Trainer Ciaron Maher is looking to step his...
327 three-year-olds remain in contention for one of the Spring Racing Carnival’s most highly sought-after prizes following this afternoon’s release of 2017 Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas nominations.
A key stallion-making racing, the Caulfield Guineas has been won by some of the country’s best three-year-olds in recent years including Shooting To Win (2014), Press Statement (2015) and Divine Prophet (2016); all now enjoying career in the breeding barn.
Having saddled the latter to an impressive win in last year’s feature race, Team Hawkes are set to be offered several good chances of defending their crown in the three-year-old feature after lodging a total of twenty 2017 Caulfield Guineas nominations, including Showtime, Chauffeur and Ducimus.
Showtime has made five appearances at the races since debuting last October and has been a consistent performer amongst black type company throughout.
Resuming this year for fourth in the Group 3 Canonbury Stakes (1100m), the Snitzel colt placed third in the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (1100m) and fourth in the Group 2 Todman Stakes (1200m), before finishing second in the Listed Valley Pearl (1200m) last time out on March 24th.
Chauffeur has been transferred to the Hawkes’ from the care of Gerald Ryan for his Caulfield Guineas preparation and is beginning to step up preparations for a competitive return.
A smart winner on debut in December, Chauffeur ran third in a Canterbury minor over 1300m on New Year’s Eve before finishing second to Houtzen in the Magic Millions 2yo Classic (1200m) on January 14th.
His form quickly tailed off through three subsequent starts and he is sure to have gained plenty of experience from his recent change in scenery.
Winner of the Listed Talindert Stakes (1100m) at only his second career start on February 18th, Ducimus finished second in the Group 3 Pago Pago Stakes (1200m) and resumed this time for fifth in the Listed Lightning Stakes (1050m) at Morphettville on July 29th.
The crop of two-year-olds through the recent Autumn Carnival was outstanding and horses like Kementari, Pariah, Invader and Royal Symphony have all been included in 2017 Caulfield Guineas nominations.
Godolphin colt Kementari has only made two appearances at the races so far, but ran second behind Malahat in a Canterbury sprint on debit before taking out the Seven News Plate (1400m) by more than four lengths on May 27th.
Pariah finished second behind Winx in a Randwick barrier trial this morning and appears as though he will be one of the horses to beat in the 2017 Caulfield Guineas.
Debuting for a smart win in the Canonbury Stakes, the Redoute’s Choice colt placed second in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) on February 11th before running second in the Group 1 Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) on February 25th.
While failing to handle the heavy going in the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m), the Redoute’s Choice colt has furnished into an impressive horse ahead of his Caulfield Guineas campaign.
A Group 1 winner, Invader also performed well in Winx’s barrier trial this morning and will relish the conditions of Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas.
Second in the Group 2 Todman Stakes on March 4th, the Snitzel colt was unlucky to miss a run in the Golden Slipper, but responded with a dominant win in the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) on April 15th.
Last seen finishing second in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) on April 15th, Invader has reportedly taken plenty of benefit from his time away from racing.
Royal Symphony announced himself to the Australian racing community in the late autumn and winter and is a proven performer at 1600m.
A dominant winner of two Victorian minors over 1200m and 1400m upon debuting, the Domesday colt flew home to win the Listed Taj Rossi Series Final (1600m) by five lengths on July 8th.
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