Group racing returns to Flemington this weekend with the Group 3 2012 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) and a strong nominations list has been announced for the $150,000 event.
Leading Victorian trainer Peter Moody has nominated four horses for the feature sprint including the in-form Golden Archer and Ready To Rip.
Multiple black-type winner Golden Archer made a promising return from injury late last month when winning the Monjon Australia Handicap at Flemington by two lengths.
Ready To Rip was transferred to Moody’s stables from Queensland earlier this year and has made an immediate impact, producing two conscutive victories.
The More Than Ready gelding won the Listed All Victorian Sprint Final (1200m) first-up before also taking top honours in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes.
Also nominated for Moody are Hobartville Stakes placegetter Moment Of Change and lightly-raced mare Le Societe.
Robert Hickmott has nominated two imports to kick off their spring campaigns with former German horse Seville and British five-year-old Midas Touch.
Midas Touch made his Australia debut last spring and went on to place in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes while Seville was unplaced from two starts on Australian soil in the autumn.
Also adding an international flavour to the nominations list is Tony Vasil-trained Green Birdie who recently returned from Hong Kong.
The former Group 1 winner is having his third start since returning to Australia after finishing unplaced in both the Monash Stakes and the Bletchingly Stakes.
Darley trainer Peter Snowden has two runners nominated with Launay returning for the first time since November and Offenders out to turn around a poor first-up eighth in the Bletchingly Stakes.
Other horses nominated for the Aurie’s Star Handicap include David Hayes-trained Pago Rock and Peter Morgan’s Dusty Star.
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Aurie’s Star Handicap 2012 – Nominations
|1||BALZEUS||Terry & Karina O’Sullivan||78|
|2||DUSTY STAR||Peter Morgan||95|
|3||GOLDEN ARCHER||Peter G Moody||101|
|4||GREEN BIRDIE (NZ)||Tony Vasil||107|
|6||LE SOCIETE||Peter G Moody||87|
|7||LIGHT EXPRESS||Michael Hibbs||82|
|9||MIDAS TOUCH (GB)||Robert Hickmott||110|
|10||MOMENT OF CHANGE||Peter G Moody||92|
|13||PAGO ROCK||David Hayes||97|
|14||READY TO RIP||Peter G Moody||100|
|15||SEVILLE (GER)||Robert Hickmott||106|
|16||SHANGHAI WARRIOR||Pat Hyland||80|
|17||SIERRA NEVADA (NZ)||Shaun Dwyer||75|
|18||SOUND JOURNEY||Peter Gelagotis||95|
|19||SYSMO (FR)||Tony McEvoy||71|
|20||TWILIGHTING||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||74|