A small yet talented field of eight has been confirmed to line up for the 2014 Group 2 Skyline Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick this weekend, including exciting Team Hawkes-trained prospect Gold Force.
Having only contested the one race start to date, Gold Force has quickly stamped his claims as a two-year-old to watch over the 2014 autumn season, when comfortably doing away with a talented field in that race; the Inglis Premier (1200m) on February 12th.
The Hawkes’ have underlined the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1200m) as the major target for the exciting Flying Spur gelding this preparation, and are confident he will continue his so-far perfect career start in the Skyline Stakes this weekend after drawing the ideal barrier 3.
Finishing second to Gold Force in the Inglis Premier, Modoc has also been included in the final field for the 2014 Skyline Stakes.
Modoc (barrier 8) has experienced something of a meteoric rise to prominence amongst a talented batch of current two-year-olds since debuting on course in January, claiming his first two races with ease which included the Our Industry Country Plate (1100m) by nearly seven lengths.
Despite a less-than-convincing maiden tilt at a Group level event in the Silver Slipper (1100m) two weeks ago, trainer Paul Perry remains confident in a memorable debut season for the talented Haradasun gelding, and will decide on a final path for Modoc following the Skyline Stakes.
Trainer Gai Waterhouse will saddle two runners in the 2014 Skyline Stakes, having accepted position in the final field for both Valentia (barrier 5) and Giuliani (barrier 7).
Valentia has excited many since debuting on track third behind boom colt Rubick and Twirl in the TAB Iphone App Plate (1000m) on January 25th, particularly when claiming the Ritz Cinema Handicap (1200m) ahead of a classy field last time out.
Waterhouse holds an understandably high opinion of Valentia, and considers the Fastnet Rock colt among her leading chances for the 2014 Golden Slipper after stable leader Fighting Sun was ruled out of contention.
Giuliani has been geared towards and appearance in the ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes since finishing an unlucky second behind leading two-year-old colt Unencumbered in the Sharp Plate (1000m) on debut in October, and has returned to the track in strong form in 2014; producing a strong piece of work to claim a strong Randwick barrier trial in February.
Anthony Cummings-trained pair Zizumba (barrier 4) and Mr Bogart (barrier 1) have also been confirmed for the 2014 Skyline Stakes, and will be joined by Time For War (barrier 6) and Rembrandt (barrier 2).
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2014 Skyline Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw
|1||1||GOLD FORCE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||James McDonald||3||55.5kg|
|2||1126||MODOC||Paul Perry||Blake Shinn||8||55.5kg|
|3||31||VALENTIA||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||5||55.5kg|
|4||1x||TIME FOR WAR||Gerald Ryan||Nash Rawiller||6||55.5kg|
|5||2x||GIULIANI||Gai Waterhouse||Tim Clark||7||55.5kg|
|6||2||ZIZUMBA||Anthony Cummings||Hugh Bowman||4||55.5kg|
|7||3||REMBRANDT||Clarry Conners||Brenton Avdulla||2||55.5kg|
|8||5||MR BOGART||Anthony Cummings||Damien Oliver||1||55.5kg|