The Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) is set to be the race to watch this Saturday as 15 talented horses battle it out for the $1 million race.
The 2014 Mackinnon Stakes is one of four Group One races running at Flemington this weekend, part of the action packed Victoria Derby Day.
Many of the 15 runners featured on the field have made an impression during the spring racing carnival, looking for one final win at the highest level of racing for the season. Headlining the field is the Andrew Balding-trained Side Glance, who will jump from the middle of the field with Craig Williams in the saddle.
Side Glance is one of four runners backing-up from the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) one week prior, which is considered the key lead-up race to the Mackinnon Stakes. In the last 10 years, seven Mackinnon winners had their previous start just seven days before in the Cox Plate.
The gelding was a fast-finishing fourth in the Cox Plate, missing out on a placing by just a neck. He is also the reigning Mackinnon Stakes champion, not winning a race since then. However he has done well this season, finishing third in three consecutive Group One races including the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) and Arlington Magic Million Stakes (2011m).
The other three horses backing-up from the Cox Plate are Happy Trails (6th) who will jump from barrier 13 with Damien Oliver to ride, Foreteller (5th) who will jump from barrier 10 with Glen Boss, and Criterion (7th) who will enjoy the rails run from barrier one with Corey Brown in the saddle.
Barrier four has brought home the most Mackinnon Stakes winners since 1983 (5), which will be occupied this year by the Robert Hickmott-trained Amralah. The five-year-old international import is in-form following back-to-back wins in the Listed Doom Bar Stakes (2000m) and Group 3 Lancaster Stakes (2100m). This will be his first start outside of Britain.
Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) runner-up Rising Romance is one of only two mares featured in the field and will enjoy up to a 2.5kg weight advantage over the boys. The Donna Logan-trained mare will jump from barrier 12 with James McDonald to ride, a gate that has yet to bring home a Mackinnon Stakes winner.
She had an impressive run in the Caulfield Cup, in which she beat many more favoured runners home just half a length off winner Admire Rakti. Her weight has gone up 3.5kg since then however, so could struggle to run as fast.
New Zealand import Costume is the only other filly on the field, and is a last start Group One winner. She will enjoy an inside run from barrier two with Blake Shinn to ride.
Check out the complete 2014 Mackinnon Stakes final field & barrier draw below.
Betting markets for the race will reopen at Ladbrokes.com.au shortly, so make sure your online betting account is ready to go.
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2014 Mackinnon Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||5×74593334||SIDE GLANCE (GB)||Andrew Balding||Craig Williams||7||59kg||112|
|2||412×582056||HAPPY TRAILS||Paul Beshara||Damien Oliver||13||59kg||113|
|3||5389×43185||FORETELLER (GB)||Chris Waller||Glen Boss||10||59kg||113|
|4||440×751408||HAWKSPUR||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||8||59kg||108|
|5||5512×55610||MORIARTY (IRE)||Chris Waller||–||3||59kg||107|
|6||1×40882134||BRAMBLES (NZ)||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||9||59kg||105|
|7||26506×1231||MOURINHO||Peter Gelagotis||Craig Newitt||11||59kg||106|
|8||2340×31311||HE’S YOUR MAN (FR)||Chris Waller||Joao Moreira||5||59kg||109|
|9||5x0x55114x||FARRAAJ (IRE)||Roger Varian||Andrea Atzeni||15||59kg||105|
|10||x5239x1680||STAR ROLLING||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||Stephen Baster||6||59kg||104|
|11||4x781x2479||SPILLWAY (GB)||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Kerrin McEvoy||14||59kg||103|
|12||219x36211x||AMRALAH (IRE)||Robert Hickmott||Chad Schofield||4||59kg||104|
|13||2811×37227||CRITERION (NZ)||David Payne||Corey Brown||1||58.5kg||112|
|14||312184×001||COSTUME (NZ)||Graeme & Debbie Rogerson||Blake Shinn||2||57kg||104|
|15||12241×4722||RISING ROMANCE (NZ)||Donna Logan||James McDonald||12||56.5kg||108|