The Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes-trained Leebaz has opened top of the odds to win Saturday’s Doncaster Prelude 2015 at Rosehill Gardens, tips for the handicap clash found below.
The $150,000 Group 3 Hyland Race Colours Doncaster Prelude (1500m) is the official lead-up race into the $2 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Royal Randwick Saturday week on Day 1 of The Championships and offers a final chance to earn a ballot exemption into the elite level classic.
Originally this year’s Prelude drew 10 final acceptors but nine are left in the mix for Rosehill Race 3 at 1:50pm (AEDT) tomorrow after the early scratching of Any Day Will Do.
Drawn nicely in barrier four with Tommy Berry to ride, the 57.5kg second top weight Leebaz leads the latest Doncaster Prelude betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au paying $3.50.
He is also at $21 for the Doncaster Mile 2015 in another seven days’ time, a price set to firm if the Zabeel five-year-old can improve on his last start sixth to Cosmic Endeavour in the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) last time out and win second-up on Saturday.
His last victory was in the Group 3 Hawksbury Cup (1600m) last May but second-up he flies with three wins from his four previous attempts two runs into a campaign.
Leebaz’s biggest dangers in the Prelude according to the bookies are then Group 2 Villiers Stakes winner Rudy ($5.50) and the in-form John O’Shea-trained Exceed And Excel four-year-old San Diego ($6).
It is a wide open market however with two other single figure fancies in Gai Waterhouse’s last start Kembla Grange winning import Excess Knowledge ($8) and the Chris Waller-trained Bull Point ($8.50), and no runner over $15 to win.
With so many livewire hopes below are our insider Doncaster Prelude 2015 tips for you to lock in online now at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $250 free bet sign-up for new depositing players!
#7 San Diego ($6)
Nice barrier two draw for Godolphin’s gelding who has James McDonald back in the saddle. The two won over 1350m at the track first-up off a year break from racing for the horse before Tim Clark jumped on for the galloper’s last start third, when beaten under half a length by Burbero in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) on March 14. Runs at Rosehill again so will be improving at a track he’s now familiar at, the distance is a non-issue and McDonald is flying so the reunion aids San Diego’s cause.
#4 Bull Point ($8.50)
Waller’s son of Fastnet Rock is now a gelding looking to win for the first time in an age. Damien Oliver rides from barrier three and the horse has ability, proven with a Crystal Mile second at Moonee Valley last Cox Plate Day, and will appreciate coming back in class after a sixth to Suavito in the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) late last month.
#2 Leebaz ($3.50)
Favourite has to be included with his second-up record (4-3-0-0) speaking for itself. Good barrier four draw with improvement to come.