Spring Stars Dominate 2012 Makybe Diva Stakes Nominations

A classy list of spring stars have been nominated for the Makybe Diva Stakes 2012 at Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse this Saturday, the weight-for-age feature to dominate the weekend’s racing action.

December Draw

One time Caulfield Cup fancy December Draw is set to resume racing in the 2012 Makybe Diva Stakes this Saturday

The $300,000 Group 2 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) has this year attracted 19 early entries and will be a spring starting point for a number of classy hopefuls including one time Caulfield Cup favourite December Draw.

Mark Kavanagh’s imported galloper was all the rage in Melbourne last spring thanks to wins in the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes and Group 1 Turnbull Stakes which saw them start one of the top fancies for the Caulfield Cup.

They broke down in their big assignment however failing to beat home any of their 17 Caulfield Cup rivals and haven’t raced since, Kavanagh and connections taking their time to get the now seven-year-old ready for their return.

Other big name nominees resuming racing in the Makybe Diva include the Ciaron Maher-trained Moudre who ran second to subsequent Melbourne Cup champ Americain in the 2010 Geelong Cup, John Sadler’s RA Lee Stakes winner from the winter Linton, and Peter Moody’s ace stayer Manighar.

One of the most consistent spring cup performers, the former Luca Cumani-trained Manighar enjoyed a winning Group 1 treble during the autumn winning the Australian Cup, Ranvet Stakes and The BMW for Moody.

They were last seen running third to Mawingo in the Doomben Cup in Brisbane and are nominated for all the majors this time in including the Caulfield Cup – Cox Plate double on successive Saturdays at the end of next month.

There is also a Caulfield Cup winner in Southern Speed, the ace mare coming off a big three length win in the Penny Edition Stakes back home at Morphettville from August 25, and former Melbourne Cup winner in Efficient (2007), to make their nine-year-old debut if accepted having run second in the Sydney Cup last time out over the two miles at Randwick, among the nominations for the classic on Saturday.

Also among the Makybe Diva Stakes nominations for 2012 are the likes of Anthony Freedman’s Doomben Cup winner Mawingo, SA Derby winner Zabeelionaire, and the Michael Moroney-trained Shenzhou Steeds who won the Caloundra Cup by seven lengths back in June and who is targeting the Caulfield Cup this time.

All Too Hard has also been entered for the race, Black Caviar’s boom half-brother having failed to impress last Saturday when finishing a distant fifth to Pierro in The Run To The Rose in Sydney.

They have also been nominated for the Chelmsford Stakes over the Warwick Farm mile this Saturday and have work to do if they are regain their popularity before contesting the $1 million Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) at Rosehill Saturday week.

Stay tuned to Races.com.au to view the 2012 Makybe Diva Stakes final field and barrier draw to be announced on Wednesday.

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2012 Makybe Diva Stakes Nominations & Ballot

Flemington Racecourse – 08/09/2012

# Horse Trainer Ballot Weight Hcp. Rating
1 DECEMBER DRAW (IRE) Mark Kavanagh 9 59kg 112
2 EFFICIENT (NZ) Robert Hickmott 1 59kg 112
3 LINTON John Sadler 6 59kg 108
4 MANIGHAR (FR) Peter G Moody 2 59kg 118
5 MAWINGO (GER) Anthony Freedman 11 59kg 109
6 MIDAS TOUCH (GB) Robert Hickmott 5 59kg 110
7 MOUDRE Ciaron Maher 15 59kg 104
8 MOURAYAN (IRE) Robert Hickmott 4 59kg 108
9 SECOND EFFORT Clinton McDonald 13 59kg 105
10 SEVILLE (GER) Robert Hickmott 7 59kg 106
11 SHENZHOU STEEDS (NZ) Michael Moroney 17 59kg 102
12 POLISH KNIGHT (NZ) Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes 16 58.5kg 101
13 ZABEELIONAIRE (NZ) Leon Corstens 12 58.5kg 101
14 AVIENUS Mark Webb 10 57kg 101
15 DANCE WITH HER David Brideoake & David Feek 8 57kg 103
16 SOUTHERN SPEED Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas 3 57kg 113
17 MISS ARTISTIC (NZ) Shaune Ritchie 18 56.5kg 97
18 THY (NZ) Peter G Moody 19 56.5kg 88
19 ALL TOO HARD Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes 14 50.5kg 100