Leon Corstens’ Thousand Guineas winner Commanding Jewel is set to return to racing at Moonee Valley this weekend heading nominations taken for the Carlyon Stakes 2013.
The now four-year-old daughter of Commands has won three of her five starts to date, most notably taking out the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) by three lengths last start back in October.
Injury setbacks ruled her out of the autumn but she’s ready to get back to it this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival starting on Saturday with the $120,000 Listed 1PRINT.COM.AU Carlyon Stakes (1000m).
“It’s great to have her back,” Corstens said according to AAP.
“You would expect her to run a very, very reasonable race.”
There were a bumper 20 older gallopers nominated for this year’s Carlyon Stakes, often a telling guide heading towards some of the major spring features.
Commanding Jewel, who will be ridden by globetrotting hoop Craig Williams for her first-up assignment replacing the suspended Michael Rodd, is the equal top-rated entry along with six-year-old General Truce, winner of the Group 3 DC McKay Stakes (1100m) in April.
She’s heading towards a shot at the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) back at the track on October 26 and is currently rated a generous $41 chance to win the weight-for-age classic through bookmaker.com.au.
“You take each step as it comes,” Corstens said.
“She’s never been over a mile-and-a-quarter before and you keep hoping all the time she’s going to achieve that.
“She looks very well in herself and she’s a lot stronger than she was last year.
“She’s furnished into a lovely mare.”
Another promising galloper set to run first-up in the Carlyon if accepted is then the Danny O’Brien-trained Elusive City five-year-old Adamantium.
A consistent sprinter, Adamantium finished off their last prep on a high back in the summer winning down the Flemington straight by two lengths in December before their two and a half length effort over Catapulted in the Group 3 Standish Handicap (1200m) on New Year’s Day.
Others high up the ballot then include Rubiton Stakes winner Adebisi who will be ridden by Dwayne Dunn, Darren Weir’s last start Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap champ at Flemington Broken and Shamardal mare Elite Elle who was second in the Sir John Monash Stakes last month.
Also coming off some nice form are then the likes of veteran eight-year-old Shadowfax, Rick Worthington’s Golden Sunshine and the Tony McEvoy-trained Pocket Rockets who will be shooting for their fourth on the trot.
The Invincible Spirit six-year-old won back-to-back races at home in Adelaide during the winter before their nice effort over 1000m at Flemington on August 10.
See below for the current Carlyon Stakes 2013 entries with the final field and barriers due for release on Wednesday.
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Carlyon Stakes Nominations & Weights
Moonee Valley Racecourse – 24/08/2013
|1||ADAMANTIUM (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||5||58kg||100|
|4||COMMANDING JEWEL||Leon Corstens||1||58kg||105|
|5||GENERAL TRUCE||Ricky Maund||2||58kg||105|
|7||IT’S CRUNCH TIME||Doug Harrison||7||57kg||90|
|9||CHOSEN TO FLY||Colin & Cindy Alderson||11||56kg||96|
|10||LAST GIFT||Stephen Theodore||14||56kg||87|
|12||OFFICE BEARER||Peter G Moody||17||56kg||75|
|13||POCKET ROCKETS||Tony McEvoy||10||56kg||91|
|14||ROMAN EYE||Kane Harris||18||56kg||67|
|15||SHADOWFAX (NZ)||Luke Oliver||12||56kg||89|
|17||ELITE ELLE||Tony Vasil||6||55kg||95|
|18||ANABAA’S LEGACY (NZ)||Dean Binaisse||16||54kg||82|
|19||GOLDEN SUNSHINE||Rick Worthington||15||54kg||84|