Darren Weir’s distance specialist Black Heart Bart has opened early and clear favourite in all-in Memsie Stakes 2016 betting to win the season’s first Group 1 in his resuming run on Saturday.
Caulfield Racecourse hosts the opening elite level of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival on the weekend with 18 nominations taken on Monday for the $500,000 Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m).
Futures Memsie Stakes odds are also now out at Ladbrokes.com.au with Blackfriars six-year-old Black Heart Bart the dominant $3.20 favourite to kick off his new season with a win.
The former Perth-trained champ enjoyed a stellar autumn last time in that included a Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) win in Adelaide.
He also placed second in three Group 1 races across three states: the Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington, the All Aged Stakes (1400m) and Randwick and the Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm.
Black Heart Bart has an outstanding 1400m record of five wins and four seconds from 10 starts at the distance to date and will appreciate kicking off over his pet metres in just his second look at the track.
His only other Caulfield run produced a Group 3 Victorian Handicap (1400m) win in late March.
Just two other nominees sit under $10 in the early Memsie Stakes betting markets with the fellow Weir-trained duo of Mahuta ($7.50) and Palentino ($10).
Four-year-old Flying Spur stallion Mahuta is also a 1400m specialist with four wins from five starts at the distance including the Magic Millions 3YO Guineas in January and the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m) at the Caulfield track from mid-February.
He has had two runs this time in, the latest producing a close sixth in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) on August 13 when beaten only two lengths.
Improving each run, Mahuta is tipped to appreciate a return to the track / distance on the weekend where the Lawrence Stakes was his only 1400m Caulfield loss.
Palentino is another four-year-old stallion from the record-breaking Weir stable, the son of Teofilo racing second-up on the back of a fourth in the Listed Regal Roller Stakes (1200m) here a fortnight ago.
He is best known for his Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) win at Flemington from March, but is yet to run in the money from two starts at Caulfield.
Weir’s fourth and final nominee to win his maiden Memsie Stakes meanwhile is the reigning Melbourne Cup winner Prince Of Penzance who is a $31 outsider over Saturday’s unsuitably short distance.
Outside of Weir’s top trio the other shortest priced in the pre-field markets include the returning Tony McEvoy-trained Alpine Eagle ($10) who trialled beautifully earlier in the month, last spring’s VRC Derby winner Tarzino ($10) racing first-up as a four-year-old, recent Bletchingly stakes winner Lord Of The Sky ($11) and the New Zealand-trained ATC Oaks winner Sofia Rosa ($11).
The Memsie Stakes 2016 field is due for release on Wednesday and will be published right here at Races.com.au.
In the meantime get behind your early favourites at the right price online through Ladbrokes.com.au – markets provided below!