Rob Heathcote’s special little filly Startantes...
The John Thompson–trained Sweet Deal came up trumps with barrier two for Saturday’s 2020 Emancipation Stakes at Rosehill and continues to dominate betting on the Group 2 event.
The penultimate showdown on the nine race Tancred Stakes Day card in Sydney this weekend, the Group 2 $200,000 Emancipation Stakes (1500m) attracted a final field of 14 fillies and mares.
Jockey Nash Rawiller jumps back aboard having ridden the mare for her two last wins including the first-up Group 3 Triscay Stakes (1200m) triumph by over two lengths at Randwick in mid-February.
Blake Shinn was aboard for her last start second to Dawn Dawn in the Group 2 Guy Walter Stakes (1400m) when beaten the barest of margins on February 29 and she has been kept fresh since.
With a little break between runs, a return to Rosehill where she boasts a 50% winning strike rate from six previous starts at the track and the nice gate all work in favour for Sweet Deal third-up on the weekend.
Despite the size of the Emancipation Stakes field this season, just three other runners are currently under double figures with market mover Amangiri ($6.50), the flying Positive Peace ($8.50) and the widely-drawn Pohutukawa ($9) considered the dangers.
Tommy Berry partners the Hawkes Racing-trained Amangiri first-up from barrier five, the nicely-bred All Too Hard mare looking to remain undefeated at the distance.
The consistent four-year-old has been tested in strong company plenty of times including her sixth when only 1.75 lengths beaten at Flemington in the Group 2 Matriarch Stakes (2000m) last November.
She races for the first time since on the back of a winning Rosehill trial that she blitzed by six lengths on a Heavy track over 900m earlier in the month and has to be considered according to her hoop.
“She is a nice mare who has always shown a lot of potential. She should have been unbeaten in her first four or five starts had it not been for some bad luck,” Berry told The Sydney Morning Herald.
“She’s come back well this prep, she trialled at Rosehill and won by a massive space the other day – she won by about six with my feet on the dashboard.
“She’s a free-rolling type who will run well fresh and if we can get our way in front will be hard to run down.”
Positive Peace brings a string of wins into the race, Bjorn Baker‘s four-year-old Stratum mare having saluted in her last four starts.
She is at a decent price to make it five on the trot and add to her excellent Rosehill record going up in grade here off a big 2.8 length win over 1350m on a mud track here in a BenchMark 88 a fortnight ago.
The Godolphin-raced Medaglia D’Oro four-year-old Pohutukawa meanwhile has work to do from gate 13 as she looks for her first top three finish when racing at Rosehill for the fourth time.
Her opening two runs this autumn at Randwick were excellent when third in both the Triscay and Guy Walter Stakes before she was tested in Group 1 company last start.
On March 14 at Rosehill she finished over nine lengths back eighth to Con Te Partiro in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) on a Heavy (9) and she should appreciate dropping back to this level fourth-up.
2020 Emancipation Stakes Field
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp. Rating|
|1||53403x600x||UNFORGOTTEN||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||6||58kg||103|
|2||355x3x03x8||OUR ABBADEAN (NZ)||Chris Waller||Jay Ford||7||57kg||105|
|3||237x042x30||INVINCIBLE GEM||Kris Lees||TBA||3||56kg||107|
|4||x2130x3417||DAWN DAWN||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Brenton Avdulla||9||56kg||104|
|5||08×7718262||MISS FABULASS||Kris Lees||Glen Boss||12||56kg||102|
|6||x54565x553||NOIRE||Chris Waller||Ms Kathy O’Hara||1||56kg||102|
|7||x3232621x0||OCEANEX (NZ)||Mick Price & Michael Kent (Jnr)||Tom Marquand||8||56kg||100|
|8||5451131×12||SWEET DEAL||John Thompson||Nash Rawiller||2||55.5kg||106|
|9||2x4247x338||POHUTUKAWA||James Cummings||James McDonald||13||55kg||102|
|10||1260x4316x||AMANGIRI||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||5||55kg||97|
|11||123x13047x||GIRL TUESDAY||Chris Waller||Kerrin McEvoy||4||54kg||102|
|12||790527×520||DELECTATION GIRL (GB)||Kris Lees||TBA||14||54kg||100|
|13||8x1332x645||SWEET SCANDAL||Chris Waller||Robbie Dolan (a)||10||54kg||95|
|14||9222×21111||POSITIVE PEACE||Bjorn Baker||Tim Clark||11||54kg||91|
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