The Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival begins in earnest at Doomben Racecourse this Saturday, May 14, and heading the early markets for the day’s feature – the 2016 BTC Cup – is Fell Swoop.
There are 19 official nominations for this year’s edition of the $500,000 Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) and current favourite in the pre-field markets at Ladbrokes.com.au is the flying Matthew Dale-trained Canberra raider Fell Swoop.
A four-year-old son of Not A Single Doubt, the in-form gelding has won nine of his 14 starts to date including his maiden Doomben run when posting a half-length win in the Group 2 Victory Stakes (1200m) on April 30.
He saluted as the odds-on favourite in Victory Stakes and is again heading betting for his return to Doomben at a quote of $4 to become the first four-year-old BTC Cup winner since Peter Moody’s mighty mare Black Caviar (2011).
Following closely in BTC Cup betting this season are Japonisme ($5) and Malaguerra ($6).
Sydney’s best Chris Waller saddles-up Coolmore Stud Stakes winner Japonisme who is looking to join Sea Siren (2012) and Your Song (2013) as the most recent three-year-olds to beat home the older BTC Cup horses.
The super-consistent son of Choisir comes off a nice autumn lead-up that includes a third to Flamberge in Moonee Valley’s Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) where he was defeated only a neck and his last start Randwick win in the Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) on April 9.
Japonisme has since won a subsequent Sydney trial over 1050m on May 6 by a tidy 1.3 lengths defeating stablemate Counterattack, Waller’s Arrowfield Sprint runner-up at $7 in BTC Cup betting for the rematch.
Malaguerra meanwhile tracks towards a run in the $1.5 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm next month, the Magnus four-year-old prepared in Melbourne by Lee & Anthony Freedman.
He won four on the trot from early November to March including Sydney’s Group 3 Star Kingdom Stakes (1200m) before a last start sixth to English in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on April 16 he’s out to atone for in Brisbane.
Along with the aforementioned Counterattack, the other $7 fancy is Ghisoni who is also the shortest-priced of the female gallopers entered for this year’s BTC Cup.
The John O’Shea-trained Lonhro filly was last seen running fifth to Japonisme in Sydney when beaten only 1.3 lengths from the outside barrier (13) in the Arrowfield 3YO Sprint.
She is yet to race outside of Sydney, but has won three of her five starts to date including two from three over 1200m and O’Shea won the race with a three-year-old filly only four years ago.
In a wide open BTC Cup market the other sprinters currently at single-figures for the win are Todd Willan’s Victory Stakes third placegetter Artlee and the Bjorn Baker-trained Hall Mark Stakes winner Music Magnate at $9 each.
The BTC Cup 2016 field and barrier draw are due for release on Wednesday morning so stay tuned.
In the meantime back your all-in favourites by following the links below to Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $500 first time depositors’ bonus with use of the code BETBONUS!