Robbie Laing’s progressive young filly Missrock is the clear favourite to secure her second win at career start number three when she takes on a field of fellow juveniles in the first on Zipping Classic Day at Sandown Hillside on Saturday – the Merson Cooper Stakes 2015.
Set to kick off the all-black type card as Sandown Race 1 at 1:00pm (AEST), this year’s Merson Cooper Stakes is registered as the $120,000 Listed Santa’s Magical Kingdom Stakes (1000m).
A final field of 11 two-year-olds were originally accepted before the early scratching of Lloyd Kennewell’s rails-drawn Sawaiki.
Of those still in the mix just four with previous experience under race conditions and the favourite Missrock the only non-maiden lining up.
Drawn nicely in gate three with Mark Zahra in the saddle, the daughter of Fastnet Rock won on debut in the Listed Debutant Stakes (1000m) at Caulfield with Zahra aboard on Guineas Day.
She then ran again at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day, November 3, and was third to Concealer in the Group 3 Ottawa Stakes (1000m) with Vald Duric in the saddle.
With Zahra returning and the nice gate over a distance she has proven winning form over, Missrock is tipped as the one to beat paying $3.70 through Ladbrokes.com.au.
There are two other single figure fancies with Sweet Varden ($4.80) drawn one on the inside of the favourite in gate two with James McDonald riding and Motown Lil ($5) with the second widest barrier to overcome.
One of a number of solid chances across the Zipping Classic Day card for Angaston-based Adelaide trainer Tony McEvoy, Sweet Varden debuts here on the back of a winning trial back home over 800m last week.
Motown Lil has had one previous run, the Sebring filly crossing one and a half-lengths away fourth in the same Melbourne Cup Day Group 3 that Missrock ran third in last time out.
At more generous odds to score the upset in the opener at Sandown on the weekend are the un-trialled Stryker colt Perpetual Crisis ($10) prepared by this year’s Melbourne Cup winning trainer Darren Weir, the Mick Price-trained More Than Ready colt Los Cabos ($12) and McEvoy’s other runner Jackson ($13) in the outside alley with Kerrin McEvoy booked for his debut run.
See below for the full Merson Cooper Stakes 2015 field, barriers, jockeys and latest fixed win odds provided by Ladbrokes.com.au who are matching the first deposits of new players 100% up to $500 in bonus bets with use of the code BETBONUS!