2016 Sapphire Stakes Nominations Feature Griante

David Brideoake’s last start The Galaxy winner Griante is the headline nomination taken for the Sapphire Stakes 2016 on Day 2 of ‘The Championships’ at Royal Randwick this weekend.


Group 1 The Galaxy winner Griante is nominated for Saturday’s Sapphire Stakes at Royal Randwick. Photo: Steve Hart.

One of the key support races on the Queen Elizabeth Stakes Day program outside the four elite level majors, this year’s $300,000 Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m) attracted 29 early entries.

Of the fillies and mares in the mix for the set weights plus penalties clash, the highest rated is Good Journey five-year-old Griante who saluted in Group 1 company last time out.

A winner of seven of her 27 career starts to date, Griante became a million dollar earner at Rosehill on March 19 when beating home Shiraz by three quarters of a length in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m).

It was a much improved effort off her first-up 12th to Flamberge in Caulfield’s Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) and if she accepts for the Sapphire Stakes she will be racing at Randwick for the first time since her second to Avoid Lightning in the same race last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.

Also coming off Group success last start is James Cummings-trained Sultry Feeling, the Encosta De Lago four-year-old taking out the Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) at the same meeting as The Galaxy.

That was her second win from as many starts this time in after her first-up Group 3 Triscay Stakes (1200m) success at Randwick in mid-February over subsequent Coolmore Classic champ Peeping.

Other Birthday Card Stakes runners in the mix for Saturday’s Group 2 at nomination stage include the Ron Quinton-trained runner-up Lucky Can Be and rising eight-year-old Cradle Me who was fourth past the post still under a length off the winner.

Also high up the Sapphire Stakes rating and a graduate from The Galaxy is the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Bounding.

The five-year-old daughter of Lonhro was fifth past the post in the Rosehill feature beaten only two lengths.

Team Snowden have also nominated for Flippant who is out to improve on her seventh to Southern Legend in the listed Darby Munro Stakes (1200m) and Choisir six-year-old I’ve Got The Looks who won a barrier trial at Warwick Farm last Friday.

Super consistent this time in and second in the Darby Munro Stakes was Bjorn Baker’s Stratum filly Egyptian Symbol.

Also nominated for the Sapphire on Saturday, the flying three-year-old is yet to finish out of the money in her nine career starts.

Third to Mahuta in the Gold Coast Magic Millions 3YO Guineas in January, her latest assignment was only last Saturday when third to Tempt Me Not in the Group 3 PJ Bell Stakes (1200m) on Doncaster Mile Day.

Returning to racing in the Sapphire Stakes are the likes of the Joe Pride-trained Belle Of The Turf Stakes winner at Gosford in January Ammirata and the Gerald Ryan-trained Peace Force who has a strong Randwick record (3-1-2-0).

Other notable entries include the lightly-raced Divine Centuri having her first run outside of Queensland and Ciaron Maher’s Street Boss filly Petits Filous who has won five of her six starts to date.

Check out the full Sapphire Stakes 2016 nominations below, the final field and barriers out on Wednesday.

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2016 Sapphire Stakes Nominations

Royal Randwick Racecourse – 09/04/2016

# Form (Last 10) Horse Sex Age Trainer Hcp. Rating
1 8x4160x386 AFLEET ESPRIT M 4 David Hayes & Tom Dabernig 91
2 1342x1811x AMMIRATA M 4 Joseph Pride 84
3 211108370x BERRY DELICIOUS M 4 Jason Coyle 91
4 x202x13x95 BOUNDING M 5 Peter & Paul Snowden 107
5 2497x380x0 BRING ME THE MAID M 4 Ciaron Maher 96
6 171x793x27 BROOK ROAD M 5 Kris Lees 97
7 545x511x54 CRADLE ME M 7 David Pfieffer 103
8 1×21 DIVINE CENTURI F 3 Stuart Kendrick 65
9 1×11233323 EGYPTIAN SYMBOL F 3 Bjorn Baker 81
10 211x9x14x7 FLIPPANT F 3 Peter & Paul Snowden 83
11 9932587×01 GRIANTE M 5 David Brideoake 107
12 6x12254x24 HIEROGLYPHICS M 4 Anthony Cummings 71
13 1180×35338 I’VE GOT THE LOOKS M 6 Peter & Paul Snowden 99
14 1x1274x562 LUCKY CAN BE M 4 Ron Quinton 82
15 2813920×41 MISS PROMISCUITY M 5 David Hayes & Tom Dabernig 102
16 18×1331211 MISS SETON SANDS M 4 Tony McEvoy 95
17 1×4195141 NO MORE TEARS (NZ) F 3 Stephen Marsh 86
18 291x374x76 OTTOMAN F 3 John O’Shea 86
19 30×6420143 PALAZZO PUBBLICO M 4 Matthew Smith 77
20 2x21x2930x PEACE FORCE M 6 Gerald Ryan 98
21 11110×1 PETITS FILOUS F 3 Ciaron Maher 90
22 603278×249 PRESS REPORT M 4 Lee Curtis 84
23 116617×622 PRIVATE SECRETARY M 6 Gregory Hickman 94
24 16×7554489 QUEEN OF KARIBA M 4 John Sargent 80
25 0x1221x270 SECRET AGENDA F 3 Mick Price 87
26 11x24111x3 SHEIDEL M 4 David Hayes & Tom Dabernig 99
27 4x14394x11 SULTRY FEELING M 4 James Cummings 99
28 21227222×6 TWO BLUE M 7 Kristen Buchanan 96
29 8x13641x05 VEZALAY M 4 Leon & Troy Corstens 95


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