There are four runners battling for top spot in the markets for this weekend’s Up & Coming Stakes 2013 at Warwick Farm Racecourse making the pick for the winner a tough one for the punters.
Running as Race 5 in Sydney at 3:00pm (AEST) on Saturday, the field for the $125,000 Group 3 Up And Coming Stakes (1300m) is down to 10 following the early scratching of #9 Dream Forward.
It’s a wide open race betting wise too with four runners at $5.50 or under in the markets.
Narrow favourite at $4.40 is Chris Waller’s JJ Atkins fourth place-getter in the winter Vilanova will get the run of the race from the inside all as they kick off their 2013 Caulfield Guineas campaign.
They are then followed closely by last start Juvenile Stayer winner by four lengths Drago ($4.60), Gai Waterhouse’s undefeated Pitcrew ($4.80) and early market mover Diamond Oasis ($5.50) who was competitive all throughout their juvenile campaign.
So which of these, if any, should you be locking in to win the Up And Coming Stakes?
And should you even bother looking at the longer priced hopes for value such as the Bjorn Baker-trained Champagne Stakes runner-up Fuerza ($9.50) or David Payne’s last start The Rosebud third palced Dowdstown Charlie ($10)?
#2 Fuerza ($9.50)
Lots to like about this local Snippetson colt who is also at a great price for an upset Up And Coming Stakes result here. Still a maiden after their eight starts to date but has run top three on five occasions showing they can match it with the best of their kind. Best run to date was nose away second behind Guleph in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes over the Randwick mile when barrier 12 (of 13) defeated them. First-up off a three month break at the start of the month at Canterbury running a good fourth, expect improvement off that getting up to the 1300m which is going to play right into their hand.
#3 Vilanova ($4.40)
Drawn to get the right run in barrier one with Hugh Bowman to ride, Waller’s son of Commands is heading towards some of the spring majors and this is their chance to prove they’ll be competitive later. Good first-up second in the Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m) in Brisbane back in May so the 1300m should be good when they resume here. Second also in the Group 2 BRC Sires Produce (1350m) that prep and their fourth to Romantic Touch in the JJ Atkins over the mile was a cracker. Had a trial on August 16 at this track (800m) and will be ready to go over a bit more distance on the weekend.
#5 Pitcrew ($4.80)
Hasn’t put a foot wrong yet and think they’ll continue to impress throughout the spring as Waterhouse has gotten so many of her young men to do over the years (think Pierro). This Sebring gelding’s had three starts for as many wins, most recently at Warwick Farm over the 1400m on July 13. Come here fresh (which they race well as), have a win at the track, distance is a non-issue. Only thing is all three wins were on Slow – Heavy, can they handle a dry track?
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from bookmaker.com.au and subject to change