Robert Smerdon’s flying import Noble Protector has opened odds-on favourite in 2015 Sunline Stakes betting for this Friday night’s Moonee Valley support race.
William Reid Stakes Night takes place under the lights in Melbourne tomorrow evening with punters treated to a double shot of Group racing including the fillies and mares facing off in the $200,000 Group 2 William Hill Sunline Stakes (1600m).
A field of 10 female gallopers is engaged for this year’s Sunline Stakes, the hot favourite through Ladbrokes.com.au of which is Noble Protector at $1.55 to win her second on the trot.
The five-year-old daughter of Haafhd came up trumps with the inside alley for her fourth run down under, the former UK-trained mare having debuted in Australia with a second to fellow import Contributer in the Group 3 Coongy Handicap (2000m) last Caulfield Cup Day.
Her latest run was a first-up win in the Group 3 Matron Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on March 14, form she’ll look to carry on with in her Moonee Valley debut this weekend.
Three of Noble Protector’s rivals are also at single-figure odds to win with Star Fashion ($8), Marianne ($8) and Girl In Flight ($9).
The David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Street Cry four-year-old Star Fashion is after her first win since October last year when she took out the Group 3 Ladies Day Vase (1600m) over the mile at Caulfield.
She’s also having her maiden run at Moonee Valley and is second-up after a sixth to Madam Gangster in the Group 3 Tressady Stakes (1400m) at the start of the month, her regular rider Michael Walker staying on in barrier six.
Marianne meanwhile jumps from gate three with Mark Zahra riding the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Darci Brahma four-year-old.
Marianne had a similar barrier (two) with Zahra aboard last time out on March 14 when second in the Matron Stakes, a fourth and a half-length loss she’ll be out to improve on here when facing off against Noble Protector once again.
Rounding out the hopes under double figures for an upset Sunline Stakes result, Girl In Flight jumps from barrier five.
Robbie Griffiths, who also saddles-up the favourite Angelic Light in the $400,000 Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) on Friday night, prepares the Commands four-year-old who comes off a fourth in the Tressady Stakes from March 7.
The next best in betting at $14 a piece are then the Gwenda Johnstone-trained Precious Gem in barrier two and John O’Shea’s Aspiration Quality runner-up Entertains out wide in nine to be ridden by Chad Schofield and Tommy Berry respectively.
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