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Flemington Races – Tips For MacKinnon Stakes
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Flemington Races – Tips For MacKinnon Stakes

2018 Seppelt MacKinnon Stakes
Flemington Racecourse
Saturday 10th November 2018
Race 8: 4.55pm (AEST),
2000 meters, WFA

The Field

75256 1. IT’S SOMEWHAT (1), : KERRIN MCEVOY, W: 59 KGS, 19.00
35542 2. PRIZED ICON (5), J: DAMIEN OLIVER, W: 59 KGS, 17.00
10X42 3. BLAIR HOUSE (2), J: WILLIAM BUICK, W: 59 KGS, 2.20
11752 4. TRAP FOR FOOLS (8), J: JOHN ALLEN, W: 59 KGS, 12.00
15X11 5. DOUBT DEFYING (10), J: MICHAEL WALKER, W: 59 KGS, 26.00
15315 6. OCTABELLO (7), J: NOEL CALLOW, W: 58.5 KGS, 34.00
21172 7. LATROBE (3), J: MARK ZAHRA, W: 57.5 KGS, 5.00
24441 8. SHILLELAGH (6), J: JAMES MCDONALD, W: 57 KGS, 7.00
11161 9. EXTRA BRUT (9), J: CRAIG WILLIAMS, W: 51 KGS, 7.50
11550 10. MICKEY BLUE EYES (4), J: COREY BROWN, W: 51 KGS, 21.00

Form and Predictions

It’s not a big field assembling for the $2 million MacKinnon Stakes in 2018. The VRC have really mucked owners, trainers and punters about with the running of this race. The last two years or so, it’s been a 1600m race, and was previously called the Emirates Stakes.

In the good old days, the MacKinnon used to be run on Derby Day and was considered a tune-up to the Melbourne Cup. These days the Derby Day card is now chockful of Group races. It makes sense to hold it on another day. Having another top quality race on Cup Day would’ve been better in my opinion.

So now that the VRC have reinstated the MacKinnon, though for how long is anyone’s guess, it assembles 10 gallopers of which there are two bonafide class horses, both of them from the UK; England’s Blair House and Ireland’s Latrobe. The rest? Not so much.

With Latrobe, he was heading to Australia for the Melbourne Cup but was deemed match-fit by the O’Brien stable, so he comes into this for a tune-up, and a possibility of a start in the Japan Cup in a few weeks. I haven’t seen the nominations yet, to confirm whether this is fact or fiction, but whatever the case, a $2 million consolation for not starting in the Cup is rather welcome.

Blair House hasn’t raced for a month, after a two-horse war with Benbatl in the Caulfield Stakes. Is well up for this, and has looked very good in the two starts he’s had in Australia so far.

Shillelagh, the horse with the Irish name, Australian trained but New Zealand is bred certainly has a middle distance pedigree on here side. Better known as a specialist miler with two Group 1’s to her name, her sire Savabeel is a former WS Cox Plate winner in 2004, as a three-year-old. I think she’s up to it.

The recent VRC Derby winner from a week ago Extra Brut proved his credentials over 2500m, even if his pedigree is mostly a sprinter/miler type. I think he can run anything between 1600 and 2400m so t his should be his go, even if it’s against the older horses.

The other ‘query horse’ would be Doubt Defying. He hasn’t done a lot wrong in his recent racing, even if he is winning in slightly lower grade. The Queenslander might be aiming a bit high in a race like this, but good on his brave connections for doing so.

Betting Gods Picks

Blair House – 2pt win @ 2.00 Bet365, Unibet
Latrobe – 1ot win @ 5.50 Bet365, Unibet, PaddyPower
Shillelagh – 0.50pt each way @ 8.00 Bet365, PaddyPower

Video Reference Guide

2018 Empire Rose Stakes (Shillelagh)

2018 VRC Derby (Extra Brut)

2018 Caulfield Stakes (Blair House)

Odds Correct at Time of Publication

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