Daniel Clarken’s reigning Blue Diamond Stakes winner Miracles of Life will have her next start under the lights at Moonee Valley on Moir Stakes Night this Friday when she tackles a class field of fellow three-year-old fillies in the 2013 Champagne Stakes.
Running as Race 4 at 7:45pm (AEST) this year’s $150,000 Group 3 Gallagher Bassett / TBV Champagne Stakes (1200m) has drawn a final field of 11 hopefuls headlined by Morphettville-based Miracles Of Life.
The daughter of Not A Single Doubt enjoyed four consecutive wins to kick off her career last season culminating with her impressive one and a half length effort over Fast ‘N’ Rocking in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) in February.
She spent the next six months sidelined and returned on August 31 to run fourth behind Blue Diamond runner-up Fast ‘N’ Rocking who had improved enough to win the Group 3 HDF McNeil Stakes (1200m).
Now she will look to get back to the business of winning in the Champagne Stakes where she will be ridden by regular jockey Lauren Stojakovic from barrier four who retains the ride despite having caused interference to other runners in the McNeil.
“She’s still just a little bit woolly and will improve further but she’s close to 100 per cent,” Clarken told the Herald Sun speaking of Miracles Of Life.
One of her main dangers looks to come from gate two with New Zealand horseman Stephen Marsh saddling up his Bernardini filly Ruud Awakening.
A Group 1 winner back home having taken out the Group 1 Haunui Farm Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Ellerslie by 2.5 lengths back in March, Ruud Awakening travelled down under after that.
They failed to make an impression in Sydney however when beating just one other runner when 15th behind Overreach in the Golden Slipper.
After a five month break they went to Melbourne at the start of the month and were fifth to Miracle To Me in a 1100m Flemington sprint, an effort they will improve on getting up to the 1200m on Friday.
The two other top-rated Champagne Stakes acceptors are then the Peter Snowden-trained Street Cry filly Metastasio and John Thompson’s Thump who have drawn at opposite ends of the field with barriers 10 and one respectively.
A daughter of Red Ransom, Thump has form around some of the best fillies and has beaten some of them too.
First-up she won the Group 2 Silver Shadow Stakes (1200m) at Warwick Farm before her very close third behind Thousand Guineas fancies Bound To Earth and Guelph in the Group 2 Furious Stakes (1200m) on September 7 at Randwick.
She goes to Melbourne for the first time here since her third on debut to Villa Verde on Melbourne Cup Day last year and must handle the other way of racing.
Other notable Champagne Stakes hopes this weekend include the Clarry Conners-trained last start Warwick Farm winner Fare Well, Tango’s Daughter who won back-to-back races in June and I Love It who won on debut last start.
See below for the full Champagne Stakes 2013 field, barriers and jockeys.
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2013 Champagne Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Moonee Valley Race 4 – 7:45pm (AEST) – 27/09/2013
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||1111×4||MIRACLES OF LIFE||Daniel Clarken||Ms Lauren Stojakovic||4||56kg||100|
|2||1121110×5||RUUD AWAKENING||Stephen Marsh||James McDonald||2||56kg||94|
|3||118×224||METASTASIO||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||10||56kg||80|
|4||3x77260x13||THUMP||John P Thompson||Craig Williams||1||56kg||89|
|5||1×361||FARE WELL||Clarry Conners||Luke Nolen||6||56kg||71|
|6||0x11x||TANGO’S DAUGHTER||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||8||56kg||70|
|7||15×6||GO AGAIN||Robert Smerdon||Ben Melham||11||56kg||66|
|8||4×4142||LONGCHAMP BELLE||Jason Warren||Michael Rodd||5||56kg||66|
|9||14x||COSMIC ENDEAVOUR||Gai Waterhouse||Nash Rawiller||7||56kg||66|
|10||4x16x||KISS ME KETUT (NZ)||Stephen Theodore||Brett Prebble||9||56kg||61|
|11||1||I LOVE IT||John Salanitri||Damien Oliver||3||56kg||63|