SUPER MAXI - There’s no arguing this former Sydneysider got it easy in front at his first WA start but after sailing to an effortless victory, he’s destined to be a great money spinner over winter. Once trained by Team Hawkes, the gelding won four times in the eastern states and was placed in stakes company yet arrived in the west on a metropolitan rating of 77, which saw him carry only 2.5kg over the minimum in a Benchmark 72+ on Saturday. After strolling to the front, Super Maxi got a breather approaching the turn before kicking clear into the straight and scoring virtually untouched. “For his first start here he was still pretty big and gross,” said winning trainer Chris Gangemi. “He’s pretty good on a wet track so later in the winter, there might be a couple of Listed races for him.” After cantering home with such authority, it’s hard to argue with the trainer’s assessment.
FLYING TIME - While Super Maxi was doing it easily up front there was a run in behind that also caught the eye. Flying Time was taking a big class drop after contesting only Stakes races in three outings this time in work and with better luck in running would have finished in the placings. Landing in a decent spot midfield in the running line, this rising nine-year-old should have known better than to lose its spot on the turn when the sprint went on. Held up until the 200m, Flying Time finally worked clear wider out and ran on strongly when it was all over to finish fifth in some of the better closing sectionals of the day. This Lindsey Smith-trained conveyance has an affinity with the Belmont 1200 metre trip and if able to dodge some of the promising up-and-comers can pick off another win at good odds in the coming weeks.
IN LOVE WITH PARIS - Could this be a genuine Belmont Guineas contender in just his second preparation? Appreciating some weight relief taking on the older horses instead of lugging as much as 59.5kg against his own age, In Love With Paris did everything right and it was only the might of the unbeaten Enticing Star that saw him beaten over the final 100 metres. His record now stands at four wins from nine starts so there’s no doubting his will to find the line and after going three weeks between runs, trainer Fred Kersley has the option of keeping In Love With Paris fresh with a similar gap before the Guineas or sending him around on either of the next two Saturdays to ensure he is rock-hard fit ahead of his biggest test to date. Either way, wherever he bobs up next, we should make sure we are on.
MONSOON CHARLIE - Three wins from 34 starts is generally a statistic I shy away from. However, when you dig a little deeper into the figures, there is enough to suggest that a fourth career win for the Chris Heywood-trained Monsoon Charlie could come in the Weston & Weston Refrigeration & Air Conditioning – Heat Of Wagga Stayers Benchmark 60 Handicap (1800m). A gelding that generally takes a couple of runs in a preparation before he produces his best, Monsoon Charlie put the writing on the wall third-up over the track and distance last start when he arguably should have won after being held-up at a vital time in the straight. Two of the three career wins for Monsoon Charlie have come at Wagga and more importantly Richard Bensley has been the winning jockey in two of the wins. Bensley is back in the saddle on Monsoon Charlie on Monday after an apprentice has ridden the gelding in his latest two starts suggesting the now six-year-old is primed for a big run. At $7.50 in early betting markets, I am happy to take the punt.
I AM KALANI - A last-start sixth in a Saturday race at Randwick when less than 2-1/2 lengths from the winner looks a solid form reference for the Nick Olive-trained I Am Kalani in the Bedrock Landscape Supplies Benchmark 70 Handicap (1400m). After being a clear leader straightening at Randwick on May 26, I Am Kalani battled on OK after being headed in the race won by Touch Of Mink and is likely to roll to the front on Monday. The decision to take advantage of the 3kg claim for apprentice Ahira Kajiya looks a winning move with I Am Kalani set to carry 56kg after the claim. Don’t be concerned about the 2 wins from 67 next to the jockey’s name in the Racenet form-guide, the same rider rode I Am Kalani to an easy 3-3/4 length victory over 1400m at Albury two runs back leading all the way and reckon it will be a case of first out first home again.