This Saturday the big one in Melbourne is of course the cup hopes facing off in Flemington’s 2013 Turnbull Stakes – betting tips and insider Races.com.au selections for which are detailed below.
Due to jump as Flemington Race 8 at 4:25pm (AEST) this year’s $500,000 Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) features 10 individual Group 1 winners in its full field, as well as the favourites for both the Caulfield Cup (October 19) and Melbourne Cup (November 5).
Turnbull Stakes betting meanwhile is a tight battle between that Melbourne Cup favourite Puissance De Lune ($4.80) and last year’s runner-up in the ‘race that stops a nation’, the Gai Waterhouse-trained Fiorente ($4.60).
A lot of this is going to come down to the ride and luck from their gates as they’ve drawn at opposite ends of the field.
The always honest and fast finishing Darren Weir-trained Puissance De Lune is drawn on the rails with jockey Glen Boss out to atone for his shocking ride in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) last start where the horse reeled off the fastest final sectionals when finishing seventh to It’s A Dundeel.
Also considered a good chance for the trophy according to the bookies are then the likes of Chris Waller’s progressive Group 1 winning mare Royal Descent ($6.50), the Mark Kavanagh-trained four-year-old Super Cool ($8) and the Lloyd Williams-owned Fawkner ($10) whose stablemate Green Moon won the Turnbull Stakes – Melbourne Cup double last spring.
So are these the horses you should be tipping in your Turnbull Stakes bets?
Or is there value to be found further down the markets from some of the outsiders here including Waller’s widely-drawn Queensland Derby champ Hawkspur ($11), last year’s Emirates Stakes winner Happy Trails ($31) or even last start Naturalism Stakes victor Mr O’Ceirin ($51).
#4 Super Cool ($8)
Big effort to win the Australian Cup over this track and distance back in March beating Fiveandahalfstar to do so. Returned with a nice third in the Memsie Stakes behind the then undefeated Atlantic Jewel. Far from disgraced in the Dato when half a length away fourth to Fiorente. Gets up to the 2000m here which they are going to appreciate, also drop from 58.5kg to 56.5kg – another advantage. Good gate nine draw, has a chance to get into the right position and if they finish this off like they can, will win at a good price for the punters.
#16 Royal Descent ($6.50)
Think it’s nearly time to break the mare’s hoodoo here – only five wins for the ladies since 1983 – with Chris Waller’s ATC Oaks winner to come close. Beat the girls in the mud over the mile and a half at Randwick in the autumn by 10 lengths to become an elite level winner. Showed she wasn’t just a top 3YO, coming on this season with three strong runs leading up to the Turnbull. First-up second and second-up third both at Group 3 level when beaten under a length. Last start was a cracker coming within a long neck of Streama in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m). Step-up to 2000m will suit, needs to handle the other way of racing in her Melbourne debut but think she can do that.
#6 Fiorente ($4.60)
Loved their Dato win, and is another set to thrive getting up in distance which will be their first look at something more than a mile since their huge second in the Melbourne Cup (3200m) in their down under debut last November. Dato was weight-for-age and so are going to love coming back to 56.5kg here. Awkward draw (14) but he is a highly-rated import with class and a good hoop on their back in Rawiller so watch out.
#14 Dear Demi ($21)
Love this price for Clarry Conners’ smart Dehere mare. Earned a shot at the Turnbull when a length away third to It’s A Dundeel as a $66 roughie in the Underwood showing her love for Melbourne’s longer distanced features. If she runs like that again is a definite chance for the minor placings again. From the draw should be able to race handy again and finishing strongly.
#5 Hawkspur ($11) – Hasn’t got the draw but distance is right, is a Group 1 winner and is favourite for the Caulfield Cup so getting ready to peak
#7 Puissance De Lune ($4.80) – Always a chance, think will improve greatly on Underwood position but really need to be firing from that inside alley in a massive field like this
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change