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Geelong Cup Tips - value lies with Maher and Eustace stayer

Aaron Hamilton in Free Tips 22 Oct 2019
Dal Harraild trains at Racing Victoria's International Horse Centre at Werribee Racecourse in Melbourne (PA Images)

Firstly, I think Steel Prince is the best horse in Wednesday’s Group 3 Geelong Cup (2400m), but, for a few reasons, I’m willing to take him on with a value runner.

Steel Prince is coming off a barrier mishap where he sustained an injury to a thigh and was clearly lame. 

He’s already qualified for the Melbourne Cup, and I’m sure his connections would love to see him run a nice race without coping a penalty for winning – but that certainly doesn’t mean they aren’t there to win. 

He won third-up at Caulfield over 2425m last campaign when running 2:31.06 on a Good 4 with just 52.5kg on his back. 



In comparison, the Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-prepared Dal Harraild was narrowly defeated by The Taj Mahal in the Sandown Classic (2400m) when third-up on a Good 3 as he carried 59kg and ran 2:31.52.

Both horses now come into Wednesday’s feature at their third runs this campaign, and both runners carry the same weight of 57.5kg. 

That’s a 1.5kg drop for Dal Harraild who went 12 lengths above benchmark (BM) on the day, and 5kg extra for Steel Prince who went 10 lengths above BM.

Last start, Dal Harraild was beaten 4.25 lengths by Surprise Baby in The Bart Cummings while Supernova, who is a $5 chance in the Geelong Cup, was 1.5 lengths from the winner in 2nd place. 

I think the bookmakers have this wrong, and I thought Dal Harraild’s run was full of merit and he should be much closer in the market than his current price of $11 to Win and $3.20 to Place. 

Dal Harraild followed Supernova throughout and couldn’t go with him as they straightened, however, he was eating into that margin again at the line and ran his final 200m in 12.08 compared to Supernova’s final split of 12.23.

Supernova was third-up while Dal Harraild was second-up, and there is one important gear change to note with the crossover nose band coming off Dal Harraild. 

That gear is used to restrain hard-pulling horses, so the fact they are removing it suggests they will let him roll up front like they did third-up last campaign when he tried to lead all the way in the Sandown Classic before being collared on the line by The Taj Mahal. 

As well as Steel Prince and Supernova rating as top chances in the race, Prince Of Arran, Red Cardinal, Grey Lion, and Red Galileo also rate highly. 

However, I’m willing to trust the Bart Cummings form with Surprise Baby seemingly on par with Steel Prince, while Wolfe (3rd) has also franked the form with a win before finishing five lengths from Mer De Glace in the Caulfield Cup. 


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Geelong Cup Tips - value lies with Maher and Eustace stayer

Firstly, I think Steel Prince is the best horse in Wednesday’s Group 3 Geelong Cup (2400m), but, for a few reasons, I’m willing to take him on with a value runner.

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