Cotton Cup Day on a Good 4 track, with the rail true, so should play fairly even.
Race 1 MAIDEN HCP (1000m)
Open sprint to start, although settled on one of the first starters. From the leading Gulgong stable, 2. Beau Zariz – by Zariz out of Beautiful Dapper (Beautiful Crown) – tuned up nicely for his debut with a close second in a Muswellbrook trial. Drawn wide but looks to have enough speed to get across.
Dangers: Dubbo flyer 5. Beechal has plenty of early speed, and with a 50 per cent place record from six starts is the clear threat. Parkes-trained 9. Ligny has had plenty of cracks but just missed last start at Mudgee and needs a firm track. Scone filly 13. True Finness was only fair on debut at home in June but reportedly is working nicely for her return.
How to play it: Beau Zariz each way and boxed trifecta 2-5-13
Race 2 MAIDEN PLATE (1400m)
Doesn't get any easier here, with several stepping up in trip and a few coming back. Like the run of 6. Duntroon Man last start at Mudgee when well in the market after debuting with a strong closing effort at Forbes. Extra trip is perfect third-up and looks hard to stop.
Dangers: Dubbo-trained 1. Ben Shoof has been hitting the line nicely this prep, and while this is weak in depth, he's drawn a horror gate with a big weight. Include former Victorian 3. Comzig who makes his debut in the district from the inside draw and will be forward enough.
How to play it: Duntroon Man to win
Race 3 BM 58 HCP (1400m)
Even and competitive race, but Mudgee-trained 4. Baker's Image looks ready to win third-up over the longer trip. Failed to run on when hard in the market at Dubbo last start, but previous form from off the speed was sound. Gets a 2kg claim and nice draw to sit midfield and charge home.
Dangers: Gulgong mare 6. Fairy Fragments has found the line nicely this prep and even better suited stepping up in trip. Fellow Mudgee raider 3. The Scotsman got under the guard of punters returning from a year off to win at home under a big weight at double figure odds. Raced over much longer first prep, so rising to 1400m here no concern. Wellington-trained 1. Smart Attire was beaten out of sight in the much stronger Coonabarabran Cup last start but previous form in similar grade, including a win three runs back, was rock solid.
How to play it: Baker's Image to win
Race 4 BM 58 HCP (1000m)
Very open race, but Nyngan-trained 2. Late Return looks ready to break through after a string of solid closing runs across the region. Likes to settle back, so wider draw suits where he can pick up a trail and launch down the middle.
Dangers: Coonabarabran mare 3. Tattinger won three starts back in a weaker grade before hitting the line hard in a similar race at Moore last start. Dubbo mare 11. Mum's The Word is another who will drift a long way back but can finish hard second up off a decent tempo.
How to play it: Late Return to win
Race 5 WARREN JC SPRINT (1200m)
Feature sprint of the day and keen on the placement here of Dubbo-trained 5. Zoutenant who powered home to win a BM 66 last start when well specked in the market. Hit the line hard in previous two and, while this is a little stronger, gets significant weight relief.
Dangers: Forbes-trained 4. Molasses has been consistent in stronger races and was rewarded in a BM 85 last start but cops a big weight hike. 1. A Magic Zariz flew home in the Dubbo Cup two runs back before an even effort behind Red Knot in the Coonamble Cup. Has plenty of quality but a huge weight to carry. Big watch on now Gulgong-trained 3. Know How. Was very competitive in much stronger metro middle distance and staying trips late last year, including a come-from-behind BM 70 win at Rosehill. Is now an 8YO and no official trial coming in, but will be finish off.
How to play it: Zoutenant each way and boxed first four 1-2-3-4-5
Race 6 COTTON CUP (1600m)
Feature race and very keen on Gulgong mare 4. Sea Lady. Should have won last start in a BM 66 at Dubbo when couldn't get clear in the straight after a terrific win storming home from off the speed at Coonabarabran. Beautifully weighted after the claim and the mile suits big time!
Dangers: Dubbo-trained 5. Hammoon Bridge comes out of that same race when just pipped by Sea Lady after he cruised up at the 250m and looked in control. Nice middle distance galloper who also gets in well at the weights. Mudgee-trained 1. Bezel looked smart winning a BM 82 at Dubbo under a big weight two runs back before outclassed at Randwick last start. Wellington-trained 3. Steamin' hit the line nicely in the Sandy Hollow Cup at Muswellbrook and will appreciate the extra trip.
How to play it: Sea Lady to win and boxed trifecta 1-3-4-5
Race 7 CL2 HCP (1600m)
Open race to finish, but looks right for Dubbo-trained 2. Club Town who boasts deeper form than most. Has found the line strong in his last two in decent CL1 races and gets nice weight relief. Settles back in the field and emerges late.
Dangers: Gulgong mare 5. Tropicana Lass has disappointed in her last few but returns to the track where she bolted in on debut. The form of Orange-trained 4. Dark Force is much better than it looks, finishing midfield behind some very progressive winners. With the 3kg claim, will be thundering home, while 6. El Rey Dorado broke through last start and gets a nice draw to go on with it.
How to play it: Club Town to win and boxed trifecta 2-4-5-6
Supplied by Racing NSW.
Full form and race replays at www.racingnsw.com.au.