Gai Waterhouse’s progressive young filly Sempre Libera has opened top of the odds to take out the juvenile’s feature of Doomben Cup Day with a win in Saturday’s 2015 Champagne Classic in Brisbane.
A final field of 15 youngsters make up the field for this year’s $175,000 Group 2 Bollinger Champagne Classic (1200m), the set weights race due to jump as Doomben Race 5 at 2:07pm (AEST).
It is one of the seven fillies taking on the boys in the 2015 JJ Atkins lead-up who sits top of the Champagne Classic odds at Ladbrokes.com.au with Waterhouse’s daughter of Medaglia D’Oro paying $3.20 for the win.
She has her fourth career start here from gate eight with Blake Shinn in the saddle, Sempre Libera having won over 1200m at Rosehill two back in the mud before her brave last start fourth when beaten under half a length by Ottoman in the Group 3 Percy Sykes Stakes (1200m) on April 11.
After a little freshen-up she looks ready to strike on firmer ground in Brisbane over a distance she’s well performed over against an open field.
Six other two-year-olds are currently under $10 for the Champagne Classic win on the weekend including Le Chef who is the next best in betting at a more generous $7.50.
Drawn a treat in gate two for apprentice hoop Luke Tarrant, the Darryl Hansen-trained Exceed And Excel gelding returns to racing here having last raced in early January at the Gold Coast when scoring an upset as a 21-1 roughie in the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m).
That win gave Le Chef two-from-two over the distance he gets again this weekend and boosted his to-date impressive record up to three wins from four starts overall.
Following the Magic Millions winner in Saturday’s markets are then Counterattack ($8) and Sampeah ($8.50) drawn at opposite ends of the field in barriers three and 11 respectively.
Counterattack is a flying Chris Waller-trained Sydney visitor shooting for his second win at start number five here, the son of Redoute’s Choice up in black type company for the first time after an April 15 win over 1200m at Warwick Farm when lumping 60kg to victory.
John O’Shea’s Godolphin-owned colt Sampeah, eighth in the Blue Diamond Stakes back in February, was last seen running third to Jameka in the Group 2 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on March 14 and has his first Queensland run on Saturday.
Rounding out the single figure fancies are then the Chris Munce-trained local hope Wicked Intent ($9) and fellow Brisbanite Secret Saga ($9) from the Group 1 winning stables of Tony Gollan.
Wicked Intent has won three of his five starts to date including the Listed Phelan Ready Stakes (1050m) back in December, is a Group 3 runner-up at the Gold Coast and was last seen crossing two lengths away sixth to le Chef in the Magic Millions Classic.
Secret Saga meanwhile is the next best fancied of the fillies outside the short-priced favourite and comes off a one and a quarter length win over 1100m at Doomben, Saturday her first look at the 1200m.
See below for the full Champagne Classic 2015 betting odds, fixed win prices open online at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $250 free bonus welcome bet for new depositing players!