Hawkes Racing’s undefeated stallion Deep Field has opened narrow favourite to defeat the world’s equal highest rated sprinter Lankan Rupee when the two face off in the Lightning Stakes 2015 at Flemington Racecourse on Saturday.
The Northern Meteor four-year-old is a winner of all five of his starts to date, the entire one of the 10 nominations taken on Monday for the $500,000 Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) – entries extended until 10:00am (AEDT) today.
In the pre-field Black Caviar Lightning Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au the bookmakers are putting their faith in Deep Field to continue his winning streak when he returns on the weekend installing him as the narrow $2.30 favourite.
Deep Field hasn’t raced since Victoria Derby Day back on November 1 when he scored a Group 2 win over 1200m at Flemington.
He’s over less distance first-up against a crack field and how he stacks up in the better company will be key to his autumn season.
Hot on Deep Field’s heels in the early Black Caviar Lightning Stakes betting markets is then the Mick Price-trained Lankan Rupee at $2.50.
A four-time Group 1 winning champion, the Redoute’s Choice gelding enjoyed a stellar autumn last year with a host of wins including a Group 1 triple taking out the Oakleigh Plate and Newmarket Handicap in Melbourne before his TJ Smith Stakes success to round out the prep in Sydney.
During the spring Lankan Rupee enjoyed another elite level success in the Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley and was last seen running third to Terravista in the Darley Classic during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
The only other single figure hope in the current Lightning Stakes markets, which will firm with the release of the final field on Wednesday, is then Chris Waller’s Group 1 winning three-year-old Brazen Beau.
The Sydney raider has won four of his eight career starts for a smart 50% strike rate and was last seen winning the Coolmore Stud Stakes over 1200m at Flemington on Derby Day.
The next two best in betting and only two other hopes under $20 in the markets are then the best fancied female galloper Vain Queen ($10) and the Joe Pride-trained Tiger Tees ($14).
John Sadler’s Artie Schiller mare Vain Queen is a straight course specialist boasting four wins from five starts at Flemignton, and two from three over the distance.
Her latest start was during the Cup Carnival at her favourite track when winning the Group 3 G.H. Mumm Stakes (1100m), an effort she’ll be looking to repeat when stepped up in class first-up.
Dubawi seven-year-old Tiger Tees, winner of last year’s The Galaxy, meanwhile runs for the first time since early September last year when runner-up to Lucia Valentina in the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) in the mud at Randwick.
See below for the current futures Black Caviar Lightning Stakes 2015 odds, prices open online now at Ladbrokes.com.au where first time depositing customers are eligible for a $250 bonus welcome bet when you quote the code BETBONUS!