The final field for the 2013 Cox Stakes (2100m) has been released; with Ihtsahymn and Luckygray set to face off again in the Group 2 event at Ascot on Saturday.
Ihtsahymn will have the opportunity to stamp himself as the star of the 2013 Perth Summer Racing Carnival after taking out the Group 2 Western Australian Guineas (1600m) and Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) in impressive fashion.
The son of Ihtiram was well-backed in the lead-up to the Kingston Town Classic and held-off a fast finishing Luckygray to record his first victory at Group 1 level and stamp himself as a potential contender for major races during the 2014 Autumn Racing Carnivals in both Sydney and Melbourne.
Ihtsahymn will jump from barrier two with just 51kg on his back this weekend and will be partnered by Steven Parnham who ended a lengthy association with Group 1 winner Playing God to take up the ride on Ihtsahymn in the Kingston Town Classic.
The Cox Stakes is one of the only major races on the Perth racing calendar that has not been won by Luckygray and the tough gelding will be stepping up to 2100 metres for the first time in his career this weekend.
Luckygray failed to fire during the 2013 Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, missing the placings in all four of his race starts, but has returned to his best form since joining the stable of Trevor Andrews at the end of October.
The Bradbuy’s Luck gelding finished fourth in the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) before recording a history victory in the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) and finishing a brave second in the Kingston Town Classic.
Luckygray has drawn ideally in the 2013 Kingston Town Classic barrier draw and will jump from gate number 4 with regular jockey Shaun O’Donnell on his back.
Mr Moet is chasing his second straight victory in the Cox Stakes and has finally drawn an inside barrier after being allocated wide gates in both the Railway Stakes and Kingston Town Classic.
The Mosayter gelding performed fairly during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival in Melbourne, finishing sixth in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) and fourth in the Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m), but has had no luck since returning to Perth.
He was trapped wide in the early stages of the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) and could finish no closer than seventh behind Luckygray and once again had no luck from a wide gate when fifth in the Kingston Town Classic.
Mr Moet will be having his final race start for trainer Adam Durrant this campaign and will be sent to the stable of Chris Waller, along with star Perth sprinter Barakey, to begin preparations for a tilt at the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
God Has Spoken (barrier 1) is the only other past winner in the 2013 Cox Stakes field and will be joined in the race by stablemate Playing God (barrier 8), while Justin Warwick (Black Tycoon and Global Flirt) as well as Grant Williams (Moonlight Bay and Elite Belle) will also have two runners in the event.
The 2013 Cox Stakes betting market will be available at Ladbrokes.com.au shortly; with Ihtsahymn and Luckygray expected to battle for favoritism.
Sign-up and deposit at Ladbrokes.com.au before this weekend to receive a free bet that can be used to back the winner of the Cox Stakes or any other race!
2013 Cox Stakes Finishing Order
|1||84×6960412||LUCKYGRAY||Trevor Andrews||Shaun O’Donnell||4||59kg|
|2||3504×71654||PLAYING GOD||Neville Parnham||–||8||59kg|
|3||26×9846475||MR MOET||Adam Durrant||Peter Hall||3||59kg|
|4||9003×79860||GOD HAS SPOKEN||Neville Parnham||–||1||59kg|
|5||31x1x23383||ROHAN||Vaughn Sigley||Glenn Smith||9||59kg|
|6||7920x71x70||KINCAPLE (NZ)||Mike Reed||Daniel Staeck||11||59kg|
|7||515×490917||BLACK TYCOON||Justin Warwick||Paul Harvey||12||59kg|
|8||560×700055||GLOBAL FLIRT||Justin Warwick||–||6||59kg|
|9||9×20005009||TALENT SHOW||Graeme Ballantyne||Jason Whiting||10||57kg|
|10||2402×00148||MOONLIGHT BAY||Grant Williams||Chris Parnham (a)||7||57kg|
|11||2313×12216||ELITE BELLE||Grant Williams||William Pike||5||57kg|
|12||16611×7611||IHTSAHYMN||Fred Kersley||Steven Parnham||2||51kg|