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13 horses are set to tackle the mile at Doomben Racecourse on Saturday in the Listed Recognition Stakes (1630m) after leading runner Mouro was scratched in favour of the Listed Festival Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens in Sydney.
Four of the 13 remaining runners are offering single figure odds in the Recognition Stakes betting market at Ladbrokes.com.au, led by short priced favourite Rudy at $2.70.
The Helen Page-trained four-year-old gelding will jump from barrier nine in the race with Luke Tarrant in the saddle.
He enjoyed four black-type racing starts during the Brisbane Winter Carnival, finishing third in both the Group 3 APHS Gunsynd Classic (1600m) and Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m). He then made his debut at the highest level of racing in the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) on June 7 but finished second.
Rudy had to work hard to make his way over from the widest draw and went fast to be in the front. He was well rated in the lead but got collared quickly and came in a long way behind the winners.
The gelding has had two starts this campaign, both handicap races at Doomben, and finished runner-up in both so is in good form heading into the 2014 Recognition Stakes. However he’ll have to beat home a field full of talented rivals, including three other single figure hopefuls.
- #4 Hopfgarten ($5.50) – Robert Heathcote’s gelding enjoyed a win in the Group 3 Sunshine Coast Guineas (1600m) in the winter and began his summer campaign with a handicap win at Doomben over 1350m on November 1. He finished back of the field in ninth place last time out but should do better on Saturday. Will jump from barrier 10 with Damian Browne.
- #11 Grayson Square ($7) – the Brian Wakefield-trained gelding has scored the inside run from barrier one with Chris Munce to ride. The gelding enjoyed three successive wins during October, two of which were on the Doomben track.
- #6 Lady Echelon ($9) – Natalie McCall’s mare had a disappointing spring after travelling to Melbourne and finishing last in the Group 3 Ladies Day Vase (1600m) before running unplaced in a greys BM90 at Flemington on November 6. She will jump from the middle of the field in barrier seven with champion hoop Jeff Lloyd in the saddle. The mare loves the mile trip at Doomben and performs well in rain-affected going.
Tony Gollan’s Brave Ali, who headlines the race with a HCP rating of 98, is a $12 shot to win the Recognition Stakes. The gelding won the Listed Ipswich Cup (2150m) and finished second in the Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) during the winter but appears to enjoy the longer trips more than the mile.
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