There are 10 top races scheduled to take place at Caulfield Cup Day this Saturday including the $125,000 Group 3 Moonga Stakes (1400m), which has drawn a quality 14-horse field of gallopers.
Known this year as the Betfair Stakes, the 2010 Moonga Stakes for four-year-olds includes a number of Group 1 winners such as All Silent and Sniper’s Bullet.
Top weight with 58.5kg is Robert Smerdon’s previous Stradbroke Handicap winner Sniper’s Bullet.
The veteran with 41 career starts has been less than impressive in recent runs coming off two 11th place finishes in the Theo Marks Stakes at Rosehill and the Gilgai Stakes at Flemington and will be left by the punters again on Saturday after drawing wide with barrier 11.
The other veteran in the Betfair Stakes field is Grahame Begg’s All Silent, also drawn in a horror gate with barrier 13.
The $1.6 million earner returned to Australia after a stint overseas with a first-up fifth to boom sprinter Hay List in the Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley and could finish in the money here if the pace is right.
Horses that will start higher up the betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au for Saturday’s showdown include the John Thompson-trained Gathering and Peter Snowden’s Lonhro four-year-old Demerit.
Gathering enjoyed a last-start win in the Listed Super Stable Stakes (1400m) at Flemington and will jump mid-field from barrier six with Craig Newitt aboard in the Betfair.
Lightly-raced Demerit has had just seven career jumps, most recently finishing fourth to Hot Danish in The Shorts at Randwick, and has definite claims here set to start from barrier eight.
Other notable Betfair Moonga Stakes starters include Anthony Cummings’ Premiere Stakes runner-up Trader and quality Queensland galloper Woorim who finished third in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes here two starts back.
Another Queensland-trained runner lining up on Saturday is Rothera, trained by 19-year-old Ben Currie in Oakey, making their Melbourne race debut.
Five-year-old Rothera is drawn ideally in barrier four, is set to carry just 55.5kg and loves a wet track which is looking the case for Caulfield on Saturday making them an attractive runner to back.
Rothera claimed a dominant win on a heavy track at Eagle Farm back in September and has a ‘swooping’ race style that suits rain-affected tracks.
The 2010 Betfair Moonga Stakes is scheduled as Race 6 at Caulfield for Saturday and is due to jump at 2:40pm (AEDST).
*Note: Albert The Fat has been scratched from the 2020 Betfair Stakes leaving 13 gallopers in contention
*Update: Dao Dao has been scratched from today’s Betfair Stakes
2010 Betfair Moonga Stakes Final Field, Barrier Draw & Weights
|#||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight (kg)||Hcp. Rating|
|1||SNIPER’S BULLET||Robert Smerdon||Nash Rawiller||11||58.5||114|
|2||ALL SILENT||Grahame Begg||Dwayne Dunn||13||57.5||116|
|3||ALBERT THE FAT||Paul Messara||Steven Arnold||5||57.5||107|
|4||MCCLINTOCK||Mark de Montfort||Glyn Schofield||14||57.5||103|
|5||JUNGLE RULER||Peter White||Darren Gauci||3||56.5||102|
|6||GATHERING||John P Thompson||Craig Newitt||6||56.5||99|
|7||AL DHAFRA||Guy Walter||Blake Shinn||1||56.5||94|
|8||DEMERIT||Peter Snowden||Mark Zahra||8||56.5||98|
|9||TRADER||Anthony Cummings||Michael Walker||9||56.5||89|
|10||DAO DAO||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||–||2||55.5||110|
|11||WOORIM||Robert Heathcote||Danny Nikolic||10||55.5||99|
|12||ROTHERA||Ben Currie||Brent Evans (a)||4||55.5||98|
|13||MAJESTICAL (NZ)||Matthew Enright||Craig Williams||12||55||98|
|14||RANSOM WILLY||Terry Kelly||Mark Pegus||7||55||75|