The clash of the three-year-old’s this season rolls on to the $400,000, Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on Saturday with 16 nominations received on Monday including Castlevecchio, Microphone, Prince Fawaz, Shadow Hero and Warning.
Castlevecchio resumes after the Dundeel colt’s second place to Japan’s Horse of the Year, Lys Gracieux (JPN), in the Group 1 WS Cox Plate over 2040m at The Valley last October.
The colt, the winner of the Group 1 Champagne Stakes over 1600m at Randwick in April, went to 124 after the placing with Timeform’s ratings to share with Bivouac and be just behind the now retired Yes Yes Yes and Exceedance on 125 in a year considered one of the best for this age group.
Castlevecchio is on the second line at $8.00 with TAB’s market for the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 7th. The Anthony Freedman trained Super Seth is the current favourite at $4.60.
Godolphin’s Microphone comes back to Sydney after winning the Group 2 Autumn Stakes over 1400m at Caulfield on February 8th. The Exceed And Excel colt won the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes over 1400m in April.
Prince Fawaz, Shadow Hero and Warning are all Group 1 winners as well. Anthony Cummings’ Fastnet Rock colt Prince Fawz took the Group 1 JJ Atkins over 1600m at Eagle Farm in June, Mark Newnham’s Pierro gelding Shadow Hero won the Group 1 Champion Stakes over 2000m at Randwick in the spring before placing fifth in the Group 1 VRC Victoria Derby over 2500m and Freedman’s Declaration Of War gelding won the Victoria Derby.
The current $6.00 Golden Slipper favourite, the Maher and Eustace trained Cellsabeel, is nominated for the $250,000, Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (1100m). The Hinchinbrook filly won over 1100m on a Heavy 8 track at Randwick back on January 18th and has not raced since. The filly galloped at Randwick last Saturday between races.
There are 13 nominations for the Silver Slipper with the winner gaining a vital confirmed place in the field for the $3.5m Group 1 two-year-old sprint at Rosehill on March 21st.
The track is rated a Heavy 8 on Monday after 199mm of rain in the last seven days. The rail will be out 6m for the entire circuit.
Rosehill’s weather this should allow the track to improve into raceday. A storm is forecast for Tuesday with 1mm to 4mm possible with 32c. Tuesday and Wednesday are fine with 29c and 24c and Thursday has a slight chance of a shower and 24c.
Friday has a medium (60%) chance of showers with 1mm to 5mm possible and 24c while Saturday’s forecast has a high (70%) chance of showers with 3mm to 10mm possible and 24c.
Cellsabeel galloping at Randwick, picture Sportpix.com.au