The reigning champion Buffering could be Perth bound again next month having been nominated for a title defence in the Winterbottom Stakes 2014 at Ascot Racecourse.
Perth Racing closed nominations for a host of their summer racing carnival majors on Monday including those for one of the two Group 1s run on Super Saturday, November 22 – the $750,000 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m).
This year’s Winterbottom Stakes nominations feature 53 sprinters including the top three from last year’s trifecta led by the Robert Heathcote-trained Queenslander Buffering.
The son of Mossman was a perennial Group 1 placegetter before breaking his elite level duck last spring with wins in the Manikato Stakes and VRC Sprint Classic in Melbourne.
He then travelled west and narrowly defeated fellow interstate raider Moment Of Change in the Winterbottom, his jockey Damien Browne charged with careless riding post-win.
Since them Buffering has had five starts only managing to win once when the first-up victor over fellow Winterbottom Stakes hope Lankan Rupee at Moonee Valley under the lights on September 26 in the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1200m).
This Friday night Buffering shoots for back-to-back Manikato Stakes wins, back at Moonee Valley, and the Winterbottom Stakes is also again in the now seven-year-old’s sights as it is for Mick Price’s Oakleigh Plate – Newmarket Handicap winner Lankan Rupee.
Second behind Buffering in the Winterbottom 12 months ago was the aforementioned Moment Of Change, nominated again in 2014 one of five for Melbourne horseman Peter Moody.
The Barley A Moment gelding is also a multiple Group 1 champ but was outclassed when dead last (11th) in the Memsie Stakes last time out, an effort he’ll be out to improve on in Friday’s Manikato.
Third over the line in last year’s Winterbottom Stakes was then the Mark Kavanagh-trained Watermans Bay, last seen running sixth in a Caulfield stakes race on October 15.
Along with Buffering the other former Winterbottom Stakes winner nominated for next month’s classic is then the Jim Taylor-trained, Bullsbrook-based Key Business gelding Barakey.
Barakey won the Winterbottom in 2012 and was last seen beating home Smoko, also nominated for this year’s spring showdown, in the Listed Goodwood Sprint (1300m) at Belmont in August.
Taylor also has his in-form Magnus mare Magnifiso Winterbottom-bound this season, the five-year-old boasting an excellent record over the track and distance (5-2-2-0).
Having finished out of the money just once in her nine starts, which have produced a quartet of wins, at Ascot she won a host of black-type races last summer and this winter including the Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m) before her last start fourth behind Pininci in the Listed Beaufine Stakes (1000m) at Belmont last time out.
The top-rated of the Winterbottom Stakes entries meanwhile is the locally-trained Amorino for Grant Williams.
Amorino has won four of his past five starts, and ran second in the other, with the Snitzel gelding last seen taking out the Listed Grandstand Cup (1500m) at Ascot on March 22.
Williams has also nominated for his improving Blackfriars six-year-old Shining Knight and star mare Elite Belle.
Elite Belle is a six-year-old daughter of Canny Lad and has won three of her past four starts in WA including the Group 3 Belmont Sprint – Hyperon Stakes double over 1400m and 1600m respectively at Belmont Park during the winter.
Other highly rated local Perth horses in the Winterbottom Stakes mix this year are the likes of the Neville Parnham-trained Checkpoint who races in the Group 3 Prince Of Wales Stakes (1200m) at Ascot this Saturday and last year’s Railway Stakes runner-up Platinum Rocker.
As for the other top interstate nominees big names include Jason Warren’s Group 1 winner Bel Sprinter who won the Group 2 Caulfield Sprint last Saturday, runner-up in that same race Miracles Of Life who won the Blue Diamond as a two-year-old, the consistent Scone-based Big Money, Group 1 BTC Cup winner Famous Seamus, Moir Stakes third placegetter Rebel Dane, upset The Goodwood winner in Adelaide last season Smokin’ Joey and Tony Gollan’s Group 1 winning Queensland galloper Temple Of Boom.
See below for the full Winterbottom Stakes 2014 nominations with futures markets on the Perth Summer Racing Carnival features to open shortly at our preferred online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au!
2014 Winterbottom Stakes Nominations
Ascot Racecourse – 22/11/2014
|2||BARAKEY||Jim P Taylor||58.5kg|
|3||BEL SPRINTER||Jason Warren||58.5kg|
|4||BIG MONEY||Rodney Northam||58.5kg|
|8||ECLAIR BIG BANG (NZ)||Phillip Stokes||58.5kg|
|9||FAMOUS SEAMUS (NZ)||Noel Mayfield-Smith||58.5kg|
|10||FAST ’N’ ROCKING||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||58.5kg|
|11||FIDDLERS ELBOW||Justin Warwick||58.5kg|
|13||IN CAHOOTS||Phillip Atkins||58.5kg|
|15||LANKAN RUPEE||Mick Price||58.5kg|
|16||MOMENT OF CHANGE||Peter G Moody||58.5kg|
|17||OFFICE BEARER||Peter G Moody||58.5kg|
|18||REBEL DANE||Gary Portelli||58.5kg|
|21||ROCK MAGIC||Chris Gangemi||58.5kg|
|22||SETTLE STRADA||David Harrison||58.5kg|
|23||SHINING KNIGHT||Grant Williams||58.5kg|
|25||SMOKIN’ JOEY||Wez Hunter||58.5kg|
|26||SMOKO||Ross & Clint Price||58.5kg|
|27||TEMPLE OF BOOM||Tony Gollan||58.5kg|
|29||THERMAL CURRENT||Peter G Moody||58.5kg|
|30||TIGER PETE||Steve Wolfe||58.5kg|
|31||WARATAH’S SECRET||David Harrison||58.5kg|
|32||WATERMANS BAY||Mark Kavanagh||58.5kg|
|35||A TIME FOR JULIA||Peter G Moody||56.5kg|
|36||ANGELIC LIGHT||Robbie Griffiths||56.5kg|
|37||COOL TRADE||Alan Mathews||56.5kg|
|39||ELITE BELLE||Grant Williams||56.5kg|
|40||GIRL GUIDE||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||56.5kg|
|41||GREGERS||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||56.5kg|
|42||GRIANTE||David Brideoake & David Feek||56.5kg|
|43||JAZZ SONG||Mick Price||56.5kg|
|44||MAGNIFISIO||Jim P Taylor||56.5kg|
|45||MIRACLES OF LIFE||Peter & Paul Snowden||56.5kg|
|46||PERON||Peter G Moody||56.5kg|
|47||PLATINUM ROCKER||Simon A Miller||56.5kg|
|48||PURE GLAMOUR||Adam Durrant||56.5kg|
|49||RISEN FROM DOUBT||Tony McEvoy||53.5kg|
|50||AUNTY ZELMA||Justin Warwick||51.5kg|
|51||ELOPING||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||51.5kg|
|52||FULD’S BET||Simon A Miller||51.5kg|