Chris Nelson’s Saturday Doomben Preview


Group 1 racing at Doomben kicks off with a Benchmark 85 over 1350m. I’m with the resuming PACIFIC RUBY who holds a very impressive fresh record, in fact she’s unbeaten first up for the Ciaron Maher stable. She tends to grind a bit however digs deep & gets the job done, from the good alley she should gain the right run for Willow! Thought WATEGOS could be an improver, down in grade & back on a firmer surface I’d be surprised if Jimmy Orman didn’t make use of the good alley. STANDING ORDER likely leads & can give a decent kick on his day.

Numbers: 14 – 3 – 10 – 8

Suggested Bet: Box up top 4 selections in exotics.


Good solid tempo in this race could well play into the hands of the second-up CONTEMPORARY. They certainly did first up at Hawkesbury when able to rip down the outside, reel in the leaders & then move clear to the line. Around Doomben over the short trip I wouldn’t be taking shorts odds, want something around $4.00 or better. VODKA MARTINI didn’t fire fresh, wouldn’t be sacking on that & he’s since trialled well, can improve sharply. KINGSTON’S HERE is big odds & well worth including in exotic bets, holds a good fresh record.

Numbers: 1 – 8 – 10 – 9

Suggested Bet: CONTEMPORARY TO WIN ($4.00 or better).


I’m a big wrap for the unbeaten FORTUNEER who faces her first acid test this afternoon taking on quality company. Loved what she did at her initial prep winning all 3 starts (sat wide twice) & her recent trial suggests she can run a race here parked off what should be a decent speed. CELUI will appreciate the drier track even though he did place in the Guineas at the Sunshine Coast on a heavy (10). 2023 Magic millions 2yo winner SKIRT THE LAW pulled up lame when well beaten first up, looking for improvement here.

Numbers: 10 – 1 – 6 – 8

Suggested Bet: FORTUNEER TO WIN.


Keen on the chances of the highly priced CLEAN ENERGY who is a full sister to the 3-time Group 1 winner Sunlight. Purchased for 2.6 million dollars she repaid a fraction of that winning on debut at Warwick Farm however the manner in which she scored on very testing heavy ground suggests it won’t be the last repayment! Additional distance plus the drier surface both plusses. LADY SHENANDOAH clocked in 3rd same race beaten over 2L, can’t see turning the tables however can see her in the placings once again. Tony Gollan’s first starter SURPRISE HONEY draws awkwardly however has trialled well.

Numbers: 4 – 9 – 13 – 2



Million Dollar race for the 2yo’s where clearly ENEEZA has the best form lines having finished close up behind Lady Of Camelot in the Golden Slipper before defeating that filly in the Group 2 Percy Sykes. She maps midfield or worse however from the good draw I wouldn’t be the least surprised to see Damian Lane settle her closer & should he be able to do that she’ll be awfully hard to hold out. Local colt GIN AND TONIC continues to race well, good alley here looks overs in the markets. SPYWIRE resumes with J. Mac to steer from a good alley whilst EMBASSY can figure although may now be chasing further than 1050m.

Numbers: 9 – 4 – 1 – 5

Suggested Bet: ENEEZA TO WIN ($3.00 or better).


Wide open Chief De Beers where some of the early speed comes out with scratchings however they should still run along. I’m with the resuming KING KAPA who trialled nicely here recently & although beaten out of the placings first up last prep there were valid excuses. He backed that up with a tough placing in this race at his next start (wide/worked) before winning next outing. Well drawn for a gun jockey he’ll be right in the finish. Wide gate for SPACEWALK who will likely go back & zoom home. THE BIG GOODBYE in the mix as are plenty others.

Numbers: 5 – 1 – 2 – 7

Suggested Bet: KING KAPA EACH-WAY.


ZOE’S PROMISE didn’t beat a lot class wise when resuming at Eagle Farm 3 weeks back however the manner in which she won did create plenty of attention. She led with the big weight rolling along at a decent tempo & when hitting the turn Andrew Mallyon had a good hold of her, without being ridden out she increased the margin down the straight to bolt in. I’m banking on her doing similar in this tougher grade. Don’t mind SONOROA from the wide draw, she sat back & blew her rivals away here two back before sound in unsuitable wet ground last time, include. THALASSOPHILE goes in once again, good win at the Sunshine Coast.

Numbers: 2 – 9 – 5 – 14



Main lead-up to the Group 1 Oaks in a fortnights time. I’m banking on two winning chances only being the star Kiwi MOLLY BLOOM & the hugely promising SCARLET OAK. I’m backing both however will lean to the latter who impressed on debut in NZ, was solid first run here on very wet ground before basically barrier trialling when winning at Newcastle. She has to raise the bar plenty however I’m of the opinion she can. MOLLY BLOOM is a Group 1 winner in NZ, she’s a class act who ran well first up at the Sunshine Coast doing her best work very late.

Numbers: 13 – 1 – 3 – 17



The Group 1 Doomben Cup is our feature where HUETOR is going for the hat trick having won the race the past 2 years. I’m with the 2019 Melbourne Cup winner VOW AND DECLARE who surely brings the best form line having run a close 4th in the Australian Cup at Flemington behind Cascadian. Pride Of Jenni ran 2nd & we all know what she did in the Queen Elizabeth at Randwick. No excuses for KOVALICA today, drawn well, drier ground & 2000m, he placed in this race last year as a 3yo. NUMERIAN & HUETOR both in the mix, the former likely needs rain, the latter wouldn’t mind it either!

Numbers: 5 – 3 – 1 – 2



We wind up the big day with an absolute raffle! This track played best off the fence last week, we’ll know if that’s the case once again by the time we get to this. FREEDOM RALLY was an eye-catcher at the Sunshine Coast first up, he draws gate one here, if that section is ok, he’ll run well, if not he’s going to need luck. YELLOW BRICK was good in the same race sitting 4 deep throughout, should he back that up he’s right in this. VILANA was good fresh & will appreciate any ‘give’ in the ground.

Numbers: 18 – 12 – 4 – 3

Suggested Bet: Box up top 4 selections in exotics.

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