This Saturday in Melbourne four Group 1 races will headline the action at Caulfield Racecourse including the Caulfield Guineas 2014 where a host of top colts are set to face off.
Running as the last on a bumper nine-race program, this year’s $1 million Group 1 BECK Caulfield Guineas (1600m) has attracted 14 three-year-olds including the early favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au Rich Enuff.
Ken Keys’ in-form Written Tycoon colt has won all three of his starts this time in in black type company including the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1200m) at Flemington two back and the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) here on September 28.
Aboard for those two Group victories was Michael Rodd who stays on for Saturday, Rich Enuff looking to become the eighth Caulfield Guineas winner in the past 12 years to come via the Prelude.
In that time three have completed the double with Helmet (2011), Anacheeva (2010 and Wonderful World (2006).
Runner-up behind Saturday’s likely Caulfield Guineas favourite Rich Enuff in both the Danehill and Caulfield Guineas Prelude meanwhile was the Tony Gollan-trained Looks Like The Cat.
The perennial placegetter also backs up in the Guineas on the weekend looking to turn the tables on his last start conqueror and celebrate his first win of the season.
The Queensland-trained son of Husson is also Group 1 performed back home when third behind Sydney visitors Almalad (1st) and Brazen Beau (2nd) in the J.J. Atkins Stakes over the Eagle Farm mile on June 7.
JJ Atkins winner Almalad is another of the top hopes in the Caulfield Guineas field this year, Gai Waterhouse’s Al Maher colt heading towards a run in the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) under weight-for-age conditions at Moonee Valley on October 25.
A $21 chance in futures Cox Plate odds at Ladbrokes.com.au to go back-to-back for the three-year-olds following the success of Shamus Award last spring, Almalad has had three runs this time in.
Two back he ran a solid fourth to Hallowed Crown, who now heads towards the Coolmore Stud Stakes down the Flemington straight on November 1, in Sydney’s Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m).
Then he improved last start at Moonee Valley under the lights on September 26 winning the Group 2 Stutt Stakes (1600m) which is the other key lead-up race to the Caulfield Guineas in recent years.
Two Caulfield Guineas winners in the past 10 years had their final lead-up in the Stutt Stakes with Whobegotyou (2008) and Helenus (2002) with Almalad looking to be the next proven miler to complete the double.
Other last start winners in the Caulfield Guineas field this year are the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Shooting To Win to be ridden by James McDonald and Michael Moroney’s up-and-comer Merion.
Talented Northern Meteor colt Shooting To Win has been right in it all season including a Golden Rose third before his tidy three length effort at Rosehill when defeating Scissor Kick in the Group 2 Stan Fox Stakes (1500m) on September 27.
Sure to handle the extra 100m of the Caulfield Guineas on Saturday, Shooting To Win makes his Melbourne debut in the classic.
Merion meanwhile comes off a Flemington win from four weeks ago when defeating fellow Caulfield Guineas hopes and former top fancies Chivalry (2nd) and Zebulon (3rd) in the Listed Living Legends Stakes (1400m).
Another intriguing entry is then Craig Williams’ mount Our Vespa, the Johno Benner-trained New Zealand raider third-up for the season and coming off a sixth in his Australian debut behind Rich Enuff in the Prelude.
Also in the mix are the likes of the Mark Kavanagh-trained Group 3 winning Street Cry colt Chivalry, Zebulon out to atone for a dead last (9th) in the Stutt Stakes, John O’Shea’s Stutt Stakes third placegetter Kumaon and runner-up in that same lead-up Moonovermanhattan for Mick Price.
See below for the full Caulfield Guineas 2014 field and jockeys with the barrier draw to be conducted at 11:00am local time and published right here at Races.com.au.
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2014 Caulfield Guineas Final Field
Caulfield Race 9 – 11/10/2014
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||2x11311x16||OUR VESPA (NZ)||Johno Benner||Craig Williams||0||56.5kg||92|
|2||1x11x941||ALMALAD||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||0||56.5kg||98|
|3||3×111||RICH ENUFF||Ken Keys||Michael Rodd||0||56.5kg||96|
|4||11×8231||SHOOTING TO WIN||Peter & Paul Snowden||James McDonald||0||56.5kg||99|
|5||49152×5777||ZULULAND||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Damien Oliver||0||56.5kg||82|
|6||2138×126||CHIVALRY||Mark Kavanagh||Glen Boss||0||56.5kg||84|
|7||1x233x22||LOOKS LIKE THE CAT||Tony Gollan||Damian Browne||0||56.5kg||86|
|8||13x263x203||KUMAON||John O’Shea||Kerrin McEvoy||0||56.5kg||82|
|9||11×41||MERION (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Steven Arnold||0||56.5kg||82|
|10||1×042||MOONOVERMANHATTAN||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||0||56.5kg||78|
|11||8116×22568||STINGRAY||John Moloney||Mark Zahra||0||56.5kg||73|
|12||4x2011x320||LUCKY TOM||Harold Norman||Rikki Jamieson (a)||0||56.5kg||73|
|13||213×39||ZEBULON (NZ)||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||Stephen Baster||0||56.5kg||70|
|14||7x144x4047||WANDJINA||Gai Waterhouse||Dwayne Dunn||0||56.5kg||71|