Thursday, March 17, 2011

Autumn Racing Carnival 2011 – Week 6 – Ranvet Stakes & Coolmore Classic

Maluckday to run in the Ranvet Stakes

The focus of the horse racing world switches to Sydney this weekend for two feature Group One races at the Rosehill track – the Ranvet Stakes and the Coolmore Classic, plus several choice Group Two competitions.
The Slipper previews for two year olds look interesting. The Todman Stakes ( 1200 metres) is one for the boys and stars Blue Diamond winner Sepoy strutting his stuff in Sydney for the first time. The small field of five seems ripe for the picking by the unbeaten Sepoy. It’s really just a matter of how much he wins by. It would be very surprising to see him beaten, though the also unbeaten Foxwedge might mount a challenge .

The Riesling Stakes for the fillies also has a small field of six entrants. Satin Shoes is the choice pick here and will probably win again as she has in her only three starts. Elite Falls looks to be her main opponent having run second to Satin Shoes in her last two outings. The extra 100 metres could make a difference, but Satin Shoes should cope with that, no worries.

More Joyous, always a joy to see racing, will be contesting the Group Two Canterbury Stakes (1300 metres). Last year’s Doncaster winner Rangirangdoo resumes in this and could threaten the star mare, but she has an edge over the distance, Rangi preferring it a little longer. Also in the reckoning is Love Conquers All and Demerit, also resuming from a spell.

The first of the Group One races, the Ranvet Stakes (2000 metres) has attracted a field of seven stayers, including Descarado and Maluckyday, who represent the top chances. One or other of the mares Sacred Choice and Keep The Peace could cause an upset.

The Coolmore Classic , a Group One race for fillies and mares run over 1500 metres, has been won over the years by some top fillies and mares – Sunline , Tuesday Joy and Typhoon Tracy for instance.

There are 17 acceptances for this race, almost a bigger field than all the aforementioned put together. There are no outstanding runners but I’ll be watching to see how Graceful Anna performs. She’s been allocated the bridesmaid position in her last three starts, so here’s hoping she can win this. She has the services of top jockey Damien Oliver which increases her chances. Melito as usual cannot be dismissed out of hand, though she has failed to win beyond 1400 metres. I have a soft spot for Lady Lynette as she is the great granddaughter of one of my favourite fillies who raced in the 1980s. Born To Be Queen was her name and she won the 1986 Metropolitan and ran third in the Victorian Derby in 1985. Lady Lynette may be outclassed here, but she has been a winner in weaker company. Others worthy of consideration are Montana Flyer, Aloha, More Strawberries, Warpath and the Peter Moody trained Miss Gai Flyer.

Though last week was out as far as previewing the racing action, I did follow it up even though I only witnessed one race – the Newmarket Handicap where Black Caviar carved her name into the history books with an effortless win carrying top weight. Her next race is the William Reid Stakes on Friday week at Moonee Valley. I’d love to attend in person, but I am committed to going elsewhere that evening.

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