The David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Petrology leads a field of a dozen middle-distance sprinters facing off at Sandown in the Manfred Stakes 2015 this Australia Day meeting on Monday.
One of two Group races on the race card, this year’s $150,000 Group 3 Thomas North Manfred Stakes (1300m) is due to run as race six at 4:20pm (local time).
To wear the number one saddlecloth is the resuming Petrology who is first-up here not having raced since mid-November.
He won his last two spring assignments on the trot in the Listed Connoisseur Stakes (1800m) at Flemington on November 6 then the Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) on November 15.
The Fastnet Rock colt has won one of his two first-up assignments and returns to the track where he enjoyed his biggest victory to date.
He will have to be at his best however with he and his Sandown Guineas winning jockey Nicholas Hall suffering an early blow with the second widest barrier in the 12-horse field for the set weights plus penalties clash.
Also first-up here and drawn in double digits with barrier 10 is the Mick Price-trained Moonovermanhattan.
The grey Manhattan Rain colt won the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase (2040m) on Cox Plate Day in late October and then rounded out his spring with a disappointing 12th to Preferment in the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) on November 1.
He didn’t see out the distance that day and should be better over the 1300m first-up here.
Drawn better and coming off a win is the Wendy Kelly-trained Fast Cash who jumps from barrier two for Vlad Duric.
A son of Charge Forward, Fast Cast won over 1200m at Moonee Valley in his resuming run on January 3 defeating Tudor by nearly two lengths and will look to go back-to-back when stepped up in class here.
A host of his rivals also won their latest start including fellow Moonee Valley winner San Nicasio for Peter Moody and the flying Lee & Anthony Freedman-trained Java.
Medaglia D’Oro gelding Java has won his past three on the trot most recently at this Sandown-Hillside track over 1400m when carrying 59.5kg to a one and a quarter-length victory over Pure Addiction.
He drops to 56kg on Monday and should be running home well with the lighter weight at a track he’s proven over.
Moody meanwhile has also accepted for Tan Tat Diamond, the son of Fastnet Rock racing for the first time since a disappointing eighth to Chivalry in the Group 3 McNeil Stakes (1200m) back in August.
Other notable Manfred Stakes hopes include Chris Waller’s three-time winning colt Bascule, the Tony McEvoy-trained Caulfield winner from the winter Affirmation and last start Werribee winner Belflyer in the outside barrier.
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2015 Manfred Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Sandown Race 6 (4:20pm) – 26/01/2015
|1||22x558611x||PETROLOGY||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Nicholas Hall||11||59kg||92|
|2||1x042710x||MOONOVERMANHATTAN||Mick Price||Daniel Moor||10||59kg||92|
|3||1226×1||FAST CASH||Wendy Kelly||Vlad Duric||2||58.5kg||74|
|4||118x||TAN TAT DIAMOND||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||3||58.5kg||69|
|5||211×13||BASCULE (NZ)||Chris Waller||Craig Williams||9||57kg||75|
|6||5x11x||AFFIRMATION||Tony McEvoy||Mark Zahra||6||57kg||70|
|7||15×1||SAN NICASIO||Peter G Moody||Ben Melham||5||57kg||69|
|8||40×111||JAVA||Lee & Anthony Freedman||Damien Oliver||7||56kg||71|
|9||421344||BERISHA||Murray Johnson||Cory Parish||8||56kg||68|
|10||7x1315x1||BELFLYER||John Moloney||Patrick Moloney (a)||12||56kg||70|
|11||1x||THE ULTIMATUM||Michael Hibbs||Ibrahim Gundogdu||1||56kg||63|
|12||6×1||GEE WHIZZER||John Price||–||4||56kg||62|