Schweppes Australasian Oaks 2012 Nominations

Saturday week is going to be the biggest day the South Australian Jockey Club has ever hosted with Black Caviar coming to town, but there is more than just Black Caviar on the menu at Morphettville with the 2012 Schweppes Australasian Oaks also running.

Lights Of Heaven

Last year's Schweppes Stakes winner Lights Of Heaven

The world’s highest rated mare Black Caviar has been nominated along with 26 other hopefuls for the $400,000 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) on April 28, the day’s other elite level feature and the marquee event being the $400,000 Group 1 Schweppes Australasian Oaks (2000m).

The Australasian Oaks 2012 attracted 28 three-year-old fillies at nomination stage, the race having produced many a turf star over the years.

Last year’s edition was won by one-time Caulfield Cup fancy Lights Of Heaven, prepared by Black Caviar’s trainer Peter Moody.

Lights Of Heaven won the Schweppes Oaks at just her fourth career start and was undefeated going into the race, but it was runner-up Absolutely and the third placed Southern Speed who would go onto win at elite level in the Australian Oaks in Sydney and the Caulfield Cup during the Melbourne Spring Carnival respectively.

This year Moody will seek another win in the classic with My Girl Tess, the lightly-raced daughter of Redoute’s Choice having broken her maiden status with a win at Cranbourne last week.

Meanwhile Bart Cummings’ smart Fastnet Rock filly Empress Rock will shoot for the same Moonee Valley Fillies Classic – Schweppes Oaks double Lights Of Heaven won 12 months ago.

One of the key lead-up races to the Schweppes Oaks is always the Group 3 Schweppervescence Stakes (1800m) which was held at Morphettville last Saturday.

Fillies set to back-up from the Schweppervescence Stakes in the Oaks include the winning filly Crucial, runner-up Rahveel for Leon Corstens, and third placed Crimson Lady prepared by Flemington trainer Michael Moroney.

Crucial is one of two hopefuls in the early entries for Mornington-based horseman Anthony Freedman along with his Zabeel filly Crystalised, while Moroney has also nominated for Savabeel filly Savvy Princess.

Also with multiple entries are Michael Kent with MV Fillies Classic third placed Our Miss Jones and Pentimento; Mark Kavanagh with Alessandra and Rock Culture; and Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra with three entries in Secret Liaison coming off a good third in the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes at Randwick last Saturday, Sharnee Rose and Spelldancer.

Other notable Australasian Oaks nominees this year include multiple Group winning Pert filly Bliss Street out to improve on her 10th in the Schweppervescence, the Robert Smerdon-trained Caulfield winner last time out Red Typhoon and highly-rated New Zealand filly Kasumi last seen running fourth in the Adelaide Guineas.

See below for the full 2012 Schweppes Australasian Oaks nominations, the final field to be released next week.

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2012 Schweppes Australasian Oaks Nominations

Morphettville – 28/04/2012

# Horse Trainer Hcp. Rating
1 ALESSANDRA Mark Kavanagh 61
2 BLISS STREET Daniel Morton 91
3 CLASSIC ELLE Tony Vasil 74
4 CRIMSON LADY (NZ) Michael Moroney 69
5 CRUCIAL Anthony Freedman 89
6 CRYSTALISED (NZ) Anthony Freedman 62
7 ELLDAMI Phillip Stokes 70
8 EMPRESS ROCK Bart Cummings 95
9 ESSENCE Phillip Stokes 65
10 FRIDAY HUSSY David Hayes 70
11 GIOE Michael Kent 64
13 INVEST Clarry Conners 69
14 KASUMI (NZ) John Sargent 75
15 LIPARI Pat Hyland 61
16 MY GIRL TESS Peter G Moody 62
17 OUR MISS JONES (NZ) Michael Kent 70
18 PENTIMENTO Michael Kent 66
19 PRINCESS ROCK Darren Weir 65
20 QUICK RETORT Stephen Theodore 63
21 RAHVEEL Leon Corstens 81
22 RED TYPHOON Robert Smerdon 68
23 ROCK CULTURE Mark Kavanagh 74
24 SAVVY PRINCESS (NZ) Michael Moroney 62
25 SECRET LIAISON Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra 79
26 SHARNEE ROSE Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra 78
27 SPELLDANCER Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra 67
28 TEMPER TANTRUM Alex Macpherson 70