This Saturday on Underwood Stakes Day at Caulfield, a full field of promising three-year-old fillies will face off in the $125,000 Group 3 Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) preparing for next month’s classic grand final, the 2011 Thousand Guineas including Mark Kavanagh’s promising Celebrity Girl.
Celebrity Girl emerged as one of the top fancies for the $500,000 Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield on October 12 when the daughter of Starcraft maintained her undefeated status with an impressive first-up victory in the Listed Cap D’Antibes Stakes (1100m) at Flemington on September 3.
Beating a quality field by two and a half lengths after working up through the field to control the race over the closing 300 metres, Celebrity Girl shot into Thousand Guineas contention and firmed into the $9 third favourite in the Luxbet markets.
Her stablemate Atlantic Jewel sits at the top of the Thousand Guineas odds paying $6, but Kavanagh has opted not to run her in this Saturday’s Prelude.
“They are two impressive fillies and they will both head towards the Thousand Guineas but we will just wait to see how we get there with Atlantic Jewel,” Kavanagh explained.
The 2011 Thousand Guineas Prelude field features a capacity 14 starters plus four emergencies with other early favourites for the upcoming Thousand Guineas out to improve their claims include Mosheen ($7.50), Hallowell Belle ($9) and Kneeling ($15).
Robert Smerdon’s recent stable acquisition Mosheen has a tough test on Saturday having drawn slightly awkwardly in barrier nine, as the Fastnet Rock three-year-old races third-up for the season.
2011 Thousand Guineas Odds
Futures all-in betting showing top 24 horses.
Runner-up to Sepoy in the Golden Slipper back in April when under the preparation of Leon Corstens, Mosheen ran a close third to Satin Shoes first-up on August 13 in the Listed Quezette Stakes (1100m).
She comes off a fifth when beaten only two lengths by Sepoy in the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on September 3 when the speed was on a little too much for her liking and is likely to have come on well since then.
Starcraft filly Hallowell Belle, who finished second to Sepoy in the Blue Diamond Stakes last season and was again runner-up behind the 2011 Manikato Stakes favourite again in the Danehill last start, is one of two acceptors in the Thousand Guineas Prelude 2011 for ace Victorian trainer Peter Moody who also has his consistent Hotel Grand filly Metonymy lining up from barrier eight.
The Nathan Tinkler-owned Kneeling has drawn wide with gate 14, Kiwi apprentice James McDonald engaged for the ride, the well-bred daughter of Encosta De Lago last seen claiming a final-stride victory over Hallowell Belle in the Listed Crockett Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on August 20.
Another notable filly engaged in Saturday’s showdown is the Darley-owned Detours, prepared by Peter Snowden who is out for back-to-back wins having prepared last year’s Thousand Guineas Prelude winner Divorces.
Detours has been racing in top class this season having run third behind subsequent Golden Rose winner Manawanui in the Group 3 Up & Coming Stakes (1300m) at Warwick Farm on August 20 and then third again this time to Streama in the Group 2 Furious Stakes (1400m) last-start on September 3.
Appreciating the step down in class for the Thousand Guineas Prelude, Detours should have plenty of fans in the Luxbet markets despite drawing barrier 13.
The full 2011 Schweppes Thousand Guineas Prelude field and barriers can be found in the table below.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au for field and betting updates on all the spring features this Saturday, both at Caulfield and at Rosehill’s George Main Stakes Day meeting.
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2011 Thousand Guineas Prelude Final Field & Barrier Draw
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Wgt.||Hcp. Rtg.|
|1||37311X16||BLISS STREET||Daniel Morton||Steven Arnold||11||57.5kg||82|
|2||3221114X80||TRIPLE ASSET||John Keys||–||15||57kg||84|
|3||211X08||MANHATTAN MAID||Darren Weir||Ms Michelle Payne||1||56.5kg||78|
|4||1X1||CELEBRITY GIRL||Mark Kavanagh||Michael Rodd||2||56.5kg||84|
|5||2X1||KNEELING||John P Thompson||James McDonald (a)||14||56.5kg||84|
|6||012X14||EMERALD DOWNS||Anthony Cummings||Glen Boss||12||56kg||78|
|7||12X35||MOSHEEN||Robert Smerdon||Danny Nikolic||9||55kg||97|
|8||2X32X122||HALLOWELL BELLE||Peter G Moody||Ben Melham||5||55kg||82|
|9||21X442X26||METONYMY||Peter G Moody||Michael Walker||8||55kg||82|
|10||1X133||DETOURS||Peter Snowden||Mark Zahra||13||55kg||78|
|11||155X50||JESSICA ROSE||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Dwayne Dunn||16||55kg||70|
|12||350X686211||OFFER||Heath Conners||Dean Yendall||18||55kg||67|
|13||35X12X1||CRUCIAL||Anthony Freedman||Steven King||3||55kg||70|
|14||38X152022||PENINSULA DANE||Matthew Hyland||Chris Symons||6||55kg||64|
|15e||213||CLASSIC ELLE||Tony Vasil||Damien Oliver||4||55kg||68|
|16e||334||GLIDING||Bart Cummings||Nicholas Hall||17||55kg||62|
|17e||2X4||OUR MISS JONES (NZ)||Michael Kent||–||7||55kg||66|