Adam Durrant’s Perth Cup favourite Real Love is also dominating the markets for her lead-up into the New Year’s Day feature, the 2014 WA St Leger running at Ascot Racecourse this Saturday.
One of only seven final acceptors for this year’s $100,000 Listed Perth Ice Works W.A. St Leger (2100m), the four-year-old Desert King mare is after her third win from four starts.
Her latest effort was at the track on December 6 when running away to win in the Group 3 Queen’s Cup (2200m) by two and a quarter lengths over Son Of Something.
She’s even shorter for her CB Cox Stakes Day assignment sitting as the firm $1.70 odds-on favourite with William Pike to ride from a nice barrier three draw.
The close second favourite at $3 is then Balmont Girl who scratched out from the $250,000 Group 2 CB Cox Stakes (2100m) at the same meeting in favour of this easier assignment.
Regular jockey Shaun O’Donnell retains the ride on the four-year-old Balmont mare who won the Group 3 Asian Beau Stakes (1400m) on November 1 before her second to Elite Belle in the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) three weeks later.
Her latest run was in the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) where she could only manage to finish 10th to Moriarty, a disappointing effort she’ll be out to atone for here when stepped up in distance.
Trainer Paula Wagg decided on the Listed race over the Group 2 leading into the Perth Cup as the mare will incur a smaller penalty if she wins Saturday’s St Leger as opposed to the Cox Stakes leading into her Grand Final aim.
Wagg is confident her WA Oaks winner will be back to her best this weekend after pulling up mildly lame with a skin condition in her near foreleg post-Kingston Town Classic run.
The only other single figure hope to take out the WA St Leger is then Respondent ($6.50) with the rails run from barrier one with Brad Parnham aboard.
The Grant Williams-trained Haradasun four-year-old won the Group 2 WATC Derby (2400m) as a three-year-old back in April and could appreciate the extra metres after failing to make a real impression of late in the Railway Stakes (7th) and Kingston Town (13th).
Vital Edition (barrier two) then represents the value in the field paying $17 for an upset WA St Leger result, the Ben Pearce-trained galloper up in class after some good runs at the track in non-black types this season.
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