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One of the three feature races offering a Caulfield Cup ballot exemption to the winner this Saturday is the 2012 Caulfield Stakes, betting tips and exotic selections for the weight-for-age classic detailed below.
The $400,000 Group 1 Cathay Pacific Caulfield Stakes (2000m), formerly the Yalumba Stakes, originally drew a final field of nine hopefuls but an injury to the Peter Moody-trained champ Manighar ruled them out of the race and the rest of the spring.
Caulfield Stakes betting markets at bookmaker.com.au then are firmly led by Gary Hennessy’s Thorn Park four-year-old Ocean Park from New Zealand who is into $1.55.
The smart stallion arrived down under for the spring after a first-up win in the Group 1 Makfi Challenge Stakes (1400m) back home and made an instant impact beating home a crack field in the Group 1
Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 22.
One person very confident in Ocean Park’s ability to win on Saturday is jockey Glen Boss.
Boss has ridden the smart young Kiwi galloper twice before firstly for their close second in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) during the autumn and then for their Underwood win.
“He’s going in the right direction. His two wins this time in have been very impressive,” Boss said.
“The horse is thriving.
“Ocean Park has proven to me he is a top-line horse.
“He has terrific acceleration, he is very quick off the mark and raced through those gaps in the Underwood the other day.
“He has done nothing but improve since that run and he will be going into the Cox Plate at his fourth run in and will be peaking by then.”
Second favourite in the Caulfield Stakes odds is then Sincero ($4.40).
The Stephen Farley-trained Umatilla five-year-old also isn’t without their chance according to trainer Stephen Farley who believes they have improved after their fifth in the Underwood, the former Group 1 champ having won the Memsie Stakes first-up in brilliant fashion before that.
“I’d be disappointed if he doesn’t finish top two,” Farley said.
Ocean Park and Sincero are the only two Caulfield Stakes chances under double figures in the markets, but are they the Races.com.au team’s tip for the quinella?
After going over what we uncovered in our exclusive 2012 Caulfield Stakes form guide & betting preview, below are our tips on the important Cox Plate lead-up.
1st: #6 Ocean Park ($1.55)
- We tipped them in the Underwood at good odds and are sticking with them here despite the short price
- Come off two Group 1 victories, the last of which was at the track
- Going up to the 2000m from 1800m looks ideal third-up
- Last time they were at the distance they were beaten just a long neck in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas from gate 10 of 18
- Also ran a close second in their other look at 2000m when beaten a quarter length in the Group 3 Waikato Guineas at Te Rapa in February
- Will like the smaller field and gate six gives them options and should see them stay out of trouble
- Has confidence of Glen Boss who stays on after the Underwood win
- Out to prove their Cox Plate potential
- Favourites have a great recent record in the Caulfield Stakes with two of the past three saluting for the punters
- Ocean Park has the best win rate (55.56%) and easily the hottest place percentage (61.54%)
2nd: #2 Sincero ($4.40)
- Brilliant first-up win in the Memsie by two and a half
- Didn’t exactly impress in the Underwood but it was their first time over 1800m for nearly a year
- Farley says there is improvement and we believe him
- Good winning strike rate of 50%
- Can also handle a wet track and weather in Melbourne is showery so conditions could play into their hand
3rd: #5 Sanagas ($26)
- Adds value to the Caulfield Stakes trifecta
- Has been disappointing in their two runs down under (13th in the Memsie and 10th in the Underwood) but sense improvement to come
- Is a Grade 1 winner in USA taking out last year’s Hollywood Cup and have been crying out for more distance
- Over 2000m should be more competitive, Caulfield doesn’t look to be their track but have seen it twice now so should improve
- Before coming to Australia had a very consistent record and still has the second best place rate of the field with 61.54 and the second best win rate of 53.85%
Whether you are backing or sacking the favourite, paying or laying our selections, the Caulfield Stakes betting odds and options you need can be found online at bookmaker.com.au.
Remember that if you are signing up with bookmaker.com.au for the first time this spring to quote the limited-time-only promo code BONUSBET to unlock your $400 Bonus Bet!
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