Sunday at the Sunshine Coast sees the postponed...
The Everest winner Redzel has opened firm favourite in Darley Classic 2017 betting to win the famous Flemington sprint on Saturday as part of Emirates Stakes Day.
The final meeting of the coveted Melbourne Cup Carnival, Saturday racing at Flemington features two elite level races including the Group 1 $1 million Darley Classic (1200m) run down the iconic ‘Straight Six’.
It is a star-studded field of sprinters engaged in the 14-horse Darley Classic field this spring and the one to beat looking at the early markets at Ladbrokes.com.au is the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Redzel ($3.70).
Co-trainer Peter Snowden took out the Darley Classic in 2012 with Mental who jumped from barrier 10, the same gate allocated to the stable’s flying Snitzel five-year-old this weekend.
Redzel has won his five latest starts on the trot going back to mid-April and has progressed through the ranks at incredible speed this spring.
He was last seen making history winning the inaugural $10 million The Everest (1200m) in Sydney on October 14 and this weekend he will face a similar line-up of rivals.
The gun gelding is in Melbourne for the first time since last November when he won a 1000m sprint at the Flemington track, so has form down the straight.
Early Darley Classic market mover and the big danger is the Lindsay Park-trained Vega Magic ($4.60) in gate four with Craig Williams aboard the Lope De Vega five-year-old.
Vega Magic is a dual Group 1 winner having won The Goodwood (1200m) in Adelaide back in May and the Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield in September.
He was a luckless second to Redzel in The Everest two back and has an extra run when fifth at The Valley as the beaten favourite in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m).
The galloper didn’t like the tight turns at Moonee Valley and is tipped to improve in his first look at Flemington over his pet distance (14:9-2-1).
The other best fancied in the Darley Classic field and odds looking to break a spring drought is Manikato Stakes hard luck story Chautauqua.
The veteran spring star was a late and controversial scratching at the barriers after failing a subsequent vet check on the night, infuriating the Hawkes Training team.
The ‘Grey Flash’ gets to atone this weekend when the Encosta De Lago seven-year-old looks to turn the tables on those that finished ahead of him when fourth in The Everest last time out.
Chautauqua is out to join Swick (2008) as just the second seven-year-old Darley Classic winner in the past 30 plus years at his third attempt.
He was the beaten favourite in both 2014 and 2015 when second to Terravista and Delectation respectively before missing last year’s edition.
The other standouts in the Darley Classic field are second placed mare in the Manikato Stakes In Her Time ($8) and Godolphin’s Stradbroke Handicap winning Lonhro entire Impending ($8.50).
2017 Darley Classic Final Field & Betting
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