Australia’s darling of the turf Winx is unsurprisingly dominating the 2016 George Main Stakes betting markets this weekend in Sydney at an odds-on price to post her eleventh consecutive win.
Only eight runners are currently on the mix for Saturday’s $500,000 Group 1 Colgate Optic White George Main Stakes (1600m), the field likely to lose Le Romain who is set to line-up at Newcastle on Friday instead of the running for second at Royal Randwick the next day.
Most rival trainers have accepted that the runners-up position is what they’re racing for up against the Chris Waller-trained Winx in this year’s George Main, and the markets at Ladbrokes.com.au reflect that.
Waller’s six-time Group 1 winning Street Cry five-year-old is at $1.16 in the George Main Stakes odds to continue her gun winning streak in her last Sydney run of the season before heading south.
Her trainer has the three-from-four winning George Main Stakes record in the past four years and from barrier six with her regular rider Hugh Bowman – who won the race aboard Shoot Out (2012) – staying on it is all coming up Winx.
She may have missed a scheduled lead-up run in the Chelmsford Stakes a fortnight ago, but her brilliant first-up win in the Warwick Stakes and a subsequent smart trial are enough to suggest she can salute for the punters at her Black Caviar-like price.
Winx was also put through her paces on Wednesday morning at the course proper over 1000m at Rosehill Gardens, giving Waller even more confidence her form will stack-up again this weekend.
“The beauty of Winx is she is a very athletic horse,” Waller told The Daily Telegraph.
“In human terms, she is very much a natural athlete.
“I’m happy with her.
“She has had that barrier trial [last Friday], which keeps her nerves settled and her fitness levels up without overtraining her.
“We take a very kind approach [with her training] and she seems to respond well.”
No other horse is at single-figures in the George Main Stakes markets with the next best in betting at an equal $11 being Darren Weir’s Japanese import Tosen Stardom and the John O’Shea-trained Hauraki.
Deep Impact stallion Tosen Stardom comes off a fourth in Melbourne’s Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley from September 3, while Godolphin’s Reset five-year-old Hauraki won the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) first-up over Le Romain two weeks back.
The only other runner under $26 is the Kris Lees-trained Le Romain ($15), but he is far from a confirmed runner with the Group 3 Cameron Handicap (1350m) at home on Friday the preferred option.
Bowman is also full of confidence he can score aboard the $6.8 million earning mare again on Saturday after being in the saddle for her mid-week workout in front of a big media crowd.
“She feels great,” he said post run on Wednesday.
“She didn’t do a lot this morning, just breezed around and had a morning out but she feels very comfortable.
“Obviously she didn’t start in the Chelmsford Stakes so it is four weeks between runs but I’m very excited about her progress.
“I am satisfied with where she is at, she has tightened up since her last run. She is on track for the weekend.”
See below for the full George Main Stakes 2016 odds, prices provided by Ladbrokes.com.au who have a brilliant offer on the Group 1 race running this weekend for punters to check out (excluding NSW).