Nominations for all the Blue Diamond Stakes Day races running at Caulfield Racecourse this Saturday February 26 have been released including those for the $400,000 Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m).
The sprint feature of the day, the 2011 Oakleigh Plate has attracted 25 nominees including dual Group 1 winner Star Witness who won the Blue Diamond Stakes here 12 months ago.
Starcraft colt Star Witness resumed with a first-up third behind Enjin Number Nine in the Listed Manfred Stakes (1300m) at Sandown on February 9.
Following the run trainer Danny O’Brien decided to save Star Witness for the shorter Group races during the autumn, the Oakleigh Plate to be used to decide whether they will take on the seemingly unbeatable Black Caviar in the $1 million Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on March 12.
Danny O’Brien has also entered Pins five-year-old Keano for the Oakleigh Plate.
Premier Victorian trainer Peter Moody has five Oakleigh Plate entries this year with Rubiton Stakes runner-up Avenue, Fastnet Rock colt Hinchinbrook, Panipique, 2009 Blue Diamond Stakes winner Reward For Effort and Reset mare Set For Fame all heading towards the 18-horse final field.
Mark Kavanagh has stablemates Catapulted, winner of the Rubiton Stakes first-up here on February 12, and Australia Stakes runner-up Undeniably both nominated for the Oakleigh.
Catapulted and Undeniably are two of the top picks behind Black Caviar in the 2011 Newmarket Handicap futures odds paying $19 and $21 respectively for the million dollar showdown through Luxbet.
Other notable 2011 Oakleigh Plate nominations include:
- Faster Son (Trevor Bailey) – Consistent Queensland galloper beaten just twice in their eight career starts, most recently ran sixth in the Rubiton and will have improved from their Group race debut
- Ortensia (Tony Noonan) – Also nominated for the $500,000 Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) at the Blue Diamond Stakes meeting
- Response (Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra) – Charge Forward mare resuming after a good spring season that included a win in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield
- Solar Charged (John O’Shea) – Speedy filly who ran third in the Rubiton
- Stirling Grove (Richard Jolly) – Improving South Australian galloper who was scratched from the Lightning Stakes last Saturday
The 2011 Oakleigh Plate final field and barrier draw will be out this Wednesday February 23 followed by the release of the odds at leading online bookmaker Luxbet.
Bookmark us here at Races.com.au to view all the latest Blue Diamond Stakes Day race fields, previews and betting updates and for the best odds on the day’s features make sure you open an account with Luxbet today!
2011 Oakleigh Plate Nominations
|1||AVENUE||Peter G Moody||106|
|4||CARDINAL VIRTUE||David Payne||93|
|6||EAGLE FALLS||David Hayes||107|
|7||FASTER SON||Trevor Bailey||92|
|8||FIRST COMMAND||Lee Freedman||108|
|9||GENERAL TRUCE||Ricky Maund||89|
|10||HINCHINBROOK||Peter G Moody||94|
|11||KEANO (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||96|
|13||PANIPIQUE||Peter G Moody||88|
|14||RESPONSE||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||107|
|15||REWARD FOR EFFORT||Peter G Moody||105|
|16||SET FOR FAME||Peter G Moody||107|
|19||SOLAR CHARGED||John O’Shea||98|
|20||STAR WITNESS||Danny O’Brien||113|
|21||STIRLING GROVE||Richard Jolly||94|
|22||TIME MATTERS||Darren Weir||101|
|24||VARENNA MISS||Tony Noonan||93|
|25||ZEDI KNIGHT||Brendan McCarthy||95|