2015 Sapphire Stakes Field Features Griante

David Brideoake’s Group 1 placed mare Griante is one of the headline final acceptors for the last on the Royal Randwick card this Saturday, the Sapphire Stakes 2015.


Group 1 placed Griante is a top chance in Saturday’s 2015 Sapphire Stakes in Sydney. Photo: Steve Hart.

Randwick is host to a bumper 10-race program for Day 2 of The Championships on the weekend, the action coming to a close at 5:15pm (AEDT) with this year’s $300,000 Group 2 Drummond Golf Sapphire Stakes (1200m).

A final field of 13 fillies and mares are due to face off in the last on Queen Elizabeth Stakes Day, including Good Journey four-year-old Griante who is down in class after a top effort in elite company in Melbourne.

Second-up winner of the Group 3 Wenona Girl Handicap (1200m) at this track and distance on March 7, Griante went to Moonee Valley last time out for a brave third when beaten under two lengths by the winner Lucky Hussler in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m).

She returns to Randwick for her second run at the track and drops back to a race against her own kind here with Steven Arnold retaining the ride and the duo drawn ideally in barrier one.

Also drawn well are Bede Murray’s last start Warwick Farm winning filly Fine Mist with gate three and the Anthony Cummings-trained Villa Verde in barrier two out to improve on an eighth behind Sweet Idea in Rosehill’s Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) from last month.

Coming off a better lead-up run is the Bart & James Cummings-trained Shamardal four-year-old Shamalia who won the Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) defeating former Golden Slipper winner Mossfun on March 21.

She did it from barrier seven (of eight) with Hugh Bowman aboard that day and now heads to Randwick, where she boasts a top record of two wins and a third from four starts, with Bowman retaining the ride in gate six.

One on her outside in barrier seven for jockey Nicholas Hall is then Robert Smerdon’s Summoned Stakes winner from the spring Politeness, running for the first time since her third to Tycoon Tara in the Group 3 Bellmaine Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield in mid-February.

Also coming via the Birthday Card Stakes meanwhile is the David Vandyke-trained local daughter of Northern Meteor Bound For Earth who ran a nice fourth first-up with improvement to come.

Other notable Sapphire Stakes hopes this autumn include last year’s runner-up Avoid Lightning last seen running 10th in The Galaxy, Kris Lees’ progressive filly Onemorezeta coming off a Gosford Guineas third and in-form Chloe In Paris who won three on the trot in Melbourne before her fifth in The Galaxy.

See below for the full Sapphire Stakes 2015 field, barriers and jockeys.

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2015 Sapphire Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw

Randwick Race 10 – 11/04/2015

# Form (Last 10) Horse Trainer Jockey Br. Wgt. Hcp. Rating
1 1384x69x88 VILLA VERDE Anthony Cummings Brenton Avdulla 2 56kg 102
2 5x4428x9x4 BOUND FOR EARTH David Vandyke Blake Shinn 5 56kg 92
3 12113x1x30 AVOID LIGHTNING Les Bridge Tim Clark 8 55.5kg 107
4 x44180x413 GRIANTE David Brideoake Steven Arnold 1 55.5kg 100
5 21x44571x3 POLITENESS Robert Smerdon Nicholas Hall 7 55.5kg 98
6 148x0310x1 SHAMALIA Bart & James Cummings Hugh Bowman 6 55kg 95
7 7151542×85 FINE BUBBLES Kris Lees Zac Purton 12 55kg 91
8 x63311x359 ATMOSPHERICAL David Pfieffer TBA 4 54kg 99
9 32x52x1115 CHLOE IN PARIS Ciaron Maher Damien Oliver 11 54kg 97
10 7x85040x20 PERON Peter G Moody Tommy Berry 10 54kg 96
11 5233x6046x BELLE DE COEUR Chris Waller Joao Moreira 13 54kg 87
12 9x111x543 ONEMOREZETA Kris Lees TBA 9 54kg 85
13 5161×17101 FINE MIST Bede Murray Jason Collett 3 53kg 82


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