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While most of the pre-Australian Oaks 2013 talk is on New Zealand Derby winner and deserving favourite Habibi the second line of betting is occupied by another genuine chance in Royal Descent who will be looking to score an upset on a nice win at the track seven days earlier.
Chris Waller’s Redoute’s Choice three-year-old is one of 11 fillies engaged in this Saturday’s $550,000 Group 1 Patinack Farm Australian Oaks (2400m) at Royal Randwick, Royal Descent second pick in the bookmaker.com.au markets at a quote of $5.
She trails only Kiwi raider Habibi ($3) who ran a good third in her debut down under behind Norzita, who takes on crack colt Pierro in Saturday’s $2 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m), in the Vinery Stud Stakes on April 6.
Royal Descent meanwhile ran at Randwick last weekend and showed nice improvement to score a breezy 2.5 length victory in the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m) when carrying a hefty 59kg, an effor Waller was happy if not a little surprised by.
“I was dreading the race last Saturday because I thought it might have been a bit beyond her,” Waller said.
She goes back to 56kg for the ATC Oaks under the set weights conditions and while she’s drawn a tad awkward with barrier nine, is still a genuine chance of stepping up in her maiden elite level assignment.
“It’s a Group 1 race and the horse is good enough to be in the first three,” Waller said.
“She was set for the Vinery Stud Stakes but it was too wet to run her.
“Last Saturday was basically the next option without going to the paddock.
“This is her first preparation. She went to the paddock for one week but she has basically been in all the time.”
A win by Royal Descent over Habibi on Saturday would also come as a relief for Waller who tried to purchase the exciting Kiwi late last year.
“We tried to buy Habibi after it won its first two starts,” Waller said.
“I thought we were a bit soft with our three-year-olds but as it turns out I’m going to have two in the race anyway.”
His other is $51 roughie Wind Bender.
#4 Royal Descent – Horse Form
- Barrier: 9
- Jockey: Nash Rawiller
- Trainer: Chris Waller
- Owners: Mr G Harvey
- Age: 3YO
- Gender: Filly
- Breeding: by Redoute’s Choice by Mulan Princess
- Career: 6-3-1-1
- Win: 50%
- Place: 83.33%
- Last 6: 113421
- Prize Money: $224,530
- Track: 1-1-0-0
- Distance: 0-0-0-0
- Current 2013 Australian Oaks Odds: $5
Why Royal Descent Can Score an Upset 2013 Australian Oaks Result
- Is a nicely-bred filly whose pedigree suggests she will run out a strong 2400m
- One of only two last start winners in the race having won the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes at the track over 2000m last weekend
- Needs to handle the 7 day back-up, the 2400m and the Group 1 field but class says she can
- Progressive filly that is improving with each run
- Set weights (56kg) will suit after she carried 59kg to victory last weekend where the runner-up had just 54kg
- The Adrian Knox Stakes has proven a nice form line for the Oaks in recent years with two fillies completing the double in the past 10 years with Republic Lass (2002) and Wild Iris (2004)
- Super consistent record so far with the second best Win (50%) and Place (83.33%) rates behind only the favourite #2 Habibi
Why Royal Descent Won’t Win the Australian Oaks 2013
- Is yet to race over further than 2000m
- Faces two smart New Zealand Group 1 winners that have won over the distance (#2 Habibi and #$5 More Than Sacred)
First Group 1 assignment
- On a short seven day back-up so could be getting tired
Think Royal Descent has what it takes to win the Australian Oaks on the weekend?
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