This weekend the Group 1 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival action is at Rosehill Gardens where the day’s feature race is the fillies’ and mares’ 2014 Coolmore Classic.
Sixteen are left in the field for this year’s $600,000 Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) following the scratching of the John O’Shea-trained White Sage (11).
It’s shaping up as a one horse race though despite the bumper field if the Coolmore Classic betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au are anything to go by.
There is only one runner under $10 in the Coolmore Classic odds, the Chris Waller-trained Catkins paying $4 to win.
Equal 58kg top weight with stable mate Royal Descent ($10) after the non-acceptance of another Waller star, Red Tracer, flying four-year-old Catkins really does look hard to beat.
She may have a wide draw (14 into 13) but there’s so much class here not to suggest she’ll salute for the punters.
Runner-up to Red Tracer to see out her spring prep last season in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1500m) at Flemington, Catkins also has plenty of ace Sydney form to go on.
Her two runs this time in have both been wins, a Group 2 Breeders Classic (1200m) success in mid-February at Rosehill followed by her Group 3 Wiggle Stakes (1400m) victory at Warwick Farm on March 8.
She’s after three on the trot and the bookies are saying she’ll get it, and her maiden Group 1 trophy to take home at just her second attempt at the big time.
But if not the favourite then who?
While there are no other single figure chances the next best in betting include last year’s Australian Oaks winner Royal Descent ($10) who as mentioned also must carry 58kg, early market mover Steps In Time ($10), the well-proven Dear Demi ($12) coming off a first-up third in the Wiggle Stakes and Surround Stakes third placegetter Lucia Valentina ($12) to be ridden by Cox Plate winning hoop Chad Schofield on just 53.5kg.
So who do you lock in? See below for the Races.com.au team’s Coolmore Classic 2014 tips as well as a complete form guide on the race so you can make your own selections!
#1 Catkins ($4)
There’s the hype and the big weight to overcome but can’t go past the bookies’ selection in this one. It could be close but think class is going to see this up-and-comer through as she has just her second Group 1 start after going down a nose in the Myer Classic over the mile. Run before that was a Group 3 win at Moonee Valley, also over the 1600m, so this is her distance. Won at Rosehill first-up here defeating a number of these, then was far too good for them in the Wiggle winning that by two lengths and never looking anything other than the winner.
#9 Sweet Idea ($14)
Gai Waterhouse’s Snitzel filly has gone under the radar a bit for this one following their disappointing last start seventh in the Surround Stakes at Warwick Farm, but think they’re going to bounce back in a big way. There were excuses that day as they lost a plate during the run and suffered lacerations. All reports from the stable say they’ve been working wells since and that they are ready to win back the love of the punters. Get in on 54.5kg so that is to their advantage after they had 56kg last start, as is barrier nine (they had 12 of 13 last run) giving them options over the 1500m. Before their last run she strung together three straight wins so know how to get to the line when things work their way inkling the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes at Randwick and of course the $1 million Magic Millions Guineas over the 1400m at the Gold Coast.
#4 Steps In Time ($10)
Money is starting to come here for Joe Pride’s Danehill Dancer six-year-old and we can see why. Think they’ll take improvement on their first-up second in the Breeders Classic to Catkins where only a nose separated the two. They went on to blitz a Warwick Farm trial over 1200m on March 11 by four lengths showing they were jumping out of their skin for this Group 1 run. Haven’t won a race since the Wiggle Stakes last year though so not sure they’ll get there first, but their fourth in this behind Appearance last autumn when defeated just three quarters of a length suggests they could come close again.
When you’re ready to place your Coolmore bets for this weekend’s major make sure you head to Ladbrokes.com.au where you’ll get your money back as a bonus bet up to $50 if your pick runs second or third to the winner!
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