The bookies are having a hard time separating the top three or four chances in the 2015 Victory Stakes at the Gold Coast Racecourse this weekend, two horses currently sharing $5 favouritism.
Running as Race 7 at 3:17pm on Hollindale Stakes Day, this year’s $200,000 Group 2 Smeg Victory Stakes (1200m) field features a dozen sprinters heading towards the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival’s Group 1 sprint treble concluding with the $2 million Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben on June 6.
Earlier it was the ultra-consistent mare Srikandi with the rails run in barrier one for top Queensland jockey Damian Browne who was the clear favourite in Victory Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
She opened at $4.40 to win first-up, Ciaran Maher’s Dubawi four-year-old having won all four of her previous starts over 1200m.
Odds on the six-time winner however are out to $5 for her ninth career start on Saturday, Srikandi racing for the first time since her third behind River Lad (1st) and Temple Of Boom (2nd) in the Stradbroke last winter – two rivals she faces again this weekend.
At $5 she is equal in Victory Stakes betting with the Joe Pride-trained Ball Of Muscle who is also drawn a treat in barrier three with Blake Shinn to ride.
Another galloper boasting an impressively consistent record, four-year-old Dubawi gelding Ball Of Muscle has run first or second in his six most recent starts including his January win at Gosford in the Listed Takeover Target Stakes (1200m).
Most recently he finished second first-up when defeated a nose by Hard Romp over 1000m at Flemington on April 11, and he heads into Saturday’s clash with a flawless three-from-three record second-up.
Just off the top two at $5.50 for the win is then Tony Gollan’s defending Victory Stakes winner Temple Of Boom in barrier six for Tegan Harrison.
The Piccolo eight-year-old is first-up having last been seen running second last (12th) in Melbourne’s Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) back in November, his worst run when finding himself outclassed in a spring field full of genuine stars.
Second in the Stradbroke Handicap last year, Temple Of Boom has a solid first-up record (12-4-3-0) and despite his age is looking to prove his evergreen status.
The next best in betting at $6 is then the nicely-drawn Knoydart for Hugh Bowman in barrier two, the John O’Shea-trained More Than Ready gelding boasting a nice record over the distance (9-2-4-2).
Also under $10 to win the Victory Stakes this year are the reigning Stradbroke Handicap winner River Lad ($7.50) who was seventh in the event last year and the returning Colin Scott-trained Speediness ($9).
Outside of those looking for the upset then include the likes of Hidden Warrior ($10) with the in-form veteran hoop Jim Cassidy riding, Gollan’s market mover Rocket To Glory ($15) who won the Chief De Beers Handicap last start and runner-up in that same lead-up Cape Kidnappers ($15) with the outside alley to overcome.
Check out the full Victory Stakes 2015 odds below, fixed win markets open at our preferred online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au who are rewarding new depositing players with up to $250 in bonus bets this season!