Robert Smerdon’s in-form stallion Under The Louvre is clear favourite in Salinger Stakes 2015 betting to keep his top Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival going in the last on Victoria Derby Day at Flemington this weekend.
The Derby Day card closer jumping as Race 9 at 5:20pm (AEST) this Saturday is the $300,000 Group 2 tab.com.au Stakes (1200m), officially known as the Salinger Stakes, and a final field of 14 hopefuls is engaged for the handicap sprint.
Favourite in the Salinger Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, who are offering an exclusive Best Tote or SP + 20% for all nine Flemington races on Saturday, is Smerdon’s Excellent Art five-year-old Under The Louvre jumping from a gun barrier two draw for his run down the straight.
Brenton Avdulla has the ride in place of the suspended Mark Zahra, Under The Louvre drifting in the early markets from $3.70 to $4 to relish the nice draw after his brave second to Vashka in the Group 3 Moonga Stakes (1400m) on Caulfield Cup Day from gate 12 of 12.
Before that he was third to Stratum Star, a top hope in Saturday’s Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m), in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) so the drop back to 1200m that he has won six from 12 over previous should suit.
There are just two other single figure hopes to win the last on Derby Day with Delectation ($5.50) jumping one on the favourite’s outside in gate three with Cox Plate winning hoop Hugh Bowman in the saddle and early market mover Dothraki ($10 into $9).
Sydney’s and the season’s best Chris Waller prepares Shamardal four-year-old Delectation who comes off a second to subsequent Manikato Stakes champion and odds-on favourite for the Darley Classic Saturday week Chautauqua in the Group 2 Gilgai Stakes (1200m) at the same track and distance as the Salinger at the start of the month.
He has a solid 1200m record now of three wins, four seconds and two thirds from 11 runs and from three starts at Flemington he has twice run second.
Dothraki meanwhile has drawn just worse than midfield in gate eight, the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Mossman five-year-old looking to continue a gun second-up record (6-3-1-1) after a first-up black-type win in Sydney over 1100m on October 17.
He has won his only other previous Flemington assignment over 1400m back in November of 2013, so it has been two years between runs at Victoria’s premier track.
There are then six sprinters at a quote of $10 – $14 in a logjam of next best fancied to win the Salinger Stakes including Bring Me The Maid ($10) in barrier four with Dwayne Dunn in the saddle.
Peter Moody’s Sebring mare gets in on just 53kg, a big drop from the 58kg she carried when third first-up behind 2015 Myer Classic contender Politeness in the Group 3 Northwood Plume Stakes (1200m) three weeks ago at Caulfield.
Other notable hopes in the mix include the David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained recent Group 2 Bobbie Lewis Quality winner over 1200m at Flemington Churchill Dancer ($12) out wide in barrier 11 with Cox Plate runner-up hoop Michael Walker in the saddle, the John O’Shea-trained Gilgai Stakes third placed six-year-old Knoydart ($12) to be ridden by Caulfield Cup winning jockey Opie Bosson and the rails-drawn Generalife ($12) who is also prepared by O’Shea for Godolphin and was a dual Group 1 third placegetter at Doomben in the winter.
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