Sunday at the Sunshine Coast sees the postponed...
Chris Waller’s brilliant sprinter Nature Strip is already at an odds-on quote to win the Black Caviar Lightning 2020 first-up this weekend at Flemington.
Nominations for the Group 1 $750,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at HQ were taken by Racing Victoria on Monday morning with 13 early entries and have been extended until 10am (AEDT) tomorrow.
Undefeated down the famous Flemington straight with four previous wins at the track, Waller’s Nicconi five-year-old was last seen powering home by over three lengths to win the Group 1 VRC Classic (1200m) there during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
The three-time Group 1 winner is also a short-distance specialist, which bodes well for Saturday, having won Sydney’s The Galaxy (1100m) and the Moir Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley at the highest level.
Another exciting sprint star making a return to the races in the Black Caviar Lightning is the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace-trained filly Loving Gaby.
The Maher & Eustace stable is absolutely flying this summer – autumn season and their I Am Invincible three-year-old will be looking to add to the success.
Lightly-raced with nine starts to date, Loving Gaby boasts three wins and four seconds for a consistent record that includes her Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) win at The Valley.
She too was last seen racing in the VRC Classic on November 9 last spring when second to Nature Strip, turning the tables on her last start conqueror a tough first-up ask this weekend.
Loving Gaby is tipped as the “danger” however paying $6.50 in the current Black Caviar Lightning odds.
She is one of four three-year-old nominees and one of two fillies with the Anthony Cummings-trained Libertini the other young female galloper in the mix at $7.
Also by star sire I Am Invincible, Libertini is a four-time winner from seven starts with her only previous Flemington run producing the game third behind Exceedance in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) on Derby Day.
The other three-year-old entries are the Team Hawkes-trained Written Tycoon colt Dirty Work making his Group 1 debut and I Am Immortal for Anthony Freedman who resumed with a second to veteran mudlark Jungle Edge in the Listed W.J. Adams Stakes (1000m) at Caulfield on February 1.
Dual The Everest winner Redzel ($8) is the other standout Black Caviar Lightning nomination this season.
The Peter & Paul Snowden-trained $16 million earner is a Group 1 winner at Flemington in the 2017 Darley Classic and also second in this race to Redkirk Warrior in 2018.
“It’s a race. You can’t pick and choose who you run against and we’re up for the challenge,” co-trainer Peter Snowden told the Daily Mercury.
“Nature Strip is a good horse and he’s going very well.
“He likes Flemington and we have got a pretty good record there too, especially over 1000m.
“It will be handlebars down and just ‘full on speed’.
“He’s going to run the race of his life.”
2020 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes Nominations
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp. Rating|
|1||1110x4509x||DESPATCH||G||5||Tony & Calvin McEvoy||106|
|2||36x32441x||DIRTY WORK||C||3||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||70|
|3||06142x257x||GIFT OF POWER (NZ)||M||5||Anthony Freedman||96|
|5||368105x77x||I AM EXCITED||M||5||David Pfieffer||106|
|6||117x7x2||I AM IMMORTAL||C||3||Anthony Freedman||89|
|8||6422x1212x||LOVING GABY||F||3||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||111|
|9||2132x721x0||MISS LEONIDAS||M||5||Shaun Dwyer||107|
|10||1014x4141x||NATURE STRIP||G||5||Chris Waller||116|
|11||577561360x||QUEEN ANNABEL||M||6||Rebecca Kelly||82|
|12||x2862x138x||REDZEL||G||7||Peter & Paul Snowden||–|
|13||152x41011x||TOFANE (NZ)||M||4||Michael Moroney||103|
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