The headline event running in Melbourne this weekend is Saturday’s 2011 Zipping Classic at Sandown, and after Racing Victoria extended nominations for the staying showdown until today, one additional galloper has been entered.
On Monday there were nine horses nominated for the $350,000 Group 2 Zipping Classic (2400m), the pack lead by last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Americain.
The French-trained star who ran a brave fourth when defending their Melbourne Cup title this year was not the only European raider among the Zipping Classic 2011 entries with Brian Ellison also nominating Saptapadi and Luca Cumani confirming Manighar for the race formerly known as the Sandown Classic.
There are now a total of 10 horses in contention after connections of Montjeu six-year-old Montgomery threw their hopeful into the mix.
Prepared by Colin and Cindy Alderson at Cranbourne, the New Zealand-bred Montgomery has won five of their 31 career starts to date and was last seen finishing seven lengths away seventh to Ironstein in the Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) at Flemington on Emirates Stakes Day.
The Zipping Classic is a standard weight-for-age race and all 10 nominees are allocated 59kg for Saturday.
The sole Victorian representative in this year’s Zipping Classic is the Robert Hickmott-trained Mourayan out to hand their astute owner Lloyd Williams his fifth successive and sixth overall success in the race.
Having first won the then Sandown Classic with Legible in 2003, Williams’ then won every edition from 2007 – 2010 with crowd favourite Zipping who the race is now named in honour of.
Twelve months ago Alhaarth stallion Mourayan ran third behind Macedonian in the Sandown Cup (3200m) at the final metropolitan meeting for the spring in Melbourne but has come on leaps and bounds since.
Mourayan was last seen finishing second to Glass Harmonium in the Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day and was a late scratching from the Melbourne Cup due to a foot injury.
Acceptances for all of the Sandown races on Saturday including the Zipping Classic will be taken on Wednesday with the final fields and barriers to be published right here at Races.com.au.
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2011 Zipping Classic Nominations & Weights
|1||AMERICAIN (USA)||Alain de Royer Dupre||1||59kg||117|
|2||BOOMING (NZ)||Jeff Lynds||5||59kg||103|
|3||COUNT ENCOSTA||John P Thompson||8||59kg||89|
|4||GINGA DUDE (NZ)||Graeme Boyd||4||59kg||107|
|6||MANIGHAR (FR)||Luca Cumani||3||59kg||110|
|7||MONTGOMERY (NZ)||Colin & Cindy Alderson||7||59kg||88|
|8||MOURAYAN (IRE)||Robert Hickmott||2||59kg||110|
|10||SAPTAPADI (IRE)||Brian Ellison||10||59kg||101|