Darren Weir’s in-form seven-year-old Akzar has opened top of the odds for their latest assignment in Saturday’s Eagle Farm Cup 2014.
Running as Race 3 at 1:05pm, the $250,000 Group 2 Merlo Coffee Eagle Farm Cup (2200m) has drawn another small field this year with just seven acceptors.
Of those it is Victorian raider, Selkirk gelding Akzar who is the dominant $2.60 favouirte and market mover.
They’ve drawn barrier three with Brad Rawiller to ride, the hoop staying on after riding them to their two most recent starts.
Two back Akzar won the Listed Warnambool Cup (2350m) on a Heavy (10) track by an easy six lengths.
They then held on well in a brave fourth behind Streama in the Group 1 Doomben Cup last start when dropped back down to 2000m.
They’ll appreciate getting back up to 2200m then on the weekend and are rated the horse most likely in Eagle Farm Cup betting.
The markets are pretty open after the favourite then with three other single figure chances.
Wistful ($3.60) follows, John O’Shea’s Tiger Hill mare drawn one inside the favourite.
The Darley-owned mare comes off three second place finishes, most recently to Angel Of Mercy in the Group 3 Lord Mayor’s Cup (1615m) at Doomben last Saturday.
How Wistful handles the step up from a mile to 2200m and the short seven day turnaround though are both crucial.
The Chris Waller-trained Moriarty ($4) and Mr O’Ceirin ($5.50) for Ciaron Maher, who is in the headlines this Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival thanks to his Stradbroke Handicap-bound filly Srikandi, then round out those under $10 in the markets.
Waller’s imported six-year-old Moriarty has the rails run from barrier one and comes off three straight fifth place finishes.
The last two were both behind the now retired Streama firstly in the Hollindale Stakes on the Gold Coast and then in the Doomben Cup, an effort Waller is tipping them to improve on.
“He is going to get on a good track for the first time in a long time,” Waller said.
“Even the other day in the Doomben Cup I reckon it was slow and he doesn’t like slow.
“He will like the 2200, he has drawn barrier one, it is a small field and Nash Rawiller is back on.
“I reckon it is the bet of the day punters.”
Glen Boss’ mount Mr O’Ceirin meanwhile also comes via the Doomben Cup, the Hollindale Stakes runner-up finishing seventh just under four lengths off the winner.
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