He’s racing in Melbourne for the first time and in the toughest company he’s ever faced but Barakey is still a clear favourite to win the Group 1 2013 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
The undefeated Perth sprinter is a $3.40 top elect at bookmaker.com.au for his east-coast debut and attempt to extend his winning streak to 12.
The five-year-old arrived safely in Melbourne on Monday night for what will be his first race since taking out the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes at Peth’s Summer Racing Carnival in November.
Occupying the second line of betting is unbeaten three-year-old Shamal Wind ($6) who gets in with the minimum weight of 50.5kg.
The Robert Smerdon-trained filly burst on to the scene in the spring with two strong wins and scored a tough first-up victory at Moonee Valley on February 8.
Following closely is triple Group 1 winner Ortensia ($6.50) who will be having her first start since a successful overseas campaign that ended in the UK in September.
No other runner falls under double figures with Mark Kavanagh-trained gelding Undeniably the next best at $10.
There is no separating the three Queenslanders in the field with defending champion Woorim, consistent entire Spirit Of Boom and in-form gelding Adebisi all at $15.
Woorim produced an upset win last year but has to lug joint topweight of 58kg in what will be his first race since May.
Spirit Of Boom was last seen running third to Barakey in the Winterbottom Stakes and Adebisi is chasing a third straight win after taking out the Razor Sharp Quality at Warwick Farm and the Rubiton Stakes at Caulfield.
Returning for another Oakleigh Plate is 2012 third placegetter Facile Tigre ($17) while Sea Lord ($18) will be out to continue his good form after winning the Group 2 Australia Stakes at Moonee Valley last month.
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