The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Update: Zaaki is a late scratching from the King Charles III Stakes field today. Click here to read more.
The inaugural edition of the 2023 King Charles III Stakes runs at Royal Randwick this Saturday and it is the flying Mr Brightside out to stamp himself as the world’s best miler as he returns to Sydney.
The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained star heads into the Group 1 $5 million King Charles III Stakes (1600m) – a race replacing the George Main Stakes – on The Everest Day on the back of five straight wins.
He did the All-Star Mile – Doncaster Mile double in the autumn before returning this spring to win all three of his lead-up runs including the Group 1 Memsie Stakes and Makybe Diva Stakes at elite level in Melbourne.
Craig Williams continues associations with the six-year-old son of Bullbars this weekend as Mr Brightside looks to add to his imposing 1600m record that stands at 10 wins and a third from 14 previous runs over the distance.
He is also two-from-two at Royal Randwick, gets his chance from a mid-field barrier eight draw which should suit considering he came from mid-field to win the Makybe last start at Flemington, and is the horse to beat.
Mr Brightside sits top of the King Charles III Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au at $2.20 with favourites boasting an imposing record in the old George Main Stakes with 11 wins from 2010-22.
The dangers occupying the second and third lines of King Charles III Stakes betting on the new look event this spring are the nine-year-old weight-for-age marvel Zaaki ($8.50) and Chris Waller’s multiple Group 1 winning mare Fangirl ($9).
Zaaki jumps one inside of Mr Brightside from gate seven with Jamie Kah in the saddle and looks lovely value to keep his good runs going.
The $10.5 million earner has plenty of form at Randwick and the mile and is looking to frank the Sydney form lines this prep.
He ran third to Fangirl fresh in the Group 1 Winx Stakes (1400m) only a half-length beaten and was good again in the $1 million 7 Stakes (1600m) at this track and distance going down by the barest of margins after boxing on well.
Zaaki simply doesn’t know how to run a bad race, has some early money coming for him, and would not surprise to see the Annabel Neasham-trained cult horse score an upset here.
Sydney’s premiere trainer Waller has an outstanding record in the old George Main Stakes preparing eight previous winners before the revamp most recently in 2021 with his subsequent Melbourne Cup winning mare Verry Elleegant.
He returns with a livewire shot at a ninth title (first as the King Charles III Stakes) in Fangirl who won the Winx Stakes first-up before a credible third last start in the 7 Stakes two lengths beaten.
She has been kept fit with a subsequent Rosehill trial, jumps from barrier two and has James McDonald on looking to return to winning form.
Waller plays a strong hand in the race numbers-wise with five final acceptors in total.
Fangirl is joined in the King Charles III Stakes field by stablemates Democracy Manifest ($71), the rails-drawn Rediener ($41) coming off four straight wins including the Group 1 Epsom Handicap here with only 50kg on his back, Group 1 winning mare Atishu ($31) coming off a Golden Pendant second to her The Everest contending stablemate Espiona, Kovalica ($12) out in gate 15.
There is a touch of money for Ocean Park four-year-old Kovalica who won the Group 1 Queensland derby (2400m) in Brisbane in style over the mile and a half back in May.
He has had two runs this time in including just being defeated by Rediener here in the Epsom Handicap and he meets him equal in the weights now.
Other standouts in the mix looking to stop the Mr Brightside dominance include the Kerry Parker-trained 7 Stakes winner Think It Over ($14) with super hoop Nash Rawiller aboard from gate four and the imported Fast Company entire Light Infantry Man ($10) on debut down under for the Maher/Eustace stable.
The 2023 King Charles III Stakes is set to run as Randwick Race 9 at 5:35pm (AEDT) as the penultimate event on the bumper 10-race The Everest Day program.
2023 King Charles III Stakes Final Field & Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Probable Weight||Penalty||Hcp Rating|
|1||x14241x631||THINK IT OVER||Kerry Parker||Nash Rawiller||4||59kg||120|
|2||3x5211x111||MR BRIGHTSIDE (NZ)||Ben, Will & JD Hayes||Craig Williams||8||59kg||119|
|3||341x217x32||ZAAKI (GB)||Annabel Neasham||Ms Jamie Kah||7||59kg||118|
|4||8x0653216x||HUETOR (FR)||Peter & Paul Snowden||Joshua Parr||12||59kg||111|
|5||2x6x372332||LIGHT INFANTRY MAN (FR)||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Zac Purton||6||59kg||110|
|6||6x6026x647||MY OBERON (IRE)||Annabel Neasham||Chad Schofield||3||59kg||109|
|7||x216x143x2||BUCKAROO (GB)||Joseph O’Brien||Hugh Bowman||10||59kg||107|
|8||121735×454||ZEYREK (FR)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Sam Clipperton||13||59kg||106|
|9||1113553×40||NUGGET (GB)||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Dylan Gibbons (a)||9||59kg||104|
|10||3x1761x015||DEMOCRACY MANIFEST||Chris Waller||Tyler Schiller||16||59kg||101|
|11||x2400x9013||GOLDEN MILE||James Cummings||Zac Lloyd (a)||5||58.5kg||109|
|12||11x3131x92||KOVALICA (NZ)||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||15||58.5kg||108|
|13||x641211x11||REDIENER||Chris Waller||Ms Kathy O’Hara||1||58.5kg||107|
|14||62x3227x13||FANGIRL||Chris Waller||James McDonald||2||57kg||114|
|15||23x216Px52||ATISHU (NZ)||Chris Waller||Kerrin McEvoy||11||57kg||111|
|16||42x1442x36||HOPE IN YOUR HEART||Kerry Parker||Jason Collett||14||57kg||109|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2021 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.