The airborne Kelly Schweida-trained...
A dozen top class stayers make-up the 2020 Tancred Stakes nominations for the feature race in Sydney this weekend including last year’s champ Avilius and star mare Verry Elleegant who both ran in last weekend’s Group 1 Ranvet Stakes trifecta.
The Group 1 Tancred Stakes (2400m) – formerly The BMW – has drawn a select group of weight-for-age stars this autumn led by the defending champion Avilius for Godolphin.
Tie The Knot (1999-2000) was the last back-to-back champion of the mile and a half feature, a feat the James Cummings-trained Pivotal six-year-old could be out to emulate on Saturday.
Avilius hasn’t won since he completed the Ranvet – Tancred Stakes double last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival at Rosehill.
He suffered his first loss at the track last Saturday when third behind William Haggas’ exciting UK raider Addeybb when failing to defend his Ranvet Stakes title.
Nearly six lengths beaten in the Ranvet, there was a notable gap between Avilius and the first two past the post with the Chris Waller-trained Verry Elleegant running second.
She too is likely to run on successive Saturdays and take on Avilius once again in the Tancred Stakes.
Jameka (2017) was the last Tancred Stakes winning mare with early money on Verry Elleegant to be the next after her brave effort in the Ranvet.
Twelve months ago, Verry Elleegant enjoyed a win on Tancred Stakes Day in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) before heading to Randwick to take out the Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m) as a filly.
A more mature mare now, she should relish getting back up to the 2400m distance for the first time since her Oaks success should Waller accept for her in the Tancred Stakes field.
“I’d love to try her over 2400 metres at weight-for-age,” Waller told the media this week.
“She had a very tough run in the Ranvet and I think Tommy Marquand (on the winner) did a fantastic job, as simple as that.
“He took off knowing we’d be vulnerable late and he was right.
“I knew if it was a sit and sprint from the turn we wouldn’t be beaten, and I was almost right. They took off from the 600.”
Waller has also nominated for his fellow five-year-old mare Youngstar, the daughter of High Chaparral Melbourne Cup performed (20th) in the spring and also a Ranvet Stakes graduate when nine lengths back for fifth.
It looks an open edition of the Tancred Stakes based on the early entries with another eye-catching nominee being Mugatoo, beaten favourite in last weekend’s Group 3 NE Manion Cup (2400m).
The Kris Lees-trained galloper won three on the trot including the Listed Canberra Cup (2000m) this prep before he was beaten into second by another Haggas-trained raider, Young Rascal in a thrilling NE Manion Cup on Slipper Day.
Odds-on favourite there, he could return to the same track and distance rising in grace for the Tancred Stakes seeking atonement.
Newcastle trainer Lees dominates the Tancred Stakes nominations numbers-wise with three further entries: Mustajeer, Raheen House and Danceteria.
2020 Tancred Stakes Nominations
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp. Rating|
|1||x65800x895||ANGEL OF TRUTH||G||4||Gwenda Markwell||101|
|2||42147×5453||AVILIUS (GB)||G||6||James Cummings||115|
|3||5015222×03||CARIF||H||4||Peter & Paul Snowden||100|
|4||13141x0x06||DANCETERIA (FR)||G||5||Kris Lees||110|
|5||322x30x036||MIRAGE DANCER (GB)||H||6||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||109|
|6||3x156x1112||MUGATOO (IRE)||G||5||Kris Lees||98|
|7||7235160×12||MUSTAJEER (GB)||G||7||Kris Lees||111|
|8||4x23960x66||RAHEEN HOUSE (IRE)||G||6||Kris Lees||101|
|9||x07005x532||SOUND (GER)||H||7||Michael Moroney||103|
|10||26441301×7||SOUTHERN FRANCE (IRE)||H||5||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||110|
|11||1x9410x422||VERRY ELLEEGANT (NZ)||M||4||Chris Waller||115|
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