Murray Baker’s Emirates Stakes winning New Zealand galloper from the spring Turn Me Loose has opened favourite in betting to win the Futurity Stakes 2016 second-up at Caulfield Racecourse this Saturday.
Last season the four-year-old son of Iffraaj enjoyed a trio of wins in succession in Melbourne including the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) over the Flemington mile on November 7.
The smart stallion returned a fortnight ago for his first run at Caulfield in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) and from barrier 10 of 18 was beaten only one and a quarter lengths when fourth to Suavito.
Now he returns to the same track and distance on Blue Diamond Stakes Day as one of 11 final acceptors for the $500,000 Group 1 italktravel Futurity Stakes (1400m).
Turn Me Loose sits top of the early Futurity Stakes betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au paying a firming $2.80 to post another elite level win after being backed in from $3.
Opie Bosson has the ride as Turn Me Loose looks to win from barrier nine, which hasn’t produced a Futurity Stakes winner since Regal Roller (2005) over a decade ago.
In a fairly open market there are four other single figure hopes including the defending Futurity Stakes winner and last start CF Orr champ Suavito ($6).
She is drawn ideally in gate three for jockey Luke Currie, Nigel Blackiston’s Thorn Park mare having won the race last Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival first-up.
The now five-year-old won the CF Orr in her first run in 10 months and is now looking to go back-to-back in the Futurity Stakes for the first time since Niconero (2008 – 2009).
Occupying the third line of betting at $6.50 and drawn one outside Suavito in barrier four is the Phillip Stokes-trained Adelaide raider Hucklebuck.
An eight-time winner from 16 starts, the Elvstroem five-year-old is best known for his 2014 Emirates Stakes win and has had just the three runs since.
The latest was a brave third in the CF Orr Stakes and he should be finishing close again.
Rounding out the single figure fancies are the rails-drawn Politeness ($8.50) and Chris Waller’s five-time Group 1 winner Boban ($9) jumping from barrier two with jockey Glyn Schofield after his first winning Futurity ride.
The six-year-old son of Bernardini is second-up on Saturday after a CF Orr Stakes sixth and chases his first win since taking out the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at the same track and distance back in August last year.
Politeness meanwhile is prepared locally by Robert Smerdon and is looking to join More Joyous (2011) and Niconero (2009) as recent winners of the race from barrier one.
The five-year-old Street Cry mare won the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) in the spring before her Emirates Stakes second to Turn Me Loose and returned with a fast-finishing second in the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) on February 13.
Other notable Futurity Stakes fancies this season include Gary Portelli’s California Dane six-year-old Rebel Dane ($15), the Darren Weir-trained Caulfield specialist Trust In A Gust ($15) and Stratum Star ($16).
See below for the full Futurity Stakes 2016 field, barriers, jockeys and current Fixed Win odds open online now at Ladbrokes.com.au where first-time customers that deposit $50 and quote the code BONUS150 will enjoy $150 in extra bonuses this weekend!