Early pre-field 2015 BTC Cup odds for this weekend’s feature sprint are now open at bookmakers around the country with the ultra-consistent Our Boy Malachi and smart mare Srikandi battling for top spot in the markets.
One of two elite level features on the Doomben Cup Day card at Doomben Racecourse on Saturday, this year’s $500,000 Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) attracted 22 nominations when early entries for the weight-for-age classic closed last week.
Of the hopefuls, many of which are Stradbroke Handicap-bound next month, it is the Team Hawkes-trained Top Echelon six-year-old Our Boy Malachi leading futures BTC Cup betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
A winner of 17 of his 19 career starts to date, the flying sprint star pays $4.20 to keep the good times going with a BTC Cup win on the weekend, which would be his maiden Group 1 success.
Last start the improver won the Group 3 Hall Mark Stakes (1200m) at Randwick, and while the BTC Cup will be a notable rise in class, the bookies are taking no chances based on his supreme win/place record so far.
Hot on his heels in the BTC Cup odds though is Ciaron Maher’s four-year-old daughter of Dubawi Srikandi ($5.50), out to become the third female galloper in five years to win following the success of Black Caviar (2011) and three-year-old filly Sea Siren (2012).
To date Srikandi has had just the nine starts, but she is yet to finish out of the money boasting seven wins and two minor placings so far.
She has ace form in Queensland having won both of her previous Doomben runs when completing the Listed Junamo Stakes – Group 3 Glenlogan Park Stakes double at the track last May.
From there she rounded out an ace Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival with a brave third behind River Lad in Queensland’s richest race, the $2 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap run at Eagle Farm over 1400m last year, but which takes place at Doomben over 1350m on June 6 this winter.
First-up off a lengthy break Srikandi showed she had lost none of her shine with a smart Group 2 Victory Stakes (1200m) success on the Gold Coast on April 25 where she beat home Ball Of Muscle by a length in the ideal BTC Cup lead-up.
The Victory Stakes has produced the last two BTC Cup winners with Your Song (2013) and Famous Seamus (2014).
The only other single figure fancy in the current BTC Cup markets is then Group 1 winner Trust In A Gust ($6.50), Darren Weir’s Keep The Faith four-year-old after his third elite level win to further improve his value at stud.
The stallion won Caulfield’s Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes – Toorak Handicap double last spring before returning on April 18 to run a close second in the Vobis Gold Sprint (1200m) behind Red Bomber.
Defeated only a nose first-up as the beaten odds-on favourite, Trust In A Gust will look to bounce back on Saturday second-up and win back the love of the punters in his maiden run at Doomben.
A host of other livewire chances then follow in the BTC Cup betting markets at double figures including Bring Me The Maid from the Peter Moody stables.
Moody took out the race in 2011 with superstar Black Caviar, and is after another win in 2015 with his Sebring filly Bring Me The Maid who was last seen running second in the $585,000 Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) in the mud at Randwick on April 11.
Also paying $11 for the win this weekend are New Zealand-trained four-year-old El Rocca who hasn’t raced since a fourth in last year’s Doncaster Mile over 12 months ago and Paul Messara’s Redoute’s Choice colt Scissor Kick coming off a fourth to the now-retired Dissident in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) from April 18.
Other notable BTC Cup hopes in the first half of the markets include Joe Pride’s Hall Mark Stakes runner-up Craftiness ($12), another Kiwi raider Sacred Star ($13) coming off back-to-back Group 1 wins at home from the summer, Victory Stakes fourth placed five-year-old Knoydart ($15) and the Tony Gollan-trained Temple Of Boom ($15).
See below for the latest early BTC Cup 2015 betting odds open online now at Ladbrokes.com.au where new depositing players are rewarded with up to $250 in bonus bets when you quote the code BETBONUS!