A quality field of summer sprinters take to the Rosehill track this weekend in the 2016 Starlight Stakes, betting tips and the latest odds on the Festival Stakes Day race found below.
There are a dozen remaining hopefuls in the line-up after the scratching of That’s A Good Idea who heads to Brisbane for a shot at the Group 3 George Moore Stakes (1200m) instead.
Of the 12 still in the mix for the $125,000 Listed Starlight Stakes (1100m) – due to run as Rosehill Race 6 at 3:40pm (AEDT) on Saturday – the best in betting at Ladbrokes.com.au at a short $3.10 and firming is Nieta.
She jumps from the second widest alley, but the money is coming for the in-form John Thompson-trained mare to post her third win on the trot.
The four-year-old has won five of her nine career starts to date including two-from-three over Saturday’s short distance.
She saw Rosehill for the first time on November 12 and enjoyed a nearly three length romp home over the 1100m carrying 57.5kg.
Joshua Parr retains the ride and Nieta will be flying home again at the track / distance stepping up in class with an advantageous drop down to the 54kg minimum in the Starlight Stakes weights.
The bookies have Shiraz as the $7 second elect in the latest Starlight Stakes odds despite the 59kg top weight allocated to the now Kim Waugh-trained seven-year-old.
The Zariz gelding has an outstanding Rosehill record of four wins and two seconds from six starts and is also an 1100m specialist (12-5-3-1).
He hasn’t raced since late August, but flies fresh and easily won a Gosford trial on November 11 leading up to this.
So will the top two in the markets be the first two over the post on Saturday or is there value further down the odds in the likes of the Joe Pride-trained Mr Manhattan ($8.50) coming off back-to-back Sydney wins, last start Doveton Stakes winner at Sandown Husson Eagle ($9) or Pride’s other runner Kuro ($9.50)?
#1 Shiraz ($7)
He gives the weight away with 59kg and has the outside alley to overcome, but tipping class to rise and this veteran sprinter to salute. He’s being kept safe in betting but is still at a very backable price for his first run since a failed Caulfield effort in late August. He has strong first-up form (7-4-0-0) and is a genuine Rosehill specialist. Loves this short distance (12-5-3-1) and is a Group 1 runner-up over the track / distance from the autumn in The Galaxy. Trialled well twice ahead of his return for his new stable and is a livewire hope.
#12 Princefamous ($13)
Double-figures looks juicy for this Peter & Paul Snowden-trained five-year-old coming off a 1.5 length win at the track / distance in easier class first-up on November 19. Should have taken improvement from the run, has a 50% winning strike rate at 1100m and is on the 54kg minimum again. Kerrin McEvoy rides and barrier five is ideal. Genuine smoky.
#13 Nieta ($3.10)
Favourite is in outstanding form, rarely loses and only needs to handle a black type field to get the job done for the punters again here. She’s been saluting at short odds in Sydney this time in and handled the track well for a 2.8 length win in a Benchmark 78 three weeks ago. Impressive there, drops in weight and has a stellar turn of foot. Can she handle the stakes’ company?
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