The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
The bookies are struggling to decide on a clear favourite in Scone Cup 2020 betting for this Friday with four runners battling for top spot in the mile feature.
A capacity field of 16 plus four emergencies is gathered for the Listed $160,000 Darley Scone Cup (1600m) this season and the current markets have the widely-drawn Archedemus as the narrow favourite.
Lightly-raced for his age, the gelding has won seven of his 15 starts including two from three over the 1600m ahead of his Scone debut on Friday.
Group 1 performed on a number of occasions including a close eighth when under three lengths beaten in the Doomben Cup (2000m) last winter, Archedemus presents fit second-up here off an eye-catching fourth in the Group 3 Hawkesbury Cup (1500m) on April 25.
He carted 55.5kg that day for a three-quarter length defeat and will take improvement off the run getting up to the mile in the Scone Cup with only a half-kilo more on his back.
Hot on his heels chasing the title of punters’ elect at $4.80 is the James Cummings-trained Phaistos (9) for the powerhouse Godolphin stable.
Grant Buckley is booked to ride the ultra-consistent Helmet four-year-old who has finished out of the money just three times in 15 starts.
He saluted for a sixth career win last time out on May 2 over 1400m in a Benchmark 88 at Randwick’s Kensington track carrying 59.5kg from the outside alley (13 of 13), and so looks very well positioned from gate nine with just 54kg on his back in the Scone Cup weights.
There are two equal $5.50 third favourites also considered the dangers on Friday with the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Military Zone (12) and the in-form Live And Free for John O’Shea.
Epaulette four-year-old Military Zone is out to add to his commanding second-up record (4:3-0-0) having returned on April 18 over 1400m for a fifth to Ranier in a Benchmark 100.
He drops from 58kg to 55kg for the Scone Cup with Christian Reith coming aboard for the ride, Military Zone brought on further fitness-wise with a winning trial at Randwick on May 5.
The gun gelding was under a length beaten fresh and was also only three-quarters off the winner Mister Sea Wolf in his other latest start when fourth in last November’s $1 million The Gong (1600m) at Kembla Grange.
As for Live And Free, the Kiwi-bred son of Savabeel is also second-up in the Scone cup field having finished a devastatingly close second behind the winner Amangiri in the Hawkesbury Cup on ANZAC Day.
Chasing his first win since January of 2019, Live And Free enjoyed a consistent spring prep late last year including his second in the Group 3 Festival Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill and carries 54kg going up one kilo from his weight at Hawkesbury first-up.
Outside the first four in betting, there is big early money rolling in for the Kris Lees-trained market mover Chief Ironside to win the Scone Cup with the imported Lawman stallion backed in from $18 to $10.
Winner of The Valley’s Group 2 Crystal Mile (1600m) at weight-for-age last October, Chief Ironside is out to atone for his two subsequent unplaced runs including a first-up 10th in the same race Phaistos ran second in a month back.
Click here for the latest Scone Cup 2020 betting odds courtesy of Ladbrokes.com.au.
2020 Scone Cup Field & Barriers
|Form (Last 10)
|SIXTIES GROOVE (IRE)
|BIG DUKE (IRE)
|CHIEF IRONSIDE (GB)
|Ms Samantha Clenton (a)
|DR DRILL (GB)
|Ciaron Maher & David Eustace
|Peter & Paul Snowden
|SATONO RASEN (JPN)
|BLACK ON GOLD
|LIVE AND FREE (NZ)
|Tom Sherry (a)
|Ms Cejay Graham (a)
|Ms Rachael Murray
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