Sunday at the Sunshine Coast sees the postponed...
Gun Perth raider Scales Of Justice is the firming favourite in Sunday’s Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes 2017 field and betting markets to return to Group 1 winning form in Melbourne.
The Not A Single Doubt gelding is best known for his Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) win at Ascot last November, after which he was narrow runner-up in the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m).
He won back-to-back Group 3 races at Belmont in the winter before heading to Flemington for a last start second behind Redkirk Warrior on September 16 in the Group 2 Bobbie Lewis Quality (1200m).
This Sunday the five-year-old heads to Caulfield Racecourse for the first time as one of 16 hopefuls facing off in the Group 1 $500,000 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) on Underwood Stakes Day.
Scales Of Justice is drawn barrier seven, which last produced a winner in 2011 with Toorak Toff, and sits top of the updated Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au paying $3.80.
Brad Rawiller retains the ride on the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes favourite who has been backed in early from $4.50, out to continue the good record of top fancies in the race with three saluting in the past five years.
Despite the size of the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes field there are only three other runners at single-figures for the win including Tosen Stardom and Theanswermyfriend at an equal $6.50.
The Darren Weir-trained Japanese import Tosen Stardom has work to do drawn the outside barrier (16 of 16), but still looks a danger with three of the past five winners having gotten the job done from a double-digit gate.
The seven-year-old comes off a lead-up third in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) from September 2 when under two lengths beaten.
That was Tosen Stardom’s third Group 1 placing in Australia, connections hoping he can break through this weekend even with the wide gate.
Robert Smerdon saddles-up progressive High Chaparral gelding Theanswermyfriend who is out to be the eighth straight four-year-old Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes winner.
His lead-up run was a Flemington black-type win over 1400m and is well weighted on the 52kg minimum on Sunday.
Rounding out the hopes under $10 is fellow 52kg lightweight Mr Sneaky in gate five with Brenton Avdulla to ride the Anthony Freedman-trained gelding.
Also a four-year-old son of High Chaparral, the galloper was runner-up to Theanswermyfriend last start, which followed three straight wins including a firs-tup victory at Caulfield on September 2.
Of the longer-priced hopes other standouts in the race include Lindsay Park’s last start Caulfield winner Grande Rosso ($13) and returning Doncaster Mile champion It’s Somewhat ($18) carrying the 58kg top weight.
2017 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes Field, Barriers & Odds
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