Group 1 winner Smokin’ Joey heads a smallish field of sprinters facing off in Ipswich’s Eye Liner Stakes 2015 in Queensland this weekend.
Eleven horses make up the field for this year’s $175,000 Listed City Of Ipswich Eye Liner Stakes (1350m), due to jump as Ipswich Cup Day Race 7 at 3:57pm (AEST).
Wearing the number one saddlecloth and carrying the 59kg top weight is the Wez Hunter-trained 2014 The Goodwood winner Smokin’ Joey drawn in barrier seven with ace Brisbane hoop Damian Browne in the saddle.
Browne replaces Chris Symons who had the mount last Saturday aboard the Mornington-based Encosta De Lago seven-year-old ran eighth behind winning mare Srikandi in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap over the same distance (1350m) but at Doomben Racecourse.
That was an improved effort from Smokin’ Joey, who hasn’t won a race since the Group 3 Carlyon Cup (1600m) at Caulfield in mid-February, after his failed 14th when unsuccessfully trying to defend his Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) title in Adelaide.
Smokin’ Joey only had 54.5kg on his back in the Stradbroke however and while the Eye Liner Stakes is a notable drop in class the veteran will still need to be at his best to handle the extra five kilograms this weekend at Ipswich.
Following Smokin’ Joey in the Eye Liner Stakes field and weights with 57kg is then the Robert Heathcote-trained Riva De Lago in gate nine for jockey Jim Byrne.
Another seven-year-old son of Encosta De Lago, Riva De Lago is second-up on Saturday after resuming on May 16 at the Sunshine Coast with a win in the Listed Glasshouse Handicap (1300m) carrying 55.5kg with Luke Nolen aboard.
The only other Eye Liner Stakes final acceptor carrying more than the 54kg minimum this winter is then Stuart Kendrick’s New Zealand-bred Neo in barrier eight with 55kg and a hoop still to be decided.
Winner of the Listed Prime Minister’s Cup (1400m) at the Gold Coast back on Anzac Day, One Cool Cat five-year-old Neo comes off a disappointing 14th of 16 runners when beaten nearly 11 lengths by Boban in the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) on May 23 in a tough elite level run.
Along with Riva De Lago, the other last start winner shooting for successive turf triumphs in the Eye Liner Stakes is then the Greg Wehlow-trained Daph ‘N’ Alf (barrier five) coming off a 1100m sprint win in Mackay who will suit any pre-race day rain.
Also coming off a nice lead-up run is the Tony Sears-trained Pillar Of Creation drawn a treat in barrier two for in-form apprentice jockey Luke Tarrant.
The God’s Own five-year-old from Toowoomba was runner-up behind Mr Favulous in the Listed Weetwood Handicap (1200m) run on a Soft (6) track before his Sunshine Coast run on a Good (3) when third behind fellow Eye Liner Stakes rival Riva De Lago in the Glasshouse Handicap.
Another last start placegetter in the mix and drawn well in gate six for hoop Michael Cahill is the young Peter Moody-trained Ulmann who ran second behind Chris Waller’s subsequent Queensland Oaks winning filly Winx in the Group 3 Sunshine Coast Guineas (1600m) on May 16.
Other notable Eye Liner Stakes hopes this year include the Tony Gollan-trained Jet Spur four-year-old Gundy Spirit in the outside alley (11) and Adelaide raider Nite Rocker who ran third to Charlie Boy in the Group 3 BRC Sprint (1350m) on May 9 before finishing dead last in the Listed Ascot Handicap (1200m) last time out on May 23.
Check out the full Eye Liner Stakes 2015 field, barriers, jockeys and weights below then visit our No. 1 recommended bookie Ladbrokes.com.au who will match your first deposit dollar for dollar up to $500 as a bonus bet when you quote the code BETBONUS!
2015 Eye Liner Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Ipswich Race 7 (3:57pm) – 13/06/2015
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||7444124×08||SMOKIN’ JOEY||Wez Hunter||Damian Browne||7||59.5kg||106|
|2||x6865789x1||RIVA DE LAGO||Robert Heathcote||Jim Byrne||9||57kg||101|
|3||010×432160||NEO (NZ)||Stuart Kendrick||TBA||8||55kg||97|
|4||589×064523||PILLAR OF CREATION||Tony Sears||Luke Tarrant (a)||2||54kg||92|
|6||1412×51340||GUNDY SPIRIT||Tony Gollan||Timothy Bell||11||54kg||91|
|7||91211×5530||NITE ROCKER||Lloyd Kennewell||Ric McMahon||4||54kg||89.5|
|8||11611258×1||DAPH ’N’ ALF||Greg Wehlow||Matthew McGuren (a)||5||54kg||89|
|9||65×4272569||BLACK CASH||Kelly Doughty||Ryan Wiggins||1||54kg||87.5|
|10||7420x5708x||SOROS||Kelly Schweida||Glen Colless||10||54kg||83|
|11||x125x59142||ULMANN||Peter G Moody||Michael Cahill||6||54kg||76|