The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Twenty-three milers have been included in nominations for Saturday’s featured 2016 Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Randwick; a race which offers its winner ballot-free entry into the Group 1 Doncaster Mile during The Championships in 2017.
Trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott are confident that Fabrizio will furnish into a serious Doncaster Mile prospect in autumn, and have subsequently included the gelding in 2016 Villiers Stakes nominations.
Claiming seven wins and a minor through only eleven career starts so far, Fabrizio returned in spring for a smart win in the McGrath Estate Agents BM72 (1200m) on August 31st.
Progressing to fourth in the Rosehill Bowling Club BM78 (1400m), the son of High Chaparral returned to winning form in the #TheRaces BM84 (1600m) before placing tenth in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m), after leading the race by close to ten lengths at one stage.
Having since taken out each of the Bartier Perry BM93 (1600m) and Listed James Boag’s Premium Stakes (1800m) on Melbourne Cup Day, Fabrizio has trialled well in the lead-up to his competitive return and should prove extremely tough to beat under the conditions of the Villiers Stakes, following a freshen-up.
Godolphin is set to launch a multi-pronged attack in the race after trainer John O’Shea mounted three Villiers Stakes nominations, including Duca Valentinois and Malice.
Duca Valentinois began his racing career under the guidance of Johnny Murtagh in Ireland in 2014, but was transferred to the care of O’Shea partway through his 2015 campaign.
Resuming this time for fifth in the CFMEU Mining BM83 (1350m), the Holy Roman Emperor gelding progressed to a smart second in the November Handicap (1400m) before a luckless third in the TAB BM85 (1500m) last time out on December 3rd.
Malice will carry winning form into the Villiers Stakes and is arguably Godolphin’s best chance of success in the race on Saturday.
Resuming for third in the Listed Ladies Day Cup (1400m) on November 3rd. the Teofilo gelding placed fifth in the Topaz Handicap (1900m) before storming home to take out the Listed ATC Cup (2000m) by half a length on December 3rd.
A strong contingent of Queensland raiders has been included in 2016 Villiers Stakes nominations, including 2014 champion Rudy.
Undoubtedly at career-best form when he saluted for Gold Coast trainer Helen Page two years ago, Rudy has returned to racing in typically positive form this time; placing fifth in the Bowcock Bloodstock Handicap (1350m) and fourth in the Listed Recognition Stakes (1400m).
The 2016 Villiers Stakes field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
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2016 Villiers Stakes Nominations
|#||Last 10||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp Rating|
|2||x08522x558||BERRY DELICIOUS||M||5||Jason Coyle||–|
|3||x8222x302x||BIG MEMORY (FR)||G||7||Tony McEvoy||–|
|4||6013863×09||CENTRE PIVOT||G||6||Peter Robl||101|
|5||x31x1290x1||CYLINDER BEACH (NZ)||G||4||Desleigh Forster||96|
|6||x4249x2329||DIBAYANI (IRE)||G||7||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||–|
|7||5x1241x524||DUCA VALENTINOIS (IRE)||G||5||John O’Shea||84|
|8||116×141011||FABRIZIO||G||5||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||–|
|9||x981137x90||FOREIGN PRINCE (NZ)||G||6||David Payne||–|
|10||50x400x912||HAZZABEEL (NZ)||G||6||Ciaron Maher||–|
|11||65x1176x51||HIGH MIDNIGHT||G||5||James Cummings||–|
|14||31131×7041||LOYALTY MAN||G||4||Michael Moroney||85|
|16||x544154521||MAN OF HIS WORD||G||4||Bruce W Hill||–|
|18||x501223x46||PAJARO (NZ)||G||6||Peter & Paul Snowden||–|
|19||05052×6133||RED EXCITEMENT||G||7||Gerald Ryan||–|
|20||1770×22318||REIBY THE RED||G||5||Jason Attard||73|
|22||3x1412x||SARRASIN (GB)||H||5||Lee & Anthony Freedman||–|
|23||567641454x||SENSE OF OCCASION||G||6||Kris Lees||97|
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