The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
The Godolphin-raced Bivouac returns to racing this weekend in the 2020 Oakleigh Plate with betting on the short distance feature dominated by the Group 1 winning three-year-old.
Punters are treated to a triple shot of elite level racing at Caulfield on Saturday including the sprinters doing battle in the Group 1 $500,000 Neds Oakleigh Plate (1100m).
There is a capacity field of 18 in the mix with the emergency Vainstream (1) getting a run from the inside alley following the early scratching of the widely drawn I Am Immortal (18).
Sitting top of the Oakleigh Plate odds online through Ladbrokes.com.au at $2.70 and firming is the James Cummings-trained Exceed And Excel colt Bivouac.
The gun youngster is drawn ideally with a midfield gate seven barrier with Craig Williams booked for the first-up ride.
Bivouac has won five of his 11 starts to date and has a stellar record over the 1100m distance of the Oakleigh Plate with three wins and a second from four runs.
Winner of the Group 2 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill last September defeating subsequent The Everest winner Yes Yes Yes (2nd) and Exceedance (3rd).
Exceedance turned the tables in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) defeating Bivouac home narrowly down the Flemington straight on November 2.
That was Bivouac’s last start but a subsequent barrier trial win at Rosehill has brought him on fitness-wise for his return this weekend.
First-up at the same track and distance last August Bivouac blitzed his rivals by over four lengths in the Group 3 Vain Stakes (1100m).
This is tougher but he looks a genuine hope ticking plenty of boxes for his test against the older horses on Blue Diamond Day.
“His first-up win in the Vain Stakes here in the spring was exceptional and the form stood up,” Cummings told the media this week.
“I was very happy with his trial win at Rosehill a few weeks ago and a jump out in Melbourne last Friday has him primed and ready.”
Despite the size of the field, just two other runners are currently under double figures in the latest Oakleigh Plate markets with Anaheed ($5.50) and the market mover Pippie ($11 into $87.50).
Prepared by Peter & Paul Snowden who won the race in 2018 with Russian Revolution, smart Fastnet Rock filly Anaheed is another three-year-old getting the love from the punters.
She is a two-time winner from three previous starts at the Caulfield track including her impressive victory-up victory in the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100) a fortnight back.
Lankan Rupee (2014) was the last horse to complete the Rubiton Stakes – Oakleigh Plate double Anaheed is out to emulate this season.
The handicap conditions see the filly come back from 54kg to the 51kg lightweight and with nothing on her back, fitter for her Rubiton run and a draw that will keep her out of trouble (15) there is a lot to like about Anaheed in the Oakleigh Plate.
Pippie is drawn one on her inside (14), the John & Chris Meagher-trained Written Tycoon mare chasing her fifth win at start number nine.
She won the Group 3 Cockram Stakes (1200m) here last August and races for the first time since her second at Flemington during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Undefeated fresh (2:2-0-0), Pippie is a lightly raced and weighted progressive type who will be up on the pace early.
Other notable hopes include the 58kg topweight veteran Ball Of Muscle ($26) and the ultra-consistent Rubiton Stakes runner-up Bold Star ($14).
2020 Oakleigh Plate Field & Barriers
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp. Rating|
|1||1x19x3022x||BALL OF MUSCLE||Joseph Pride||Glyn Schofield||13||58kg||109|
|2||1100x1336x||ZOUTORI||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Jamie Kah||2||56kg||105|
|3||41x121162x||BIVOUAC||James Cummings||Craig Williams||7||55.5kg||110|
|4||1320x1487x||FAATINAH||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Regan Bayliss||5||55.5kg||104|
|5||025x2255x4||BONS AWAY||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Jye McNeil||12||55kg||103|
|6||3x657x1653||CRYSTAL DREAMER||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Damian Lane||9||55kg||103|
|7||1272x229x||TROPE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dwayne Dunn||6||52.5kg||98|
|8||10x180x133||ALL TOO ROYAL||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Michael Dee||10||52kg||95|
|9||445x11360x||ANJANA||Lindsey Smith||Zac Spain||17||52kg||84|
|10||2116×11212||BOLD STAR||Gordon Richards||Daniel Moor||8||52kg||97|
|11||38x17219x6||FINE DANE||John Moloney||Beau Mertens||11||52kg||87|
|12||x41259x111||HALVORSEN||Robbie Griffiths||Dean Yendall||4||52kg||97|
|13||1466x116x5||HUMMA HUMMA||John McArdle||William Pike||3||52kg||99|
|14||2918×92332||MYSTYKO (NZ)||Trevor Rogers||Dean Holland||16||52kg||93|
|15||127x11102x||PIPPIE||John & Chris Meagher||Ms Linda Meech||14||52kg||97|
|16||61x93513x1||ANAHEED||Peter & Paul Snowden||Tim Clark||15||51kg||105|
|17||117x7x2||I AM IMMORTAL||Anthony Freedman||Damien Thornton||18||50kg||89|
|18||1130×2||FREE OF DEBT||Chris Bieg||Craig Newitt||19||50kg||88|
|19e||4×39071523||VAINSTREAM||John Pascoe||Anthony Darmanin||1||52kg||80|
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