Thursday, August 12, 2010

2010 Spring Racing Season – Week 3 – The Liston Stakes

Shoot Out - Caulfield 31/7/10 - Getty Images
A superb weekend of racing is scheduled this coming Saturday, with a number of really fascinating races on the cards, most particularly the Group 2 Liston Stakes, a WFA contest over 1400 metres at Caulfield.

As long as the track is not too water effected (it is likely to be, after all the rain Melbourne received this week) it will feature the keenly anticipated clash of 2009 Cox Plate winner So You Think with Australian Derby winner Shoot Out. Though Shoot Out likes a soft track, Bart Cummings has stated that So You Think will not run if the track is rated heavy. Also in the field is another son of High Chaparral, 2009 Victorian Derby winner, Monaco Consul, and Predatory Pricer who won this race last year. Other classy runners include Heart of Dreams, Carrara and Vigor, as well as several Melbourne Cup hopefuls, including last year’s winner, Shocking, starting their spring campaigns. It is sure to be a ripper of a race, though I’ll have my fingers crossed for a Shoot Out victory.

The Vain Stakes (1100 metres) for three year old colts and geldings also has a sterling field that includes Blue Diamond winner Star Witness. I watched a video last week of a trial that Star Witness won in a stunning fashion, swooping from a long way back to overtake the leaders and win by a good margin. He’s up against other bright young boys like Breitling, Soul, General Truce, Master Harry and Shrapnel, but judging by that video footage, I reckon they’ll have a hard time beating Star Witness.

Golden Slipper winner Crystal Lily resumes in the Quezette Stakes (1100 metres). Shaaheq, who ran second to Star Witness in the Blue Diamond would be her main danger, but others like Panipique, Broadway Harmony or Warm Love, may be in with a chance.

In Sydney the feature race is the Group 3 Run to the Roses with hyped colt Masquerader sure to start favourite with the equally fancied Hinchinbrook being switched to the Starlight Stakes after receiving a hefty weighting of 58kg. The Gai Waterhouse trained Squamosa could be a threat, as too could Kudakulari and Sasa.

Last weeks feature races resulted in Lonhro filly, Obsequious defeating Solar Charged in the San Domenico. Elusive Touch won the Aurie’s Star beating Leica Larrikin and Grand Duels. The Handsome One is obviously not up to the class of such a race, so I’ll only back him in future in weaker races. Love Conquers All continued his winning ways, taking out the Missile Stakes, with Danleigh and Sniper’s Bullet running second and third respectively.

In other racing news, Makybe Diva’s first foal, a colt by Galileo, appropriately named Rockstardom, is due to have his racing debut in the next week or so. One to watch with interest.

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