The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Rob Heathcote’s Queensland raider, Rothfire, is firming favourite to return to winning form in his trip east on Saturday for the Group 1 $1.5 million Winterbottom Stakes (1200m).
Continuing the elite level action of the Perth Summer Racing Carnival, the 2022 Winterbottom Stakes field features a capacity line-up of sprinters.
Rothfire was a big winner in Tuesday evening’s Winterbottom Stakes barrier draw coming up trumps with barrier three for his hoop Damien Oliver.
Oliver chases his third Winterbottom success after earlier victories aboard Marasco (2006) and Voodoo Lad (2018).
Rothesay five-year-old Rothfire has his first start at the Ascot track in WA, but is well supported to steal the trophy paying $4.80 in the latest Winterbottom Stakes odds online at Ladbrokes.com.au.
After a third in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) from a wide alley at home behind Alligator Blood back in June, Rothfire won the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) first-up at The Valley in early September.
He’s been good in Group 1 company twice since when fifth, under two lengths beaten by the filly Coolangatta, in the Moir before a distant second behind runaway winner Bella Nipotina in the Manikato.
His last start was an eighth behind upset winner Roch ‘N’ Horse down the Flemington straight as a 40/1 outsider in the Group 1 Champions Sprint (1200m), a run that was better than it reads on paper with just 1.2 lengths between him and the first horse over the line.
Another interstate raider occupies the second line of Winterbottom Stakes betting this season with the James Cummings-trained one-time favourite Vilana at $6 after drawing wider in barrier 12.
Ms Jamie Kah rides the in-form Hallowed Crown four-year-old who is two-from-two at the 1200m and back down to the distance for the first time in a while.
He has been good in Sydney over the spring winning the $1 million Silver Eagle (1300m) fresh before an eighth when hampered by barrier 20 of 20 behind I Wish I Win in the $10 million Golden Eagle (1500m).
The entire was back in the winners’ circle third-up last time out at Newcastle posting a narrow win in the $1 million The Hunter (1300m) ahead of his Perth assignment on the weekend.
Cummings and the Godolphin stable have also accepted for fellow four-year-old stallion Paulele, the son of Dawn Approach after his first win since the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield in early October.
He was unplaced in the Manikato (8th) on Heavy going and Champions Sprint (11th), donning blinkers for the first time, his last two with excuses and can improve sharply here as an $11 shot.
Equal at $6 with Vilana in the markets meanwhile is the best fancied of the locals, Elite Street, in gate seven with Brad Rawiller in the saddle.
Dan Morton’s consistent Street Boss six-year-old is a genuine specialist at the Ascot track (10:6-1-1) and races in his third straight Winterbottom.
He won the event in 2020 during a rich vein of form and came off a trio of black-type victories last year before running third behind Graceful Girl as the beaten favourite.
This prep Elite Street has been strong again winning the Group 3 Northam Stakes (1100m) and Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m) first and second-up before a fourth last time out in the Group 3 Colonel Reeves (1100m).
Back to the six furlongs he’s sure to be in the mix again this weekend looking to be the first dual winner since Buffering (2013, 2015) who also won his on non-successive years.
2022 Winterbottom Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||x5543x1528||ROTHFIRE||Robert Heathcote||Damien Oliver||3||58.5kg||110|
|2||x11518x181||VILANA||James Cummings||Ms Jamie Kah||12||58.5kg||111|
|3||03322×6180||PAULELE||James Cummings||Ben Melham||16||58.5kg||109|
|4||x1113x11x4||ELITE STREET||Daniel Morton||Brad Rawiller||7||58.5kg||115|
|5||2633×64636||THE ASTROLOGIST||Leon & Troy Corstens||William Pike||2||58.5kg||108|
|6||73x4833x31||MASSIMO||Chris & Michael Gangemi||Brad Parnham||11||58.5kg||108|
|7||4x222x6482||RED CAN MAN||Steve Wolfe||Shaun McGruddy||17||58.5kg||108|
|8||2722×29904||STAGEMAN||Adam Durrant||Clint Johnston-Porter||5||58.5kg||105|
|9||436x86x033||INDIAN PACIFIC||Neville Parnham||Paul Harvey||15||58.5kg||104|
|10||27x47x00x4||BEAU ROSSA||Will Clarken||Todd Pannell||8||58.5kg||102|
|11||53x426x491||HOT ZED||Lou Luciani||Jason Whiting||6||58.5kg||97|
|12||2104×31606||KISSONALLFORCHEEKS||Daniel Morton||Chris Parnham||14||56.5kg||107|
|13||x2x113x115||MISS CONTEKI||Simon A Miller||Patrick Carbery||13||56.5kg||105|
|14||2511x5x221||THIS’LL TESTYA||Mitchell Pateman||Ms Lucy Warwick||9||56.5kg||105|
|15||4141211×11||SNIPAROOCHY||Stephen Miller||Jason Brown||1||56.5kg||95|
|16||111||MY BELLA MAE||Dion Luciani||Steven Parnham||10||51.5kg||84|
|17e||3350×54225||TITAN BLINDERS||Chris & Michael Gangemi||Shaun O’Donnell||4||58.5kg||96|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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