Weights for next week’s Grafton Cup 2013 have now been released with the Peter Moody-trained Voila Ici the highest handicapped of the 32 stayers entered for the centenary edition of the Clarence River Jockey Club’s showcase race.
Set to light up Grafton Racecourse on Thursday July 11, this year’s $150,000 Listed Dogherty Constructions 100th Grafton Cup (2350m) is shaping up as a cracker with a high class list of early entries.
Heading the early Grafton Cup weights with 59kg is progressive European import Voila Ici who comes off a brave second with a similarly large handicap (59.5kg) on a Heavy (9) track in the Caloundra Cup last Saturday.
The New Zealand-trained Caloundra Cup winner Zennista is also among the Grafton Cup nominations with trainer Lisa Latta opting to bypass the Queensland Cup over the two miles at Eagle Farm this Saturday in favour of the New South Wales feature.
Zennista is on 57kg for the Grafton Cup as one of the two next heaviest weighted hopefuls along with dual Group 1 winner Fiumicino.
The Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes-trained Fiumicino was brave in defeat in the mud at Rosehill on Monday when they carried 59kg to second in the Listed Winter Cup (2400m).
While the Hawkes have been very vocal over their disapproval of the veteran Zabeel nine-year-olds big weight there which they believe cost him the race, they should be happier as they go back two kilos for the Grafton Cup.
Winter Cup champ Destiny’s Kiss is another set to back up at Grafton, Joe Pride’s Power Of Destiny four-year-old getting in on 56kg.
Shooting for their third straight win following back-to-back Rosehill victories, Destiny’s Kiss had 55.5kg for their Winter Cup success and should be able to handle a half kilo rise without any problems.
Destiny’s Kiss is also one of three horses equal first on the Grafton Cup 2013 ballot along with Zennista and Zar Zar Binks.
The Bindi Cheers-trained Zar Zar Binks is guaranteed a run then and is extremely well weighted on the 54kg minimum.
A rising Zariz four-year-old Zar Zar Binks is so high up the order of entry as they managed to win the Grafton Cup Prelude (2120m) on Thursday which was her second on the trot following a massive 4.5 length effort in the Murwillumbah Cup.
Meanwhile there are just two other horses above the 54kg minimum with the Ciaron Maher-trained Mr O’Ceirin (56kg) and Gai Waterhouse’s Reuben Percival (55.5kg).
Other notable hopes getting in with the light weight then include Murwillumbah Cup runner-up Handsome Dane, De Fine Lago coming off a Moonee Valley win from last weekend and Peal Of Bells.
A seven length winner of the Stayers Cup (3200m) at Randwick two back, the Gwenda Markwell-trained Peal Of Bells was a shock dead last in the Winter Cup on Monday.
Beaten over 23 lengths Markwell put it down to the Heavy track and failing to be able to complete some crucial lead-up work because of other washed out trials around Sydney.
They were to back up on Saturday in the Listed Queensland Cup (3200m) at Eagle Farm but have been scratched from the race with a pending veterinary inspection before being cleared for the Grafton Cup.
Check out the full 2013 Grafton Cup nominations, ballot and weights in the table below.
Whether it is the Queensland Cup this weekend or Thursday’s Grafton special make sure the bets you place are at the best prices by backing a winner online at bookmaker.com.au!
2013 Grafton Cup Weights & Ballot
Grafton Racecourse – 11/07/2013
|1||VOILA ICI (IRE)||Peter G Moody||5||59kg||103|
|2||FIUMICINO (NZ)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||6||57kg||99|
|3||ZENNISTA (NZ)||Lisa Latta||1=||57kg||103|
|4||DESTINY’S KISS||Joseph Pride||1=||56kg||97|
|5||MR O’CEIRIN (NZ)||Ciaron Maher||7||56kg||97|
|6||REUBEN PERCIVAL (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||8||55.5kg||96|
|8||BID SPOTTER||Toby Edmonds||13||54kg||86|
|9||BRAVE ALI (NZ)||Craig Martin||23||54kg||71|
|10||BUFFETT (NZ)||Bruce W Hill||24||54kg||70|
|11||CASTLEMAGNE KING||Basil Ryan||29||54kg||63|
|12||CIRCLE OF FAME||Ruth Cooper||31||54kg||59|
|13||DAZZLE US||Bruce W Hill||19||54kg||78|
|14||DE FINE LAGO||Tony Vasil||11||54kg||92|
|16||GOLD CAPE||John Wheeler||18||54kg||80|
|17||HANDSOME DANE||Owen Glue||22||54kg||73|
|18||LUCKY IMA CUGAT||Steve Hodge||30||54kg||60|
|19||PEAL OF BELLS||Gwenda Markwell||9=||54kg||93|
|21||PIAZZA SAN PIETRO (NZ)||Bede Murray||20||54kg||77|
|25||SAINT ENCOSTA||John P Thompson||15||54kg||84|
|27||SHENZHOU STEEDS (NZ)||Michael Moroney||9=||54kg||93|
|29||VOLCANIC TRADER||John A Sprague||32||54kg||55|
|30||WORLD WIDE||Bede Murray||12||54kg||90|
|32||ZAR ZAR BINKS||Bindi Cheers||1=||54kg||79|