A classy line-up of sprinters make-up the nominations for this weekend’s Eye Liner Stakes 2016 in Queensland on Ipswich Cup Day.
A total of three Black-Type races headline the action at Ipswich Racecourse on Saturday including the $175,000 Listed City Of Ipswich Eye Liner Stakes (1350m).
Four last-start winners feature in the early entries including the Liam Birchley-trained Beckham coming off a win over the same distance at Doomben in mid-May.
The Pins stallion has now won four of his 11 starts over 1350m, and with a further three second place finishes over the distance looks a big chance when stepping up to stakes company for the first time in the Eye Liner Stakes.
The Eagle Farm-based Birchley has also nominated for his veteran Holy Roman Emperor seven-year-old Time To Plunder, the grey looking to improve on a last start sixth to Executed in the Listed Lighting Handicap (1050m) from June 8 at Doomben.
Also hailing from Brisbane and coming off a win into the Eye Liner Stakes this Queensland Winter Racing Carnival is the Robert Heathcote-trained Saluter.
A six-year-old son of Commands, the gelding won over 1000m first-up at the Sunshine Coast on May 15 in his maiden run since a ninth to Lucky Hussler on the Gold Coast in January’s Magic Millions Cup (1400m).
Saluter boasts a strong 1350m record (18-3-5-1), but is yet to race at the Ipswich track.
The two last start winners in the mix are Odyssey Moon for Victorian horseman Robert Smerdon and the Matthew Dunn-trained Royal Occasion.
In-form young Snitzel colt Odyssey Moon comes off a string of top three runs in strong company including his win over 1300m in the wet at Sandown-Hillside from June 4.
The three-year-old carried 58kg to victory that day in a handicap against his own age, which followed on from his third to Nautical at Flemington in the Listed Straight Six (1200m) from May 21.
Prior to that the up-and-comer was runner-up behind He’s Our Rokkii in Randwick’s Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) during Sydney’s ‘The Championships’ and ran third in the Listed Bendigo Guineas (1400m) in March.
Royal Occasion meanwhile represents Murwillumbah horseman Dunn, the five-year-old Lonhro gelding coming off a 1200m win at the Gold Coast from early May as a $20 roughie.
Other notable hopes include recent Weetwood Handicap winner at Toowoomba Choice Bro, his also Tony Sears-trained stablemate Pillar Of Creation who ran third in the Weetwood two back and the returning Steel Zip.
A rising nine-year-old, Pat Duff’s veteran Canadian Silver grey Steel Zip has had four previous runs at Ipswich for just the one second.
He hasn’t been at the track since his sixth to Alma’s Fury in the 2014 Eye Liner Stakes and hasn’t won a race since the Listed Keith Noud (1200m) in Brisbane last November.
His latest run was back in February, but he has been in top form in three recent trials at home at Deagon winning all of his hit-outs including the latest over 1050m on June 9.
See below for the full Eye Liner Stakes 2016 nominations, the field and barriers out on Wednesday followed by the top odds at Ladbrokes.com.au!
2016 Eye Liner Stakes Nominations
Ipswich Racecourse – 18/06/2016
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp. Rating|
|1||x089008x50||ABU BEN ADAM||G||5||Pat Duff||71|
|2||1214×95051||BECKHAM (NZ)||H||5||Liam Birchley||81|
|3||64238×3610||CHOICE BRO||G||6||Tony Sears||92|
|4||2x004x8156||DAPH ’N’ ALF||G||7||Cassandra Marsh||87.5|
|5||1×94211090||LUCKY NEWS||M||6||Kristen Buchanan||84|
|6||6460460×07||NINTH LEGION||G||6||Peter Robl||–|
|7||3550×43231||ODYSSEY MOON||C||3||Robert Smerdon||–|
|8||157×087109||OLD HABITS||G||4||Kurt Goldman||69|
|9||4×50621130||PILLAR OF CREATION||G||6||Tony Sears||94|
|10||1200135×41||ROYAL OCCASION||G||5||Matthew Dunn||79|
|13||512111036x||STEEL ZIP||G||8||Pat Duff||100|
|14||33x0897x56||TIME TO PLUNDER||G||7||Liam Birchley||87|
|15||3043126×87||TIMELESS PRINCE||G||6||Tony Newing||–|