Comeback king Jim Byrne is confident he can...
The punters are tipping the outstanding Spring Carnival for local trainer Danny O’Brien to continue on Thursday with this year’s Melbourne Cup winning horseman saddling-up the favourite Miami Bound in the 2019 Kennedy Oaks.
On Tuesday O’Brien’s outstanding young stayer Vow And Declare made history as the first Australian-bred Melbourne Cup winner since Shocking (2009).
On Day 3 of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, O’Brien is inline for another potential Group 1 victory with his Wakeful Stakes winning filly Miami Bound leading markets on the $1 million Kennedy Oaks (2500m).
The Kennedy Oaks 2019 field is down to 14 three-year-old fillies after the early scratching of the Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Apicus (6).
Donning the No. 1 saddlecloth and sitting top of the Kennedy Oaks odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, Miami Bound comes into barrier seven with Damien Oliver continuing his successful association with the daughter of Reliable Man.
Miami Bound is out to do the Wakeful Stakes – VRC Oaks double for the second year on the trot following Aristia (2018) last year and has firmed into $3.60 in the latest markets for the Group 1.
“She’s been preparing for this all spring. Her run on Saturday was terrific in the Wakeful and it’s usually a good guide for the Thursday. So fingers crossed,” O’Brien said this week.
“I feel a bit greedy even hoping for it (after winning the Melbourne Cup).”
The danger looking at VRC Oaks betting for Thursday is Moonlight Maid for trainer Mitchell Freedman.
Winner of Flemington’s Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m) two back from barrier 16 of 16, the well-bred Puissance De Lune filly took on the boys last start on Cox Plate Day.
Moonlight Maid was far from disgraced when runner-up behind Soul Patch in the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase (2040m), the form of which was franked when the winner finished third in the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) last Saturday.
Now it is Moonlight Maid’s turn over the 2500m at Flemington, Ben Melham retaining the ride on the easing $4 second elect.
It is an open edition of the Kennedy Oaks this spring with a further two single figure chances: Vegas Jewel ($4.50) and Gamay ($6) drawn opposite ends of the field in barriers 14 and one respectively.
Mark Kavanagh’s lightly-raced Shocking filly Vegas Jewel is bred to stay and comes off back-to-back Group seconds, the latest seeing her only a quarter-length beaten in the Wakeful Stakes behind Miami Bound.
Prior to that she was closer again when runner-up to Gamay in the Group 3 Ethereal Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield from a wide draw (13 of 15).
The Ethereal Stakes winner Gamay meanwhile bypassed the Wakeful, the Pierro filly kept fresh for her big Oaks assignment where Ryan Moore replaced Declan Bates in the saddle.
Beauty Bolt ($14) is the only other Kennedy Oaks filly under $20 for the win this week, while there has also been a tickle for early market mover Amazing Peace ($41 into $31) – coming off a 2350m win at Newcastle – to be ridden by Nash Rawiller who had an outstanding Cup Day on Tuesday.
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