A near-capacity field of 15 three-year-old colts and geldings will run in the Group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill this Saturday after final acceptances were taken on Wednesday morning.
Headlining the field is the Michael Moroney-trained Merion, who will enjoy an inside jump from barrier two with Steven Arnold to ride.
Merion has won three of his nine career starts, including the Listed Living Legends Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on September 13 where he just out bobbed his rival to win on the line. The gelding has failed to return to the winner’s circle since then despite five starts.
The gelding resumed for a minor placing in the William Hill Plate (1300m) at Sandown on February 7 before running fourth in the Group 3 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) two weeks later. Merion was last seen running sixth in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) on March 7. Despite showing no turn of foot, he kept on through the line to finish three and a half lengths off winner Wandjina.
John O’Shea and Bart & James Cummings will both deliver dual-pronged attacks on the race after accepting with two horses each.
O’Shea will saddle two Godolphin three-year-olds in the race – Hauraki and Gouldian.
Hauraki won his maiden back in October followed by a benchmark 70 win over 1400 metres on November 8. The colt was spelled for three months but couldn’t make anything of his first two starts this campaign before running second in the Group 2 Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) on March 14. The colt will jump from barrier four with champion hoop James McDonald to ride.
Joining Hauraki in the 2015 Tulloch Stakes is stablemate Gouldian. The colt stepped up to black-type racing on November 1 for the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) but finished midfield in seventh place. He was last seen running a close second in a Benchmark 70 over a mile last month. Gouldian will jump from barrier seven with Sam Clipperton.
Bart & James Cummings will saddle Ruling Dynasty and High Midnight.
Ruling Dynasty has finished in the first two in all three of his past starts but will need to overcome a wide start from the outside gate with Tommy Berry.
The lightly-run High Midnight has just two career starts to his name, winning his maiden over a mile at Kembla Grange on March 13. The gelding will jump from barrier nine with Jason Collett.
Check out the final field and barrier draw for the 2015 Tulloch Stakes below. Open your Ladbrokes.com.au online betting account to receive up to $250 in a bonus match on your first bet.
2015 Tulloch Stakes Field & Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||1x4169x346||MERION (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Steven Arnold||2||56kg||85|
|2||1122×604||DIAMOND VALORES (NZ)||Peter & Paul Snowden||TBA||14||56kg||78|
|3||11×602||HAURAKI||John O’Shea||James McDonald||4||56kg||79|
|4||43x4517x82||GOULDIAN||John O’Shea||Sam Clipperton||7||56kg||68|
|5||3x3311x353||QUICK STRIKE||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||11||56kg||70|
|6||13x37x156||RHODIN DRIVE||Gwenda Markwell||Jim Cassidy||3||56kg||67|
|7||341×77||BLADEMEISTER||Peter & Paul Snowden||TBA||8||56kg||67|
|8||1×51||CAPED CRUSADER (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Adam Hyeronimus||12||56kg||72|
|9||46121||RULING DYNASTY||Bart & James Cummings||Tommy Berry||15||56kg||71|
|10||49211||HAPPY SOUL||Bryce Heys||Craig Williams||5||56kg||61|
|11||3×431||BROGUE (NZ)||Steve Englebrecht||Nicholas Hall||13||56kg||64|
|12||2×353||SADDLER’S FLAME||Kevin Moses||Kerrin McEvoy||6||56kg||–|
|13||51||HIGH MIDNIGHT||Bart & James Cummings||Jason Collett||9||56kg||62|
|14||41||OMEROS||John Sargent||Blake Shinn||1||56kg||64|
|15||952||GENERAL ZABEEL (NZ)||John P Thompson||Christian Reith||10||56kg||–|