Unsurprisingly Chris Waller’s $4 million earning mare Winx has opened odds-on favourite in George Ryder Stakes 2016 betting to win her fifth Group 1 race this weekend on Golden Slipper Day at Rosehill Racecourse.
The four-year-old daughter of Street Cry has won her last seven on the trot, a brilliant winning streak she is well fancied to continue in the $1 million Group 1 China Horse Club George Ryder Stakes (1500m) on Saturday.
Her latest turf triumph was a one and a half-length victory in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 27, and she now sits top of the George Ryder Stakes odds paying $1.65 at Ladbrokes.com.au to back up with yet another victory.
She faces just seven rivals in the weight-for-age classic and is jumping from barrier seven, which last produced a George Ryder Stakes winner in Pierro (2013), with Hugh Bowman continuing his ace association with the seemingly unstoppable Cox Plate winner.
Despite all the hype, no mare has won the race since then three-year-old filly Heat Of The Moment (1986) so Winx has a hoodoo to overcome if she is to salute for the punters on Saturday in a race Waller has three previous victories in.
Chasing Winx for second in the George Ryder Stakes odds this Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival are three other single figure hopes including the fellow Waller-trained Press Statement.
This three-year-old Hinchinbrook colt comes off a shock loss in the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) when beaten a long-neck by Le Romain a fortnight ago over the mile.
He is a dual Group 1 winner over that distance including in the Caulfield Guineas last season, but Waller has him stepping back in distance for the showdown with his star stablemate on Saturday.
Bowman rode Press Statement last time out and James McDonald replaces him in the saddle this weekend having won the race aboard Japanese raider Real Impact (2015) 12 months ago.
Press Statement gets the inside run from barrier one on Saturday out to be the first winner from the gate since Waller’s second champion in the race, Rangirangdoo (2011).
Next best in betting are Murray Baker’s star Kiwi Turn Me Loose ($7.50) who is a dual Group 1 winner in Melbourne and First Seal ($9) for John Thompson.
A four-year-old son of Iffraaj, Turn Me Loose was last seen winning the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield three weeks ago and has his first Sydney run on the weekend, which will be the test.
Consistent Fastnet Rock mare First Seal meanwhile has a gun record at Rosehill with a win and three seconds from four previous starts at the track.
Winner of the 2014 Flight Stakes over the Randwick mile, she was also runner-up in the Coolmore Classic at this track and distance last March and second again in the Vinery Stud Stakes over 2000m at Rosehill the next run.
This time in she scored a very nice win carrying 58kg to victory in the Group 2 Millie Fox Stakes (1300m) to break her Rosehill maiden before a Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) second to Holler on March 5.
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