TJ Smith Stakes Tips, Bets and Race Preview – 2022

The TJ Smith Stakes remains the most coveted sprint title of the Autumn Carnival, and Australasia’s best jets will step out at Randwick on Day 1 of The Championships.

This year, the TJ Smith Stakes will host the next chapter of the Nature Strip/Eduardo rivalry, but there is a case to be made for several gallopers, and it shapes as a terrific betting race.

You can find my complete race preview and 2022 TJ Smith Stakes Tips below.

Suggested Bets 

  • 2 Units E/W #3 Masked Crusader
  • Boxed Trifecta of the selections below

TJ Smith Stakes – Winner – No. 3 Masked Crusader

He is still my favourite sprinter, and I am confident that William Pike returning to the saddle will also see Masked Crusader return to winning from.

The Toronado gelding owned one of the standout performances of last autumn when he destroyed them in the William Reid, and he was unlucky not to add this race to his mantle a fortnight later.

He hasn’t shown his best in two starts back this time, but he faces far better conditions this week, has options from the rails draw, and I think that he is a touch of overs at TJ Smith Stakes odds of $9.


TJ Smith Stakes – 2nd – No. 1 Nature Strip

He won this race in 2021, he has been set for it again, and Nature Strip will take plenty of beating in the TJ.

The Nicconi gelding has a multiple Group 1 winner; you don’t need me to tell you that, and he added The Everest to his CV during an impressive spring prep last year.

He is yet to salute in two starts back this time, but was certainly unlucky not to get there in the Black Caviar Lightning, and he’s ready to peak again on Saturday.


TJ Smith Stakes – 3rd – No. 2 Eduardo

Eduardo is as tough as nails, and I can’t find a reason why he won’t be in the finish of the TJ Smith Stakes.

The Host gelding went to a new level last autumn and winter, jagging two Group 1 races along the way, and he simply hasn’t run a bad race since.

He filled the minors in the Black Caviar Lightning first-up this time and held on to win the Challenge Stakes last time out, and I like that he has been kept up to the mark with a trial since that race.

If this turns into a dogfight, you can bet that this bloke will be in the thick of it.


TJ Smith Stakes – 4th – No. 6 Shelby Sixtysix

What an incredible rise to prominence this has been, and realistically, Shelby Sixtysix wouldn’t look out of place in the TJ Smith Stakes winner’s stall on Saturday.

The Toronado gelding could hardly win a Highway race earlier in his prep, but he has proven to be one of the best swimmers in the country after nearly pulling off a huge upset in the Challenge Stakes.

Since then, he has won the Maurice McCarten Stakes and The Galaxy, and he steps out this week rock-hard fit. Imagine.

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