The final field and barriers for the Heritage Stakes 2012, one of the seven stakes races running at Randwick for George Main Stakes Day this Saturday, have been released with eight promising three-year-olds engaged to face off.
Due to jump as Royal Randwick Race 2 at 1:30pm the $100,000 Listed Schweppes Heritage Stakes (1100m) is one of the first events on the card and the field is led by the Gai Waterhouse-trained Raceway making their three-year-old debut.
The More Than Ready rig races for the first time since their failure in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes over the Randwick mile on Sydney Cup Day, the then two-year-old failing to beat home any of their eight rivals when crossing over 25 lengths off their winning stablemate Pierro.
Prior to their catastrophic Champagne performance Raceway finished a brave fourth to Pierro in the Group 1 Inglis Sires Produce Stakes and fifth when beaten under four lengths by Pierro again this time in the esteemed Group 1 Golden Slipper.
On Saturday they have drawn barrier one of eight and will be ridden by Blake Shinn for the first time with their regular rider Hugh Bowman engaged to ride the undefeated Chris Waller-trained Relaxed And Happy.
Drawn in gate five Exceed And Excel gelding Relaxed And Happy shoots for their fourth straight career win after victories at Newcastle, Wyong and Canterbury respectively.
Along with Relaxed And Happy there is one other youngster in the Heritage Stakes 2012 yet to taste defeat in the John Thompson-trained Destruction out wider in gate seven with Glyn Schofield in the saddle.
The Fastnet Rock colt debuted with a victory over Kabayan at Rosehill over 1200m back in May before backing up 16 days later to break through in a black type taking out the Listed Dalrello Stakes (1200m) on a Heavy (9) at Doomben.
Another stakes winner in the Heritage Stakes mix for Saturday is Allan Denham’s up-and-coming General Nediym filly Ichihara.
Ichihara won their opening three career starts during the autumn including a tight victory over Cavalry Rose in the Group 2 Magic Night Stakes (1200m) at Rosheill.
They suffered their first defeat when third to Dances On Stars in the Group 3 Kindergarten Stakes (1100m) a fortnight later, after which connections sent her to the paddock for a spell.
She resumed back on August 25 at Warwick Farm when fourth to Nechita in the Group 3 Silver Shadow Stakes (1200m), Denham hopeful Ichihara can return to form on Saturday.
The third last-start winner engaged in the Heritage this year is then the Neville Layt-trained Canberra visitor Red Excitement coming off a big win in Canberra who is looking to hand their trainer back-to-back wins in the feature following the success of Karuta Queen 12 months ago.
Rounding out the field are then Anthony Cummings’s consistnet General Nediym filly Agueda drawn ideally in barrier three and coming off two second place Listed finishes this time in, the Gerald Ryan-trained Villa Splendido having just their third career start, and the John O’Shea-trained Don’t Blink.
See below for the full 2012 Schweppes Heritage Stakes field, barriers and jockeys then head to bookmaker.com.au to back a winner at the guaranteed best prices this weekend and beyond.
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2012 Heritage Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Royal Randwick Race 8 – 1:30pm – 22/09/2012
|1||112549x||RACEWAY||Gai Waterhouse||Blake Shinn||1||57.5kg|
|2||11x||DESTRUCTION||John P Thompson||Glyn Schofield||7||57.5kg|
|3||1113×4||ICHIHARA||Allan Denham||Brenton Avdulla||2||56.5kg|
|4||111||RELAXED AND HAPPY||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||5||56kg|
|5||66x3187x1||RED EXCITEMENT||Neville Layt||Tommy Berry||4||56kg|
|6||3212424×22||AGUEDA||Anthony Cummings||Peter Robl||3||54kg|
|7||12x||VILLA SPLENDIDO||Gerald Ryan||Corey Brown||6||54kg|
|8||1×854||DON’T BLINK||John O’Shea||James McDonald||8||54kg|