Sam Clipperton believes with a bit of luck he can get the job done in Saturday’s 2015 Southern Cross Stakes with one of the top chances in the Randwick showdown, Territory.
Four horses are fighting for favouritism in tomorrow’s $150,000 Group 3 Adaptra Southern Cross Stakes (1200m), the handicap clash running as Apollo Stakes Day Race 4 at 2:55pm (AEDT).
Current Southern Cross Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au are led by the Gai Waterhouse-trained Driefontein at $3 after the Fastnet Rock mare ran a devastatingly close second to Weary in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on January 31.
Also coming via a top three run in the Expressway is Clipperton’s mount, veteran Lonhro seven-year-old Territory.
The gelding finished off only a length away from the winner in the race after a first-up third at Gosford in the Listed Takeover Target Stakes (1200m) from January 9.
His last win was back in August last year in a Benchmark 90 over 1200m at Rosehill, and he pays $4.40 to break the drought with a Southern Cross success on Saturday.
“He showed some versatility last start when third in the Expressway,” Clipperton told Racenet this week.
“With a bit of luck he’ll be right there.”
The other two top fancies in betting along with he and Driefontein are then market mover Hot Snitzel ($4.20) with the rails run from barrier one and Bull Point ($4.80) also first-up and drawn one wide in two.
Territory carried 58.5kg in the Expressway Stakes with Clipperton aboard and should relish dropping right back to the 54kg minimum on Saturday, weights led by the returning Anthony Cummings-trained multiple Group 1 winner Fiveandahalfstar (60.5kg).
Fiveandahalfstar is a $34 outsider in betting for his first run back since spraining a tendon during his win in the 2013 The BMW nearly two years ago, the distance far shorter than his preferred.
Other key rides for Clipperton at Randwick on Saturday include his 2015 Golden Slipper tip Calaverite who runs first-up in the $125,000 Listed Lonhro Plate (1100m) and last start Carrington Stakes winner Ninth Legion taking on a crack field in the $250,000 Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m).
Last Wish (Race 2), Chintz (Race 7) and Absalon (Race 8) make it nearly full card for the hoop at the early Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival meeting.
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