Thursday, April 22, 2010

Autumn Racing Season 2010 – Week 13 – Sydney Cup

RIP Viewed 17 April 2010
Viewed winning the 2008 Malbourne Cup

The Sydney racing carnival winds up this week with the running of the Sydney Cup and three other Group One races.

The first of these is the Champagne Stakes, a 1600 metre race for two year olds. The unlucky Beneteau has a chance to win in this, but there are others with equal claims, for instance, Toorak Toff, Skilled, Kudakulari and the filly Yosei who won the Sires Produce at her last start. Still, two year old races are hard to predict, so anything could win.

The Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000 metres) has a familiar field of runners from last week. Doncaster Mile winner Rangirangdoo is backing up here and is the top pick, though he has not won over the distance. Road To Rock was only narrowly beaten by Rangi in the Doncaster and could turn the tables on him this time. Victorian Derby winner and AJC Derby placegetter, Monaco Consul has a weight advantage, and if back to his best could well surprise.

A smallish but quality field of stayers will contest the Sydney Cup (3200 metres) with several of the runners having good form over the two miles, and half the field having the Zabeel factor. Zavite won the Auckland Cup back in March and was narrowly beaten by Littorio in the BMW, Cape Cover won this year’s Adelaide Cup over the distance, and is a very good chance. Then there’s Moatize who has the Bart Cummings factor in his favour, though he hasn’t won a race for a long time. He prefers a good track, and he’s likely to get it on Saturday. The other Bart runner is Precedence who has recent good form and will probably start as favourite. Of the mares, Jessicabeel looks the most promising, recently winning the Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap.

Class gallopers, Danleigh, Mic Mac and Hot Danish are the leading lights of the Group One All Aged Stakes (1400 metres) However filly Melito, may trump them again as she did in the TJ Smith, though I’m hoping Mic Mac, who was by no means disgraced with his third place in the TJ Smith, will win.

Ascot racecourse in Western Australia hosts the WATC Derby. As I’m unfamiliar with the form in that state I won’t even try and suss a winner, though I am attracted to God Has Spoken, Chartreux and filly, Impressive Jeuney who won the WATC Oaks.

And it’s good to see Graceful Anna return to racing in the Mick Dittman Three Year Old Plate (1000 metres) at Eagle Farm. She hasn’t raced since winning the Magic Millions 3 YO Trophy back in January. Also part of the field is 2009 Golden Slipper winner, Phelan Ready and smart filly Paprika. Looks an interesting race…

The VRC St Leger at Flemington (2800 metres) on Sunday is of interest as the very promising young stayer Rundle is part of the field. By Galileo, he’s owned by Lloyd Williams who specialises in stayers, e.g. Efficient, Zipping and Linton – all high quality distance runners. Rundle has had four starts for three wins, his last at Flemington over 2500 metres, where he beat Chartreux by two lengths.

Last Saturday, I managed to listen to the Doncaster Mile on the way to Geelong. I was very disappointed that Typhoon Tracy didn’t run a place, but apparently she was galloped on during the race which no doubt stymied her chances. I was surprised that she didn’t launch into her usual fighting finish, so that explains it.

Gai Waterhouse managed to win the AJC Oaks with Once Were Wild, who beat Faint Perfume by a fair margin, but Ortensia scored a sizzling last to first win in The Galaxy.

The sad news this week was the death of Viewed who was put down after suffering a twisted bowel. A great stayer, he will go down in history as the winner of the 2008 Melbourne Cup and the 2009 Caulfield Cup. Valerie at
Foolish Pleasure Blogspot has a wonderful post on Viewed in the light of his relationship to her blog’s namesake.

Recent retirements have included the wonderful Zarita, Light Fantastic, Wanted and Miss Maren, so we won’t see any of them race again, though we can look forward to their children in the case of Zarita, Miss Maren and Wanted and maybe see Light Fantastic as a Clerk of Course horse in the future.

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