The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
The punters are shying away from Lasqueti Spirit scoring an historic Sydney Cup 2017 victory in the re-run this weekend with the money flying in for the favourite Big Duke.
Big Duke went around in the abandoned first running of this season’s $2 million Group 1 Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) a fortnight back, the two mile classic declared a no-race after the tragic fall of the ill-fated Almoonqith.
Darren Weir’s Chairman’s Handicap winner retains favouritism in Sydney Cup betting at Ladbrokes.com.au for the rescheduled race at Royal Randwick, Glen Boss aboard the well-weighted stayer on 52kg from barrier two.
Earlier in the week when Sydney Cup odds on the updated capacity field first reopened, one of the three new editions to the line-up Lasqueti Spirit was under $10 for the win.
Lee Curtis’s VRC Oaks winning daughter of Beneteau didn’t run in the original event, instead seen running third to Bonneval in the Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m) on the same day.
That performance convinced connections to take advantage of the second Sydney Cup running and extend the noted front-runner out over two miles for the first time.
She’s the sole three-year-old taking on the older stayers this weekend and will inject speed into the event, turning it into a genuine battle of the best long distance performers.
History is against Lasqueti Spirit however as she looks to be the first three-year-old filly in over a century to take out the Sydney Cup.
Four have done so, but none since Moorilla back in 1911 who joined Diffidence (1899), Patroness (1895) and Petrea (1880).
The long time between success for the fillies is partly due to the fact that until this weekend, none have attempted the feat since Taressa who crossed third to Opulent in 1952.
“Three-year-old fillies aren’t the type of horses that go in it [but] she is unique in that sense and I have no doubt she can handle it,” Curtis told The Daily Telegraph.
“That’s the most important thing to ask is just knowing she is going to come through it and handle it OK and we’re confident of that.
“I’m happy going into it and we’re not real bullish or going crazy but we’re happy with our horse and we can’t wait for the race.”
The punters still need convincing though as Lasqueti Spirit has eased out from $9 to $11 to make history.
Following Big Duke are the two Charlie Appleby-trained English visitors Penglai Pavilion ($5.50) and Polarisation ($6.50).
The finished third and first respectively in the voided results first time around and look very well suited to the type of race Lasqueti Spirit up front will make it.
The powerhouse Godolphin stable will also be represented in the race by local hope Tally ($12) for trainer John O’Shea.
Tally jumps from barrier one and took no ill-effects from the first race having been pulled up at the 1200m mark.
Tommy Berry rode The Offer to Sydney Cup success in 2014 and chases a second win on Saturday on the O’Shea-trained four-year-old son of Street Cry.
Tally took out the Listed Mornington Cup (2400m) in late March and ran third in last year’s ATC Derby over the mile and a half at Randwick.
O’Shea said the team had been eager to get him up to two miles for a while and that the distance should be a non-issue on the weekend.
More generous Sydney Cup odds can be found on the likes of Who Shot Thebarman ($13) who was involved in the fall when Almoonqith broke his leg and Chance To Dance ($15) who split the raiders when second in the first running on April 8.
Check out the full Sydney Cup 2017 betting odds and offers online now at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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