Aurora’s Star in Doubt for 2016 Vinery Stud Stakes Run

Australian Oaks-bound filly Aurora’s Star is in danger of missing out on a run in Saturday’s Vinery Stud Stakes 2016 according to trainer Anthony Cummings who has a ‘Plan B’ in stall.

Anthony Cummings

Trainer Anthony Cummings is sweating on a start for Aurora’s Star in Saturday’s 2016 Vinery Stud Stakes at Rosehill Racecourse. Photo: Daniel Costello.

One of two elite levels on the Rosehill Gardens Racecourse program for The BMW Day in Sydney on the weekend, this year’s $500,000 Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) attracted 20 nominations.

The three-year-old fillies’ set weights clash only has a capacity field of 14 starters, leaving Aurora’s Star as an unlikely runner currently sitting 19th on the Vinery Stud Stakes ballot.

A nicely-bred daughter of Medaglia D’Oro, Aurora’s Star has had five starts to date for two wins all in non-black type company.

Her latest run was at Wyong on March 20 when saluting on a Heavy (8) track to win over 2100m by a quarter-length to prove her staying ability.

A high enough attrition rate will see her make the cut and line-up in stakes company for the first time in the Vinery Stud Stakes, but if not Cummings will wait a week run her in the $200,000 Group 2 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on Day 1 of ‘The Championships’.

“I don’t think she’ll get in so the Adrian Knox Stakes the following week is the more likely race to get her into the Oaks,” he told AAP.

After a brave third behind 2016 Australian Derby-bound Tarzino in last Saturday’s Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m), Ciaron Maher’s Crown Oaks winner Jameka is early favourite in pre-field Vinery Stud Stakes odds.

She is at a futures price of $3.80 in the all-in Vinery Stud Stakes betting markets to back-up on the short seven day turnaround and win, sitting just ahead of the David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Kiwi Group 1 winner Risque ($4) who ran third to Palentino in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington last time out and Peter & Paul Snowden’s lightly-raced daughter of More Than Ready Happy Hannah ($5) who is 16th on the ballot.

Aurora’s Star meanwhile is only rated a $41 chance.

If she is forced to run in the Adrian Knox Stakes instead on Doncaster Mile Day, it will give her just a week before her major Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival assignment – the $1 million Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) to run on April 9.

Cummings hasn’t prepared an Australian Oaks winner since On Air back in 1998, but the Adrian Knox Stakes is good form line to follow into the Group 1 over a mile and a half.

Two of the past three Australian Oaks champs came out of the Group 2 a week prior with Royal Descent completing the double in 2013 for Chris Waller before the John Sargent-trained Gust Of Wind improved on fourth to win the Oaks as a 16/1 shot defeating race favourite Winx.

The 2016 Vinery Stud Stakes field and barriers are due for release on Wednesday morning so stay tuned.

In the meantime back your early favourites in that and the upcoming Randwick classics on the first two Saturday’s in April through – home of Odds Boost!


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