12 two-year-old fillies are set to contest the Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) at Warwick Farm this Saturday in what is sure to be a hotly contested race.
Chris Waller, Gerald Ryan, and John O’Shea are all set to double their chances at winning the $175,000 race after accepting with two of their juvenile stable stars each.
Waller will cover the entire field after Always Allison drew the inside jump from barrier one while Micucci will have to overcome a wide start from barrier 12.
Always Allison made her debut in the Tab Rewards Maiden Plate (1150m) at the course proper earlier this month on the back of two winning barrier trials in January. The filly was due to make her debut in the Group 3 Widden Stakes (1100m) on January 31 but was scratched due to the rain affected track.
The filly was smartly away in her debut run before settling nicely just outside the leader. She put pressure on him nearing the home turn, easily taking the lead on straightening before drawing away to win decisively by two and a half lengths.
Since her win Always Allison strongly won another 900m trial last Tuesday.
Micucci has yet to win her maiden, finishing outside the placings in all three of her starts thus far.
Gerald Ryan’s Heavenly Hand will enjoy a start from barrier three with Brenton Avdulla to ride while stable mate Thorsborne will jump from gate seven with Tim Clark as jockey.
Heavenly Hand won her maiden on debut at Kembla Grove back in December, which is her only start to date, while Thorsborne won a 2YO Handicap (1000m) at Canterbury on February 6.
John O’Shea’s pair Italy and Circular will jump from neighbouring gates – nine and ten – in their bid to win the 2015 Sweet Embrace Stakes.
Italy won her maiden two weeks ago while Circular made her debut at Randwick on February 18, finishing just three-quarters of a length off the winner in third place.
The Gary Portelli-trained Racy won her maiden on debut back in December but finished end of the field in the $2 million Magic Millions Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast on January 10. The filly will jump midfield from barrier five with Hugh Bowman.
Check out the complete 2015 Sweet Embrace Stakes field and barrier draw below.
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2015 Sweet Embrace Stakes Field & Barrier Draw
|1||11||LADY JIVAGO||Jeff Englebrecht||Grant Buckley||11||55.5kg|
|2||12||TIBROGARGAN MISS||Darryl Hansen||Luke Tarrant (a)||4||55.5kg|
|3||2×1||ITALY||John O’Shea||James Doyle||9||55.5kg|
|4||130||RACY||Gary Portelli||Hugh Bowman||5||55.5kg|
|5||1||ALWAYS ALLISON||Chris Waller||Glyn Schofield||1||55.5kg|
|6||454||MICUCCI||Chris Waller||Jason Collett||12||55.5kg|
|7||1x||HEAVENLY HAND||Gerald Ryan||Brenton Avdulla||3||55.5kg|
|8||3x||SPEAK FONDLY||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||6||55.5kg|
|9||1||THORSBORNE||Gerald Ryan||Tim Clark||7||55.5kg|
|10||2||MOWGLI||Clarry Conners||Joshua Parr||2||55.5kg|
|11||3||CIRCULAR||John O’Shea||James McDonald||10||55.5kg|
|12||–||ALPINA||John P Thompson||Blake Shinn||8||55.5kg|