The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
A capacity line-up of 18 sprinters are set to take to Caulfield Racecourse in the Oakleigh Plate 2017 field this Saturday as part of an action-packed Blue Diamond Stakes Day card.
The Futurity Stakes field may have attracted only nine runners, but the $500,000 Group 1 The Resimax Group Oakleigh Plate (1100m) features a full field of Newmarket Handicap hopefuls.
Sitting top of the Oakleigh Plate field is the defending champion Flamberge now prepared by Darren Weir.
The seven-year-old son of Exceed And Excel took out the short-distance sprint last Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival when prepared by Peter Moody, winning first-up in a narrow victory at juicy $26 Oakleigh Plate odds.
This weekend the veteran returns chasing back-to-back wins in the race for the first time since Dual Choice (1971-72).
For his victory 12 months ago, Flamberge carried 58kg to the upset victory from barrier 15 of 17.
This season he gives the weight away again carrying the 58kg top weight from barrier six, Brad Rawiller in the saddle after his second win in the Oakleigh Plate after the victory aboard Weekend Hussler back in 2008.
Weir meanwhile is after his first Oakleigh Plate and has also accepted for the flying Thermal Current (11), Hellbent (13) and El Divino who was the big winner for the stable barrier-wise in gate two.
Exceed And Excel six-year-old Thermal Current chases a third win on the trot and is down from 59kg to just 53kg on the back of a Listed W.J. Adams (1000m) win at the track in early February.
Hellbent is third-up on Saturday and may be out wide, but gets a nice weight in on just 52kg having carried 56kg for his last start third to Super Cash in the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) on February 11.
Wide Oakleigh Plate barriers haven’t been a problem in the past few years however with three winners in the last four years saluting from a double-digit gate.
El Divino meanwhile has Dean Yendall aboard this weekend, the Snitzel colt looking to be the first three-year-old Oakleigh Plate winner since Starspangledbanner (2010).
Last year’s runner-up Fell Swoop is back looking to go one better in 2017, Matthew Dale’s consistent Not A Single Doubt five-year-old first-up on the weekend.
The gelding hasn’t finished out of the money since May last year and was last seen finishing only a half-length third to Malaguerra in Flemington’s Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m).
Fell Swoop has won a recent Canberra trial but carries 56kg compared to the 53kg he had for last year’s second in the Oakleigh Plate quinella.
Mick Price looks for a second win in the race to add to that of Lankan Rupee (2014) saddling-up last autumn’s Blue Diamond Stakes winner Extreme Choice.
Craig Newitt rode Price’s other Oakleigh Plate winner to victory along with Snitzel (2006) for Gerald Ryan and is aboard Extreme Choice on Saturday in the colt’s first run since finishing fifth to stablemate Flying Artie in the Coolmore Stud Stakes.
Other key acceptors include Lindsay Park’s Winterbottom Stakes second placed mare Sheidel in barrier three with the ‘Magic Man’ Joao Moreira aboard and the Shane Nichols-trained Myer Classic winning filly I Am A Star out wide in barrier 17.
Check out the full Oakleigh Plate 2017 field, barriers, jockeys and weights below before heading to our No. 1 recommended bookmaker Ladbrokes.com.au for the hottest autumn odds.
2017 Oakleigh Plate Final Field & Barrier Draw
Caulfield Race 8 (4:50pm) – 25/02/2017
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp. Rating|
|1||1100x98x44||FLAMBERGE||Darren Weir||Brad Rawiller||6||58kg||112|
|2||42156x323x||FELL SWOOP||Matthew Dale||Damien Oliver||8||56kg||108|
|3||1118x15x||EXTREME CHOICE||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||9||54kg||110|
|4||0x10x3021x||KAEPERNICK||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Kerrin McEvoy||16||53kg||102|
|5||27x421152x||SHEIDEL||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Joao Moreira||3||53kg||106|
|6||450170×911||THERMAL CURRENT||Darren Weir||TBA||11||53kg||102|
|7||15x16225x7||FAATINAH||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||TBA||7||52.5kg||101|
|8||26x11352x6||WILD RAIN||Mark Kavanagh||Stephen Baster||1||52.5kg||105|
|9||76x1225x58||AEGEAN SEA||Clarry Conners||TBA||5||52kg||84|
|10||0x10113x34||HELLBENT||Darren Weir||Damian Lane||13||52kg||97|
|11||1L0x55402x||MISS PROMISCUITY||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Ms Katelyn Mallyon||12||52kg||99|
|12||x121140x81||OCEAN EMBERS||Shea Eden||Jason Benbow||18||52kg||98|
|13||743×415834||READY SUNSHINE||Ryan Balfour||Michael Dee||10||52kg||75|
|14||60x869x102||SHAKESPEAREAN LASS||Pat Carey||Ms Michelle Payne||4||52kg||94|
|15||1x154231x2||I AM A STAR (NZ)||Shane Nichols||Craig Williams||17||50kg||105|
|16||11x477x25||EL DIVINO||Darren Weir||Dean Yendall||2||50kg||89|
|17||9x1x66735x||MISSROCK||Robbie Laing||Dean Holland||14||50kg||81|
|18||6x1x14x32||GUARD OF HONOUR||Kris Lees||Ben E Thompson (a)||15||50kg||79|
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