After missing out on a Group 1 in the Coolmore, the Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes-trained Queen Of The Turf hopeful Real Surreal is likely to back up in Saturday’s PJ Bell Stakes 2014.
Also nominated for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick this weekend, the $200,000 Group 3 PJ Bell Stakes (1200m) looks the more likely option for Hawkes’ Real Saga filly.
Real Surreal is one of an incredible 34 three-year-old fillies nominated for this year’s PJ Bell Stakes, a race revealing a real mixed bag of entries.
Winner of the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic as a juvenile last year, Real Surreal spent 12 months on the sidelines before returning with a fourth to Sweet Idea in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes at Randwick in February.
From there she caught the eye with a second to Thump in the Group 2 Surround Stakes before her last start eighth, beaten three and a half lengths, behind Steps In Time in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) on March 22.
She’s in line for a shot at the Doncaster, but if she doesn’t make the field for the day’s $3 million feature she’ll be back down in distance for the PJ Bell.
Real Surreal is also nominated for Saturday week’s $1 million Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m), a race she pays $21 to win in the futures Ladbrokes.com.au markets.
If not the Queen Of The Turf she’ll follow the bulk of the other PJ Bell nominees into the $500,000 Group 2 Royal Sovereign Stakes (1200m) on Sydney Cup Day.
Also nominated for Saturday’s showdown is Real Surreal’s lightly raced stable mate Bracidame having just her third career start if accepted.
The other least experienced hopes include Tony McEvoy’s undefeated Kayjay’s Joy, the Anthony Cummings-trained Latin Salsa with just the one run for one win to her name and Runaway Star for Gerald Ryan.
There are then 11 last start winners, including a number resuming for the season here, nominated for the PJ Bell this year.
One of those is the Chris Waller-trained Calming Influence, the Commands filly first-up after a three and a half month break before which she won back-to-back Sydney races in December.
Waller has also nominated for his Light Fingers Stakes third placegetter Champagne Cath looking to atone for her Surround Stakes 11th from early March.
Dominating the race numbers wise meanwhile is Peter Snowden with a trio of entries.
Snowden’s hopes are Group 3 winner Montsegur, the returning Miniature and the flying Street Cry filly Engagement after her fourth on the trot.
John O’Shea also looks to play a strong hand in the race with his highly experienced Group 1 Flight Stakes third placegetter from the spring Bound For Earth coming via a Darby Munro second to Sidestep, consistent up-and-comer Dublin Lass and Papillon Rouge first-up here.
Other notable PJ Bell Stakes hopes then include last start Moonee Valley winner Miss Stelle, Miss Tenpins, and the Gai Waterhouse-trained duo of Darby Munro third placegetter Northern Glory and Group 1 performer Shahad.
The bumper PJ Bell Stakes 2014 nominations are listed below.
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2014 PJ Bell Stakes Nominations
Randwick Racecourse – 12/04/2014
|1||BOUND FOR EARTH||John O’Shea||93|
|2||BRACIDAME (NZ)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||64|
|3||CALMING INFLUENCE||Chris Waller||88|
|4||CHAMPAGNE CATH||Chris Waller||88|
|5||COMMAND MORE||Gerald Ryan||4|
|6||COSMIC ENDEAVOUR||Gai Waterhouse||79|
|7||DIAMOND FUND||Gerald Ryan||70|
|8||DUBLIN LASS||John O’Shea||70|
|11||FARE WELL||Clarry Conners||68|
|12||FLIGHT ACADEMY||Jason Coyle||78|
|13||GLENBAWN DAME||John P Thompson||67|
|14||KAYJAY’S JOY||Tony McEvoy||64|
|15||LATIN SALSA||Anthony Cummings||62|
|18||MISS STEELE||Michael Kent||79|
|19||MISS TENPINS (NZ)||Bjorn Baker||69|
|22||NORTHERN GLORY||Gai Waterhouse||82|
|23||NUCLEAR CLASS||Tas Morton||71|
|24||OH SO ADORABLE||Garry Clarke||86|
|25||PAPILLON ROUGE||John O’Shea||70|
|27||REAL SURREAL||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||94|
|29||RUNWAY STAR||Gerald Ryan||64|
|30||SASSY SISTER||Anthony Cummings||62|
|34||TWILIGHT ROYALE||Bjorn Baker||83|