Pro punter preview, top pick and value bet

newmarket handicap
newmarket handicap

The Newmarket Handicap is a Group 1 sprint race over 1200 metres, down the famous Flemington straight. Total prizemoney is $1.5 million.

The Newmarket Handicap was first run all the way back in 1874 and was considered Australia’s premier sprint race for much of it’s history, though in recent times that mantle has been passed to other races such as the TJ Smith Stakes and The Everest. It remains one of the top sprint events in Melbourne.

Newmarket Handicap 2022: Trevor Lawson’s preview

I reckon there’s probably two main chances, then a big gap to the rest. It’s not the greatest edition of the Newmarket that we’ve seen, but there are plenty here with a rough hope given it’s very even aside from the top two.

Track

The rail is out 5 metres. There’s no rain predicted and winds are light, so it should all play very well.

Speed

The pace will be genuine as there’s probably six horses here that like to race up on the pace. They’ll probably come down the middle to the outside as they did last week.

Runner-by-runner

Prices courtesy of TopSport, correct at time of publication.

LOST AND RUNNING [$3.70] is in career best form and returned very well with a soft win at Randwick. He looks to still have improvement in him and has drawn well. The horse to beat.

HOME AFFAIRS [$3.80] ran well first-up to win the Lightning Stakes. He’s unbeaten in two runs down the straight and he’s drawn wide, which should be the place to be. Has very strong claims.

ARTORIUS [$12] ran okay first-up in the Rubiton when not suited. He hasn’t won since the Blue Diamond last year. He’ll be back and on the inside here. He looks well unders for mine.

MASKED CRUSADER [$13] was slightly disappointing in the Lightning. He’s down the straight here again and I think he’s better around the corner where he can accelerate I’m happy to bet around him.

QUANTICO [$15] is first-up. He’s ran well down the straight before. He’s drawn out and has a chance at the price.

SWATS THAT [$15] ran to a career best first-up in the Lightning. She did similar last year in the same race, then failed twice. I’ve assumed she’ll regress again and only have her as a rough chance.

SNAPDANCER [$16] is a consistent mare that I have returning a peak figure last start under JMac. She loses him here but has still got a chance at good odds.

OXLEY ROAD [$19] is racing well and put in a good run in the Oakleigh Plate. I’m not sure he can go to another level here, which he would need to. Rough chance.

LEVANTE [$26] has won Group 1s in New Zealand at her past two starts. We ca get a line on her through Entriviere, who raced in Sydney in the spring. Another one with a rough chance.

SEPTEMBER RUN [$26] is first-up here. It’s a long time since she’s fired –  she hasn’t won a race wince the Coolmore in 2020 and hasn’t rated near her top since last year’s Lightning. I’d prefer to bet around her.

COUNT DE RUPEE [$31] is first-up here and went out in good form last prep. I’m not sure he’s up to this class but he probably has a rough chance.

ZOUTORI [$41] wasn’t suited first-up in the Oakleigh Plate. He’s run well down the straight in the past. Barrier 1 isn’t ideal. Just a very rough chance.

HALVORSEN [$41] races well down the straight but this is a very big rise in class. Another very rough chance.

THE ASTROLOGIST [$61] raced on the pace in the Lightning and wasn’t suited. He has a good record down the straight and gets the blinkers for the first time here. He’s only a rough chance but looks over the odds for mine if you’re looking for a big price.

ROCH ’N’ HORSE [$67] was narrowly beaten by Levante last start. Rough chance at big odds.

POLAND [$101] and FINANCE TYCOON [$21] are outclassed here for mine.

Verdict

Lost And Running is the horse to beat for mine. I have him marked around $4.50, so let’s wait and see what price we can get on the day. I have Home Affairs just behind at $5.50 and then a big gap to the rest, led by Snapdancer at $14. The Astrologist is only a rough chance, but appeals if you’re looking to find some value at big odds.

Punt like a pro with Trevor Lawson’s Melbourne Ratings.

As well as a full set of rated prices, speed maps and suggested bets, you can spend each and every raceday with a pro punter: the Melbourne Ratings Live Page gives you direct access to Trev himself to ask whatever you like.

If you’re keen to win, it’s the only way to punt.