As many as 12 horses could run in the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) this Saturday at Caulfield after four horses were late entries for the race but original nominee Dissident remains the classiest.
The four-year-old horse is already a four-time Group One winner and is chasing his second of the season after scoring the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) two weeks ago.
Trainer Peter Moody will be aiming for his third Futurity Stakes win with Dissident, and it is a strong sign that the trainer has already completed the CF Orr-Futurity Stakes double twice – with Typhoon Tracy in 2010 and Moment Of Change last year.
It almost looks like victory for Dissident in the 2015 Futurity Stakes is written in the stars but Moody isn’t getting too cocky too early. The trainer notes his horse has a tendency to hit a flat spot on the bend at Caulfield but his “great tactical speed” and ability to rally when balanced make up for it.
“He’s improved since the Orr and he pleased me again on the course proper today,” Moody told TVN.
“He’ll go there cherry ripe, there will be no excuses. It looks tailor made, but they don’t give away Group 1s.”
Dissident won his first Group One race last autumn in the Randwick Guineas (1600m) before completing a double in the spring with the Memsie Stakes (1400m) and Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m).
The horse got a head start on his autumn campaing, resuming in the Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m) on January 24 but things didn’t go as planned. He just managed to scrape into third place in the race on the back of a disappointing run.
Returning to his desired distance of 1400 metres at Caulfield three weeks later, Dissident confidently won the CF Orr Stakes by one and a half lengths. He’ll return to these same conditions on Saturday in a far less competitive field.
Ben Melham has ridden Dissident in all past six of his starts so has a good understand of the horse’s abilities. The hoop rode him in trackwork at Caulfield today (Tuesday) and is confident he’s only progressed since his last win.
“He’s come on, he’s a happy horse. He’s going to be very hard to beat again,” Melham said.
Final field and barrier draws for the 2015 Futurity Stakes will be released on Wednesday morning.
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