The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Roughie hope Rock Magic is the notable early market mover taking on the odds-on favourite Bivouac in 2019 Ladbrokes Manikato Stakes betting for The Valley feature this evening.
Moonee Valley lights up on Cox Plate eve for the Group 1 $1 million Ladbrokes Manikato Stakes (1200m) featuring 11 weight-for-age hopefuls.
Donning the number one saddlecloth is the Chris Gangemi-trained Perth raider Rock Magic who has been backed in from $31 to $21 in the Manikato Stakes odds at race sponsor Ladbrokes.com.au.
The veteran 10-year-old has had 51 career starts to date and his latest win was in the Group 3 Northam Stakes (1100m) back in early May.
The Redoute’s Choice gelding races first-up in a tough edition of the Manikato Stakes on the back of a winning Belmont trial looking to add to his sold first-up record (12:4-1-1).
A winner of over $1.4 million in prize money, Rock Magic has had four previous runs at Moonee Valley without a top three finish but was racing competitively in Melbourne in the autumn of 2018.
He contested the 2017 Manikato running three lengths back seventh to Hey Doc and some of the punters are getting behind the old warhorse for the upset.
It would be some upset too with Ladbrokes Manikato Stakes betting firmly led by the Godolphin-raced Bivouac ($1.80 into $1.90) further looking to frank the Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) form out of Sydney.
James Cummings’ talented Exceed And Excel colt completed the Run To The Rose – Golden Rose double in September defeating Yes Yes Yes in both Rosehill races.
The Chris Waller-trained Yes Yes Yes came out at Randwick last weekend in the $14 million The Everest (1200m) and flew hope setting a new track record when defeating the top-rated Santa Ana Lane.
Bivouac has to date won five of his nine career starts and is proven the Melbourne way of racing having won Caulfield’s Group 3 Vain Stakes (1100m) first-up in August by over four lengths.
Kerrin McEvoy replaces Hugh Bowman in the saddle of the ace three-year-old.
Manikato Stakes history shows McEvoy guiding another Godolphin-raced three-year-old to victory in the event as a short-priced favourite when he partnered Sepoy in 2011.
In another tick for Bivouac this year, Sepoy won the Manikato from barrier one that this year’s favourite has also drawn.
“I feel like he’s looking great. His training has been excellent. A little jump-out last week kept him ticking over and we’re ultimately quite pleased with where we are at going into the race,” Cummings said of Bivouac ahead of Friday night’s Group 1.
The Bostonian is the danger at $6.50 with Tony Pike’s Kiwi galloper drawn a treat in barrier three with Damian Lane aboard the Jimmy Choux gelding.
The five-year-old chases his first win of the spring after doing the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 / Kingsford-Smith double in Brisbane over the winter.
Last time out he ran just over a half-length third to subsequent The Everest placegetter Trekking in the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) and plenty suggest an improved run from The Bostonian third-up in the Manikato off that.
“He has been great in both runs so far this preparation and he’s been building towards the 1200m which is going to really suit him,” Lane said of his Manikato mount.
Other notable hopes include in-form filly Loving Gaby ($8.50) who was a two-time Group 1 runner-up as a juvenile in the autumn and Lindsay Park’s internationally performed seven-year-old Faatinah ($16) coming off a fourth when a half-length beaten in the Group 1 Moir.
Click here for the latest Ladbrokes Manikato Stakes 2019 odds online.
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