Like Atlantic Jewel in Saturday’s Cox Plate, the favoured mare for the Manikato Stakes 2013 at Moonee Valley on Friday night Samaready has drawn barrier seven in her bid to beat the boys in the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival sprint classic.
Headlining proceedings on Friday evening the $1 million Group 1 Sportingbet Manikato Stakes (1200m) has drawn a top class field of 12 sprinters, including international talent from aboard.
But it is the in-form Samaready leading the Manikato Stakes markets, Mick Price’s Blue Diamond Stakes winner from last year flying this time in.
She had a year on the sidelines but came back as a more mature four-year-old winning her first-up run at Caulfield. She then backed up a month later at Moonee Valley and beat home Buffering by a blistering four lengths to become a dual Group 1 winner in the Moir Stakes (1200m) on September 27.
For the Moir Samaready was ridden by Craig Newitt from barrier 7 (of 10) and conditions should suit again with a month between runs for her here once more, Newitt staying on and the same barrier seven draw.
Price has also accepted for his Australian-bred Choisir six-year-old Le Bonsir who will jump one outside their favoured stablemate in barrier eight, the gelding third in the Moir two starts back.
Moir Stakes runner-up Buffering meanwhile is also back on Friday night, Rob Heathcote’s perennial Group 1 placegetter looking to finally break their elite level maiden status.
It will be the 18th Group 1 appearance for the Mossman six-year-old and their third shot at the Manikato.
In 2011 they were fourth to Sepoy before a sixth last year behind Sea Siren.
They have had their luck hampered again this year drawing barrier 10 of 12.
The other Queensland representative is then the Tony Gollan-trained Temple Of Boom, Craig Williams to ride from barrier 11.
Of course the other big name Manikato Stakes acceptor in 2013 is the Caspar Fownes-trained raider Lucky Nine.
In gate four with Brett Prebble to ride, the Hong Kong hero races for the first time since winning the Group 1 Krisflyer International Sprint (1200m) in Singapore back on May 19.
Reports from the horse’s trainer Fownes say they will only be around 85% fit for the Manikato, but is still expected to be competitive after a good hit-out at Werribee with Prebble aboard this week.
“Everything’s going smoothly,” Fownes told the Herald Sun.
“He is really well in himself; and Brett said he’s stronger and heavier this campaign.”
Along with Samaready and Lucky Nine there are three other last-start winners looking to go back-to-back in the Manikato this weekend, the most notable of which is Rebel Dane.
Gary Portelli’s California Dane four-year-old won their first Group 1 last start on September 29 at Caulfield with a brave effort in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) but must now handle a drop back to the 1200m.
The other two coming off a win are then the Anthony Cummings-trained Diamond Earth (barrier three) and Chris Waller’s always honest Arinosa (barrier 12) who won the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick at the start of the month.
Rounding out the 12-horse Manikato Stakes field are then Krisflyer International Sprint runner-up Bel Sprinter on the rails, the Danny O’Brien-trained Shamexpress, Peter Moody’s always dangers Moment Of Change and recent The Shorts winner Sessions for Peter Snowden.
See below for the full Manikato Stakes 2013 field, barriers, jockeys and weights in the table below.
Then to check out the post-field betting markets head to Ladbrokes.com.au and open an account with the online bookie offering double the odds on the Cox Plate this weekend!
2013 Manikato Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Moonee Valley Race 8 – 10:00pm (AEST) – 25/10/2013
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||x51551471x||LUCKY NINE (IRE)||Caspar Fownes||Brett Prebble||4||58.5kg||118|
|2||168x1432x2||BUFFERING||Robert Heathcote||Damian Browne||10||58.5kg||112|
|3||0x7570x228||TEMPLE OF BOOM||Tony Gollan||Craig Williams||11||58.5kg||106|
|4||1579x132x6||BEL SPRINTER||Jason Warren||Michael Rodd||1||58.5kg||110|
|5||53x161x97x||SHAMEXPRESS (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||Stephen Baster||2||58.5kg||107|
|6||31x2205x24||MOMENT OF CHANGE||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||6||58.5kg||108|
|7||1x1240x141||REBEL DANE||Gary Portelli||Glen Boss||9||58.5kg||109|
|8||1321x1x214||SESSIONS||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||5||58.5kg||102|
|9||53163×1134||LE BONSIR||Mick Price||Michael Walker||8||58.5kg||100|
|10||11113x4x11||SAMAREADY||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||7||56.5kg||113|
|11||4025178×31||DIAMOND EARTH||Anthony Cummings||Peter Robl||3||56.5kg||84|