The Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra-trained Heatherly is the top-rated of the McEwen Stakes 2016 nominations for the key Moonee Valley support act this Saturday in Melbourne.
Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes Day features two Group highlights including the weight-for-age $200,000 Group 2 Mitty’s McEwen Stakes (1000m) that attracted 15 sprinters at nomination stage on Monday.
The McEwen Stakes is a key Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival lead-up to features including the $500,000 Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) back at the track and distance on September 30.
The Moir Stakes is one race firmly on the radar of four-year-old Lonhro mare Heatherly who was last seen winning the Listed Norman Carlyon Stakes (1000m) at the Valley first-up on August 20.
That was her first start since a third in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) in late February, the short-distance specialist boasting an outstanding record at Moonee Valley now of three wins and a third from four runs ahead of the weekend.
Third in the same lead-up was Street Boss six-year-old O’Malley who is also nominated for a rematch in the McEwen Stakes, won 12 months ago by super sprinter Chautauqua (2015), on the weekend.
Along with Heatherly the other two last start winners in the mix are the flying Jarrod McLean-trained Handsome Tycoon and Wild Rain prepared by Mark Kavanagh.
Not A Single Doubt six-year-old Handsome Tycoon has won his past six races on the trot, but they’ve all been at either Darwin or Alice Springs.
The Yangery-trained gelding is back in Melbourne for the first time since August last year, but does have a solid record over the distance (6-2-2-1) albeit in easier company.
Wild Rain is a five-year-old daughter of Manhattan Rain, Kavanagh’s classy mare a winner of two of her four starts at the Valley.
She was last seen posting a 1.75 length win at Caulfield in mid-July’s Group 3 Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m) and races at the Valley for the first time since June last year.
Lindsay Park have entered Group 2 winner Faatinah who hasn’t raced since a The Goodwood fifth in Adelaide back on May 21, along with returning Coolmore Stud Stakes runner-up Keen Array and Sheidel.
Holy Roman Emperor mare Sheidel ran second in Adelaide’s Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) before her last start The Goodwood seventh and has plenty of winning form over the 1000m (11-6-2-1).
Other notable hopes include last year’s third placegetter Furnaces from the Godolphin stable and the Robert Smerdon-trained Reldas.
Testa Rossa six-year-old Reldas boasts a 50% winning strike rate at the track so far (10-5-1-2) and was last seen finishing third at Flemington on July 9 in the Listed All Victorian Sprint Series Final (1200m).
See below for the full McEwen Stakes 2016 nominations before heading to Ladbrokes.com.au for access to all the hottest spring betting odds and promotions (T&Cs apply).
2016 McEwen Stakes Nominations
Moonee Valley Racecourse – 03/09/2016
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp. Rating|
|1||30x424x19x||ALPHA MISS||M||5||Robert Smerdon||100|
|2||722512647x||BEAU RADA||G||5||John McArdle||91|
|3||12346x115x||FAATINAH||G||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||90|
|5||3x2111x111||HANDSOME TYCOON||G||6||Jarrod McLean||85|
|6||2x231113x1||HEATHERLY||M||4||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||103|
|8||12112x083x||KEEN ARRAY||G||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||96|
|9||653113x67x||NOZOMI||G||5||Lee & Anthony Freedman||86|
|11||74191011×0||PASSING SHOT (NZ)||H||5||Stephen McKee||96|
|13||52114160×8||SHAKESPEAREAN LASS||M||5||Pat Carey||92|
|14||111x34127x||SHEIDEL||M||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||103|
|15||21x22126x1||WILD RAIN||M||5||Mark Kavanagh||100|