The money continues to roll in for Annabel...
The money in WH Stocks Stakes 2017 betting this Friday evening is on the Shane Nichols-trained I Am A Star to return to her best breaking a notable winning drought in The Valley showdown.
A key support act on the Moir Stakes Night program, this year’s Group 2 $200,000 Zoustar Stocks Stakes (1600m) field features a dozen mares.
Drawn midfield in barrier seven with Ben Melham to ride is last year’s Group 1 Myer Classic winner over the Flemington mile, I Am Invincible mare I Am A Star.
The now four-year-old enjoyed back-to-back Group 2 wins in March, including the Sunline Stakes (1600m) over the same track and distance she returns to in the Stocks Stakes.
Third in the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) in Adelaide over the autumn, she is out to improve on her two unplaced seventh place runs leading into Friday evening.
Two back I Am A Star was just over five lengths off Vega Magic at Caulfield in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m).
She seen last seen finishing running seventh to Sword Of Light in Flemington’s Group 2 Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m), a run that was better than it reads on paper.
I Am A Star was only three lengths beaten in the Let’s Elope and will appreciate getting back out to a mile at Moonee Valley in the Stocks Stakes.
The latest Stocks Stakes odds have the former Group 1 winner as the clear $3.10 favourite, and the drop from 59kg last time out to 56.5kg has also seen her firm in from an opening quote of $4.20.
There are three other single-figure hopes in the Stocks Stakes betting markets including the flying Hell Or Highwater ($4.20) chasing a fourth consecutive win.
Lindsay Park saddle-up the five-year-old Not A Single Doubt mare from gate nine and Dean Yendall retains the ride after guiding her to a one and a half-length win at Caulfield in the Listed Heatherlie Handicap (1700m) last time out.
She rises from 54kg to 57kg at weight-for-age in the Stocks Stakes, but her lead-up form suggests she is flying and can add to her imposing record of three wins and a third from four previous starts at the mile.
The other best in betting at more generous odds are then Montoya’s Secret ($9) and Lizzie L’Amour ($9.50) jumping from the outside and inside barriers (12 and 1) respectively.
The ‘Magic Man’ Joao Moreira is back down under for a big weekend of racing starting on Friday night and partners the Leon & Troy Corstens-trained High Chaparral four-year-old Montoya’s Secret.
A winner of her only other start at The Valley, the proven miler also has plenty of class having taken out Rosehill’s Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) during the autumn.
This time in she had a tough first-up run for 10th behind Hartnell in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) before an eighth, just over three lengths behind Hell Or Highwater in the Heatherlie Handicap.
She meets her last start conqueror better in the weights for Friday night’s rematch and the step-up in distance also boosts her cause.
Lizzie L’Amour is still in 2017 Caulfield Cup calculations looking to bounce back after her seventh at Moonee Valley on September 9 behind her dual Oaks winning stablemate Bonneval in the Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m).
This is an easier assignment for the Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman-trained Kiwi daughter of Zabeel who is a Group 1 winner over 2000m back across the Tasman.
Check out the full WH Stocks Stakes 2017 field, barriers, jockeys and latest Group 2 racing odds for the Moonee Valley night race below – pricing open now at Ladbrokes.com.au.
2017 Stocks Stakes Field, Barriers & Odds
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