Chris Waller’s star import My Kingdom Of Fife will face nine rivals in the Doomben Cup as the in-form six-year-old looks to keep their flawless record on Aussie shores intact.
Kingmambo gelding My Kingdom Of Fife is currently battling for favouritism with fellow European import Glass Harmonium in the markets for this Saturday’s $500,000 Group 1 Doomben Cup (2020m) after the pair ran one-two in the Group 2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast last start.
The Hollindale was My Kingdom Of Fife’s third straight win in Australia making the former Queen-owned galloper undefeated down under.
On debut they won the Group 3 Doncaster Mile Prelude (1600m) beating a handy field at Randwick on April 9 before scoring an elite level win here in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m).
Seeking their second Group 1 win this season, on Saturday My Kingdom Of Fife is due to jump from the mid-field barrier five and will be ridden by Dwayne Dunn.
Dunn was aboard for My Kingdom Of Fife’s first Aussie win, the stayer then partnered by Nash Rawiller for their next two starts.
Rawiller, however, is serving a suspension for careless riding meaning Dunn gets to reunite his association with the Waller-trained champion.
Waller is out for back-to-back wins in the Doomben Cup following his success in the staying showdown with Metal Bender 12 months ago.
Metal Bender enjoyed a narrow Doomben Cup victory last year after taking out the Hollindale Stakes, and My Kingdom Of Fife looks on track to complete the same winning double.
Last year’s winning trainer will also be represented on Saturday by 2010 Doomben Cup third-placegetter Triple Honour.
The Michael Moroney-trained Glass Harmonium makes their second appearance in Australia this weekend after their barnstorming debut and has drawn one inside of My Kingdom Of Fife in barrier four.
Moroney intends to spell Glass Harmonium after Saturday and looks towards a spring campaign that will likely include targeting the Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate.
It is a top-class final field for this year’s Doomben Cup, two other runners at single figure odds to win with John Wallace’s Gold Coast hopeful Shoot Out and evergreen WA eight-year-old Scenic Shot both getting love from the punters after drawing barriers three and two respectively.
High Chaparral four-year-old Shoot Out, winner of the 2010 AJC Australian Derby, comes off a fifth place finish in the Hollindale Stakes while Scenic Shot ran an eye-catching third behind the two Doomben Cup favourites in that lead-up race.
Scenic Shot is out for a second Doomben Cup win having saluted in the race back in 2009 when ridden by Shane Scriven.
Scriven will again be in the saddle this year and rates the warhorse a top chance to win another.
“He’s two years older than when he won last time, but the engine still purrs,” Scriven said.
Other notable gallopers lining up for their shot of Doomben Cup glory are this year’s Queensland Derby favourite Shootoff seeking his third win on the trot, Kiwi raider The Hombre, Anthony Cumming’s outsider Shadows In The Sun who won the Group 1 SA Derby (2500m) at Morphettville on May 8 and Joseph Pride’s veteran Vision And Power.
On Saturday rising nine-year-old Vision And Power will be reunited with jockey Jim Cassidy for the first time this year.
It has been more than two years between drinks for Carnegie gelding Vision And Power whose last visit to the winner’s stall was for their back-to-back Group 1 wins in the George Ryder Stakes and Doncaster Mile in April of 2009, races Cassidy was aboard for.
“It will be good to have the horse reunited with Jimmy, they’ve had some great moments,” Pride said.
Cassidy is a triple Doomben Cup winning hoop courtesy of his three successive victories aboard the mighty Rough Habit from 1991 to 1993.
Meanwhile John Bary’s Lucky Owners four-year-old The Hombre enjoyed a solid bit of workout at Doomben yesterday ahead of Saturday’s test, the hulking stayer impressing both trainer and jockey Jonathan Riddell.
“He worked quite well, he seems to enjoy this track and swung around the turn nicely,” Riddell said of The Hombre.
The Hombre is no stranger to the Doomben course proper having won the Group 3 Rough Habit Plate (2020m) here last winter carnival on protest before finishing second in the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) and then ninth in the 2010 Queensland Derby at Eagle Farm.
“He’s more mature now, a lot sharper,” Riddell said.
“Last year he did it on raw ability, but he’s so big now it’s taken a bit longer for him to find fitness.
“He hasn’t won for a while, but his last three runs have been really good efforts.
“He’s going good enough to bring him over and give him his chance to step up again this year.”
The 2011 Kirks Doomben Cup is scheduled as Doomben Race 7 on Saturday and is due to jump at 3:45pm (AEST)
2011 Kirks Doomben Cup Final Field & Barriers
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight|
|1||36X7574413||SCENIC SHOT||Daniel Morton||Shane Scriven||2||59kg|
|2||64070X0189||ZAVITE (NZ)||Anthony Cummings||Chris Munce||6||59kg|
|3||230064X396||TRIPLE HONOUR (NZ)||Chris Waller||Larry Cassidy||7||59kg|
|4||370X005753||VISION AND POWER (NZ)||Joseph Pride||Jim Cassidy||9||59kg|
|5||333440X955||SHOOT OUT||John Wallace||Corey Brown||3||59kg|
|6||753566X111||MY KINGDOM OF FIFE (GB)||Chris Waller||Dwayne Dunn||5||59kg|
|7||2X136X60X2||GLASS HARMONIUM (IRE)||Michael Moroney||Hugh Bowman||4||59kg|
|8||X85050X223||THE HOMBRE||John Bary||Jonathan Riddell||10||59kg|
|9||19X8054361||SHADOWS IN THE SUN||Anthony Cummings||Tim Clark||1||55.5kg|
|10||59X6490311||SHOOTOFF (NZ)||Graeme Rogerson||Michael Rodd||8||55.5kg|