A total of 117 nominations have been weighted for the 153rd running of the $2 million Gr1 Sydney Cup (3200m) to be run at Royal Randwick on day two of The Championships on Saturday, 14th April. Among the entries are nine horses that competed in last year's Melbourne Cup, including winner Rekindling and runner-up Johannes Vermeer. Fame Game, one of nine entries from Japan, has been allocated top weight of 58kg on a 50kg limit (49kg for 3YOs). The second-highest weighted horse is 2016 Melbourne Cup winner Almandin with 57kg, while 2017 Melbourne Cup quinella Rekindling (winner) and Johannes Vermeer (2nd) are next with 56.5kg. The highest weighted mares are Single Gaze and Lizzie L'Amour with 53kg. Click here to view full weights for Sydney Cup.
At Caulfield in Melbourne, 7YO French-bred gelding Gailo Chop (Deportivo-Grenoble, by Marignan) remained unbeaten this preparation when scoring a strong front-running victory in the $200,000 weight-for-age Gr2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Hartnell. Owned by OTI Racing, Gailo Chop advanced his record to 12 wins (including the Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 Mackinnon Stakes, Gr3 TS Carlyon Cup, Gr3 La Coupe de Maisons-Laffitte & Listed Penny Edition Stakes) and 5 placings (Gr1 Prix d'Ispahan) from 25 starts for $2,589,047 in earnings. Trainer Darren Weir confirmed that Gailo Chop would now head to the Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on 10 March before travelling to Sydney to for the $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) in Sydney on 14 April. "He's a great horse with a great racing style," Weir said. "Just watching him, he really seemed to be enjoying that." Weir added: "He went at a good strong gallop. It was a beautiful bring-on gallop to have him fit enough for the 2000 metres [the Australian Cup] in a couple of weeks."
Trainer Nick Olive says Single Gaze continues to thrive ahead of Saturday's Gr2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield. Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) was considered an unlucky runner when resuming with a slashing second to Hartnell in the Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) on 10 February, and Olive says the 5YO has made the necessary improvement to go one better in Saturday's $200,000 weight-for-age feature. "She has come through that run [CF Orr] with flying colours and gone forward off it. She had a nice gallop this morning [Tuesday] on the steeple grass at Caulfield and she worked really well," the Canberra horseman told racing.com. "She sat off another horse, went three-quarter pace over 1000 metres and galloped home the last 600m. It was a good solid gallop and they came home the last 400m in 22.8 so we were really pleased." Olive added: "I think the 1800 metres will suit her second-up. She is a little more dour going in to her second run, we think she will be one of the main chances on Saturday, we think she will give it a good crack."
At Caulfield in Melbourne, triple Gr1-winning former English Derby victor & successful Darley shuttler Authorized (Montjeu-Funsie, by Saumarez) celebrated an elite race success when 7YO UK-bred gelding Hartnell (Authorized-Debonnaire, by Anabaa) maintained his excellent first-up record when resuming with a slashing win in the $500,000 weight-for-age Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Brave Smash. The Godolphin-owned Hartnell improved his record to 12 wins (including the Gr1 The BMW, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr2 PB Lawrence Stakes, Gr2 Hill Stakes, Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr3 Sky High Stakes & Gr3 Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket) and 13 placings (including the Gr1 Cox Plate, Gr1 Melbourne Cup, Gr1 Underwood Stakes, Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes, Gr2 Apollo Stakes, Gr1 Ranvet Stakes, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes & Gr1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud) from 38 starts for $4,766,610 in earnings. Trainer James Cummins said Hartnell could very well now head to Sydney for a clash with champion mare Winx in the Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on 3 March. "I would like to run him in the best race available to him and that might be the Chipping Norton," Cummings told Godolphin.com. "I also like the idea of keeping him fresh, so we'll see how he comes through this win. He's a unique horse...I haven't trained one like him."
Canberra trainer Nick Olive says that top staying mare Single Gaze is thriving ahead of her seasonal reappearance in the Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400) at Caulfield on Saturday week. A winner of the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes as a 3YO, Single Gaze enjoyed quite a successful campaign in the spring with the highlight being her runner-up performance in the Caulfield Cup before a disappointing 17th place finish in the Melbourne Cup in November. Olive said Single Gaze was likely to campaign in both Melbourne and Sydney in the autumn, with an early target being the $1.5 million Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on 10 March. "After the campaign and the Melbourne Cup, I didn't know whether we'd bring her back for the autumn," Olive told racenet. "I just thought I'd put her in the paddock and see how she went but she did tremendously well in the five weeks she was there and she's come back in great order...she looks fantastic." Olive added: "She'll start in the Orr, then go to the Peter Young and then the Australian Cup. We'll head off to the Ranvet and The BMW in Sydney if she's going well."
Boom Time has received a 1kg penalty for the Melbourne Cup following his surprise win in last Saturday's Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m), reports racing.com. The David & Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig-trained 6YO will now carry 53kg in the $6 million Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday, 7 November. "Boom Time finished 1.25 lengths ahead of Single Gaze, with the fast-finishing Johannes Vermeer a further head away in third. The 1kg penalty represents two lengths over the Melbourne Cup distance of 3200m," said Racing Victoria's chief handicapper, Greg Carpenter.
At Caulfield racecourse in Melbourne, Arrowfield Stud's retired former Champion Australian Sire Flying Spur (Danehill-Rolls, by Mr Prospector) celebrated an elite race success when 6YO bay entire Boom Time (Flying Spur-Bit Of A Ride, by Snippets) landed the biggest prize of his career with an upset win in the $3 million Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Johannes Vermeer. Boom Time's surprise victory improved his record to 7 wins (including the Listed Mornington Cup Prelude) and 9 placings (including the Gr1 ATC Western Australian Derby, Gr3 JRA Cup & Listed JC Roberts Stakes) from 32 starts for $2,459,025 in earnings. The former WA-trained Boom Time was originally retained to race by his breeder after he was passed in for $65,000 at the 2013 Magic Millions Perth Yearling Sale, but is now owned by his co-trainer David Hayes. Hayes, who has now trained three Caulfield Cup winners following Fraar in 1993 and Tawqeet in 2006, said Boom Time benefited from a tough run the previous week in the Gr2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m). "What a great horse. He's tough and backed up off that gut-buster last week and I think that probably won him the race, the good hard run under his belt," Hayes told racing.com. "It was very much like Fraar's win. Fraar had the hard gut-buster the week before, ate up and thrived. It can ruin a horse and it can make a horse." Boom Time will now head to the $6 million Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday, 7 November.
Jockey Kathy O'Hara is confident that Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) will have no problem running out a strong 2400 metres in tomorrow's Gr1 Caulfield Cup despite never being tested over the journey, reports Sky Racing. The only time Single Gaze competed over 12 furlongs was in the 2016 Australian Oaks as a 3YO when she dislodged O'Hara shortly after the start. However, she has proven very affective over a mile-and-a-quarter winning the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes at three and also landing the Gr2 PJ O'Shea Stakes over 2200 metres in Brisbane during the winter. "I think she'll be all right with the journey," O'Hara said. "Her prep has been faultless. She's gotten miles in her legs and everything has gone to plan so far." O'Hara added: "She's only got to go another furlong which I think she'll have no trouble with. She feels like she'll just go all day." O'Hara's only other ride in a Caulfield Cup was aboard Wild Iris in 2005 when she was unplaced by Railings. "It's been a long time, over 10 years. I'm really, really excited and she's a genuine each-way chance," she said. "Single Gaze is on song and I'm looking forward to it." Single Gaze is currently at $34 fixed odds with TAB.
Black Heart Bart, Scales Of Justice and Vega Magic are among the 18 Group One winners that feature in the nominations for the three $1 million races of The TABtouch Masters – the Gr1 Railway Stakes, Gr1 Winterbottom Stakes and Gr1 Kingston Town Classic. Black Heart Bart and Scales Of Justice, the WA Horse of the Year recipients of the past two years, are just two of the 10 Group One winners among the Railway Stakes nominations, with the others being Egg Tart, Good Project, Ihtsahymn, It’s Somewhat, Perfect Reflection, Redkirk Warrior, Silent Sedition and Single Gaze. Vega Magic, which has won two Gr1 titles since transferring from the WA stable of Sean Casey to the Victorian yard of David & Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig, headlines the Winterbottom Stakes entries that include fellow top-flight winners Hey Doc, Impending, Malaguerra, Redkirk Warrior, Santa Ana Lane, Sheidel, The Quarterback, as well as defending champion Takedown. Mark Worwood, Racing and Wagering Manager of Perth Racing commented: “Perth Racing is delighted with not only the quantity and quality of the nominations but also their geographical spread. One hundred and nine of the 222 nominations for the club’s three Group One races are trained outside Western Australia and that demonstrates the pulling power of an event of which there’s none like it anywhere else.” Worwood added: “It’s the world’s only single-track thoroughbred racing festival featuring a Group One race worth at least $1,000,000 on three consecutive Saturdays.”
Predictably, Champion mare Winx dominated proceedings at last night's annual 'Racing's Night Of Champions' awards ceremony in the Royal Randwick Ballroom of the Australian Turf Club in Sydney. Champion trainer Chris Waller's two wins made it seven straight in both the Champion Trainer category and the Bart Cummings Medal. The category winners were:
Canberra trainer Nick Olive has confirmed that Single Gaze will be aimed at the $3.15 million Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) in the spring, reports racing.com. "She'll start off in the Memsie. That'll be a starting point for her," Olive said. "She'll do all her racing in Melbourne at this stage. The Makybe Diva [Gr1] and the Underwood [Gr1] maybe after that, and then the Caulfield Cup." A winner of the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes as a 3YO, Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) didn't race for ten months after she was involved in a heavy fall in the Australian Oaks at her following start. However, the now 5YO showed she was back to her best when recording stakes wins in the Listed Tails Handicap (1600m) and Gr2 PJ O'Shea Stakes (2200m) in Brisbane during the winter. Despite having only a short break since finishing third behind Chocante in the Gr2 Brisbane Cup in June, Olive insists Single Gaze thrives on a tight turnaround. "She holds her fitness very well off these short breaks, and it's when she races best when she's had these short breaks and she comes in with residual fitness is when she has her best campaigns to be honest," he said.
At Doomben racecourse in Brisbane, Rich Hill Stud's Melbourne Cup winning stallion Shocking (Street Cry-Maria di Castiglia, by Danehill) added a Group success when 4YO bay gelding Chocante (Shocking-Strictly Maternal, by O'Reilly) relished a return to firmer footing when posting a dominant win in the $300,000 Gr2 Brisbane Cup (2200m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Pemberley. Chocante's performance showed why trainer Stephen Marsh holds him in such high regard and improved his record to 5 wins (including the Gr3 Counties Cup) and 6 placings (including the Gr3 BRC Chairman's Handicap) from 15 starts for $305,271 in earnings. Marsh said Chocante will return home to New Zealand before returning in the spring for an ambitious tilt at the Caulfield & Melbourne Cups. "He's a good horse and I rapt to win this race before he goes home," Marsh told Racing Queensland Webnews. "I'll bring him back for the spring in Melbourne and aim high for the Cups but we can always come down a level or two."
At Doomben racecourse in Brisbane, Arrowfield Stud's multiple stakes-winning stallion Not A Single Doubt (Redoute's Choice-Single's Bar, by Rory's Jester) added a group success when in-form 4YO mare Single Gaze (Not A Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) rewarded her backers with a 1.3-lengths win for trainer Nick Olive in the $200,000 Gr2 PJ O'Shea Stakes (2200m). Allowed to sit just off pacemaker Preferment in a sedately run race, Single Gaze was quick to hit the front turning for home, where she was able to easily defeat 6YO gelding Rudy and 5YO gelding High Church. Purchased by Olive for $70,000 at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Redbank North, Single Gaze improved her record to 5 wins (including the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes, Gr3 Arrowfield Kembla Grange Classic & Listed Tails Handicap) and 7 placings (including the Gr2 Hollindale Stakes, Gr2 ATC Surround Stakes & Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes) from 21 starts for $1,448,600 earnings.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $650,000 weight-for-age Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) to be run at Doomben racecourse in Brisbane this Saturday. The Doomben Cup, which boasts an honour roll that includes Bernborough (1946), Rough Habit (1991, 1992 & 1993), Durbridge (1994), Danewin (1995), Juggler (1996), and Might And Power (1998), will have a capacity field of 16 with two emergencies. Godolphin's Gr1 Doncaster Mile winner and last-start Hollindale Stakes victor It's Somewhat along with former German stayer Articus currently head the TAB market at $4.40. Both imports should derive plenty of improvement from their last start wins and have drawn well in barriers 6 and 8 respectively. Next best in the market is the dual Gr1-placed Sense of Occasion (barrier 18) at $7.50, ahead of Hollindale Stakes runner-up Single Gaze (barrier 14) at $9, with last year's Perth Cup hero and impressive first-up winner Star Exhibit (barrier 4) at $11. Click below to view the 2017 Doomben Cup field.
Canberra trainer Nick Olive believes the stars are aligning for Single Gaze ahead of Saturday's Gr1 Doomben Cup (200m), reports Racing Queensland Webnews. A winner of last year's Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes, Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) didn't race for ten months after she was involved in a heavy fall in the Australian Oaks at her next start. The 4YO finally returned to the winner's circle with a strong win in the Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) at Doomben last month, before producing a top Doomben Cup trial when runner-up to It's Somewhat in the Gr2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast twelve days ago. She will attempt to become only the fifth mare to win the Cup in its 84-year history. "It's Somewhat is the one to beat but I'm looking forward to taking him on over 2000 metres," Olive said. After Saturday, Olive said Single Gaze could run in the Gr2 O'Shea Stakes (2200m) at Eagle Farm on 3 June before preparing for a Melbourne spring campaign aimed at the Caulfield Cup. "She's never been to Melbourne but she has worked well their way of going and is a natural on the other leg," Olive said. "If Winx wasn't headed for the Cox Plate we'd go that way but we won't be taking Winx on and we'll go after the Caulfield Cup."
At the Gold Coast in Queensland, highly talented 6YO US-bred gelding It's Somewhat (Dynaformer-Sometime, by Royal Academy) showed his toughness when holding on for a brave front-running win in the $350,000 Gr2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Maurus. Last seen posting his maiden top-flight victory in Australia's premier mile race – the Gr1 Doncaster Mile Handicap – in April, the Godolphin-owned It's Somewhat improved his record to 9 wins (including the Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr2 Ajax Stakes, Gr3 Craven Plate & Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes) and 10 placings (including the Gr1 Doomben Cup & Gr1 George Main Stakes) from 32 starts for $3,143,679 earnings. It's Somewhat will be remembered as the last horse to win a stakes race in the royal blue silks for outgoing trainer John O'Shea whose tenure with Godolphin ended on Sunday. Former champion jockey Darren Beadman, who will take over as interim trainer for Godolphin, said: "He [O'Shea] has taught me a lot of over the past couple of years and he has been a great friend to me. I really haven't had a chance to absorb what has gone on this week but I realise there is a big challenge ahead." Beadman added: "Not many Doncaster winners come to the Gold Coast but it was a strong field. We gave him a trial after the Doncaster but there is no doubt the race will have been good for him." It's Somewhat will make his next appearance in the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 20 May.
Gr1 winner Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) has arrived at the Gold Coast ahead of Saturday's Gr2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m), reports AAP. A winner of last year's Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes, Single Gaze didn't race for ten months after she was involved in a heavy fall in the Australian Oaks at her next start. However, trainer Nick Olive has worked wonders with the 4YO who returned to her best with a strong win in the Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) at Doomben twelve days ago. "I couldn't be happier with the way she looked," said Olive, upon arriving at the Gold Coast to oversee Single Gaze's preparation. "She galloped on Tuesday and went very well. She should be spot-on for the 1800 metres on Saturday." Olive added: "You haven't seen the best of her yet and I hope she can win some more stakes races this winter." Olive confirmed that Single Gaze's primary winter target is the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 20 May.
At Doomben racecourse in Brisbane, Arrowfield Stud's multiple stakes-winning stallion Not A Single Doubt (Redoute's Choice-Single's Bar, by Rory's Jester) added a black-type success when smart 4YO mare Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) made a welcome return to the winner's circle when landing the $100,000 Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) for 3YO+, defeating Col 'n' Lil & Cantbuybetter. Purchased by her trainer Nick Olive for $70,000 at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Redbank North, Single Gaze improved her record to 4 wins (including the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes & Gr3 Arrowfield Kembla Grange Classic) and 6 placings (including the Gr2 ATC Surround Stakes & Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes) from 18 starts for $1,258,300 earnings. Olive said Single Gaze will progress to the Gr2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast en route to the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 20 May.
Trainer Nick Olive believes Gr1 winner Single Gaze is close to producing her best form after a long stint on the sidelines. A winner of last year's Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes, Single Gaze didn't race for ten months after she was involved in a heavy fall in the Australian Oaks at her next start. The daughter of Not a Single Doubt has had three runs back this campaign, including a last-start third in the Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on 25 March. Olive is hopeful that the 4YO can land a major prize over the Brisbane winter carnival, commencing with this Saturday's $100,000 Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) at Doomben. "She was lucky to come through it [the fall] the way she did. I got her back in the spring and she was only 90 per cent and we did not want her to race like that," Olive told AAP. "It wouldn't have been fair to her because she always gives 100 per cent." Olive added: "I decided to let her have a longer break but we are seeing the benefit of it now. She has been great since we had her back." Single Gaze will be ridden by regular jockey Kathy O'Hara and will carry 58kg on Saturday.
At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, deceased dual-Derby winning stallion & former Coolmore shuttler Montjeu (Sadler's Wells-Floripedes, by Top Ville) added a Group success when 6YO Irish-bred gelding Assign (Montjeu-Belesta, by Xaar) scored by 0.8 length for trainer Robert Hickmott in the $150,000 Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes (2000m) for 3YO+, over 6YO UK-bred gelding Astronomos (New Approach-Crimson Ribbon, by Lemon Drop Kid) & 4YO mare Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze). Owned by Nick & Lloyd Williams, Assign improved his record to 6 wins (including the Gr2 Herbert Power Stakes & Listed MRC Mornington Cup Prelude) and 4 placings (including the Listed MRC Harry White Classic) from 17 starts for $606,014 earnings.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $600,000 Gr1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) for 3YO+ fillies & mares to be run at Rosehill Gardens this Saturday. The current favourite is 3YO filly Omei Sword ($3.50 with tab) who will have to overcome the outside barrier (19) if she is to post her maiden Gr1 victory. Second favourite is Dixie Blossoms at $7, followed by dual Gr1-winning filly Global Glamour at $8, and star New Zealand filly La Bella Diosa at $9.50. Of those runners under double figure odds, New Zealand 1000 Guineas winner La Bella Diosa has drawn best in barrier 3, while Dixie Blossoms (12) and Global Glamour (16) have also drawn wide. The final field is:
Talented mare Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) has returned to trainer Nick Olive's Canberra stable to commence her preparation for the autumn, reports AAP. A winner of the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) last autumn, the now 4YO missed the entire spring after Olive decided she need more time in the paddock. "It was very disappointing not to have her in the spring but I think it's been the right move because she's had a really good spell and she's come back looking fantastic," Olive said. "She's just going on the water walker for three weeks and then she'll come back to the stable." He added: "She's done really well, we're really happy with her." Olive indicated the Gr1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill on 11 March was a possible target for the daughter of Not A Single Doubt.
Gr1-winning filly Single Gaze has returned to the stable of trainer Nick Olive as she commences her build up towards the spring. The 3YO daughter of Arrowfield stallion Not A Single Doubt gave Olive the biggest win of his career when claiming the Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes in the autumn. "I'm really happy with her," Olive told AAP. "She's tough and has come back even stronger than at the commencement of her last campaign. She's settled back in, is relaxed and going through everything perfectly." He added: "She's more muscular and feels stronger under saddle." Olive has mapped out an ambitious spring campaign for Single Gaze which could include a tilt at the Gr1 Cox Plate in October. "She will initially be headed towards the W H Stock Stakes which is a Group 2 mares race at Mooney Valley over a mile; it looks a really nice race for her," he said. "She will be nominated for all the big spring races and if she can win the Stocks - or goes well - the Cox Plate will definitely be on the radar, but she's got to show she's up to it."
Gr1-winning trainer Nick Olive says the wetter the track the better for his exciting staying prospect Calaway Cruizer (High Chaparral-Calaway Gal, by Clang) in Saturday's TAB Highway Handicap (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens, reports Racingnsw.com.au. Calaway Cruizer, a 3YO daughter of High Chaparral and Golden Slipper winner Calaway Gal, scored at Canberra (1400m) and Wagga Wagga (1600m) in heavy conditions recently by a combined margin of nearly 12-lengths and is primed third-up for the step up to city grade. "She's immature but a genuine talent, real nice staying filly in the making, coming back in distance on Saturday is not ideal but the way she's racing the prospects of more rain and a weight pull, she should go close," said Olive, who is enjoying his finest season to date thanks to the exploits of Gr1-winning filly Single Gaze. Three-year-old Calaway Cruizer with 54.5kg has a decisive pull in the weights against the higher raters, especially with more rain forecast. "I'd originally planned to wait until a more suitable '1800' Highway for her in a couple of weeks, but it would have been too long between runs, especially the form she's in," Olive said. "She'll race mid field and if it's heavy again, it's in her favour because she's progressed and will be strong at the finish of 1500m. But in saying that, we haven't seen anywhere near the best of her, next preparation when she's developed and more experienced is something to look forward to."
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $1 million Gr1 Australian Oaks (2400m) to be run at Royal Randwick on Saturday. Top Victorian filly Jameka, who will be seeking a classic double after landing the VRC Oaks in the spring, is the current $3.50 favourite for the 3YO fillies feature ahead of Peter & Paul Snowden's highly progressive filly Happy Hannah at $4.60. Other horses under double figure odds are talented Kiwi fillies Capella ($7), Valley Girl ($8), and Sofia Rosa ($9). The final field is:
1. JAMEKA (Ciaron Maher-Damien Oliver) 56kg (16)
2. SINGLE GAZE (Nick Olive-Kathy O'Hara) 56kg (9)
3. HONESTA (John Thompson-Craig Williams) 56kg (8)
4. SACRED EYE (David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-Nicholas Hall) 56kg (1)
5. AMBIENCE (John O'Shea-James McDonald) 56kg (3)
6. VALLEY GIRL (Donna Logan & Chris Gibbs-Brett Prebble) 56kg (10)
7. SOFIA ROSA (Stephen Marsh-Hugh Bowman) 56kg (12)
8. DIAMOND MADE (Bruce Cross-Glyn Schofield) 56kg (5)
9. ALASKAN ROSE (Michael Moroney-Dwayne Dunn) 56kg (6)
10. CAPELLA (Danica Guy-Opie Bosson) 56kg (15)
11. CHABAUD (Robert Smerdon-Tommy Berry) 56kg (2)
12. SELF ESTEEM (Peter & Paul Snowden-Mark Zahra) 56kg (13)
13. HAPPY HANNAH (Peter & Paul Snowden-Blake Shinn) 56kg (7)
14. BELIEVE (Anthony Cummings-Kerrin McEvoy) 56kg (11)
15e. ZASORCERESS (Jason Warren-Damian Lane) 56kg (4)
16e. AURORA'S STAR (Anthony Cummings) 56kg (14)
At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, Arrowfield Stud's multiple stakes-winning stallion Not A Single Doubt (Redoute's Choice-Single's Bar, by Rory's Jester) celebrated an elite success when 3YO filly Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) scored by 0.8-length for trainer Nick Olive in the $500,000 Gr1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) for 3YO fillies, over fellow fillies Valley Girl (Mastercraftsman-Leigh Valley, by Bianconi) & Happy Hannah (More Than Ready-Absolute Joy, by Zabeel). Purchased for $70,000 by her trainer Nick Olive at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Redbank North, Single Gaze took her record to 3 wins (including the Gr3 Arrowfield Kembla Grange Classic) and 5 placings (including the Gr2 ATC Surround Stakes) from 13 starts for $1,178,300 earnings. "It is unbelievable...just fantastic," Olive said. "She is such a good filly. I was confident all week that she would be better over 2000 than she was at a mile." He added: "Everybody else didn't think that she would run it, but we were super confident."
At Kembla Grange in the NSW Illawarra, Arrowfield Stud's multiple stakes-winning stallion Not A Single Doubt (Redoute's Choice-Single's Bar, by Rory's Jester) added a Group success 3YO filly Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) scored by 0.8-length for trainer Nick Olive in the $200,000 Gr3 Arrowfield Kembla Grange Classic (1600m) for 3YO fillies, over fellow fillies Dixie Blossoms (Street Sense-Whistle Dixie, by Star Way) & Asinara (Teofilo-Angalreem, by Mr. Prospector). Purchased for $70,000 by his trainer Nick Olive at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Redbank North, Single Gaze took her record to 2 wins and 5 placings (including the Gr2 ATC Surround Stakes) from 12 starts for $873,300 earnings.
At Royal Randwick in Sydney, former Champion Australian Sire & 11-time Gr1-winning World Champion Miler Lonhro (Octagonal-Shadea, by Straight Strike) added a Group success when undefeated Godolphin home-bred filly Ghisoni (Lonhro-Portillo, by Red Ransom) had an easy 1.8-lengths victory for trainer John O'Shea in the $175,000 Gr2 Surround Stakes (1400m) for 3YO fillies, over fellow fillies Single Gaze (Not A Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) & Stay With Me (Street Cry-Miss Finland, by Redoute's Choice). Now an emphatic 3 from 3 in her short career, and with her first group success, Ghisoni's earnings stand at $203,775.
At the Gold Coast in Queensland, retired Arrowfield Stud stallion & former Champion Australian Sire Flying Spur (Danehill-Rolls, by Mr Prospector) added a restricted stakes success when 3YO colt Mahuta (Flying Spur-Vahine, by Zabeel) scored by 1-length for trainer Darren Weir in the $2 million Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (1400m) for 3YOs, over 3YO fillies Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) & Egyptian Symbol (Stratum-Our Egyptian Raine, by Desert Sun). "It's easy to say after the event but if you went on his form it was good for a race like this but it was his first time the reverse way, he had the outside barrier and a bit of weight," Weir said. "But after they'd gone 300 metres all of that was out of the way because he looked to be on his right leg and he got across into a nice rhythm. He was getting tired late but he was entitled to do that." Mahuta, who was purchased by Weir for $35,000 at the 2014 Magic Millions Adelaide Yearling Sale from the draft of Redbank North, took his record to 5 wins (including the Gr2 Sandown Guineas, Gr3 Carbine Club Stakes & Listed Gothic Stakes) and 1 placing from 7 starts for $1,567,460 earnings.
The barrier draw has been conducted and the final field announced for Saturday's $3.5 million Gr1 Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens. The field is:
1. VANCOUVER (Gai Waterhouse-Tommy Berry) 56.5kg (18)
2. HEADWATER (Team Hawkes-Glen Boss) 56.5kg (11)
3. FURNACES (John O'Shea-Hugh Bowman) 56.5kg (1)
4. HAPTIC (John O'Shea-James Doyle) 56.5kg (3)
5. EXOSPHERE (John O'Shea-James McDonald) 56.5kg (10)
6. READY FOR VICTORY (Mick Price-Nicholas Hall) 56.5kg (9)
7. ODYSSEY MOON (Rodney Northam-Ryan Moore) 56.5kg (13)
8. ENGLISH (Gai Waterhouse-Blake Shinn) 54.5kg (6)
9. REEMAH (David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-Kerrin McEvoy) 54.5kg (15)
10. SPEAK FONDLY (Gai Waterhouse-Damien Oliver) 54.5kg (12)
11. FIREWORKS (Gerald Ryan-Brenton Avdulla) 54.5kg (14)
12. HAYBAH (David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-Stephen Baster) 54.5kg (2)
13. OTTOMAN (John O'Shea-William Buick) 54.5kg (8)
14. LAKE GENEVA (Team Hawkes-Dwayne Dunn) 54.5kg (5)
15. SINGLE GAZE (Nick Olive-Ms Kathy O'Hara) 54.5kg (16)
16. LOOK TO THE STARS (Clarry Conners-Craig Williams) 54.5kg (19)
17e. SERENADE (Michael Moroney) 54.5kg (7)
18e. RACY (Gary Portelli) 54.5kg (4)
19e. HEAVENLY HAND (Gerald Ryan) 54.5kg (17)
The connections of Fireworks (Snitzel), Single Gaze (Not A Single Doubt) and Odyssey Moon (Snitzel) kept their Golden Slipper dream alive by paying the $150,000 late entry fee for Saturday's $3.5 million Gr1 2YO feature at Rosehill Gardens. The Slipper field will be announced at Rosehill this morning after Breakfast With The Stars with the barrier draw to take place at the track at 11am. Gai Waterhouse's unbeaten colt Vancouver remains the dominant $2.80 favourite for the world's richest juvenile race ahead of Godolphin colt Exosphere ($4.60) and the Team Hawkes-trained Headwater ($8), who will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing effort behind Vancouver in the Gr2 Todman Stakes last start.
At Canberra in the Australian Capital Territory, Gr1 Golden Slipper-winning Widden Stud stallion & former Australian Champion 1st-Season Sire Stratum (Redoutes Choice-Bourgeois, by Luskin Star) added a Group success when 2YO gelding Takedown (Stratum-Apamea, by Zafonic) scored by 1-length for trainer Gary Moore in the $275,000 Gr3 Black Opal Stakes (1200m) for 2YOs, over 2YO fillies Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze) & Antelucan (Domesday-Dawn Attack, by Fantastic Light). This was the first stakes victory for Takedown who was retained to race by his breeders Widden Stud and Robert Anderson. He took his record to 2 wins from 3 starts for $190,850 earnings.
At the Gold Coast in Queensland, Darley's former Champion Australian Sire Exceed And Excel (Danehill-Patrona, by Lomond) added a restricted stakes success when 2YO gelding Le Chef (Exceed and Excel-Red for Lou, by Testa Rossa) scored by 0.8-length for trainer Darryl Hansen in the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m), over 2YO fillies Pepperano (Court Command-Serrano, by Ferocity) & Single Gaze (Not a Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze). Le Chef, bred in South Australia by Greg Hicks, was purchased by Lenore Saunders for $120,000 at last year's Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Widden Stud. He took his record to 3 wins from 4 starts for $1,199,200 earnings. The victory was the biggest in racing for the long time owner as well as her trainer Darryl Hansen and jockey Luke Tarrant. Connections are excited about the future of Le Chef with Hansen saying the son of Exceed and Excel will be even better as a three-year-old. "I am singing Luke's praises as he is a super star. I must thank Mrs Saunders. They come from Mt Isa and put a lot of money into racing," said Hansen. "I'm just over the moon!" Le Chef is out of the former quality Melbourne based racemare Red for Lou, whose best performance came when finishing third behind Divine Madonna in the 2007 Gr1 Myer Classic (1600m) at Flemington.
Some of the gloss may have come off Wicked Intent when the talented Queensland juvenile surrendered his unbeaten record at the Gold Coast last start, but he is still popular with punters for Saturday's $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic. Wicked Intent, beaten by Mishani Honcho in the Gr3 BJ McLachlan Stakes on 27 December, has gone from outright favourite to equal $6.00 top pick with Frequendly. However, the colt is still the best backed runner with online bookmaker sportsbet.com.au. "Wicked Intent blotted his copybook last start, but he is still the one punters want," said sportsbet.com.au's Shaun Anderson. "Frequendly has firmed, but Wicked Intent holds more than double the money than the next best backed runner, which is Single Gaze ($10)''. Market courtesy of sportsbet.com.au.
At Wyong on the NSW Central Coast, 2YO colt Zoutenant (Zizou-Tenant's Tiara, by Beautiful Crown) scored by a nose for trainer Kevin Moses in the $200,000 Magic Millions Wyong 2YO Classic (1100m), over fellow 2YO colt Surf Seeker (Wanted-Surfari, by Imperial Prince) and 2YO filly Single Gaze (Not A Single Doubt-Redaluca's Gaze, by Intergaze). Zoutenant was purchased by Moses for $105,000 at this year's Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Turangga Farm. From the Listed Eskimo Prince Stakes winner Tenant's Tiara, Zoutenant boasts as his fourth dam Blue Diamond Prelude winner Sudden, best known as the dam of 1992 Triple Crown winning filly Burst. Moses was understandably delighted with Zoutenant's performance and confirmed a trip north for the Gold Coast Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m) in January. "I was very happy with him," Moses told racingandsports.com.au. "I put blinkers on, I don't like putting blinkers on them early but I thought the prize-money is too good and I've just got to put them on now." He added, "He had a run the other day because I thought he needed to prize money to get into this race, but now he can go to the other Magic Millions and he'll improve off that. It's a very big win for us." Outside of the winner, the performance of the runner-up Surf Seeker was eye-catching. The son of Eliza Park's Gr1-winning sire Wanted was arguably unlucky not to have been standing in the winner's circle after storming home from near last on the turn.
Wicked Intent and Rommel head the current order of entry lists for their respective million dollar feature events to be run at the Gold Coast on 10 January. After extending his unbeaten run to three with a brilliant win in Saturday's Listed Phelan Ready Stakes at Doomben, Wicked Intent (Wicked Style-Tell'Em It's Easy, by Easy Rocking) has overtaken Carriages to head the prize-money list for the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m). Others quality juveniles high on the order of entry for the rich 2YO event are Carriages, Frequendly, Flamenco, Madotti and Single Gaze. Meanwhile, recent Western Australian Guineas winner Rommel (Commands-I'mtoogoodtobetrue, by Good and Tough) heads the order of entry for the $1 million Gold Coast Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (1400m). The Neville Parnham prepared 3YO is assured of a start but is an unlikely runner. Other quality stakes winners including Hijack Hussy, Tales of Fashion and Fixation are high up in the order of entry. Late entries for eligible Magic Millions graduates for the 2YO Classic and 3YO Guineas close at 11am (AEST) on 31 December.