Now these might be the famous last words of the racing writer, but is this race a little thin for chances? Yes there are upsets every day in Australian horse racing, but in set weight fillies races the best filly is normally very hard to beat.
Where has this girl come from? Well from New Zealand, but she is the definite wildcard horse in the race. She has had 7 starts for 6 wins and these Kiwi horses always run well in the autumn features in Sydney. She beat the boys in the New Zealand Derby and that race has in the past provided good form for the Sydney autumn. This filly looks to be very consistent and will no doubt be in the finish. A filly in form is a filly worth a bet.
After an average performance last start, this Group One winner needs to bounce back quickly if she is to match it with the other fancies in this race. Fillies in the past that have won the Crown Oaks have performed well in the early autumn but stumbled towards the autumn classics. Let’s hope this is not the case with Dear Demi. She no doubt has the talent and will enjoy the 2000m and on her past performance we cannot dismiss her after one bad race.
This filly has never run a bad race in her 13 start career. She is ultra-consistent and has a nice turn of foot when required. Yes, she has never run a race over 2000m before, but with so many other options available, it is unlikely that Gai would try her over this trip if she did not think the filly could run the trip. Driefontein is by Fastnet Rock and his progeny seem to be able to do anything at the minute and it would not be surprising if this filly got to the lead and looked the winner at some stage.
This filly is a potential star in the making. She was unlucky not to have beaten the older horses at her last start and seems ideally placed against her own age and sex. Dear Demi might be more suited at the distance, but on pure class Norzita looks the clear best chance in the race and will be very hard to beat. Bart has been a bit absent of late, but he always seems to find at least one good one heading into a major carnival. Everything seems to be falling into place for this filly and not only is she the one to beat in this race; she might be the one to beat in the Sydney Oaks.
Are these the only four chances in the races? Longport and Summerbliss have been competitive in the past with a few of the main chances, but they have never had the better of the likes of Dear Demi and Norzita. Out of the four chances listed, Norzita is the clear best. She seems to have no real weaknesses and can run on or take up a forward position. At level weights she should have the measure of her rivals in this race.
4th. Dear Demi. She will be hard to beat at the 2500m of the Oaks, but may be a little vulnerable this weekend.
3rd. Habibi. A real wildcard that if trained by Gai Waterhouse or Peter Snowden would be at least $1 shorter. She has been really hard to beat in the big races in New Zealand and that form for the younger horses usually stands up well in Sydney.
2nd. Driefontein. This filly will jump at close enough to $15. Not bad for a filly that has never run a bad race and has won over 1.5 million dollars.
1st. Norzita. Looks so hard to beat at the level weights. She should have beaten the older horses at her last start and on that run she will only be fitter and improved. If she has improved as most of Bart’s continue to do, she might just blow these away. $3.00 at this stage is extremely good value.
By Zeb Armstrong