their knees at a mile. They can pretend all they like, he's slow."

Mugatoo is at $11 while Sir Dragonet is a $14 chance with

Online article taken from racenet.

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