A classy capacity field of stayers is accepted to face off in the 100th edition of the Clarence River Jockey Club’s premier event with the Grafton Cup 2013 acceptances closing today.
Lighting up Grafton Racecourse this Thursday, July 11, the $150,000 Listed Dougherty Constructions 100th Grafton Cup (2350m) features a full 16 starters plus three emergencies lying in wait.
Heading the field in the number one saddlecloth with 59kg is the Peter Moody-trained import Voila Ici (barrier 10) coming off a second to Zennista in the Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) on June 29.
Caloundra Cup winner Zennista then follows in the Grafton Cup field and weights on 57kg, the Lisa Latta-trained Kiwi raider in gate eight with her last start winning jockey Damien Browne retaining the ride.
At the sunshine coast the Zenno Rob Roy mare carried 55kg to victory and must be at her best with the two kilo increase for the Grafton classic this week.
Also on 57kg is then Fiumicino (barrier 7), the rising Zabeel 10-year-old a brave second in the Listed Winter Cup (2400m) in the mud at Rosehill last Monday when second with a big 59kg.
Winter Cup winner Destiny’s Kiss is also accepted for a Grafton Cup re-match with 56kg, Joe Pride’s consistent Power Of Destiny gelding suffering an early blow with gate 17.
They will come into 14 should all three emergencies fail to gain a start which is still a big ask after they had a lovely run from barrier four in the Winter Cup with 55.5kg.
Other notable Grafton Cup hopefuls drawing out in the carpark for Thursday’s feature then include the Ciaron Maher-trained Group performer Mr O’Ceirin (19) and Zar Zar Binks (18).
Zar Zar Binks is one of the locally-trained hopefuls, Bindi Cheers’ progressive Zariz three-year-old coming off a gutsy win in the Grafton Cup Prelude (2120m) from last week.
The Grafton Cup Prelude victory followed a four and a half length winning effort by the up-and-coming gelding in the Murwillumbah Cup in the mud, the barrier the only thing going against them for their acid test this week.
Cheers also accepted for her Casino Prince three-year-old Phrases who drew barrier three but who looks unlikely of gaining a start as the third emergency.
Other notable chances that are assured of a spot in the starting 16 then include the Gai Waterhouse-trained Reuben Percival (barrier 12), Michael Moroney’s Caloundra Cup fourth placed Shenzhou Steeds (barrier 15) and Peal Of Bells drawn ideally in barrier four.
Peal Of Bells will gallop between races at their home course at Kembla Grange on Tuesday in front of Racing NSW stewards to prove their fitness before being allowed to run on Thursday.
The Gwenda Markwell-trained gelding was in flying form when winning the Stayers Cup over the two miles by seven lengths at Randwick last month but was well below par when beaten nearly 24 lengths finishing dead last in the Winter Cup.
The full 2013 Grafton Cup field, barriers, jockeys and weights are listed in the table below.
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2013 Grafton Cup Final Field & Barrier Draw
Grafton Race 7 – 3:53pm (AEST) – 11/07/2013
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||400×007352||VOILA ICI (IRE)||Peter G Moody||Glen Colless||10||59kg||103|
|2||217×274331||ZENNISTA (NZ)||Lisa Latta||Damian Browne||8||57kg||103|
|3||3750×70102||FIUMICINO (NZ)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dwayne Dunn||7||57kg||99|
|4||635×644211||DESTINY’S KISS||Joseph Pride||Christian Reith||17||56kg||97|
|5||41x520x616||MR O’CEIRIN (NZ)||Ciaron Maher||Blake Shinn||19||56kg||97|
|6||9272239×55||REUBEN PERCIVAL (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Nash Rawiller||12||55.5kg||96|
|7||660×070118||PEAL OF BELLS||Gwenda Markwell||Tim Clark||4||54kg||93|
|8||30×4075024||SHENZHOU STEEDS (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Eddie Wilkinson||15||54kg||93|
|9||132×708818||ANAGOLD||Bryan Guy||Anthony Pattillo||11||54kg||91|
|10||5545×51234||DEVISED||Tim Donnelly||John Kissick (a)||6||54kg||85|
|11||415×800990||SAINT ENCOSTA||John P Thompson||Timothy Bell||9||54kg||84|
|12||32846×6857||RAEBURN||Brian Smith||Ryan Wiggins||1||54kg||83|
|13||76x550x077||YULALONA||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||14||54kg||81|
|14||1366312311||ZAR ZAR BINKS||Bindi Cheers||Matthew Paget||18||54kg||79|
|15||3811255065||DAZZLE US||Bruce W Hill||Jim Byrne||16||54kg||78|
|16||43×0813132||PIAZZA SAN PIETRO (NZ)||Bede Murray||Ms Kathy O’Hara||2||54kg||77|
|17e||8×88853108||TRAJET||Liam Birchley||Robert Thompson||13||54kg||76|
|18e||06×0851112||HANDSOME DANE||Owen Glue||Brenton Avdulla||5||54kg||73|