Michael Kent’s undefeated youngster Philippi is the topline entry for the Norman Robinson Stakes 2012 this weekend, the three-year-olds’ feature to run as one of the 10 feature races on Caulfield Cup Day in Melbourne on Saturday.
A traditional lead-up to the $1 million Group 1 AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on the opening day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival in early November, the $150,000 Group 3 Norman Robinson Stakes (2000m) has this year drawn 13 nominations with entries extended until 10:00am (AEST) on Tuesday.
Likely favourite for Saturday should they accept will be the Michael Kent-trained Host colt Philippi who has won all three of their career starts to date, most recently the Listed UCI Stakes (1800m) at Flemington on October 6.
Their flawless record to date has ensured Philippi is installed as one of the top fancies in the Victoria Derby odds at bookmaker.com.au currently occupying the third line of betting at $10 following only Spring Champion Stakes champ It’s A Dundeel ($2.80) and shock Caulfield Guineas winner All Too Hard ($4.80).
Also coming via a run in the UCI Stakes are the likes of Moe galloper Hvasstan (2nd), Tony McEvoy’s South Australia raider Jimando (3rd), Starcraft colt Right To Roam (4th) and the Matt Laurie-trained Escado (5th).
Twelve months ago the Michael Moroney-trained Sabrage won the Norman Robinson at just their fifth start before progressing on to run a brave third to Sangster in the Victoria Derby.
Sabrage came into the Norman Robinson Stakes via a third the Group 2 Bill Stutt Stakes at Moonee Valley and this year UCI Stakes third placed Jimando also ran in the Bill Stutt, the consistent Commands colt finishing third to Pierro.
Other notable Norman Robinson Stakes nominees then include the Gai Watehrouse-trained Kabayan coming off a Group 2 Stan Fox Stakes victory over 1500m at Rosehill who is an $11 chance for the Derby, and $13 Derby fancy Honorius who ran third to It’s A Dundeel in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes last time out.
See below for the full list of entries with the Norman Robinson Stakes final field due for release on Wednesday.
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2012 Norman Robinson Stakes Nominations
Caulfield Cup Day – 20/10/2012
|2||COSTA NOVA||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||63|
|3||ELECTRIC FUSION||Robert Smerdon||64|
|11||PRIORITY ROAD (NZ)||Michael Kent||64|
|12||RIGHT TO ROAM||Pat Carey||65|