The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Defending champion Redkirk Warrior is among the Newmarket Handicap 2018 nominations taken for this autumn’s edition of the famous Flemington sprint.
Last Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival the Lindsay Park-trained Hong Kong import broke a century long hoodoo winning the Group 1 $1.25 million Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) first-up.
The now seven-year-old is again set for a resuming run in the Newmarket Handicap, the classic set to run down the straight on March 10 as part of ‘Super Saturday’.
If successful, Redkirk Warrior will be the first back-to-back Newmarket Handicap winner since Razor Sharp (1982-83) 25 years ago.
The official Newmarket Handicap nominations closed on Tuesday and Racing Victoria received 56 early entries.
Along with the reigning winner co-trainer David Hayes and the Lindsay Park stable have also nominated for a further 10 sprinters.
Among their other standout hopefuls are last weekend’s Group 2 Australia Stakes winning four-year-old Thronum, class mare Sheidel, Coolmore Stud Stakes third placed filly Formality and last autumn’s Blue Diamond Stakes winner Catchy.
Headlining the nominations though is the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Redzel whose first-up run is scheduled for February 17 in the Group 1 $750,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m).
The gun son of Snitzel extended his winning streak to six on the trot at the same track and distance as the Newmarket Handicap last November taking out the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m).
That followed the outstanding five-year-old’s Sydney win in the inaugural edition of the $10 million The Everest (1200m) and took his career earnings up to just shy of $7.8 million.
Team Snowden chase their maiden Newmarket Handicap victory and have also nominated for last year’s Blue Diamond second placed Redoute’s Choice colt Pariah along with The Galaxy winning entire Russian Revolution.
Leading Victorian trainer Darren Weir is also after his first Newmarket Handicap win and has five entries led by his Japanese import Brave Smash, third to Redzel in The Everest trifecta last October.
Another big name on the list of potential Newmarket Handicap horses this autumn is triple TJ Smith Stakes winning grey Chautauqua.
Boasting an excellent Flemington record (9:4-3-1), the seven-year-old Encosta De Lago gelding for Hawkes Racing ran fourth in both The Everest and Darley Classic to see out his spring.
Chautauqua was runner-up in the 2015 Newmarket Handicap and third in the 2016 edition, but missed last year’s race.
Also proven down the 1200m straight six at elite level is the Aaron Purcell-trained Merchant Navy.
A recent acquisition for Coolmore, the three-year-old son of Fastnet Rock was last seen winning the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) on VRC Derby Day.
If successful, Merchant Navy will become the fifth three-year-old in the past decade to take out the Newmarket Handicap and the first since Brazen Beau (2015).
Other standout Newmarket Handicap nominees include the Tony McEvoy-trained last start Manikato Stakes winner Hey Doc, Robert Hickmott’s flying Nicconi three-year-old Nature Strip who posted a third win on the trot in the Inglis Dash on January 20 and the consistent Rich Charm for Cranbourne trainer Mrs Udyta Clarke.
The Newmarket Handicap 2018 first acceptances close on February 20 and all-in betting is set to open shortly at Ladbrokes.com.au.
2018 Newmarket Handicap Nominations
Flemington Racecourse – 10/03/2018
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp. Rating|
|3||960x31160x||BON AURUM||H||5||Aaron Purcell||105|
|4||12x2316x||BOOKER||F||3||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||90|
|5||344x2123x5||BRAVE SMASH (JPN)||H||5||Darren Weir||107|
|6||112×3||BRAVO TANGO||C||3||Mitchell Freedman||72|
|7||516111250x||CANNYESCENT||G||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||96|
|8||110x21330x||CATCHY||F||3||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||102|
|9||3231x7644x||CHAUTAUQUA||G||7||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||115|
|10||x9113x385x||CLEARLY INNOCENT||G||6||Kris Lees||110|
|11||111x4x||CROWN WITNESS||F||3||Henry Dwyer||80|
|13||81368x008x||DERRYN||H||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||102|
|14||311900821x||FASTNET TEMPEST (IRE)||G||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||98|
|15||x98x4408x4||FLAMBERGE||G||8||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||110|
|16||302x11013x||FORMALITY||F||3||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||102|
|17||x21x78192x||FUHRYK||M||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||103|
|18||1x2247x12x||GLENALL||H||4||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||93|
|19||21302x19x6||GLOBAL GLAMOUR||M||4||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||108|
|21||1196x1401x||HEY DOC||G||4||Tony McEvoy||113|
|22||83x477100x||I AM A STAR (NZ)||M||4||Shane Nichols||106|
|23||1x29x||I DID IT AGAIN||G||3||Greg Eurell||70|
|24||50020x267x||ILLUSTRIOUS LAD||G||6||Peter Gelagotis||104|
|26||275537×514||KEN’S DREAM||G||4||Darren Weir||90|
|28||x415x66x16||LORD OF THE SKY||H||7||Robbie Laing||106|
|29||1351x30x3x||LUCKY LIBERTY||G||6||Henry Dwyer||90|
|30||25x643700x||MALIBU STYLE||G||6||Neville Parnham||96|
|31||111x101x||MERCHANT NAVY||C||3||Aaron Purcell||108|
|33||311x1220x2||MR SNEAKY||G||4||Anthony Freedman||100|
|34||12111||NATURE STRIP||G||3||Robert Hickmott||84|
|35||1220x129x||PARIAH||C||3||Peter & Paul Snowden||91|
|36||24x21x2||PREZADO||G||3||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||78|
|37||1x105x100x||REDKIRK WARRIOR (GB)||G||7||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||111|
|38||2211x1111x||REDZEL||G||5||Peter & Paul Snowden||116|
|39||34111x411x||RICH CHARM||G||5||Udyta Clarke||103|
|40||011x43765x||ROCK MAGIC||G||8||Chris Gangemi||106|
|41||14x164x10x||RUSSIAN REVOLUTION||H||4||Peter & Paul Snowden||109|
|42||43816x80x7||SARACINO (NZ)||G||4||Michael Moroney||97|
|43||1x1x71192x||SAVANNA AMOUR||M||4||Chris Meagher||103|
|44||11x121x10x||SHE WILL REIGN||F||3||Gary Portelli||112|
|45||1460x4359x||SHEIDEL||M||6||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||109|
|46||x12121x11x||SNITTY KITTY||M||4||Henry Dwyer||101|
|47||x22833005x||SO SI BON||H||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||95|
|48||110208×613||STELLAR COLLISION||G||5||Darren Weir||95|
|49||3x180x188x||SUPER CASH||M||5||Andrew Noblet||107|
|51||x4810x950x||SWEET SHERRY||M||4||Brent Stanley||95|
|53||21306x13x1||THRONUM||H||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||102|
|54||4135x2450x||TULIP||F||3||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||81|
|56||14x160x117||VOLPE VELOCE||M||4||Graham Richardson||105|
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