Big Names to Target NZB Memsie StakesThursday, Aug 30, 2012
Spring racing makes a grand return on Saturday with Caulfield’s A$220,000 Group 2 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) attracting a field of leading Cup and Cox Plate hopes.
This is the third year New Zealand Bloodstock has sponsored the Memsie Stakes and the race has a tremendous record of producing Group 1 winners later in the spring with three standout Memsie winners – Sunline, Makybe Diva and So You Think – amongst those that have raced to Cox Plate glory in the same year.
The Memsie Stakes is the second leg of New Zealand Bloodstock’s Caulfield Spring Weight-for-Age Championship which covers four races, the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes, Group 2 Memsie Stakes, Group 1 Underwood Stakes and Group 1 Caulfield Stakes.
King’s Rose holds off Heart of Dreams to
win last year’s NZB Memsie Stakes
Current Championship leader Second Effort (Mossman) was awarded 10 points for his win in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes a fortnight ago and the Clinton Mcdonald trained six-year-old will line up in Saturday’s Memsie Stakes in a bid to extend his lead. Jockey Chris Symons retains the ride for Saturday and the son of Mossman will jump from barrier 10.
The Championship leader faces stiff competition in the Memsie including a rematch with veteran galloper Heart of Dreams (Show a Heart) who ran fifth fresh up in the P.B. Lawrence Stakes, earning three Championship points. Trainer Mick Price has nominated the dual Group 1 winner for the Cox Plate and the seven-year-old looks very competitive in the field boasting an excellent record at Caulfield and a competitive second up record.
Group 1 Railway Stakes winner Luckygray (Bradbury’s Luck) is racing in top form this season for trainer Garry Poletti winning three consecutive Group 3 races in Western Australia. He had his first race in Melbourne last start in the P.B. Lawrence Stakes where he ran fourth, earning four Championship points. Currently heading the betting, another positive performance on Saturday could see him go close to the top of the Caulfield Spring Weight-for-Age Championship points table.
Cox Plate bound Sincero (Umatilla) is set to make his seasonal re-appearance in the Memsie and is well prepared for the race having won a trial at Rosehill on 21 August. The Stephen Farley trained five-year-old has a strong fresh up record boasting four wins from seven starts and has won four of his five races at 1400 metres. Sincero has drawn well in barrier four with Michael Rodd to ride.
A wet track forced trainer Jim Conlan to delay the return of Rekindled Interest (Redoute’s Choice) who was due to commence his spring campaign in the P.B. Lawrence Stakes. Running third in last year’s Cox Plate and second in the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes in April, the son of Redoute’s Choice is reportedly well forward for Saturday’s race and is another fancied runner to draw an inside barrier of three.
The Memsie will see a number of Cups bound horses make their spring debuts with current Caulfield Cup favourite Green Moon (Montjeu) making his first appearance for trainer Robert Hickmott since winning the Group 2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) fresh up in March. Hickmott will also saddle the Cups bound Midas Touch (Galileo) who made his spring return in the Group 3 Aurie's Star Handicap (1200m) earlier this month.
Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes will saddle two runners, Niwot (Galileo) and Maluckyday (Zabeel). Niwot won the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) at his last start and has been successful in the Melbourne Spring Carnival before when winning the Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m). 2010 Melbourne Cup runner-up, Maluckyday, will make his anticipated return to the track after being ruled out of the spring last year with pneumonia and having just one start in Sydney in the autumn. The son of Zabeel has drawn barrier eight and he is currently at $51 for the Melbourne Cup.
Cups king Bart Cummings has entered the German import Sanagas (Lomitas) who boasts in imposing record of seven wins from just 11 starts. He won the Group 1 Hollywood Turf Cup (2400m) in November last year and has drawn wide in 13.
Trainer Peter Moody will saddle the Irish bred Voila Ici (Daylami) for his first Australian start. The lightly raced eight-year-old has done most of his racing in Italy where he is a Group 1 winner over 2400 metres. He comes into the Memsie fresh up and holds nominations for the Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup.
Happy Trails (Grand Journey) carries good form into the race having won the Group 3 Spring Champion Stakes (1200m) fresh up at Morphettville on August 11 beating Caulfield Cup winner Southern Speed who won the Listed Penny Edition Stakes at her next start. The Paul Beshara trained five-year-old has drawn barrier 11 with Glen Boss to ride.
Michael Moroney trained Wall Street (Montjeu) comes into the race after contesting the Group 1 Doomben Cup in May and has placed twice at Group 1 level when racing fresh up. The David Hayes trained Eagle Falls (Hussonet), and Mister Milton (Snippetson) from Norman Waymouth’s stables, complete the field, and both have already had two races coming into the Memsie and have drawn barriers seven and nine respectively.
The four races in New Zealand Bloodstock’s Caulfield Spring Weight-for-Age Championship offer A$1.24 million in stakes and the ultimate winner of the Championship will receive trophies to the value of $25,000.
Last year’s New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes was won by the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year King’s Rose (Redoute’s Choice) who beat Heart of Dreams. King’s Rose won the Group 2 Spotless Stakes at her next start and was twice Group 1 placed during her campaign.
To view the points table and race schedule for New Zealand Bloodstock’s Caulfield Spring Weight-for-Age Championship, click here.