Nominations for the 2014 Group 1 Futurity Stakes have been released, with a currently field of 11 set to storm around 1400m track at Caulfield on Saturday, including Moment Of Change.
Widely expected to comfortably claim the Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m) first-up on January 24th, Moment Of Change was upset when a fast finishing Richie’s Vibe managed a last minute lunge to win by a nose.
While drifting in betting markets following the shock result, the talented Barely A Moment gelding struck back on February 8th to claim the first Group 1 title of the year in the C.F Orr Stakes (1400m) ahead of Eurozone and 2013 Cox Plate Champion Shamus Award.
Peter Moody is confident the form of his star five-year-old will go a long way in the 2014 Futurity Stakes, in which he is also set to saddle French import Lidari.
Following an impressive career in his homeland which delivered 5 wins from only 11 starts, talented five-year-old Lidari has maintained strong form since transferring to the care of Moody in 2013, having secured three places and a win; the BMW Handicap Open (1400m) in August.
A busy autumn calendar has been set for the Acclamation stallion, with runs in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and Group 1 Doncaster Handicap (1600m) likely targets.
After contracting a nasty bout of ringworm that led to scratchings in both the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m) and Group 2 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) over the past two weeks, trainer Robbie Laing has interestingly included Polanski in nominations for the 2014 Futurity Stakes.
With the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) outlined as the major target for the Rakti colt this preparation, Laing revealed that he has not decided whether or not to leave the three-year-old in the mix for this weekend’s event, which will likely be used solely for race fitness if accepted.
Two runners; Pinwheel and Sizzling have been included in nominations for both the Futurity Stakes and Group 2 Apollo Stakes at Sydney’s Royal Randwick on Saturday, with acceptances likely to be based on final fields and barrier draws for respective trainers Peter Snowden and Chris Waller.
Finishing outside the top three only once in seven starts to date, Gai Waterhouse-trained Bull Point is an early favourite to continue his incredible run of results in the 2014 Futurity Stakes, having also been included in nominations.
The Fastnet Rock colt experienced a meteoric rise in his debut season, rounding out this impressive campaign third behind Zoustar in the Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) in September before returning in blistering form to take out the Group 3 Manfred Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield two weeks ago.
Waterhouse has understandably identified Bull Point as one of her leading prospects for 2014, and has aimed the talented three-year-old towards appearances in the Newmarket Handicap (1200m) on March 8th and Doncaster Mile (1600m) on April 12th.
Clear For Action, Sertorius, Sistine Demon and 2013 Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) runner-up Smokin’ Joey have also been included in nominations for the 2014 Futurity Stakes.
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2014 Group 1 Futurity Stakes Nominations
|1||BULL POINT||Gai Waterhouse||88|
|2||CLEAR FOR ACTION||Jim Conlan||92|
|3||EUROZONE||Bart & James Cummings||98|
|4||LIDARI (FR)||Peter G Moody||102|
|5||MOMENT OF CHANGE||Peter G Moody||111|
|8||SERTORIUS||Jamie Edwards & Bruce Elkington||105|
|9||SISTINE DEMON||Andrew Noblet||85|
|11||SMOKIN’ JOEY||Wez Hunter||104|