The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Phillip Stokes’ ultra-consistent four-year-old Ancestry is tipped as the sprinter to beat first-up in Saturday’s 2021 Oakleigh Plate field at Caulfield Racecourse as part of the Blue Diamond Stakes Day action.
A bumper line-up of 18 short-distance specialists face off in this season’s Group 1 $500,000 Neds Oakleigh Plate (1100m) and all the money is on The Brothers War gelding Ancestry to extend his winning streak to five on the trot.
He was in flying form last prep including a last start Flemington victory in the Listed Century Stakes (1000m) during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
He’s been brought-on fitness-wise with two recent trials and has a strong two-from-three record at Caulfield ahead of not only his Group race debut on the weekend.
It may be a notable rise in grade and genuine acid test for Ancestry in the Oakleigh Plate, the progressive galloper drawn in barrier four with Michael Poy to ride, but the bookies are taking no chances.
Current Oakleigh Plate odds online at Ladbrokes.com.au have the favourite at $5.50 and Ancestry looks made for this event carrying just 53.5kg.
First-up at the track last prep he carted 58kg to victory so should be flying fresh on Saturday with less weight.
Occupying the second line of Oakleigh Plate betting are two equal $8 chances with the early market mover Celebrity Queen ($8) and the widely-drawn Anders ($8) out in gate 17.
Premier Perth jockey William Pike partners the Grant & Alana Williams-trained WA raider Celebrity Queen with the talented Redoute’s Choice mare having her first interstate start this weekend.
She’s built an excellent record at home with six wins and four seconds from her 12 starts, including a Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes second in late November.
Heading to the big city, Celebrity Queen has had a recent trial and has an undefeated first-up record having won all three runs fresh to date.
Anders will need luck from that outside alley, but the Not A Single Doubt colt still has claims for a first-up win carrying just 50kg with Glen Boss to ride.
The gun three-year-old is a genuine short-distance horse with four wins from five starts over the 1100m and is looking to atone for his dead last in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) down the straight at Flemington on Derby Day.
Better suited to Caulfield and the 1100m, Anders comes off a four-length winning trial at Geelong, but will need to be good against this field from that gate.
Despite the size of the Oakleigh Plate field, just one other runner is at single-figures for the win with the rails-drawn Dirty Work ($9.50) for Hawkes Racing.
The four-year-old Written Tycoon entire is also a short-distance specialist at 1100m (11:5-1-2) including his narrow Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) victory at the track and distance last October.
Backed-up from that and was far from disgraced when third, under a length beaten at The Valley in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m).
Carried 58.5kg in that Group 1 and has 57kg on Saturday, so remains a chance in field of lighter-weighted runners.
Of the double-figure runners the one tipped most likely for an upset is the 58kg topweight Zoutori ($11).
The Zoustar five-year-old enjoyed back-to-back Group 2 wins at Flemington down the iconic ‘Straight Six’ last time in and was last seen finishing fourth to Bivouac in the Group 1 VRC Classic (1200m).
A good first-up performer (7:4-1-1), Zoutori also has the flying Jamie Kah continuing associations on Saturday.
2021 Oakleigh Plate Field & Barriers
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||x2400x114x||ZOUTORI||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Ms Jamie Kah||7||58kg||109|
|2||8111x3413x||DIRTY WORK||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Kerrin McEvoy||1||57kg||107|
|3||x8x35311x2||KEMALPASA||Richard & Chantelle Jolly||Damian Lane||10||57kg||107|
|4||x160x5528x||STANDOUT||Gerald Ryan & Sterling Alexiou||Damien Oliver||15||55.5kg||104|
|5||x11133x0x6||MIZZY||Anthony Cummings||Mark Zahra||16||54.5kg||106|
|6||1114x1111x||ANCESTRY||Phillip Stokes||Michael Poy||4||53.5kg||100|
|7||611x12122x||CELEBRITY QUEEN||Grant & Alana Williams||William Pike||3||53.5kg||104|
|8||8x466633x2||BOLD STAR||Gordon Richards||Patrick Moloney||12||52.5kg||98|
|9||x535x1344x||BROOKLYN HUSTLE||Jason Warren & Dean Krongold||Jye McNeil||14||52kg||100|
|10||212x5462x3||GARNER||Gordon Richards||Daniel Moor||2||52kg||95|
|11||1118x120x6||HOW WOMANTIC||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Lachlan Neindorf (a)||11||52kg||89|
|12||825x3352x1||PROPHET’S THUMB||Anthony & Sam Freedman||Dean Yendall||13||52kg||100|
|13||121×412153||RIDING THE WAVE||Lindsey Smith||Will Price (a)||8||52kg||86|
|14||11233×1127||SWORD OF MERCY||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Dean Holland||6||52kg||90|
|15||1541×01||PORTLAND SKY||Matt Laurie||Teodore Nugent (a)||5||50kg||95|
|16||x1120x492x||HANSEATIC||Anthony & Sam Freedman||Damien Thornton||18||50kg||92|
|17||23x25318x||RANTING (NZ)||Leon & Troy Corstens||Michael Dee||9||50kg||91|
|18||x211x1130x||ANDERS||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Glen Boss||17||50kg||90|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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