The super-consistent Les Bridge-trained Southern Legend has opened short priced favourite in Theo Marks Stakes 2016 betting for the Rosehill Gardens showdown this Saturday in Sydney.
Running as Rosehill Race 7 at 3:50pm (AEST) as the penultimate event on the Golden Rose Stakes Day card this weekend, the $200,000 Group 2 Task Retail Theo Marks Stakes (1300m) features a final field of just 10 hopefuls.
Leading the early markets at Ladbrokes.com.au at a short $2.80 for the win after coming up trumps with gate three in the Theo Marks Stakes field and barriers is Not A Single Doubt four-year-old Southern Legend.
A winner of four of his six starts to date, the gelding is undefeated at Rosehill having won both his previous starts at the track in the autumn including the Listed Darby Munro Stakes (1200m).
He won first-up at Randwick on August 20 carrying 60kg from barrier 13 (of 13) and will relish the better barrier and the notable drop back to Saturday’s 53kg minimum with Tim Clark retaining the ride.
Two other runners are also under double-figures in the Theo Marks Stakes odds this Sydney Spring Racing Carnival with the returning Counterattack ($4.50) and the in-form Tycoon Tara ($6.50).
Chris Waller saddles-up Redoute’s Choice four-year-old Counterattack first-up from a gun barrier two, the stallion having his first start since a mid-field seventh to Under The Louvre in Brisbane’s Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) on June 11.
He will relish the return to Sydney, is a Group 3 winner and has plenty of class proven by his third in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) to stablemate Japonisme down the Flemington straight last Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Tycoon Tara has a wider gate seven draw with Blake Shinn back aboard the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Written Tycoon mare.
He rode her for a first-up win in the mud at Randwick on August 6 in the Group 2 Missile Stakes (1200m) before Kerrin McEvoy jumped on the smart six-year-old for her latest victory a fortnight later at the same track and distance in the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m).
The rails run in the Theo Marks on Saturday belongs to the Gary Portelli-trained top weight Rebel Dane who is a $10 hope to overcome his hefty 59kg allocation.
Tommy Berry stays on the California Dane seven-year-old from barrier one after two earlier runs on the evergreen veteran who placed second in the Missile Stakes as the beaten odds-on favourite and third to champion mare Winx in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) three weeks ago.
Rebel Dane has killer form at Rosehill (6-3-1-0) and over the distance (3-2-0-0) and only needs to handle the weight to be in the finish again.
Other standouts include the John O’Shea-trained Group 2 winner at the track from the autumn Old North ($12) and Waller’s other runner Mackintosh ($14), while the Team Hawkes-trained eight-year-old Messene is the early market mover at $16.
See below for the full Theo Marks Stakes 2016 field, barriers, jockeys, weights and latest Fixed Win odds provided by Ladbrokes.com.au.