The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Prolific father-daughter training duo Grant & Alana Williams chase their fourth consecutive win in the 2021 Railway Stakes field this weekend saddling-up the odds-on favourite Western Empire in the mile classic.
Kicking off elite level racing this Perth Summer Racing Carnival, Saturday’s Group 1 $1 million Railway Stakes (1600m) field features a capacity line-up of in-form milers.
Grant & Alana Williams have prepared the past three Railway Stakes winners with Galaxy Star (2018), Regal Power (2019) and Inspirational Girl (2020) all ridden to victory by the ‘Wizard of the West’ William Pike.
Pike also rode Elite Belle to victory in 2014 for Grant Williams and will chase a fifth success on Saturday partnering the ultra-consistent favourite Western Empire.
A four-year-old son of Iffraaj, Western Empire dominates Railway Stakes betting at a short $1.75 quote through Ladbrokes.com.au and has won his past five on the trot.
His three-year-old campaign came to a brilliant finish with a win in the Group 2 WATC Derby (2400m) before the latest spruik horse in WA resumed on October 30 taking out the Group 3 Asian Beau Stakes (1400m) by two lengths.
Western Empire drops to 53kg in the Railway Stakes and looks well weighted, the gun youngster also drawn ideally in barrier three as he looks to take his career to the next level.
The danger occupying the second line of betting at Railway Stakes odds of $9.50, the only other horse under double-figures to upset the favourite is the rails-drawn Kissonallforcheeks.
Chris Parnham partners the Dan Morton-trained Written Tycoon mare, another last start winning four-year-old.
She has won seven of her 13 previous starts at the Ascot track and has winning form up to 1500m suggesting the mile won’t be an issue.
Kissonallforcheeks also gets in on the 53kg minimum weight and is on the quick back-up having carried a kilo more to a narrow victory in last weekend’s Group 3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m).
Prior to that she ran over six lengths back sixth behind Western Empire in the Asian Beau Stakes after fading late and, despite her brave win last Saturday, will need to be very good to turn the tables.
Another last start winner in the mix at a generous $13 quote is Massimo jumping wider from barrier 11 with Clint Johnston-Porter in the saddle.
After back-to-back seconds in the Listed Birthday Card Stakes and Group 3 Northerly Stakes, the Sessions five-year-old was strong recording a half-length victory over Valour Road in the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) on November 6.
Massimo carried 59kg to victory there and drops to 57.5kg on Saturday at elite level out to become the first horse to complete the Lee Steere Stakes – Railway Stakes double in the same year since Belle Bizarre (2006).
The other best in betting include Asian Beau Stakes runner-up Notorious One ($14), the 58kg top-weight Valour Road ($19) drawn the outside barrier and Comfort Me ($21) chasing a third win on the trot.
2021 Railway Stakes Field & Barriers
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||7x4621x332||VALOUR ROAD||Simon A Miller||Brad Rawiller||17||58kg||111|
|2||0x6094x221||MASSIMO||Chris & Michael Gangemi||Clint Johnston-Porter||11||57.5kg||110|
|3||3x70x158x5||THE VELVET KING||Darren McAuliffe||Ms Kyra Yuill||9||56.5kg||108|
|4||11x3323x13||DANCE MUSIC||Simon A Miller||Brad Parnham||15||56kg||107|
|5||4x750x31x8||TOO CLOSE THE SUN||Lindsey Smith||Joseph Azzopardi||2||55kg||105|
|6||5x2117x411||COMFORT ME||Rhys Radford||Peter Knuckey||16||53kg||90|
|7||5013475×25||DIG DEEP||Daniel & Ben Pearce||Patrick Carbery||7||53kg||97|
|8||113×111314||KAPTAIN KAOS||Michael Grantham||Ms Lucy Warwick||10||53kg||95|
|9||100x096x97||KAY CEE||Neville Parnham||Steven Parnham||6||53kg||101|
|10||01121×2161||KISSONALLFORCHEEKS||Daniel Morton||Chris Parnham||1||53kg||94|
|11||22x4211x55||NAUGHTY BY NATURE||Jason Miller||Jordan Turner||12||53kg||97|
|12||165×131122||NOTORIOUS ONE||Chris & Michael Gangemi||Shaun O’Donnell||4||53kg||96|
|13||130284×646||PLATOON||Neville Parnham||Jason Brown||14||53kg||99|
|14||38x17x4132||SON OF BACCHUS||Rhys Radford||Jason Whiting||8||53kg||89|
|15||576x221P36||TELLEM WE’RE COMIN||Daniel Morton||Troy Turner||13||53kg||97|
|16||43131111×1||WESTERN EMPIRE (NZ)||Grant & Alana Williams||William Pike||3||53kg||100|
|17e||127×474478||MEDIA BARON||David Harrison||Ms Jade McNaught||5||53kg||88|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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