2013 Spring Stakes Stepping Stone for Carnival Hopes

This Saturday Adelaide’s Morphettville Racecourse will host a range of Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival contenders who are looking to kick off their campaigns in the Spring Stakes 2013.

Happy Trails

Reigning winner Happy Trails is nominated to defend their title in the 2013 Spring Stakes this Saturday. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia.

Having produced many a spring star over the years, this year’s $115,000 Group 3 Spring Stakes (1200m) has drawn 19 nominees.

Among the top fancies is the defending Spring Stakes winner Happy Trails.

Paul Beshara’s local Good Journey six-year-old won the race first-up 12 months ago before heading to Melbourne for an excellent season that culminated with a win in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

They were last seen crossing a credible third behind Chris Waller’s injured import Reliable Man (1st) and current Cox Plate favourite It’s A Dundeel (2nd) in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on April 27.

Happy Trails kicks off here again before going second-up into the $350,000 Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 31, a race they ran second to Sincero in last year when it was still only a Group 2 status event.

Last year’s Spring Stakes runner-up Gossip Girl is also back for another crack in 2013, the veteran Testa Rossa mare having had just two failed runs since her second to Happy Trails here last August.

Local trainer David Jolly meanwhile has nominated for his Dane Shadow mare Danish Spy and Budriguez.

Danish Spy was in top form during her autumn – winter campaign running a close second to Star Of Giselle in the Group 2 Queen Of The South Stakes (1600m) before finishing less than two lengths away fourth to subsequent Stradbroke Handicap winner Linton in the Group 3 RA Lee Stakes (1600m) in May.

Al Maher seven-year-old Budriguez also runs first-up here not having raced since March.

They were on fire during their latest prep though, the now seven-year-old enjoying a Caulfield win in the Group 3 Carlyon Cup (1600m) in February.

They also ran third, beaten only half a length by Foreteller, in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at the track before posting back-to-back wins.

Their best was a very close victory over 2013 Melbourne Cup favourite Puissance De Lune in the Group 2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) at Flemington before their easier win in the Group 3 Victoria Handicap (1400m) at Caulfield last start.

“He has had just the one jumpout so he is probably going to be a bit underdone for Saturday,” Jolly told TVN.

After Saturday Budriguez will then head to the Listed Penny Edition Stakes (1450m) back at the track on August 24 before their Melbourne plans are mapped out.

Other top-rated fancies among the Spring Stakes 2013 nominations then include Tony McEvoy’s Parramatta Cup winner Pelicano, local Zariz gelding Riziz who comes off a win in the Listed All Victorian Sprint Final win at Flemington from July 6, consistent Ballarat galloper Broken and Just Discreet.

The Phillip Stokes-trained Exceed And Excel mare Just Discreet returns to racing having run second to Assertive Eagle in the Listed Proud Miss Stakes (1200m) last time out in May.

“She has had a jumpout in preparation for the race and is in good order,” Stokes said.

“She’s a backmarker who just needs luck and I think she’ll be capable of winning a low-grade stakes race in Melbourne over the spring.”

The official 2013 Spring Stakes final field and barriers are due out on Wednesday so stay tuned.

In the meantime why not treat yourself to a bonus $500 bet at bookmaker.com.au by signing up as a new depositing player using the code word BONUSBET?

2013 Spring Stakes Nominations

Morphettville Racecourse – 10/08/2013

# Horse Trainer Hcp. Rating
1 BARIGAN BOY Grant Young 88
2 BROKEN Darren Weir 95
3 BUDRIGUEZ David Jolly 111
4 DANISH SPY David Jolly 82
5 DEHERE HUNTER Kane Harris 74
6 DRAW FORWARD Mick Price 86
7 FINAL COMMAND John Macmillan 89
8 GAMBLIN’ GURU Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas 66
9 GENERAL OFFER Mick Price 76
10 GOLDEN PENNY Richard Jolly 88
11 GOSSIP GIRL Jim Mason 92
12 HAPPY TRAILS Paul Beshara 112
13 JUST DISCREET Phillip Stokes 95
14 MELIORA Peter G Moody 89
15 OUT OF COOBER Bill Smart 81
16 PELICANO Tony McEvoy 101
17 PILLAR OF HERCULES Michael Hickmott 90
18 RIZIZ Ken Sweeney 101
19 ROMAN TREASURE (USA) Peter G Moody 90