The first of three Group races on the Hawkesbury Racecourse line-up this Saturday is the 2014 The Darley Crown for the female gallopers with our insider tips on the exciting feature detailed right here.
Kicking off the Group racing on Hawkesbury Gold Cup Day as Race 5 at 2:45pm (AEST), this year’s $150,000 Group 3 The 2014 Darley Crown (1300m) will see a full field face off.
Two early scratchings see #8 Queen’s Elect (Joe Pride) and #10 La Pieta (Peter Snowden) come out however, allowing the first two emergencies #15 The Messina Nymph (Tony McEvoy) and #16 Commanding Wit (Paul Snowden) get a run.
The Darley Crown betting is pretty open this year with five under double figures to win, the favourite of which is Cosmic Endeavour ($4.20).
Gai Waterhouse’s Northern Meteor filly is on the improve and comes into the race on the back of three very nice Sydney runs, most recently winning the Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on April 19.
The four other single figure fancies are then the Peter Moody-trained Sapphire fourth placed Plucky Belle ($4.80), the David Payne-trained Lilliburlero ($7) who ran sixth in the Sapphire, Peter Snowden’s Redoute’s Choice four-year-old Seaside ($8) racing for the first time since their Tressady Stakes fourth on March 1 and last start Wyong winner The Messina Nymph ($8) up in class here.
But will one of these top rated hopes salute for the punters on the day?
Or can a chance further down The Darley Crown betting markets surprise with a win such as Commands mare Commanding Wit ($14) seeing her first stakes field or the returning Darley-owned Belle Of The Turf Stakes runner-up Pleiades ($13)?
#6 Cosmic Endeavour ($4.20)
There’s a number of live wire chances but think the favourite’s form will hold up here so we’re sticking with James McDonald’s mount even with her wide draw (12). McDonald has our tick of approval for all the majors at Hawkesbury actually starting with this where Cosmic Endeavour has the class to go back-to-back and win this on the back of her Randwick Group 2. Up in distance but she’s been tops this time in also running second in the PJ Bell to Politeness.
#7 Pleiades ($13)
Last time out this Snowden-trained Redoute’s Choice four-year-old was a close second in the Group 3 Belle Of The Turf at Gosford over the mile on January 10 and they run for the first time since here, they’re improving and first-up over 1300m will suit but think they’ll be ready to win second or third-up with as they’re yet to win when resuming.
#16 Commanding Wit ($14)
Prepared by Snowden’s son Paul, this progressive Commands four-year-old adds value to the Darley Crown trifecta as they step up to stakes company for the first time at start number nine. Have earned it too finishing first or second in all four of their runs this year, the last three being at Canterbury over 1250m. The distance looks spot on and they get a gun run in gate eight giving them chances now they’ve made the starting line-up.
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change