The airborne Kelly Schweida-trained...
Jockey Hugh Bowman has described Darren Weir’s dual Group 1 Flemington winner Humidor as a “worthy contender” for the world’s best mare Winx in the Turnbull Stakes 2017 this Saturday.
Winx chases win number 21 on the trot when she has her first official start at the famous Flemington track in the weekend’s Group 1 $500,000 Seppelt Turnbull Stakes (1600m).
The six-year-old daughter of Street Cry became a 13-time Group 1 winner last time out, easily accounting for subsequent Epsom Handicap champ Happy Clapper who she ran down to go back-to-back in Randwick’s George Main Stakes over the mile.
She arrived safe and sound in Victoria last Thursday and is set for just her fourth Melbourne run over her illustrious career, and her first at Flemington.
Winx warmed up for the Turnbull Stakes, which she contests on way to a shot at a third straight Group 1 $3 million Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) success at Moonee Valley on October 28, with a crucial Flemington track gallop on Monday.
Waller and Bowman were thrilled with the mare’s fitness and her sizzling run down the ‘Straight Six’, boosting their confidence ahead of Turnbull Stakes Day.
Unsurprisingly Winx is already firming in pre-field Turnbull Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au now paying a short $1.18 to hand Waller with his second win in three years after success with Preferment in 2015.
At $5 in those futures Turnbull Stakes betting markets, Weir’s last start Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) winner Humidor is the only other single-figure hope to take out the feature.
Humidor also won the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington defeating Jameka in March, before his second to last year’s Caulfield Cup winner next-up at Rosehill in the Group 1 The BMW (2400m).
A five-year-old son of Teofilo, Humidor presents a genuine challenge for Winx this weekend according to Bowman, as the duo prepare to do battle for the first time.
“I was impressed with Humidor’s victory last start. I thought it was a very dominant win,” Bowman told The Australian.
“I would have to say he is a worthy contender.”
Winx has worn earmuffs for her latest two starts after missing the kick first-up and taking until the final few strides to chase down stablemate Foxplay in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
She worked without them at Flemington this week and is likely to remain without them on race day where she gets the chance to show off her versatility.
“I’ll be honest. I think she’s happier than she was at Rosehill,” Bowman said.
“Rosehill is a bit tighter and all of her prep at the busiest track has been out of business.
“She’s such a competitive individual that she wants to race everything.
“She’s certainly more comfortable going through her gears on the Melbourne leg.”
To back Winx in the latest Turnbull Stakes 2017 betting markets and lock in top odds on the super mare, head to Ladbrokes.com.au.
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