Twenty nine two-year-olds have been nominated for the Listed 2013 Black Opal Stakes (1200m) which will take place as one of the features on the Canberra Cup day card on Sunday.
The $250,000 sprint always attracts a strong pool of entrants, many of whom are being aimed at races such as the 2013 Golden Slipper.
There is certainly no shortage of runners from the big stables, with the likes of Gai Waterhouse, Peter Snowden and Anthony Cummings all entering runners.
David Payne scratched Criterion from Saturday’s Silver Slipper due to a wide barrier so he will be hoping for a more favourable draw this weekend.
The Sebring colt won on debut in November before running third in the Listed Canonbury Stakes first-up on February 16.
Potentially backing up just eight days after the Silver Slipper is Gary Portelli’s colt All The Talk who produced a brave effort to run fourth after doing plenty of work early.
Sidestep is one of two Darley-owned gallopers entered by Peter Snowden and will be out to build on a debut third in the Listed Cooper Stakes at Sandown in November.
Snowden’s other entrant is Aspen who debuted with a fourth-place finish at Warwick Farm in December and was a strong trial performer on February 25.
Queanbeyan trainer Neville Layt has entered Torio Magic and Flying Mamusa who have both had two starts at Canberra.
Highlighting the significance of the race is that it attracts entrants from many locations and Queensland trainer Less Ross has nominated Mishani Gladiator.
The Dubawi gelding was a strong winner at Doomben in December but will have to bounce back from a seventh-place finish at the Gold Coast on New Year’s Day.
The Black Opal Stakes forms part of a bumper card at Canberra this Sunday that also includes the Canberra Cup and the Canberra Guineas.
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Black Opal Stakes 2013 – Nominations
|1||ALL THE TALK||Gary Portelli|
|4||CHILLY PREDICTION||Jason Coyle|
|5||CRITERION (NZ)||David Payne|
|6||FLAK JACKET||Grahame Begg|
|7||FLYING MAMUZA||Neville Layt|
|8||GAMBLER’S BLUES||Tim Martin|
|9||GOLD CHIP||Rick Worthington|
|10||HAILIN’ DIAMONDS||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes|
|12||LADY ANGELICA||John Nisbet|
|13||MAMA’S LUCK||Mark Schmetzer|
|15||MICKEY SPANOOCH||Paul Theobald|
|16||MISHANI GLADIATOR||Les Ross|
|17||MR JACKMAN||Gai Waterhouse|
|18||POWER ALERT||Trevor Sutherland|
|20||RAISE NO DOUBT||Marc Conners|
|24||SPIRIT MANIA||Aaron Clarke|
|25||STAR WARS (NZ)||Scott Aspery|
|26||STEEL BOLT||Aaron Clarke|
|28||TORIO MAGIC||Neville Layt|
|29||TWICE SHY||Anthony Cummings|