The number of weight-for-age stars heading towards Saturday week’s Doomben 10,000 2016 has been cut to just 14 after first acceptances for the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival closed this week.
On Wednesday Racing Queensland took first declarations for the $750,000 Group 1 James Boag’s Premium Doomben 10,000 (1350m), which heads the Doomben Racecourse card on Saturday May 28.
After 54 nominations were originally received for the lucrative clash, just 14 hopefuls remain in contention including the Ciaron Maher-trained favourite Azkadellia.
Maher may be sceptical about the winning chances of his last start Queen Of The Turf Stakes champion at Doomben, but the bookies have the in-form Shinko King mare as the dominant pre-post favourite.
The latest Doomben 10,000 odds at Ladbrokes.com.au have the four-year-old, a winner of six of her 14 starts to date for $1.33 million in prize money, at $3.80 to win her Brisbane debut.
She has raced exclusively in Group 1 company since early March for three top three runs in Sydney and is looking to extend that brilliance in Brisbane’s Doomben 10,000 before backing-up at Eagle Farm on June 11 in the $1.5 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).
Just two mares have won the Doomben 10,000 since the success of Flitter (1994) with Hot Danish and Beaded going back-to-back in 2010-11.
Along with Azkadellia the two other mares still in contention this season are the Darren Weir-trained Scarlet Billows and veteran seven-year-old Two Blue prepared by Wyong’s Kristen Buchanan.
There are also two fillies out to emulate the success of then three-year-old Sea Siren (2012) with Stuart Kendrick paying first acceptances for the in-form Divine Centuri and the John O’Shea-trained Ghisoni still tracking towards the clash.
Lonhro filly Ghisoni occupies the second line of futures Doomben 10,000 betting at $4.80 after her last start fifth to Japonisme in Sydney’s Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) when beaten only 1.3 lengths from the outside barrier (13).
Her latest win was the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) at Randwick first-up in late February, and she should be well suited to the 1350m of the Doomben 10,000 should she run in the field.
Sydney’s Chris Waller won last year’s Doomben 10,000 with Boban (2015) and is back in 2016 with Delectation.
The four-year-old son of Shamardal is best known for his Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) win at Flemington last November, but hasn’t finished in the money in his four subsequent runs.
Last Saturday he raced in the Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) and finished eighth to Malaguerra, still only beaten 2.4 lengths.
Equal $7 with Delectation in markets on the Doomben 10,000 first acceptances is Dothraki for Peter & Paul Snowden.
Co-trainer Peter Snowden has prepared two previous winners – Beaded (2011) and Epaulette (2013) – when head trainer of Darley (now Godolphin) in Australia.
His hope in 2016 to win in partnership with son Paul is a five-year-old son of Mossman who caught the eye running second in the BTC Cup last weekend.
The last BTC Cup graduate to win the Doomben 10,000 was Spirit Of Boom (2014) who also ran second in the shorter lead-up.
Prior to the Doomben run last Saturday Dothraki finished fifth in the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) and third in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) during a successful Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign.
Other notable Doomben 10,000 first acceptors include recent Victory Stakes winner Fell Swoop, Bjorn Baker’s Written Tycoon four-year-old Music Magnate and Street Cry colt Rageese who is also accepted to run in this Saturday’s $125,000 Group 3 Fred Best Classic (1350m).
The 2016 Doomben 10,000 final field and barriers are out next Wednesday, May 25, making now the time to lock in your early picks at their generous odds through Ladbrokes.com.au!