There’s an odds-on favourite in the mix but can It’s A Dundeel get the job done in the big one at Warwick Farm Racecourse on the weekend, or is there an upset 2014 Chipping Norton Stakes result on the card in Sydney?
Murray Baker’s five-time Group 1 champion, High Chaparral four-year-old It’s A Dundeel, pays $1.90 in the latest Ladbrokes.com.au markets to take out the $500,000 Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) and make it a half dozen elite level victories.
Like the successful defending champion Shoot Out (2012-13) last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival, It’s A Dundeel is first-up here after missing out on the money in the Cox Plate last start back in October.
They are ready to make an impact in their highly anticipated return however having won a Randwick trial by a good margin late last month.
The favourite also came up trumps in the Chipping Norton Stakes barrier draw getting the inside running from barrier one with their regular jockey James McDonald aboard once more.
History shows that in the past 30 years only one double figure chance has won the Chipping Norton Stakes, He’s No Pie Eater (80-1, 2007), making those under $10 in the markets the ones to back.
Outside of It’s A Dundeel there are three other acceptors in the small eight-horse, weight-for-age field that fit this bill.
The trio are all stable mates too prepared by Sydney’s leading trainer Chris Waller.
Waller has dominated the Chipping Norton in recent years having gone back-to-back with Shoot Out in 2012 and 2013.
This year he’s after his third on the trot saddling up Emirates Stakes winner Boban ($4), former Queensland Derby champ Hawkspur ($9) and six-year-old Group 1 performer Moriarty ($9.50).
So can one of Waller’s take it out again in 2014? Or is the Chipping Norton Stakes trophy really It’s A Dudneel’s for the taking like their short price in the markets suggests?
#1 It’s A Dundeel ($1.90)
Really is hard to go past the Kiwi here who already boasts five elite levels down under. The Cox Plate mishap aside this horse doesn’t run a bad race as evidenced by all their other impressive performances. Run fourth in their two most recent first-up efforts so resuming isn’t when they pull out their best, but think they’ve got this field’s measure after an easy Randwick trial win on February 24, gun gate one draw and class to overcome.
#2 Boban ($4)
Best fancied of Waller’s trio this year and for good reason. Cracking effort in the spring to win the Group 1 Emirates Stakes over the Flemington mile, their fifth win from as many starts that prep including another elite level, Sydney’s Epsom Handicap. This is their pet distance with two wins from three starts over the mile. Also drawn perfectly in four which is the most successful barrier in the past 30 years in this race with six winners.
#5 Monton ($17)
Monton is the value Place Bet here with the consistent form to back us up in suggesting they’re worth a look in for top three in this Group 1. Gun gate two draw, which produced last year’s winner Shoot Out, so should get a good trail up with It’s A Dundeel if they jump well. Notable class rise here having been out of black type getting their ratings back up over the past two months but this small field at a familiar track and distance should be to their liking. Also the only other in the field outside the odds-on pick to have won over the Warwick Farm mile with a top record (4-2-1-0).
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change