Nominations are now out for Saturday’s Ballarat Cup 2014 with a bumper 35 entries taken for the end-of-spring showdown.
The final black-type of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, the $200,000 Listed Ballarat Cup (2200m) is shaping up as a top race featuring a host of quality stayers.
Won last year by subsequent Sydney Cup champ The Offer, trainer Gai Waterhouse has nominated for her smart Al Maher gelding Pheidon.
The four-year-old ran a devastatingly close second when just nosed out of the Group 3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) at Sandown last Saturday and would be a top chance of going back-to-back in the Ballarat Cup for his trainer.
Despite the entry however, Pheidon is more likely to head west to Perth for a shot at some of their summer carnival support races as hinted at by Waterhouse after the weekend’s effort.
The Ballarat Cup’s highest rated nominee this year is Michael Kent’s seven-year-old Pins mare Epingle.
Fifth to The Offer in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) back in April, this season she’s had four runs including fourth place efforts in both the Listed Cranbourne Cup (2020m) and Group 2 Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m) in October.
Last Saturday she raced in Sandown’s feature race, the Group 2 Zipping Classic (2400m), and was far from disgraced when just a neck away second to French raider Au Revoir.
While Au Revoir, who will stay on in Australia, has been spelled Epingle could back up on the seven day turnaround in the Ballarat Cup shooting for her first win since claiming February’s Group 3 Hobart Cup – Launceston Cup double in Tasmania.
Another headline Ballarat Cup entry is veteran eight-year-old At First Sight, the Darren Weir-trained import coming off a second to Mujadale in the Ararat Cup (2000m) from November 9.
Paul Jones’s Ararat Cup winner Mujadale has also been nominated for the Ballarat edition, the seven-year-old to line up in his 38th career start if accepted, as has third placed Great Lane for Warrnambool trainer Symon Wilde.
The only other last start winner in the mix is the in-form Spinderbella for Robert Smerdon.
The five-year-old mare is only lightly raced having won five of her nine career starts to date, including a 2040m effort under the lights at Moonee Valley last time out on October 24 that earned her a step up to black-type company at Ballarat.
Another headliner is the Robert Hickmott-trained, Lloyd Williams-owned stayer Massiyn.
The Zamindar six-year-old comes off a close second to Bring Something in the Listed Bendigo Cup (2400m) on October 29, a race that has served as a nice Ballarat Cup lead-up over the years.
Also coming off nice lead-up runs are the likes of Kyneton Cup Bring Back, recent runner-up over 2200m on Bendigo Cup Day Cadel Triomphe and Tony McEvoy’s Cup Day Plate runner-up Sysmo.
Other notable chances then include the Mick Price-trained Group 2 performer Tango’s Daughter, stable mate Count Of Limonade who was fifth in the Bendigo Cup last time out and Darren Weir’s Hobart Cup winner from last year Hurdy Gurdy Man to be ridden by three time winning jockey Brad Rawiller.
See below for the full Ballarat Cup 2014 nominations with the final field set for release on Wednesday.
The other features on the 10-race program for Ballarat Cup Day are then the Magic Millions-sponsored $200,000 Magic Millions Clockwise Classic (1000m) for juveniles and the $100,000 Magic Millions 3YO Classic (1100m).
To back your favourites in the last Melbourne stakes’ race for the season at the best price make sure you have an account open online at Ladbrokes.com.au where your first deposit will be matched up to $100 as a bonus welcome bet!
2014 Ballarat Cup Nominations
Ballarat Racecourse – 22/11/2014
|1||AT FIRST SIGHT (IRE)||Darren Weir||92|
|2||BRING BACK||Mark Ashby||73|
|3||CADEL TRIOMPHE (NZ)||Colin Little||68|
|4||CADILLAC MOUNTAIN||Peter G Moody||75|
|5||COUNT OF LIMONADE (IRE)||Mick Price||96|
|6||ELECTRIC FUSION||Robert Smerdon||88|
|7||EPINGLE (NZ)||Michael Kent||102|
|9||FAT AL||Peter G Moody||98|
|10||GREAT LANE||Symon Wilde||75|
|11||HAPPY AS HELL||Terry & Karina O’Sullivan||81|
|12||HURDY GURDY MAN||Darren Weir||95|
|14||IN MASQUERADE (NZ)||Peter G Moody||72|
|15||MASSIYN (IRE)||Robert Hickmott||93|
|16||MASTER’S DEGREE||Steven Lake||74|
|17||MOBACO (FR)||Darren Weir||92|
|18||MOTIVADO (GB)||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||84|
|19||MUJADALE||Paul A Jones||88|
|20||PHANTOM BREW (NZ)||Colin Little||78|
|23||SCRATCHY BOTTOM||Michael Kent||80|
|24||SHENZHOU STEEDS (NZ)||Mitchell Freedman||81|
|26||ST ISSEY (NZ)||Pat Hyland||73|
|27||SYSMO (FR)||Tony McEvoy||93|
|29||TANGO’S DAUGHTER||Mick Price||94|
|31||THE INVENTOR||Bevan Laming||90|
|32||TUSCAN FIRE||Dan O’Sullivan||98|
|33||VILANOVA (NZ)||Chris Waller||95|
|34||WALTZING TO WIN||David Huxtable||82|
|35||YOU THINK SO (NZ)||Michael Kent||84|