2013 Newmarket Handicap Start Likely for Ortensia

A disappointing result in the Oakleigh Plate first-up is unlikely to prevent Ortensia from contesting Saturday week’s Group 1 2013 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington.

Ortensia is likely to contest the Newmarket Handicap. Photo: Sarah Ebbett.

The triple Group 1 winner was resuming from an extended break following her 2012 overseas campaign and was never in the race, finishing 4 1/2 lengths off winner Mrs Onassis in 11th position.

On that occasion she carried the topweight of 58kg but will get a relief of 1.5kg in the Newmarket which is a major reason trainer Paul Messara is giving it “serious consideration.”

Messara said the seven-year-old had a sore fetlock following the Oakleigh Plate but is now back on track.

Ortensia tasted success on the world stage during a lengthy international stint last year, winning the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint in Dubai and the Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes in the UK.

She is one of 24 horses remaining in contention for the $1 million sprint for which weights were released earlier this week.

Perth star Luckygray heads the weights with 58kg after a Perth summer campaign where he won the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic and the Group 2 Lee-Steere Stakes and finished second in the Group 1 Railway Stakes.

Three horses have been allocated 56.5kg with 2012 Oakleigh Plate winner Woorim and early favourite Moment Of Change joining Ortensia.

Moment Of Change is the $2.80 favourite in the Newmarket pre-post market after running second to stablemate Black Caviar in the Lightning Stakes first-up.

The four-year-old won the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes during the spring and boasts an excellent record of five wins and four minor placings from 10 starts.

Others high up in the Newmarket weights include Group 1 winner Atomic Force (56kg), unbeaten Perth sprinter Barakey (56kg) and Queensland gelding Spirit Of Boom (55kg).

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