David Hayes has admitted to being “bullish” over his chances with double figure roughie Maraatib in today’s Crown Oaks 2012, the Euroa horseman unable to comprehend the price difference between his smart filly and the favourite that beat her home last start.
Redoute’s Choice three-year-old Maraatib may still be a maiden after 10 starts to date but she did catch the eye on Derby Day when running two lengths away second to Zydeco in the Group 2 Wakeful Stakes (2000m).
“Michael Walker got off her and said he should have won,” Hayes said of Maraatib’s Wakeful effort.
Maraatib will now get her chance to atone when she faces off against Anthony Freedman’s classy Zabeel filly Zydeco again today at Flemington in the $1 million Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m), but the two are at opposite ends of the betting scale.
Zydeco is the short priced $2.10 favourite in the Crown Oaks odds while Maraatib, drawn nicely in gate three, is at $17.
The other major players in the Crown Oaks field and markets meanwhile are then the Clarry Conners-trained Dear Demi ($5) and the Michael Kent-trained Summerbliss having just her third career start.
While she may not boast the pedigree of a stayer, neither her sire nor dam having run over further than 2040m, Hayes is confident Maraatib will get the distance in the Oaks today and prove the bookies wrong.
“The bookmakers think it is a race in two between Dear Demi and Zydeco but I think it is much more open than that,” Hayes said.
“I’m very bullish about Maraatib.”
He could be right too as Maraatib’s sire Redoute’s Choice, while himself not a stayer, did produce Hayes’ previous VRC Oaks winner Miss Finland (2006).
Hayes will saddle up a triple pronged attack in the Crown Oaks field 2012 also represented by his last-start Ethereal Stakes winner Alzora ($19) in gate five and $51 roughie Mama’s Choice in barrier two coming off a Wakeful Stakes sixth.
“Alzora’s also had a lovely preparation and I think the result could come down to luck in running,” Hayes said.
Whether it is the in-form favourite or a smokey in the field the best Crown Oaks odds can be found online at bookmaker.com.au – home of the famous $400 bonus welcome bet offer.