One of two black-types on the Eagle Farm race card this Saturday, the 2014 Ascot Handicap is shaping up as a super showdown with nearly half the field at single figures to win.
Running as Brisbane Race 6 at 3:08pm, the $80,000 Listed PMP Limited Ascot Handicap (1200m) field is down to 13 runners following the early withdrawal of #13 Jefferson Park (4).
Of those remaining hopefuls Ladbrokes.com.au have five under $10 to win, all paying between $7 and $9.50.
In fact, the markets are so tight that three horses currently share equal $7 favouritism.
Those battling for top spot in the latest Ascot Handicap odds are Rob Heathcote’s 59kg top weight Excellantes, Seeking More drawn in the second widest gate and Bymonashee who gets in on the 54kg minimum.
Falvelon six-year-old Falvelon comes off a hit-and-miss Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival campaign highlighted by their Listed Hinkler Handicap (1200m) win at the track in April.
They come via the Group 3 WJ Healy Stakes (1200m), won by 2014 Ramornie Handicap hope Big Money, on June 21 that they’ll be out to improve on against easier company here.
Fellow local, Seeking More is a Sequalo four-year-old prepared by Kelso Wood who has been in flying form leading up to this.
They too ran in the Healy Stakes and were just half a length away third when carrying 54kg from barrier one with Glen Boss in the saddle.
On Saturday they have the wide gate to overcome however and go up three kilos to 57kg with Justin Stanley taking over for Boss.
Brian Smith’s Monashee Mountain gelding Bymonashee then is up in class here after two nice thirds over the distance, the most recently being at Eagle Farm two weeks ago when half a length off Epic in a Class 6.
They might be in stakes’ company here but they will appreciate the weight relief coming down from 57.5kg to 54kg.
Next best in betting following closely on $7.50 is then the Jason McLachlan-trained Sunshine Coast galloper Facile Tigre out in barrier 13 (of 13) with 58kg.
They are third-up this prep looking to improve on their fifth in the WJ Healy when beaten under two lengths, albeit carrying one and a half kilograms less.
Rounding out the single figure chances at $9.50 is then Steel Zip.
Patt Duff’s Deagon-based grey comes off a run of Brisbane black-types including the Group 2 QTC Cup (1300m) where they crossed one and a half lengths away sixth to sacred Star.
They had a run in Ipswich next when sixth again this time to Alma’s Fury in the Listed Eye Liner Stakes (1350m) and then went up to 1400m at Caloundra last Saturday for the Listed Glasshouse Handicap.
They drop back in distance here then so even being on the short turnaround are a good chance over the 1200m which they see for the first time since their close third to Typhoon Red in the Listed Weetwood Handicap (1200m) at Toowoomba in early April.
Outside the top five it’s still a very close market with plenty of other livewire chances including the John Thompson-trained Redoute’s Choice seven-year-old Metallurgical ($10)coming off a Healy Stakes sixth and La Tikka Rosa ($10).
Drawn in gate six, four-year-old Freeze mare La Tikka Rosa was ridden by Jim Byrne last start for her nice two length win over 1100m at Ipswich.
Byrne however opted to jump off the mare in favour of partnering Tony Gollan’s $12 chance Theft, last seen running seventh at the Gold Coast on June 9.
Her trainer Matthew Dunn then has engaged the services of Glen Colless, who was last aboard La Tikka Rosa for her ninth to subsequent Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap third placed filly Srikandi, in the Listed Junamo Stakes (1200m) at Doomben back in May.
See below for the full Ascot Handicap 2014 odds, prices Ladbrokes.com.au customers can lock in online now by following the links.
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