The two resuming three-year-old colts in Saturday’s Group 1 at Flemington are batting for top spot in the 2017 Black Caviar Lightning odds.
Fastnet Rock (2005) was the last three-year-old to win the autumn feature sprint, but the bookies are taking no chances on Star Turn and Flying Artie to break the hoodoo this weekend.
A final field of 13 smart sprinters take to the track on Saturday in Flemington Race 8 at 4:45pm (AEDT) for this autumn’s edition of the $750,000 Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m).
Formerly the Lightning Stakes, the event is the sole 1000m Group 1 race run during the season and is shaping up as the three-year-old’s for the taking in 2017.
Two of the past four winners jumped from the barrier including Chautauqua (2016) last year who was also ridden to victory by Dunn for the Hawkes’ stable.
Star Witness colt Star Turn won the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1000m) at Caulfield defeating an older field of horses including subsequent Darley Classic champion Malaguerra before his third in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m).
He trialled perfectly leading up to his return and is set for an on-pace ride from the barrier as he looks to turn the tables on his last start conqueror Flying Artie.
Coolmore Stud Stakes winner Flying Artie also draw well for Saturday’s rematch, the Mick Price-trained son of Artie Schiller to be ridden by Damien Oliver from gate four.
Price prepared the 2015 Black Caviar Lightning winner Lankan Rupee, while the most recent of Oliver’s five wins in the event was aboard Nicconi in 2010.
Sports back in 2001 was the last champ from barrier four, but Flying Artie is a first-up flyer (3-2-1-0) who is out to prove himself in an open-age field.
Occupying the third line of Black Caviar Lightning Stakes betting is the early market mover Spieth ($5.50 into $5) to be ridden by Hugh Bowman.
The fast progressing Thorn Park four-year-old was narrowly defeated by Malaguerra when runner-up in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) last November, trainer Bryce Heys out for atonement in the Black Caviar Lightning.
The only double-figure Lightning Stakes winner since 2002 was Scenic Blast ($21 in 2009) and the others under $10 for the win this year are Supido ($7.50), Terravista ($8.50) and Heatherly ($8.50).
The Michael Kent-trained Sebring stallion Supido kicks off his autumn chasing a sixth win from 10 career starts.
A lightly-raced five-year-old, the galloper is undefeated at Flemington boasting four wins from as many starts at the track.
He hasn’t raced since a third to superstar Black Heart Bart, who won the CF Orr Stakes last weekend, in Adelaide’s Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) but trialled well at Cranbourne earlier in the month.
Terravista is also first-up, Joe Pride’s veteran seven-year-old looking to atone for the 10th to Takedown in Perth’s Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) in late November.
He was runner-up to Chautauqua in last year’s Black Caviar Lightning quinella, but hasn’t been first past the post in a race since a first-up Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) win in October of 2015.
Locally-trained Lonhro mare Heatherly is looking to join Black Caviar (2011-13) and Snitzerland (2014) in beating home the boys in the Lightning Stakes results on Saturday.
She runs first-up since her second to Extreme Choice in the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) at the distance at Moonee Valley last September and recently beat Flying Artie in an 800m hit-out.
Check out the full Black Caviar Lightning 2017 odds below, following the links to back your autumn tips at the best prices at the home of Odds Boost (T&Cs apply) – Ladbrokes.com.au.