The bookies are having a hard time separating the top fancies in one of the feature Easter Saturday races at Melbourne’s Caulfield Racecourse this weekend with Sertorius narrowly winning the Victoria Handicap 2013 betting battle.
The Jamie Edwards-trained Galileo five-year-old enjoyed a super spring campaign in Melbourne last year winning six consecutive races before being stepped up to black type company when seventh in the Ballarat Cup on November 25.
The Freshwater Creek-based galloper had never seen stakes company or the 2200m before, had to carry a hefty 58kg and drew the far outside barrier 14 of 14 and were sent for a spell immediately after that testing run.
They return on Saturday facing another black type assignment in the $150,000 Group 3 Victoria Handicap (1400m) which has attracted a final field of 12 hopefuls.
Drawn nicely in gate three with Ryan Maloney to ride on the 54kg minimum Sertorius is currently topping the Victoria Handicap odds for their resuming run at a quote of $4.60.
They are followed closely in the markets then by four other single-figure chances, three of which occupy the second line of Victoria Handicap betting paying $5.50 including early market mover Budriguez.
David Jolly’s exciting Adelaide galloper certainly as the right form and could firm close to favouritism before Saturday’s race jumps.
Winner of the Group 3 Carlyon Cup (1600m) here in early February the Al Maher six-year-old also ran third to Foreteller, who went on to win the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes last Saturday, in the Group 2 Peter Young (1800m) at Caulfield last month before another mile win on March 9 when carrying 58kg to victory in the Group 2 Blamey Stakes at Flemington.
Budriguez carried 58kg to dead heat for the Blamey Stakes win with the current 2013 Melbourne Cup betting favourite Puissance De Lune and despite their hefty 59kg top weight in the Victoria Handicap could still prove the horse to beat.
The other $5.50 chances are then Peter Snowden’s last start stakes winning Lonhro gelding Launay (barrier 12) and the Tony Vasil-trained Under The Eiffel (barrier six) who shoots for win number three on the trot following wins at Launceston in the George Adams in February and at Caulfield over 1400m last Saturday.
Dan O’Sullivan’s Ballarat galloper British General at $6 then rounds out the single figure fancies for the Victoria Handicap 2013.
The General Nediym five-year-old was second to Launay at Flemington three starts back before a close third to Centennial Park, who runs in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill this weekend, in the Super Saturday Stakes on March 9.
They were last seen coming within a short half-head of Under The Eiffel last Saturday and will be looking to turn the table on their last start conqueror and paying a nice price to do so.
Check out the current fixed win prices on the full Victoria Handicap field in the table below with complete markets on all the weekend’s racing available online at bookmaker.com.au.
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2013 Birthday Card Stakes Odds
Caulfield Race 6 – 3:50pm (AEST) – 30/03/2013
|3||C’EST LA GUERRE (4)||71.00|
|6||UNDER THE EIFFEL (6)||5.50|
|9||BRITISH GENERAL (10)||6.00|
|10||SHOUT OUT LOUD (1)||21.00|
*Fixed Win odds provided by bookmaker.com.au and subject to change