The spring has well and truly sprung in the world of racing as reflected in the quality of Saturday’s Missile Stakes 2014 field where Chris Waller will saddle-up a trio of runners.
Running as Royal Randwick Race 6 (3:35pm), this year’s $175,000 Group 2 McGrath Estate Agents Missile Stakes (1200m) has attracted a final field of nine hopefuls that will be fighting for top spot in the weekend’s markets at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Three of those come from the stables of four-time Sydney premiership winning trainer Waller.
He will kick off the spring carnival campaigns of two Group 1 winners in Boban and Hawkspur plus the very promising French import Weary.
Bernardini five-year-old Boban will be ridden by Glyn Schofield when the Chipping Norton Stakes champ runs for the first time since a second last in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (200m) back in April where they suffered a bleeding attack.
Hawkspur meanwhile won last year’s Queensland Derby as a three-year-old in a super Brisbane campaign but has managed just the one win since and also come via the Queen Elizabeth when 10th to It’s A Dundeel.
Weary then rounds out Waller’s trio, the Astronomer Royal grey having enjoyed a stellar autumn season that included a third in the Doncaster Mile behind stablemates Sacred Falls (1st) and Royal Descent (2nd) and a last start second in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) on April 26.
Another two Group 1 winners in the Missile Stakes mix are then the Gary Portelli-trained Rebel Dane and John Sargent’s mare Kirramosa drawn in barriers four and two respectively.
Blake Shinn rides California Dane stallion Rebel Dane who was last seen running 7th to River Lad in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) in Brisbane and who hasn’t won a race since their Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes success at Caulfield in September last year.
Kirramosa is also first-up here, the now four-year-old daughter of Alamosa having won back-to-back Flemington features last Melbourne Cup Carnival including the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) on November 7.
Other mares in the mix are then the Gai Waterhouse-trained Sweet Idea (barrier seven) and the Kris Lees-trained Thump in the outside gate.
A super consistent Snitzel four-year-old, Sweet Idea has plenty of top level form including a second in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) back in March and boasts an impressive first-up record (3-2-1).
Thump is also Group 1 performed and, like Sweet Idea, comes off a winning Sydney barrier trial.
Rounding out the Missile Stakes field are then the Joe Pride-trained Laser Hawk who will not be joined in Sydney by stablemate Tiger Tees and the Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes-trained Messene.
Pride has opted to run Tiger Tees in Melbourne this weekend instead where they run in the $150,000 Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) at Flemington, while Messene will back-up from their nice second behind the fellow Hawkes-trained Entirely Platinum in a 900m Rosehill trial from Monday.
See below for the full Missile Stakes 2014 field and barriers.
Then head over to our preferred sportsbook Ladbrokes.com.au who are currently matching the first deposits of new customers dollar for dollar as an early spring bonus up to $250!
2014 Missile Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Royal Randwick Race 6 (3:35pm) – 09/10/2014
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||111x54170x||BOBAN||Chris Waller||Glyn Schofield||5||58.5kg||117|
|2||4157x2547x||REBEL DANE||Gary Portelli||Blake Shinn||4||58.5kg||111|
|3||x1313x820x||LASER HAWK||Joseph Pride||Kerrin McEvoy||8||58.5kg||109|
|4||570x63440x||HAWKSPUR||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||3||58.5kg||108|
|5||11x11x117x||MESSENE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||James McDonald||1||58.5kg||107|
|6||244x32132x||WEARY (FR)||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||6||58.5kg||106|
|7||x2x111729x||SWEET IDEA||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||7||56.5kg||106|
|8||14x414211x||KIRRAMOSA (NZ)||John Sargent||Tim Clark||2||56.5kg||102|
|9||1317x7184x||THUMP||Kris Lees||Brenton Avdulla||9||56.5kg||99|