Mark Kavanagh’s undefeated mare Atlantic Jewel will look to extend her record to nine from nine this weekend when the triple Group 1 winner heads a crack field for the 2013 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes at Moonee Valley.
The headline race of the Melbourne meeting, and a key lead-up to the spring majors, the $300,000 Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) drew 12 early entries with nominations extended until 10:00am (AEST) on Tuesday.
Atlantic Jewel is the top rated of the current nominees following the daughter of Fastnet Rock’s first-up success against a star-studded field in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 31.
Reuniting with her regular rider Michael Rodd who previously guided her to Group 1 wins in the 2011 Thousand Guineas and last year’s All Aged Stakes, Atlantic Jewel was returning from a 16 month injury-enforced lay off.
She showed no ill effects of the career setback which saw her miss so much racing however, winning the Memsie by an easy two and a half lengths over Ferlax earning top spot in the futures markets for the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) on October 26.
Saturday she’ll look to win again this time at Moonee Valley where she won her second career start in September two years back.
It might not be in the Dato however with Kavanagh also nominating her for the $220,000 Group 2 Stocks Stakes (1600m) against a field of fellow mares.
He believes she could be competitive in both races, however is mindful that she’s still fragile after so long away from racing.
“We’ll nominate and see how they look and make our mind up nearer to acceptance time,” Kavanagh said according to The Australian.
“I’ve got two good races to choose from, but I’d rather just see how she works on Tuesday and then make the call on which race she’ll start in,” he told WA Today.
“But I’m very happy with her and there’s no need to make a quick decision.”
Kavanagh will still be represented in the Dato however if he chooses not to accept for his star mare with Memsie Stakes third placegetter Super Cool.
“I’m very happy with the way both horses have trained on since running at Caulfield. I’m very happy with the way they have come on,” Kavanagh said.
Another top fancy for the Cox Plate 2013, Kavanagh’s Fastnet Rock four-year-old was the narrow Australian Cup winner in the autumn and are sure to improve on their Memsie third when they get up to the mile on Saturday.
Also with dual representatives in the Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes nominations is Victoria’s premier trainer Peter Moody with High Esteem and Lidari.
Redoute’s Choice stallion High Esteem, winner of the Adelaide Guineas in April, comes off a close second at Caulfield to their stablemate and French import Lidari who enjoyed their first win down under first-up.
Other highly rated entries include Gai Waterhouse’s Melbourne Cup runner-up Fiorente who was sixth in the Memsie, triple Group 1 winning Kiwi Sangster and last year’s Emirates Stakes winner Happy Trails who defends their Dato title here with Damien Oliver aboard.
Oliver hasn’t ridden since last November having been disqualified for race betting, but gets back in the saddle for Saturday’s ride on the star South Australian runner.
See below for the full Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes 2013 nominations, updates out tomorrow followed by Wednesday’s final field and barrier draw.
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2013 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes Nominations
Moonee Valley Racecourse – 14/09/2013
|1||ATLANTIC JEWEL||Mark Kavanagh||117|
|2||BASS STRAIT (NZ)||David Hayes||71|
|3||FIORENTE (IRE)||Gai Waterhouse||111|
|5||HAPPY TRAILS||Paul Beshara||111|
|6||HIGH ESTEEM||Peter G Moody||87|
|7||LIDARI (FR)||Peter G Moody||101|
|8||SANGSTER (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||110|
|9||SEVILLE (GER)||Robert Hickmott||107|
|11||STAR ROLLING||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||75|
|12||SUPER COOL||Mark Kavanagh||113|