Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes 2017 Nominations Feature Royal Symphony

Tony McEvoy’s Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas favourite Royal Symphony won’t have an unusual lead-up into the mile classic via a run against the older horses this Sunday in Caulfield’s 2017 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes despite being nominated for the event.

Royal Symphony

Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas favourite Royal Symphony is nominated for but won’t be accepted into Sunday’s 2017 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos.

Run as one of six elite levels across a bumper weekend of racing in Sydney and Melbourne, this season’s Group 1 $500,000 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) takes place on the same day as the NRL Grand Final as part of Underwood Stakes Day.

The Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes nominations for 2017 drew 24 early entries and the sole three-year-old in the mix is undefeated Domesday colt Royal Symphony.

After posting his fourth career win in Flemington’s Listed Exford Plate (1400m) on September 16, Royal Symphony firmed in clear $3 futures favouritism for the Group 1 Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas (1600m) over the mile on October 14.

He won’t be tested against an open-age field of rivals leading-up to that however, despite McEvoy nominating the youngster for the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, which hasn’t been won by a three-year-old since Exceed And Excel (2003).

Instead it has been confirmed that Royal Symphony will be kept to his own kind in the Group 3 $175,000 Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) at the same meeting.

The other standout Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes nominee this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival coming off a string of four straight victories is Bons Away, prepared by Ciaron Maher who will begin his lengthy suspension on Monday.

Last year’s Caulfield Cup winning horseman Maher has copped a six month suspension and $75,000 fine after pleading guilty to his part in the Peter Foster ownership fiasco.

Prior to his official suspension he nominated Bons Away for Sunday’s Group 1, the flying Bon Hoffa four-year-old having won the Listed Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m) in an upset over The Everest-bound Brave Smash at Caulfield last Saturday.

Maher won last year’s Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes with Bon Aurum (2016) and could get a final shot at Group 1 glory before his suspension with Bons Away this weekend.

If successful he will be the second back-to-back Sir Rupert Clarke winning horseman in four years joining Darren Weir who won in 2014 and 2015 with Trust In A Gust and Stratum Star respectively.

Weir is in the mix again this spring with four Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes nominees: El Divino, Lucky Hussler, Tosen Stardom and Voodoo Lad.

Former Japanese-trained stallion Tosen Stardom caught the eye last time out running under two lengths third to Vega Magic in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) on September 2, while Voodoo Lad is a genuine Caulfield track specialist (4-3-1-0).

Other notable entries include the returning PB Lawrence Stakes runner-up to Hartnell from August 19 Charmed Harmony, Godolphin’s reigning Doncaster Mile winner It’s Somewhat and Perth Group 1 winner Scales Of Justice who was the Bobbie Lewis runner-up to Redkirk Warrior at Flemington a fortnight back.

Check out the full Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes 2017 nominations below, the official field and barriers along with updated markets at due out on Wednesday.

2017 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes Nominations

Caulfield Racecourse – 01/10/2017  

# Form (Last 10) Horse Sex Age Trainer Hcp. Rating
1 x5240x48x5 ATTENTION H 4 Peter & Paul Snowden 90
2 157×321111 BONS AWAY G 4 Ciaron Maher 98
3 x151611125 CANNYESCENT G 5 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 96
4 9x60229x42 CHARMED HARMONY G 8 John Sadler 101
5 7x2504x527 EL DIVINO H 4 Darren Weir 91
6 7121175×31 GRANDE ROSSO G 6 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 103
7 x073397x00 GREAT ESTEEM G 7 Stuart Webb 94
8 4313x1119x IT’S SOMEWHAT (USA) G 7 James Cummings 114
9 29x3380x53 LAND OF PLENTY H 4 Grahame Begg 80
10 x791x705x6 LUCKY HUSSLER G 8 Darren Weir 111
11 254869x07x MAGICUS G 6 Tony Romeo 72
12 2413311×12 MR SNEAKY G 4 Anthony Freedman 90
13 111×1 ROYAL SYMPHONY C 3 Tony McEvoy 85
14 24x1401x56 ROYAL TUDOR G 5 Rodney Ollerton 90
15 7x49155x34 SANTA ANA LANE G 5 Anthony Freedman 96
16 x6321220x0 SAVILE ROW (NZ) H 4 Michael Moroney 98
17 1112x211x2 SCALES OF JUSTICE G 5 Lindsey Smith 110
18 114173×546 SNITZSON H 4 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 94
19 x4030x2283 SO SI BON H 4 Robbie Laing 95
20 23276×1531 SOVEREIGN NATION G 5 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 97
21 x41212x221 THEANSWERMYFRIEND G 4 Robert Smerdon 96
22 09x4x22x53 TOSEN STARDOM (JPN) H 7 Darren Weir 109
23 210x257x14 VOODOO LAD G 6 Darren Weir 108
24 353510×682 WYNDSPELLE (NZ) H 4 Michael Kent 84


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