Randwick horseman Kevin Moses is keen to make a case for his six-year-old galloper All Legal in this Saturday’s Villiers Stakes 2012 where they will face a tough field of quality milers.
The Al Maher gelding has won five of their 32 career starts to date, most recently the Listed Ladies Day Cup (1300m) at Hawkesbury in early November, and will be out to make it six in the $175,000 Group 2 Inglis Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on the weekend.
In the latest Villiers Stakes odds All Legal, drawn in gate nine of the capacity 18-starter plus one emergency field, pays $17 with markets led by the Peter Snowden-trained four-year-old Galah.
If successful in scoring an upset Villiers Stakes result on Saturday it will be All Legal’s first Group race victory and Moses’ second win in the Sydney Summer Racing Carnival classic.
Moses won the race back in 1979 aboard King’s Ideal during his years as a jockey.
He is now hoping to taste success again, this time as a trainer, hoping to follow the trend set by jockey-turned-trained Ron Quinton last year.
In the years directly leading up to Moses’ ’79 win in the Villiers Quinton rode three consecutive Villiers Stakes winners before coming back 12 months ago to train last year’s Villiers champ Monton who is back to defend their title again in 2012.
“I had Christmas lunch with Ron on Monday,” Moses said.
“Greg and Jimmy Lee, who both rode at the same time as well and are now training, were there.
“Craig Carmody was there, all the jockeys who are now training so we still get on well.
“But there is nothing I like more than beating any of them.”
While the odds are juicy there is certainly some form suggesting All Legal could make a nice smokey in the Villiers Stakes betting markets.
For one, three of their five career starts have been over the mile.
They were also far from disgraced last time out when seventh to Malavio in the Listed Festival Stakes (1500m) when beaten under two lengths.
For the Festival Stakes, won by this year’s runner-up Monton before their Villiers success last summer, All Legal carried 55kg with Glyn Schofield in the saddle.
Schofield retains the ride this weekend but the horse drops back to a nice 53.5kg light-weight – Monton the 59kg top-weight of the field.
And while realistic about their chances, Moses is going into the race with the attitude “you never know.”
“He’s only small and he’s done a grand job to get to where he has,” Moses said.
“He cost $25,000 and he’s won over $400,000 so I couldn’t be any happier with the horse.
“He is probably just two lengths off being able to win a race like this but he tries so hard every time he goes around and you never know.”
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