A host of potential Spring Racing Carnival superstars are set to trial at Royal Randwick this Friday including Gai Waterhouse’s 2014 Melbourne Cup favourite The Offer.
There jockey Tommy Berry, who rode them three times last time in, guiding the last start Sydney Cup winner to a close third behind stablemate Danas Best over 1200m.
Danasinga gelding Danas Best, ninth in The Metropolitan last October, resumes racing this weekend having been nominated for the $100,000 Listed Winter Challenge (1500m) at Rosehill.
Having won three on the trot during the autumn including their four length romp over Opinion in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) on April 19, The Offer meanwhile has dominated futures Melbourne Cup betting for this November.
Paying $13 in the latest odds for the $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington, The Offer trials again in the first heat on Friday morning over 1250m at the Kensington track.
It’s a trial full of top gallopers too with six of the 10 coming from Waterhouse’s stables.
Along with The Offer Waterhouse’s other more notable trial runners are her British import Greatwood yet to race down under, fellow import Tres Blue who ran third last in last year’s Melbourne Cup behind Waterhouse’s maiden ‘Loving Trophy’ winner Fiorente and Diamond Drille.
Al Maher mare Diamond Drille, like The Offer, is a Group 1 winner coming off a third in their first trial.
She ran over 1050m with Berry aboard back on the 18th in a hit-out Manduro gelding Greatwood ran second to Splash Out in.
The four-year-old won the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) at Randwick back on Sydney Cup Day and will likely head towards the elite level mares’ races this spring.
A possible end-of-campaign target for her then is the $500,000 Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day, November 1.
Outside of Waterhouse’s contingent some of the other big names in the opening Randwick jump-out on Friday are the Chris Waller-trained Foreteller who won the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) last September, and the John Thompson-trained duo of ATC Derby third placegetter Hooked and Sydney Cup graduate Tremec.
There are also a number of other champions engaged across the morning in other trials including the Chris Waller-trained duo of Hawkspur and Boban.
Last year’s Queensland Derby winner Hawkspur runs in the second trial over 850m, where stablemate Weary is also running, while Boban is next over the same distance where Waller also lines up Our Voodoo Prince.
Hawkspur is a non-official hope for the Melbourne Cup on November 4 paying $41 to win while his Chipping Norton Stakes champ from March Boban could be set for a title defense in the $1 million Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) at the end of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Also on the spring cups path for Waller, Our Voodoo Prince is a $26 chance in the early markets for the ‘race that stops a nation’.
They are set to earlier run in the $3 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 18, for which they are a $17 chance, and before that the $500,000 Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) two weeks earlier after kicking things off in Sydney.
Others trialing on Friday include the Joe Pride-trained The Galaxy winner Tiger Tees and Grahame Begg’s last start Civic Stakes runner-up Bennetta in the fourth heat over 850m.
To follow the spring progress of all Friday’s trail runners make sure you bookmark us here at Races.com.au.
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