Tonight in Launceston’s 2015 Vamos Stakes during the Tasmanian Summer Racing Carnival Barry Campbell’s consistent mare Miss Middleton will shoot for her maiden Group race win.
The six-year-old daughter of Churchill Downs is one of 14 fillies and mares engaged to face off in the $125,000 Group 3 Armidale Stud “Needs Further” Vamos Stakes (1400m) that runs as Launceston Race 5 at 8:40pm (local time) this evening.
She has suffered an early blow with a wide barrier 13 draw however for her and apprentice hoop Ismail Toker to overcome in the weight-for-age feature.
A winner of six of her 17 starts, Miss Middleton boasts an outstanding Launceston race record of three wins from four starts at the track but none have been in Group company.
She has also won her only previous start over the track and distance and comes off back-to-back seconds at Tasmanian’s other premier course, Hobart.
Her latest run was a second when nearly four lengths off visiting Victorian I Love It in the Group 3 Bow Mistress Trophy (1200m) on February 6 having come from well back to flash home late in a run she’ll be out to improve on here.
It is a tight Vamos Stakes betting battle at the bookies this year with three hopefuls looking to jump favourite including Miss Middleton.
She pays around $4.60 in the latest Vamos Stakes odds trailing only the Stephen Theodore-trained Bow Mistress third placegetter Lady Lakshmi and the rails-drawn Starcraft mare Goodfun Girl who both also pay four-dollars-something to win.
Last start at Launceston three back Miss Middleton won over 1200m here on New Year’s Eve in her first victory since a success at Devonport in July of 2013.
She was with Spreyton at the start of her career but spent a campaign during the 2013-14 season racing in Melbourne and Sydney without any luck for Bart Cummings, the big romp on January 31st a successful return to her old trainer and state.
Now back in form and firing on all cylinders, she could be hard to hold out tonight at her pet track even from the horror barrier.
Her last start conqueror I Love It is not among her Vamos Stakes rivals having been sent to the paddock, tonight’s field featuring just the four interstate raiders including the aforementioned South Australian Goodfun Girl prepared by Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas, and early favourite Lady Lakshimi.
Miss Middleton’s biggest local rival looks to be the Bill Ryan-trained Sh’bourne Spirit, in barrier five for jockey Brendon McCoull, who won the Lady Lynette Fillies & Mares Plate two defeating Miss Middleton by a half-length on January 25.
Sh’Bourne Spirit however was beaten six and a half lengths when seventh in the Bow Mistress last time out.
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