The 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakesfield and barrier draw has been released; with 13 talented sprinters set to contest the Group 1 event at Flemington on Saturday.
Talented sprinter Shamexpress is on top of the 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes final field and will looking to maintain his excellent record down the famous Flemington straight.
Shamexpress (barrier eight) failed to fire when sixth behind equine superstar Black Caviar in the Group 1 Lightning Stakes (1000m) last year, but bounced back the a fortnight later to score a narrow win in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m).
The O’Reilly entire failed to perform at his best during an overseas campaign in the United Kingdom and struggled around the Moonee Valley circuit in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m), but returned to his best form with an unlucky second place finish behind Buffering in the Group 1 VRC Sprint Classic (1200m) at Flemington on Emirates Stakes Day.
The only other Group 1 winner in the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes field is talented mare Samaready, who has not been seen at the races since she suffered an exercise induced pulmonary haemorrhage when she was beaten as a well-backed favourite in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m).
Samaready (barrier four) returned to the races after a lengthy stint in the spelling paddock with a win in the Group 3 Theshark.com.au Stakes (1100m) and stamped herself as one of the best sprinters in Australia with a dominant four lengths victory in the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1200m).
Two of the most interesting runners in the 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes field are classy juveniles Boomwaa and Bugatty, who are set to become the first two-year-olds to contest the Group 1 event since Clever Zoe in 1993.
The Black Caviar Lightning Stakes has long been on the agenda for Boomwaa (barrier five), who won the Group 3 Maribyrnong Plate (1000m) in impressive fashion during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, while Team Hawkes have thrown Bugatty (barrier 12) in after he tired in the final stages of the Group 3 Chairman’s Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on February 1.
Bernabeu, Thermal Current (barrier one) and Brilliant Bisc (barrier 13) are set to fly the flag for the three-year-old crop in the 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes; with Bernabeu considered the leading chance of the trio in the Group 1 event.
Bernabeu (barrier nine) finished his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a dominant three and a half lengths victory over Iconic and Churchill Dancer in the Flemington Fling (1000m) at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day and he looks to have returned to the races in excellent condition after recording a strong win over Shamexpress in a jump out at Flemington last Friday.
Another sprinter who looks to have returned for the autumn in sensational condition is Snitzerland (barrier 10), who a barrier trial over the likes of Catkins and Red Tracer by a most impressive six lengths at Rosehill Gardens on February 4.
Snitzerland had only two starts during her 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, finishing eighth in the Moir Stakes and second in the Listed Earl Grey Stakes (1000m), but has previously performed well at the highest level of racing; winning the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) and finishing second in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) during her autumn preparation.
Lionel Cohen-trained Aeronautical (barrier seven) and Cranbourne-based Unpretentious (barrier two) will also be returning to the races in the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes, while Michael Moroney-trained African Pulse (barrier six) and veteran gelding Esprit De Bullet (barrier three) will be backing up from the Listed W.J. Adams Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on February 1.
The 2014 Black Caviar Lighting Stakes is set to be an opening betting race, ending the tight grip Black Caviar has had on the race in the past three years, and you can find the best odds for every runner in the field at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||161x97x92x||SHAMEXPRESS (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||Damien Oliver||8||58.5kg||108|
|2||115462434x||PAGO ROCK||David Hayes||Stephen Baster||11||58.5kg||102|
|3||3660x29x1x||AERONAUTICAL||Lionel Cohen||Chad Schofield (a)||7||58.5kg||103|
|4||8211×61510||ESPRIT DE BULLET (NZ)||John Hyam||Vlad Duric||3||58.5kg||100|
|5||53x113x19x||UNPRETENTIOUS||Nikki Burke||Craig Williams||2||58.5kg||102|
|6||945x1x15x4||AFRICAN PULSE||Michael Moroney||Michael Rodd||6||58.5kg||97|
|7||113x4x118x||SAMAREADY||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||4||56.5kg||113|
|8||56x127x82x||SNITZERLAND||Gerald Ryan||Brenton Avdulla||10||56.5kg||108|
|9||23x213715x||THERMAL CURRENT||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||1||55.5kg||86|
|10||45x1221x||BERNABEU||John O’Shea||Nash Rawiller||9||55.5kg||84|
|11||1x309x3||BRILLIANT BISC||Peter G Moody||Glen Boss||13||53.5kg||78|
|12||34122||BOOMWAA||Robbie Laing||Dean Yendall||5||46kg||72|
|13||212||BUGATTY||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dean Holland||12||46kg||70|