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Ciaron Maher & David Eustace’s class filly Away Game has opened top of the Light Fingers Stakes 2021 betting markets for the key Apollo Stakes Day support act at Randwick Racecourse this weekend.
There’s a capacity line-up of three-year-old fillies engaged in Saturday’s Group 2 $200,000 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) and current odds favour a return to winning form by Away Game.
Last year’s Light Fingers Stakes winning hoop Hugh Bowman (Flit, 2020) partners the talented daughter of Snitzel whose resume includes a $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic win, Blue Diamond fourth and Golden Slipper second as a two-year-old.
Away Game chases her first victory since saluting on a Heavy (8) Randwick track last April in the Group 2 Percy Sykes Stakes (1200m) and she was last seen running third to Aim in the $2 million Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast in mid-January.
She is at $3.30 and firming in the latest Light Fingers Stakes odds online at Ladbrokes.com.au with the danger following closely at $3.80 being the Chris Waller-trained Hungry Heart.
Hungry Heart will be ridden by jockey James McDonald who won aboard Bennetta back in 2013, the nicely-bred daughter of Frankel looking to break her bridesmaid tag.
She’s won just one of her seven starts to date when McDonald partnered her to victory in the Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) at Randwick a year ago, with a Golden Slipper fifth to follow.
There was plenty of hype and money on Hungry Heart over her spring campaign, but she just couldn’t quite get there running second three times on the trot including to Montefilia in the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) last October.
Her latest run was a seventh when midfield behind Odeum at Caulfield in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) and she will appreciate being fresh and back in Sydney this weekend off the back of two excellent Rosehill trials.
Despite the size of the field, just two other fillies are currently at single-figures in Light Fingers Stakes betting with early market mover Vangelic ($7.50) and the Godolphin-raced Thermosphere ($9).
The Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Vancouver filly Vangelic has her fifth run at the Randwick track and is after her first win there after a trio of placings including a second to Away Game in last April’s Percy Sykes.
She ran third in both the Tea Rose and Flight Stakes at the track behind Hungry Heart who was runner-up in both, before also failing to perform the Melbourne way running 11th in the Thousand Guineas ahead of her return on Saturday.
Thermosphere is looking to hand trainer James Cummings and the Godolphin stable their third Light Fingers Stakes victory in three years after recent victories by Alizee (2018) and the aforementioned Flit (2020) last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
The Exosphere filly won Flemington’s Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m) last October before a sixth in the Thousand Guineas and presents fit second-up here after a close Rosehill third in a Benchmark 88 on January 30.
Of the longer-priced runners those representing potential value looking for the upset include Jamie Richards’ Kiwi raider Kahma Lass ($16) last seen winning the Group 1 NZ 1000 Guineas in November and the rails-drawn She Can Sing ($21) chasing a third win on the trot.
2021 Light Fingers Stakes Field & Barriers
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Probable Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||1114215×23||AWAY GAME||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Hugh Bowman||6||56kg||98|
|2||2121x||KAHMA LASS (NZ)||Jamie Richards||Kerrin McEvoy||2||56kg||98|
|3||215x2227x||HUNGRY HEART||Chris Waller||James McDonald||9||56kg||94|
|4||1622x4330x||VANGELIC||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||Tim Clark||5||56kg||87|
|5||0x285168x3||THERMOSPHERE||James Cummings||Nash Rawiller||11||56kg||86|
|6||1x2298x46x||EVERY ROSE||Mark Newnham||Joshua Parr||16||56kg||79|
|7||x33111520x||JOVIALITY||Chris Waller||Sam Clipperton||7||56kg||79|
|8||11×11715||NEVER TALK||Kris Lees||Jason Collett||14||56kg||78|
|9||13x222242x||SWEET REPLY||Richard & Michael Freedman||Tommy Berry||12||56kg||76|
|10||13477x60x4||PHILIZZY||Anthony Cummings||Regan Bayliss||8||56kg||73|
|11||523x21134x||ELIZABEEL||John Sargent||Robbie Dolan||10||56kg||71|
|12||3x2150x4||LOVE SENSATION||Kevin Corstens||Ms Rachel King||4||56kg||65|
|13||51x1353x3||NICCI’S FLING||Gary Portelli||Ms Kathy O’Hara||3||56kg||65|
|14||4x6x4108x3||ORPHEUM||Ron Quinton||Jay Ford||13||56kg||64|
|15e||311||SHE CAN SING||Michael Costa||1||56kg||62|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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