Clarry Conners’ in-form Dehere filly Dear Demi will need plenty of luck on Wednesday to win her maiden Group 1 title after she drew the extreme outside gate in Monday’s Thousand Guineas 2012 barrier draw.
Set to run as Caulfield Race 6 at 3:40pm (AEST) the $500,000 Group 1 Schweppes Thousand Guineas (1600m) drew a capacity field of 16 starters plus two emergencies.
The acceptance of the Chris Waller-trained Jade Marauder, who drew the inside alley, however was a mistake and she has since been withdrawn from the field with triple-figure outsider Meditrina gaining a start through the scratching.
Thousand Guineas odds at bookmaker.com.au are currently led by Molto Bene who came up trumps with barrier five, now into four.
Will Clarken’s smart Adelaide filly, last seen running a close third in the Thousand Guineas Prelude, has been well supported to win her third black type on Wednesday coming in from $5 into $4.40.
The news from yesterday’s barrier draw wasn’t as good for Dear Demi however who came up with gate 18 of 18.
Currently rated a $16 chance in the Thousand Guineas betting markets, Dear Demi has been in excellent form since April.
She has enjoyed two stakes victories, most recently in the Group 2 Furious Stakes (1400m) and hasn’t finished worse than fourth in her seven most recent runs.
She has also recorded two Group 1 minor placings when second to boom colt Pierro in the Champagne Stakes over the Randwick mile as a juvenile on Sydney Cup Day, and then last start when third to Norzita in the Flight Stakes over the 1600m at Randwick again.
Dear Demi showed she was on track for her first ever start outside of Sydney with a nice piece of track work at Caulfield on Monday morning, indicating to Conners she would be fine the opposite way of racing.
“She worked nicely here this morning and got around the track as good as gold,” he said on Monday.
“I base myself here when I’m in Melbourne and I’ve had a lot of luck with horses staying at Caulfield like (1993 Thousand Guineas winner) Arborea and (1988 Thousand Guineas runner-up) Research (who both went on to win the Wakeful Stakes and VRC Oaks in their respective years).”
While confident the distance is right on Wednesday for his filly, Conners knows that making her Melbourne debut from such a wide gate will test Dear Demi, and his instructions to jockey Jim Cassidy, who replaces regular rider James McDonald, will be to “ride for luck”.
“The instructions will be to go back from there and ride for luck,” Conners said.
“He can use all his genius and ability from the half mile (800m).
“There’s nothing you can do about bad draws but it’s a shame it has to happen in a major race.
“It will give Jimmy something to think about.”
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