The David Vandkye-trained Lamasery has opened top of the markets for the Hill Stakes 2012 at Randwick this weekend, the in-form six-year-old looking to earn a trip to Melbourne for a shot at the spring cups.
Set to run as Royal Randwick Race 7 at 4:40pm on Saturday, the $200,000 Group 2 Bacardi Hill Stakes (2000m) field features 10 gallopers following the early withdrawal of #9 Mr O’Ceirin.
Leading the Hill Stakes odds at bookmaker.com.au at a quote of $3 is the rails-drawn Lamasery, the six-year-old Commands gelding running third-up for the season.
A Melbourne Cup Day winner last spring after missing a shot at the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups due to a hoof injury, Lamasery resumed on August 25 with a close fourth in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
The stepped up to the mile last time out on September 8 and ran third to Danleigh in the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes, Vandyke confident over the 2000m Lamasery will prove hard to beat on Saturday.
The last time they saw the distance they won the Group 3 Kingston Town Stakes at Rosehill and if they win on the weekend it will be all systems go towards The Metropolitan 2012 on Epsom Handicap Day.
In a relatively wide open Hill Stakes betting market there are then three other horses paying between $6 and $6.50 to upset the favourite with:
- #3 Class Is Class ($6) – Gets the gate (4) and the jockey (Nash Rawiller) making this Chris Waller-trained import worth a look for a place after their seventh in their Australian debut in the Tramway two weeks back over 1400m, Group 3 winner in England over 2098m so distance is right here
- #6 Permit ($6.50) – Second of four chances Waller saddles up in this race, six-year-old Permit has the fitness factor with two runs for the season behind them including their second to Glencadam Gold in the Permier’s Cup over 1800m at the start of the month
- #1 Mourayan ($6.50) – Lloyd Williams-owned spring cup hopeful was in flying form last spring and looked set for a similarly impressive if not better campaign this time after a good first-up fourth to Southern Speed in the Makybe Diva Stakes
Other genuine hopes at slightly longer odds then include the Graeme Boyd-trained Kiwi raider Ginga Dude ($11), Waller’s consistent four-year-old coming off a win in the Group 3 Kingston Town Stakes over the 2000m at Rosehill last Saturday Stout Hearted ($11), the Hawkes-trained Australian Derby runner-up Polish Knight ($11) getting up to their preferred distance here, and Peter Moody’s Group 1 winning mare Lights Of Heaven ($14) out to improve on her last in the Chelmsford Stakes over the Warwick Farm mile on September 8.
Waller’s former The Metropolitan champ The Verminator ($21) and Williams’ hit-and-miss import Midas Touch ($31) then round out the 2012 Hill Stakes field and betting markets.
To get behind your favourites in all the Randwick and Caulfield races running this Saturday head to bookmaker.com.au, the Australian-owned and operated sportsbook offering its players a better deal.
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2012 Hill Stakes Odds
Royal Randwick Race 7 – 4:40pm – 22/09/2012
|2||GINGA DUDE (5)||11.00|
|3||CLASS IS CLASS (4)||6.00|
|4||MIDAS TOUCH (3)||31.00|
|7||THE VERMINATOR (11)||21.00|
|8||STOUT HEARTED (7)||11.00|
|9||MR O’CEIRIN (10)||–|
|10||POLISH KNIGHT (6)||11.00|
|11||LIGHTS OF HEAVEN (2)||14.00|
*Fixed Win odds provided by bookmaker.com.au and subject to change