Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
A nice field of Doncaster Mile types face off in the Ajax Stakes 2016 at Rosehill Racecourse this Saturday including the Chris Waller-trained Good Project draw the outside alley.
One of the key support races on the Coolmore Classic Day card in Sydney, this year’s $175,000 Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) field has attracted 15 final acceptors.
Jumping from a wide barrier 15 of 15 draw with Brenton Avdulla in the saddle is Waller’s progressive Not A Single Doubt four-year-old Good Project.
The stallion is second-up and has twice run second from his four previous assignments two runs in.
Winner of Perth’s Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) over the Ascot mile last November, Good Project’s resuming run was a third in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) at Randwick on February 27.
He carried 57kg that day and goes up a half-kilo to 57.5kg in Saturday’s handicap clash over 200m further.
The Ajax Stakes winner is exempt from ballot and penalty in the $3 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 2, and Good Project currently pays $26 to win the classic through Ladbrokes.com.au in pre-field markets.
Waller has a bumper four Ajax Stakes runners this Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival with Weary the big winner in the barrier draw coming up with the inside alley.
Tommy Berry rides the French import who comes off a ninth in the Liverpool City Cup and who hasn’t won a race since the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) back in January of 2015.
Rounding out Waller’s contingent are then imported stallion Kool Company and 2014 NZ Derby winner Puccini who ran fifth in a Flemington Group 3 over 1400m last weekend in Melbourne as a $26 shot.
Heading the Ajax Stakes weights this season is the Rodney Northam-trained Big Money with 59kg.
The consistent Choisir six-year-old won the Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) two back after a third to Our Boy Malachi in the Expressway Stakes.
His last run was a disappointing 10th in the Liverpool City Cup however that he’s out to atone for here.
The next heaviest weighted hopes are then the John O’Shea-trained Generalife (58.5kg) and Gai Waterhouse’s returning stayer Excess Knowledge drawn in barriers five and 13 respectively.
Lonhro gelding Generalife is third-up on the weekend following two fourth place finishes behind Big Money in the Southern Cross and then Charlie Boy in the Liverpool City Cup.
Excess Knowledge meanwhile hasn’t raced since his brave second only three lengths off the shock winner Prince Of Penzance in last November’s $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m).
He won the Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) prior to that after a Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) second and will only improve on whatever he does first-up over the 1500m in the Ajax Stakes.
Along with Genealife, O’Shea has also accepted for It’s Somewhat (57.5kg) out in gate 14 with the Villiers Stakes third placegetter coming off the close Liverpool City Cup sixth when beaten under a length and a half.
See below for the full Ajax Stakes 2016 field, barriers, jockeys and weights.
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2016 Ajax Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Rosehill Race 8 (4:50pm) – 12/03/2016
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||x9607x3310||BIG MONEY||Rodney Northam||Robert Thompson||11||59kg||107|
|2||533x652x44||GENERALIFE||John O’Shea||James McDonald||5||58.5kg||106|
|3||11x572217x||EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (GB)||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||13||58kg||105|
|4||7x123121x3||GOOD PROJECT||Chris Waller||Brenton Avdulla||15||57.5kg||104|
|5||19x87x23x6||IT’S SOMEWHAT (USA)||John O’Shea||Sam Clipperton||14||57.5kg||104|
|6||27x57523x2||ROCK STURDY||Joseph Pride||Jason Collett||2||57.5kg||104|
|7||x10042x5x8||KOOL KOMPANY (IRE)||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||6||57kg||103|
|8||2x249000x9||WEARY (FR)||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||1||57kg||103|
|9||x000820x03||PUCCINI (NZ)||Darren Weir||Brett Prebble||3||55.5kg||100|
|10||154x11947x||SADLER’S LAKE||Chris Waller||Tim Clark||7||55.5kg||100|
|11||1180×05052||RED EXCITEMENT||Gerald Ryan||TBA||9||55kg||99|
|12||0x3320099x||RUDY||Helen Page||Thomas Huet||4||55kg||99|
|13||250513310x||CASINO DANCER||Mike Van Gestel||Ms Winona Costin (a)||10||53.5kg||100|
|14||35649×0243||DANCES ON STARS (NZ)||Gerald Ryan||Christian Reith||8||53.5kg||96|
|15||7x60x7x139||ALPHA BEAT||Anthony Cummings||Daniel Moor||12||53kg||86|
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