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Doncaster Mile Tips - Complete guide to Randwick Group 1

joshua-bell
04 Apr 2024
Joshua Bell 04 Apr 2024
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  • Runner-by-Runner Guide to the Doncaster Mile
  • Who will take out the Randwick Group 1?
  • Another Wil heads the betting markets
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Celestial Legend (Getty Images)

Rated by many as the premier 1600m handicap race in the country, the Group 1 Doncaster is run at Randwick racecourse on day one of The Championships.

First run in 1866 the race has been won by some champion horses including Wakeful (1901), Tobin Bronze (1967) and more recently Winx (2016).

Another outstanding field has been assembled in 2024 and we have run through every runner below.

1. Think About It (15)


For the first time in his career he has failed to win in three consecutive starts dating back to the last run of his previous campaign.

Joe Pride has not been shy in admitting he believes his star sprinter can get over further ground and this will test that theory because it’s his first go over a mile.

He’ll carry the top weight of 57kg and has the outside barrier to contend with.

2. Obamburamai (8)


The Japanese horse came over and won our riches when making his Australian racing debut in the Golden Eagle back in November scoring by the barest of margins over Pericles, a horse he meets 1.5kg worse at the weights in this contest.

He’s not been seen at the races since that win but he has won four of his six career race starts and is a horse with a tonne of upside.

Drawn well and it will take a brave punter not to think he can win again.

3. Pericles (16)


James Cummings has worked out the horse’s pet distance in my opinion and he gets another crack at the top grade, this time over 1600m.

All four runs this prep have been okay and he’ll be nearing peak fitness now at this stage of the campaign.

Has placed four times from five starts on a heavy surface so if the rain comes as predicted, it will not be a concern.

4. Militarise (4)


The Chris Waller trained son of Dundeel has a very impressive resume considering he is still just three years of age.

He’s a three time Group 1 winner and while he hasn’t added another win to his tally this campaign, he’s been excellent in all three runs.

He loses nothing with Zac Purton climbing aboard and will have a lovely run in transit from barrier four.

5. Zougotcha (19)


The two-time Group 1 winner has come back really well this prep after a plain 2023.

She beat Lady laguna first up at Group 2 level by a length and meets that mare better at the weights here and she then came out and won the Coolmore with the top weight at her next outing.

Drawn a tricky gate but she will appreciate any rain that arrives.

6. Golden Mile (1)


Returned to a semblance of his best form when beaten under two lengths in the George Ryder last time out making up considerable ground late in the race.

He is a horse capable of producing a rating good enough to be competitive in a race of this quality, he just needs the pattern to pan out in his favour.

7. Kovalica (12)


Similar to the above horse, he’s a capable and talented galloper that we don’t see the best of on every single occasion. 

I’m of the opinion he is better suited to 2000m but you will find him flashing late in the piece especially if the pace is on up front like it usually is in a Doncaster.

8. Detonator Jack (2)


Ony a lightly raced five-year-old who has been a consistent performer over his career, placing in 14 of 17 career starts, one of which was at Group 1 level in Adelaide.

Drops 5.5kg on his third behind Democracy Manifest at Group 2 level last start and absolutely swims!
Not the worst.

9. Berkshire Shadow (13)


Made his Australian racing debut for Cairon Maher at Group 3 level at Flemington where he was beaten 6.6 lengths.

Would need to improve dramatically to be any chance in a race like this.

10. Rustic Steel (7)


Couldn’t have been much more impressive when scoring by over three lengths at Group 3 level at Newcastle first up.

Was then one of the horses soundly beaten by Another Will last time out and it’s tough seeing him turn the tables here.

11. Attractable (5)


The 2023 Big Dance winner was extremely disappointing last start when he failed to fire a shot at Caulfield, beaten over 17 lengths.

His best performances have been on a good track and I’m certain he doesn’t get that on Saturday.

12. Lady Laguna (10)


She’s absolutely flying this prep and for whatever reason continues to be disrespected in the market.

Did everything but win her second Group 1 in a row when beaten by the barest of margins behind  last start and she drops considerably in the weights for this.

This is not much of a harder task and she’s drawn well.

13. Democracy Manifest (11)


Somewhat of a cult hero to start his racing career out but he is a very genuine performer who has won just shy of a million dollars in prize money.

He may not be a top liner but under a handicap scale he is a winning chance and he possesses an excellent turn of foot late in his races.

Has two wins on a heavy track.

14. Phearson (24)


Was excellent when winning a Group 3 first up and then simply went too quick in front last time out and was found wanting late.

Will struggle in this grade and the barrier does not help his chances.

15. Loch Eagle (23)


A horse that is capable of producing a high rating on his day especially if the track get in the heavy range.

Will be tough from the barrier.

16. Lindermann (22)


This is a high class four-year-old and he proved that when stepping back in grade to win at group 3 level by a huge margin last start.

He’s a Group 1 winner who has performed well at this track and distance in the past and will not know himself with just 50.5kg.

Has had three goes on a heavy track without placing which must be a big concern as is the draw in barrier 22.

17. Semana (17)


Another mare that continually gets underrated by the market despite an excellent overall record.

In her first Group 1 start she was beaten a head by Zougotcha and she meets that mare 2kg better at the weights in the contest.

She has finished in the top two in six of eights starts on either soft or heavy going and although she’s drawn horribly, represents incredible value at her current quote.

18. Another Wil (21)


I haven’t seen a horse with this much potential since Black Caviar came on the scene and the way in which he wins his races, in just a few strides, has similarities to that great mare.

He’s won all four races this campaign by a combined 13+ lengths and although this is a huge step up in class, he’s just such a talented individual that I don’t doubt he’ll measure up.

The barrier is a big concern, as is the imminent rain.

19. Celestial Legend (6)


Has put together back to back wins leading into this event, the latest of which came in the Group 1 Randwick Guineas at this track and distance.

He may be the best three-year-old in the country and he gets in incredibly well at the weights compared to a horse like Militarise who he beat last start.

Drawn well in barrier six and is one of the leading contenders.

20. Southport Tycoon (20)


Broke through for his maiden Group 1 in the Australian Guineas over 1600m beating Veight and Riff Rocket both of which have come out and won at the highest level since.

Drops 8kg on that performance and although he has been given a horror draw, he has to be a winning chance.

21. Nugget (9)


Has had six goes at Group 1 level for two placings and was beaten four lengths in the Epsom at this track and distance last campaign.

Not for me.

22. Hinged (14)


Finished within a length of Zougotcha  at Group 1 level two back and is a mare that loves a heavy track.
Just the one win at the highest kevel over her career but is being asked to carry just 50kg.

23. Navajo Peak (18)


Has been well beaten in all three runs this prep and would need to improve to be any chance.

24. Palmetto (3)


Hasn’t shown anything to suggest he’s up to a race of this quality although has performed well on a heavy track in the past. 

Verdict

SELECTIONS

1st: No. 19 Celestial Legend
2nd: No. 18 Another Wil
3rd: No. 12 Lady Laguna
4th: No. 17 Semana

Best Bet1: Celestial Legend Win @13/2 at Elitebet - 5 Units
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06 Apr 2024

Doncaster Mile