Chris Waller’s fillies dominate the nominations...
Peter Snowden’s Australian Oaks-bound Group 1 winning filly Guelph has opened top of the odds for her latest assignment, a second-up run in the 2014 Surround Stakes in Sydney this weekend.
The talented daughter of Exceed And Excel is one of 13 three-year-old fillies engaged in this year’s $175,000 Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm.
Drawn in the extreme outside barrier (13 of 13) for the Chipping Norton Stakes Day feature, Guelph and jockey Kerrin McEvoy are still the ones to beat according to the bookies.
In the latest Surround Stakes betting markets they pay $2.70, Guelph better suited to the extra distance here after her first-up sixth behind the Gai Waterhouse-trained Sweet Idea in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) from February 22 at Randwick.
Guelph has already tasted Group 1 success four times before – twice as a juvenile in the 2013 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes and Champagne Stakes, then again during her three-year-old spring campaign taking out the Flight Stakes – Thousand Guineas double.
She’ll be eyeing more Group 1 trophies later this Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival with Snowden considering her for a host of classics including the $550,000 Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on April 19.
In the current futures Australian Oaks odds she pays $9 occupying the equal third line of betting with Chateau Lafaite.
Guelph’s biggest danger in the Surround is a filly who isn’t going to the Oaks but who has the TJ Smith Stakes and possibly the Queen Of The Turf Stakes in her sights, the also widely-drawn Sweet Idea (barrier 12) paying $3.40 for an upset.
A daughter of Snitzel, Sweet Idea is undefeated this time in having won the two big Magic Millions three-year-old races at Wyong and then the Gold Coast in January before her last start victory in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes at Randwick.
Guelph and Sweet Idea are the only two under double figures for the Surround but if you fancy an upset there’s plenty of value then.
Next best in betting at $10 are the Chris Waller-trained Redoute’s Choice filly Chateau Lafaite (barrier eight) who won her latest two starts back in October and Real Surreal ($10).
Chateau Lafaite has had just the four runs to date and sees black type company for the first time here, while the Hawkes-trained Real Surreal comes via a first-up fourth in the Light Fingers.
She was a top two-year-old also winning the lucrative $2 million Gold Coast Magic Millions Classic back in January of last year before being forced to spend 12 months on the sidelines.
Also in the mix are the likes of John O’Shea’s Light Fingers Stakes runner-up Gypsy Diamond ($16) and another Waller hopeful in Street Sense filly Champagne Cath ($17), third in the Light Fingers, drawn in barriers three and two respectively.
Full Surround Stakes 2014 betting markets can be found at Ladbrokes.com.au with the current fixedwin odds for all the fillies detailed in the table below.
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2014 Surround Stakes Odds
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