Rob Heathcote’s special little filly Startantes...
The punters are hoping there will be plenty to celebrate in Saturday’s Hawkesbury Gold Cup 2021 when the Ron Quinton-trained five-year-old Royal Celebration starts the well-backed favourite in the mile classic.
A smart field of 11 is gathered for this season’s Group 3 $200,000 Hawkesbury Gold Cup (1600m) and it is Quinton’s progressive Excelebration entire Royal Celebration sitting top of the odds.
The latest Hawkesbury Gold Cup betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au list the horse at $3.10 to break a notable drought and win for the first time since April last year.
He won over the mile at Warwick Farm in a Benchmark 88 carrying 59kg to victory that run before finishing fifth in last year’s Hawkesbury Gold Cup results, under a length off the winner Amangiri when the event ran over 1500m at Rosehill.
His best performance since was the close second from out wide at 20/1 behind Outrageous in last November’s Group 3 Festival Stakes (1500m).
This prep Royal Celebration has had two lead-up runs including a last start third when making up plenty of late ground after being slow away and racing wide throughout over 1400m at Randwick on April 24.
He presents fit third-up, looks well suited to the mile and with 55kg from gate four with Sam Clipperton aboard could be a hard to beat favourite.
The other two best fancied runners in the Hawkesbury Gold Cup odds are Mark Newnham’s 59kg top weight Greysful Glamour ($5) and the Hawkes Racing-trained Archedemus ($5.50) drawn in barriers seven and 10 respectively.
Despite giving the weight away, striking grey Stratum mare Greysful Glamour still has plenty of support as she looks for her first win since taking out Randwick’s Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1600m) last December.
She has had five runs this campaign and drops notably in grade after a disappointing run when last (13th) to Nettoyer in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) on April 17.
Up on the pace that run, she faded late and gets the chance to atone in easier company this weekend.
Archedemus is also out to make amends for an unremarkable lead-up run, the Lope De Vega seven-year-old finishing ninth to Rocha Clock in the same event Saturday’s favourite Royal Celebration placed third in.
He carted a hefty 60.5kg that start and comes back to 58.5kg here as he looks to return to the same vein of form that saw him salute in the $1 million The Gong over the mile at Kembla Grange in the spring.
In an open market a further two runners are at single-figures with Sam Kavanagh’s evergreen eight-year-old Sikandarabad ($7) in terrific form and drawn the rails, and the John Thompson-trained Pins gelding Purple Sector ($8) presenting as the dangers.
2021 Hawkesbury Gold Cup Field & Barriers
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Probable Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||80115×0020||GREYSFUL GLAMOUR||Mark Newnham||Ms Rachel King||7||59kg||105|
|2||47x3721x59||ARCHEDEMUS||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Joshua Parr||10||58.5kg||100|
|3||03x2117x50||PURPLE SECTOR (NZ)||John Thompson||Nash Rawiller||5||58.5kg||100|
|4||0x07x0x200||MISS SISKA||Matthew Smith||Ms Kathy O’Hara||3||57.5kg||102|
|5||311x77910x||COSTELLO||David Payne||Keagan Latham||6||56kg||95|
|6||1200×87724||SIKANDARABAD (IRE)||Sam Kavanagh||Tim Clark||1||55.5kg||94|
|7||15x3829x93||ROYAL CELEBRATION||Ron Quinton||Sam Clipperton||4||55kg||93|
|8||073575×457||LOOKS LIKE ELVIS||Jarrod Austin||Jason Collett||11||54kg||91|
|9||30×8682181||SURREAL IMAGE||Kevin Corstens||James Innes Jnr||8||54kg||78|
|10||213236×433||LIVEINTHEFASTLANE||Robert & Luke Price||Robbie Dolan||2||53kg||73|
|11||x35823x206||HAMOGANY||Dean Mirfin||Grant Buckley||9||53kg||60|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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