There are 11 top sprinters engaged in the 2014 Concorde Stakes in Sydney on Saturday and to help you back the winner in the set weights plus penalties showdown below are our insider tips for Randwick Race 6.
This year’s $125,000 Group 3 Concorde Stakes (1000m) is due to jump at 3:45pm on Saturday afternoon and current top fancy in the Ladbrokes.com.au odds is market mover Sessions.
In from $4.60 to $4 the John O’Shea-trained Lonhro five-year-old is first-up for the season and shooting for his fourth win from six resuming runs over a 15-start career.
Last time out the stallion was outclassed when well beaten in the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) running 13th to Smokin’ Joey in Adelaide but that was at the end of a prep and first-up here at a shorter distance Sessions could be hard to hold out.
His most notable rivals are then David Pfieffer’s Northern Meteor mare Atmospherical ($4.60) last seen winning a Scone black-type back in May, the Joe Pride-trained Target In Sight ($6) coming off a first-up win at the track from four weeks ago and stablemate Rain Affair ($7.50) looking to return to his former Group 2 winning form from two years ago.
So will the money trial prove the one to be tracking with Sessions to win?
Or is there an upset Concorde Stakes result on the card from a longer priced hopeful such as Whittington ($9) having his first start for Chris Waller or even Gary Portelli’s Group 3 Skyline Stakes winner from the autumn I’m All The Talk ($16)?
#3 Rain Affair ($7.50)
It’s been over 12 months between drinks for Pride’s former star sprinter who hasn’t won a race since the Group 3 Missile Stakes in August last year. The most recent form on this Commands seven-year-old is poor with three unplaced runs at the back of the field during the autumn including a 10th to Tiger Tees in The Galaxy last time out over the 1100m at Rosehill in March. That said he’s been capable of some great runs including three Group 2 victories the autumn before that and Group 1 form around Hay List. Didn’t trial last prep but has had two good hitouts this time last month at Warwick Farm so could surprise.
#2 Safeguard ($12)
Not the best fancied of O’Shea’s two in the race but like the favourite Sessions is first-up and drawn well in gate three with Kerrin McEvoy to ride. The Exceed And Excel four-year-old hasn’t raced since a sixth in the Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1400m) against his own kind on May 31. Was beaten just over a length there and was also runner-up in the Group 3 Gold Coast Guineas. Can handle all types of tracks, won a Warwick Farm trial on August 29, McEvoy has ridden him for his lead-up work and the tongue tie is on.
#6 Whittington ($9)
Waller saddles up this former Gai Waterhouse-trained son of Tale Of The Cat for the first time here. Magic Millions Sprint winner over 1100m in January so the short distances suit. First-up form is very good (5-2-1-0) and has improvement off a Gosford Guineas eighth from April in the mud. Fifth to Tiger Tees in The Galaxy so has faced some quality competition and will do so again if comes back in good style.
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*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change