The Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas-trained Daytona Grey is the headline acceptor for the RN Irwin Stakes 2016 field at Morphettville this weekend as he looks to go back-to-back in the Adelaide sprint feature.
Twelve months ago the locally-trained Artie Schiller gelding won the $120,000 Group 3 R N Irwin Stakes (1100m) by an impressive two and a half lengths as a $31 roughie in betting.
The now six-year-old is back to defend his title this Adelaide Autumn Racing Carnival with last year’s winning hoop Clare Lindop continuing her association with Daytona Grey who is drawn in barrier seven of 11 for Morphettville Race 6 on Saturday.
The horse won the race last season on the back of a sixth in the Listed Manihi Classic (1100m), a race he won this year leading up to his RN Irwin Stakes title defence.
This year’s Manihi Classic runner-up, I Am Gypsy, is also accepted to face off against Daytona Grey in the RN Irwin Stakes on Saturday.
Apprentice Ryan Hurdle stays on the four-year-old I Am Invincible mare who was beaten only a short half-head at 41/1 odds last time out on April 9.
She goes up from 54kg that run to 56.5kg in Saturday’s weight-for-age rematch and is also drawn wide in barrier 10 as she looks to turn the tables on her last start conqueror and win her first race since October last year.
Along with Daytona Grey the other last start winner in the RN Irwin this year is the Phillip Stokes-trained Runway Star, drawn a treat in barrier three.
Star interstate hoop Craig Williams is over for the ride on the five-year-old daughter of Northern Meteor, replacing Luke Currie in the saddle of the mare who won the Listed Matrice Stakes (1200m) at the track in mid-March.
She is Group 1 performed, won the previous season’s Matrice Stakes also and has a top record at the Morphettville track of two wins from three starts.
Returning to racing on the weekend for Morphettville horseman Lloyd Kennewell is Lion Heart six-year-old Heart Of A Lion to be ridden from gate eight by Joe Bowditch.
The consistent gelding has a strong record at the course (12-3-3-2), but hasn’t run since his fourth to Miss Promiscuity at Caulfield in July last year in the Group 3 Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m).
He looked fit and ready to return off the lengthy let-up however winning a Morphettville Parks barrier trial over 1000m on April 15 with Bowditch in the saddle.
Another first-up runner in the field representing Victoria’s Darren Weir is Street Sense mare La Passe, the five-year-old coming up trumps with barrier two.
She won the Group 2 Blazer Stakes (1400m) and Group 2 Tristarc Stakes (1400m) at home in Melbourne at big odds last October before a 12th to Politeness when beaten 4.5 lengths in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) on Derby Day in the spring.
La Passe is back racing on the weekend for her Adelaide debut over a distance she has a good record of a win and a second from two previous starts at.
Melbourne Cup winning horseman Weir has also accepted for Tuscan Sling who apprentice Harry Coffey will ride from the inside alley one inside her stablemate.
Another five-year-old mare, this daughter of Danehill Dancer has run worse than third just once in her 12 career starts when defeated by a Heavy (9) track during the Melbourne Cup Carnival last November.
Since then she’s had four runs including the Group 3 Bellmaine Stakes (1200m) win at Caulfield on February 13, and a last start second to subsequent Queen Of The Turf Stakes winner Azkadellia in the Group 3 Mannerism Stakes (1400m) a fortnight later.
See below for the full RN Irwin Stakes 2016 field, barriers and jockeys before heading to Ladbrokes.com.au where your first deposit as a new sign-up with be matched 100% up to $500 with use of the code BETBONUS!
2016 RN Irwin Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
Morphettville Race 6 – 23/04/2016
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||05415380×1||DAYTONA GREY||Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas||Clare Lindop||7||58.5kg||93|
|2||6619x200x6||NOSTRADAMUS||Phillip Stokes||Dom Tourneur||9||58.5kg||92|
|3||467111314x||HEART OF A LION||Lloyd Kennewell||Joe Bowditch||8||58.5kg||90|
|4||964x1355x0||KARACATIS||Richard Jolly||Paul Gatt||4||58.5kg||89|
|5||113247×960||CASHED||Ryan Balfour||Todd Pannell||5||58.5kg||85|
|6||1255×36358||SANDHILL FLASH||Sam Turner||Caitlin Jones (a)||6||58.5kg||84|
|7||120x3131x8||NORTHERN ZHAR||David Jolly||Jason Holder||11||58.5kg||80|
|8||164414110x||LA PASSE||Darren Weir||TBA||2||56.5kg||104|
|9||23×1373112||TUSCAN SLING||Darren Weir||Harry Coffey (a)||1||56.5kg||99|
|10||x12100x0x1||RUNWAY STAR||Phillip Stokes||Craig Williams||3||56.5kg||94|
|11||11106×3442||I AM GYPSY||Gordon Richards||Ryan Hurdle (a)||10||56.5kg||83|