Simon O’Donnell – VRC Oaks

Oaks Day is always a terrific day of racing at Flemington during Cup week.

The favourite for the feature race – the Crown Oaks – is Yankee Rose who ran third in the 2016 Cox Plate behind two superstar horses in Winx and Hartnell. She’s now back amongst her own sex at 2500m, which will be challenging not only for her but every competitor in this event, but I think she’s going to have the class to get her through on the excellent weight–for–age form she showed at Moonee Valley.

Whilst Yankee Rose will be hard to get past, the two horses that’ll be trying their hardest at the end will be Eleonora and Smart As You Think.

Eleonora comes from the handy stable of Murray Baker in New Zealand, and with Damien Oliver aboard she should continue her sweet form of late at a race distance that should also be favourable to her

Smart As You Think has a lack of experience, with just the six starts to her name, but showed plenty of class when she won at her last start at Moonee Valley. Trained by John McArdle and ridden by Jamie Mott, I think she’ll hit the line hard and challenge for the top spot in the Oaks on Thursday.

In summary, weight-for-age form is generally the best indication on any racetrack, particularly with a three-year-old coming back against their own age.

My SuperPick is Yankee Rose in the VRC Oaks; I’ll take the 50% Profit Plus option for the win.

Good luck!

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