Thirteen talented fillies have been confirmed in the final field for Saturday’s Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on Saturday, highlighted by the inclusion of some of the Autumn Carnival’s most exciting three-year-old thoroughbreds.
Fenway charged home to post a maiden Group 1 victory in the Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) two weeks ago and is sure to find ideal running position from barrier 8 in the Australian Oaks.
Claiming two wins and one minor place finish from her six competitive starts so far, Fenway stamped her claims as one to watch when debuting for a two length win in a Bendigo minor over 1400m in spring; returning to the paddock after placing a credible third in the Group 2 Wakeful Stakes (2000m) on Derby Day.
Unlucky to finish outside the places in fourth in both the Group 3 The Vanity (1400m) and Group 3 Schweppervescence Trophy (1600m) upon resuming this time, co-trainer Shannon Hope is confident the High Chaparral filly will line up for the Australian Oaks in peak condition.
Thunder Lady boxed on for third in the Vinery Stud Stakes a fortnight ago and will relish a step-up to 2400m for the 2015 Australian Oaks.
Winning the Wakeful Stakes before finishing a close second in the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) most notably in spring, the Mastercraftsman filly has steadily built to the task this time in; failing to figure as the only female in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) first-up and running fifth in the Group 3 Keith F Nolan Classic (1600m) leading into the Vinery Stud Stakes.
Adrift caused a huge upset when beating a talented field to the line in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) first-up however Gai Waterhouse is certain she is a genuine stayer and will be pleased with the allocation of barrier 3 for the Australian Oaks.
Securing three race wins through her seven start career so far, the Zabeel filly has appeared to fade in form since her impressive first-up performance; running seventh in the Group 2 Surround Stakes and ninth in each of the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and Vinery Stud Stakes most recently.
Kiwi raider Savaria has been the standout of the New Zealand three-year-old filly season this time in but will have to overcome the somewhat wide and awkward barrier 12 if to debut in Australia in the best way possible this weekend.
Finishing outside the first three only once in six career starts, the daughter of Savabeel won a minor over 1400m first-up this time; progressing to second in the Oaks Prelude (1800m) and victory in each of the Group 3 Lowland Stakes (2100m) and Group 1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m) most recently.
Leading Chris Waller-trained filly Winx has been confirmed to be partnered by Joao Moreira and will leave from the rails draw, while Ballet Suite has been charged with overcoming the wide gate 13 in the 2015 Australian Oaks.
Candelara gained a position in the Australian Oaks field with an impressive win in the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m) on Monday and is sure to receive a gem of a ride from leading hoop Hugh Bowman, particularly after drawing the ideal barrier 2.
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2015 Australian Oaks Final Field and Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||325312×053||THUNDER LADY (NZ)||John Sargent||Zac Purton||11||56kg||95|
|2||1x122x7515||WINX||Chris Waller||Joao Moreira||1||56kg||95|
|3||143×441||FENWAY||Lee & Shannon Hope||–||8||56kg||–|
|4||5×13211||SAVARIA (NZ)||Roydon Bergerson||James McDonald||12||56kg||–|
|5||x2237x8871||CANDELARA||Bjorn Baker||Hugh Bowman||2||56kg||71|
|6||213×1108||SWEET AND SPEEDY||Peter G Moody||Chad Schofield||6||56kg||86|
|7||2x2152x626||WINE TALES||Chris Waller||–||5||56kg||82|
|8||611×1799||ADRIFT (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Damien Oliver||3||56kg||88|
|9||5124×32212||RUSTIC MELODY||Kris Lees||Brenton Avdulla||10||56kg||66|
|10||521×114||BALLET SUITE||Chris Waller||Ryan Moore||13||56kg||87|
|11||1×47433180||WILDENSTEIN||Paul Perry||Brodie Loy (a)||4||56kg||65|
|12||4×114||GUST OF WIND (NZ)||John Sargent||Tye Angland||7||56kg||63|
|13||63115||ZARZALI||Bart & James Cummings||Craig Williams||9||56kg||66|