One of the key support races on the Doomben Cup Day program in Brisbane this Saturday is the 2013 Lord Mayor’s Cup where Rob Heathcote’s Stradbroke Handicap-bound sprinter Solzhenitsyn is the headline acceptor.
The ace Brisbane trainer’s maiden, and to date only, Group 1 winner having taken out the Toorak Handicap over the Caulfield mile last October, St Petersburg six-year-old Solzhenitsyn is one of 12 final acceptors for the $115,000 Group 3 Carlton Mid Lord Mayor’s Cup (1600m) on the weekend.
Set to run as Doomben Race 4 at 1:55pm (AEST) this year’s Lord Mayor’s Cup is the back-up plan for Solzhenitsyn after Heathcote missed the first acceptance cut off for the smart gelding in the $500,000 Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m).
Instead they will run in the Lord Mayor’s Cup, weather and track conditions permitting, before targeting Queensland’s richest race – the $1.36 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 8.
Currently Solzhenitsyn, last seen running less than two lengths away seventh to current Doomben Cup betting favourite Lights Of Heaven in the Group 2 AD Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast, is rated a $15 chance in the Stradbroke Handicap odds.
They are also set to start top of the Lord Mayor’s Cup betting markets this weekend so long as the rain stays away and the track is firm, Heathcote confirming they would be scratched if the ground was heavy on Saturday.
It won’t be an easy task even on a firm track however as Solzhenitsyn has drawn the extreme outside barrier 12 of 12.
Also drawn wide is the John Thompson-trained Commands gelding Transporter (11) who was another that missed out on a Doomben Cup first acceptance.
Winner of back-to-back Brisbane races on Slow tracks in April including a 1615m effort by six lengths, the gelding was last seen running a very competitive third in the Hollindale Stakes when beaten only half a length after jumping form gate 11 of 11 – the same barrier they have this weekend.
Thompson launches a triple-pronged attack on the Lord Mayor’s Cup this year also accepting for the rails-drawn six-year-old Shamardashing looking to improve on their first-up failure in the Prime Minister’s Cup on Hollindale Day, and Hollindale ninth placed Hour Of Peril.
Melbourne’s leading trainer Peter Moody also has multiple acceptors with disappointing import Voila Ici to be ridden by Luke Nolen from barrier seven, and the resuming Ibicenco.
Shirocco stallion Ibicenco, another import, was last seen winning the Listed Sandown Cup over the two miles (3200m) on November 17 with Saturday’s distance likely to be a little short for the genuine stayer.
The only other horse coming off a win is then the Kelly Schweida-trained local Epic.
Drawn ideally in gate three with Ric McMahon in the saddle the Stratum five-year-old is after their fourth consecutive victory in Brisbane their last run resulting in a one and a quarter length victory over the Doomben mile on April 27.
Check out the complete 2013 Lord Mayor’s Cup field, barriers, jockeys and weights in the table below.
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2013 Lord Mayor’s Cup Final Field & Barrier Draw
Doomben Race 4 – 1:55pm (AEST) – 18/05/2013
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||3x62400x00||VOILA ICI (IRE)||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||7||59kg||107|
|2||x13136x307||SOLZHENITSYN (NZ)||Robert Heathcote||Michael Rodd||12||59kg||109|
|3||41x68996x0||SHAMARDASHING||John P Thompson||Timothy Bell||1||59kg||95|
|4||x612210x00||BIGGLES||Noel J Doyle||Grant Cooksley||6||59kg||95|
|5||1779237×00||DANAGAZE||Lawrie Mayfield-Smith||Andrew Spinks||5||59kg||85|
|6||6622444×26||WHAT HAPPENEDHENRY||Kelly Schweida||–||8||59kg||85|
|7||112×772113||TRANSPORTER||John P Thompson||Michael Cahill||11||59kg||99|
|8||55426×9449||HOUR OF PERIL||John P Thompson||Ryan Wiggins||10||59kg||90|
|9||x42x7x741x||IBICENCO (GER)||Peter G Moody||Brad Rawiller||9||59kg||103|
|10||32×2672111||EPIC||Kelly Schweida||Ric McMahon||3||59kg||87.5|
|11||21626×6140||ONETIMEATBANDCAMP||John P Thompson||Jim Byrne||4||59kg||81|
|12||7257217×27||ZENNISTA (NZ)||Lisa Latta||Jonathan Riddell||2||57kg||99|