Group One racing returns to Sydney this weekend with the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) running at Warwick Farm.
16 top gallopers have been nominated to tackle the mile in the $500,000 race, with premier Sydney trainer Chris Waller set to dominate the race after nominating nine of his stable stars.
Waller is one the verge of winning the race an unprecedented five times in a row so it’s no surprise the trainer is throwing everything he’s got into it. He began his winning streak with Danleigh in 2011, Shoot Out won the next two, and Boban took out the title last year.
At the moment Waller is tied with the late Guy Walter, who won the Chipping Norton Stakes four years in a row from 1999 with Tie The Knot, however he could soon set his own record.
Boban is set to defend his title in the Group One race on Saturday after winning one length ahead of Dundeel last year. As well as defending his victory in the race, the five-year-old gelding will also aim to break his drought and return to the winner’s circle for the first time since last March.
After winning the Chipping Norton last year, Boban suffered a bleeding attack in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) six weeks later, finishing second last to his rival Dundeel. The gelding then ran unplaced in all four of his starts during the spring and continued his losing streak when resuming in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) on January 31. He was last seen running midfield in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m), however the gelding worked well to the line and finished just three lengths behind winner Contributer.
Five more of Waller’s nominated horses are coming via the Apollo Stakes on February 14 – Foreteller, Hawkspur, He’s Your Man, Junoob, and Weary – all but one of which ran unplaced.
Five-year-old gelding Weary is Waller’s fittest nominee after winning the Expressway Stakes first-up and finishing third in the Apollo Stakes.
Waller’s three other potential runners include Beaten Up, who ran second last in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 14, Group 1 The Metropolitan (2400m) winner Opinion, and Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) third Who Shot Thebarman, both of which are resuming.
The 2015 Chipping Norton Stakes is set to be an Apollo Stakes re-match after winner Contributer and runner-up Ninth Legion were also nominated on Monday morning.
Other horses nominated for the $500,000 feature race include Anthony Cummings’ Fiveandahalfstar, who resumed last Saturday in the Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) following 22 months on the sidelines due to injury, British raider Hartnell, Kris Lees’ talented mare Lucia Valentina, and four-time Group One winner Silent Achiever.
Check out the complete list of 2015 Chipping Norton Stakes nominations below. Open your Ladbrokes.com.au online betting account before the betting market opens later this week to receive a $250 bonus match on your first bet.
2015 Chipping Norton Stakes Nominations
|1||BEATEN UP (GB)||Chris Waller||109|
|3||CONTRIBUTER (IRE)||John O’Shea||109|
|4||DISCLAIMER (GB)||Peter & Paul Snowden||97|
|6||FORETELLER (GB)||Chris Waller||113|
|7||HARTNELL (GB)||John O’Shea||100|
|9||HE’S YOUR MAN (FR)||Chris Waller||110|
|10||JUNOOB (GB)||Chris Waller||108|
|11||LUCIA VALENTINA (NZ)||Kris Lees||111|
|12||NINTH LEGION||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||105|
|13||OPINION (IRE)||Chris Waller||104|
|14||SILENT ACHIEVER (NZ)||Roger James||116|
|15||WEARY (FR)||Chris Waller||108|
|16||WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ)||Chris Waller||108|