Page 1

CAULFIELD PREVIEW September 19, 2009 UNDERWOOD STAKES  (WFA 1800M) Race 7, 4.10pm (Perth time) Saturday’s Group 1 Underwood Stakes (WFA 1800m) at Caulfield is a wonderful mix of the leading Cox Plate and Caulfield Cup contenders. It certainly is shaping is the best race of an enthralling and entertaining spring carnival, and history might prove it to be the most competitive race of the campaign. The race includes the last two Melbourne Cup winner (Viewed and Efficient), last year’s Cox Plate winner (Maldivian), the2007 Caulfield Cup winner (Master O’Reilly), the 2008 Caulfield Guineas winner (Whobegotyou), the 2009 Australian Guineas winner (Heart Of Dreams), the 2007 Victoria Derby winner (Kibbutz) and last season’s winners of the Doomben Cup (Scenic Shot), The BMW (Fiumicino), Coolmore Classic (Typhoon Tracy) and Yalumba Stakes (Douro Valley). The Underwood is so perfectly placed in the carnival that this year’s race was so sought after by trainers that entries as bursting at the seams with three emergencies, which includes two Group winners MacO’Reilly and Miss Darcey. Significantly, more winners of the Underwood Stakes – 13 – have gone on to win the Cox Plate at Moonee Valley than the 12 horses who have won the Yalumba Stakes (WFA 2000m,

SPEED MAP Predicted positions on settling

Caulfield) and Cox Plate double, despite the fact the Yalumba is perfectly placed two weeks before the Moonee Valley race. Only three have won the treble, and what a trio of champions they are – Northerly (2001), Bonecrusher (1986) and Ajax (1938). Danny O’Brien’s rising star Vigor, to be ridden by Damien Oliver, is trying to become the eighth horses to win the Underwood-Caulfield Cup double. Elvstroem did it in 2004, Mummify in 2003 and Northerly, when he won his second Underwood, in 2002. Danny Nikolic and the retired great jockey Harry White are the leading winners of the Underwood with four. Nikolic will ride the Caulfield Cup contender Red Ruler. The Cox Plate horses will fight this out. I am going for a horse from left field with Heart Of  Dreams, who finally looks primed to win. Heart Of Dreams is stepping into unknown territory beyond 1600m, but the gelding is racing as though the trip will suit him. His luckless fifth behind Vigor in the G2 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington, when he was badly checked and finished hard late, suggests this is an ideal race for him from barrier four. Whobegotyou is the danger. The blinkers switched him on to win at Moonee Valley (G2 Dato Tan Chin Nam) and he has always raced well at Caulfield. Vigor was terrific in the Makybe

AND ALSO Form is what makes the money go around, and it is what urges And Also  to urge its reader(s) to take a punt on the 1400m Guineas Preludes (races four and five) at Caulfield on Saturday. Going back through the racebook from Flemington on September 5, AA found big ticks against the names Irish Light and Tollesprit. Everyone saw the flashing lights on Irish Lights when she stormed home, apparently underdone, to win over 1100m, and those who saw Glen Boss’ expression on coming back to scale saw another reason to blackbook the Hayes filly. The barrier (11) won’t help here, the distance will. Jump on at $4. Not everyone saw Tollesprit in the 1200m G2 Danehill, the race that had Black Caviar hogging the limelight, but each watch of the replay of Mark Pegus running into dead-ends before jagging back to get around horses marked him a future winner. He’ll relish the 1400, too – have a crack eachway at the $7. Whether next month’s Guineas winners will be there on Saturday is moot, but there’s money to be had in the absence of the fillies Aloha and Melita, and the colt Denman. After that, sit back and be entertained by the Group 1s – R6, the Sir Rupert Clarke (1400m), might be sub-standard in the elite sense, but it looks super-competitive; and R7, the Underwood (1800m), has too much talent and too many sub-plots for one race (if that is possible). And   Also bets you’ll find plenty for the future. Stephen Howell

Race Preview  

Caulfield and Underwood Stakes Preview

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you