Australian Guineas runner-up Strike The Stars will make his return to racing this weekend when he contests the Group 1 2012 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.
The four-year-old has not won since the Gloaming Stakes last September but was one of the most promising young horses of the autumn when finishing fourth in the Australian Derby and South Australian Derby in addition to the Australian Guineas performance.
The son of Savabeel is part of a 15-horse strong Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes field and has drawn barrier four for the first-up test.
“He’s been back in work for quite a while now,” trainer Anthony Cummings said.
“He’s on his way to Melbourne now. He’s had a pretty faultless lead-up.
“He’s had a barrier trial already. He galloped the Melbourne way this morning and went very well.”
With the the winner of more than $400,000 in prizemoney set to carry the minimum weight of 52kg, lightweight jockey Vlad Duric has been appointed to ride him for the first time.
“Vlad’s in good form and he’s happy to waste to ride him,” Cummings said.
Strike The Stars is one of of a number of interstate challengers heading to Melbourne for the only Group 1 event of the weekend along with Queensland gelding Solzhenitsyn, Darley seven-year-old Pinwheel and the David Payne-trained Centennial Park.
Both Solzhenitsyn and Pinwheel head to Melbourne with impressive results behind them as they look to chase their first Group 1 win.
Pinwheel won both the Missile Stakes and the Warwick Stakes last month while Solzhenitsyn is chasing a fifth straight win after winning first up at Doomben on the back of an excellent winter campaign.
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