Fri, Nov 25, 9:25am by Staff Writer
It’s Winterbottom Stakes Day on Saturday, the second of three consecutive Group 1 days at Perth. The locals took the honours last week when Scales of Justice ran away with the Railway Stakes but the East Coast horses hold a strong hand in this week’s feature.
A field of 12 will line up in the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) with Terravista ($3.60) and Malaguerra ($3.30) fighting out favouritism. Terravista has won ten and been placed a further six times from his 23 race starts with trainer Joe Pride once labelling him ‘WBS’ (World’s Best Sprinter). He’s won the one Group 1 from 11 G1 starts – with four placings – and he’s won five times over the trip. Last start he ran second to Redzel down the Flemington straight over 1000m, with his last win being back in October 2015.
Malaguerra is a dual Group 1 winner and comes off a last-start victory in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) during the Flemington Carnival. He’s also won five times over 1200m with a good winning strike rate of 11 from 21 in total.
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Takedown ($9.50) has been racing in good form this prep with two wins and a placing from four runs. If the gelding can manage a victory, all eyes will turn to trainer Gary Moore and his now famous post-win celebrations.
Keen Array ($31) has won six from 16 with four of those wins being at 1200m. He was a 5L seventh to Malaguerra last start but has featured in the stewards’ report at his last two runs due to his bad ‘racing manners’. Stablemate Sheidel ($13) also has an impressive record of 14 wins from 25 starts and is a dual Group 3 winner. She was fifth in the Darley Classic last start and ran second in the Group 1 Robert Sangster (1200m) earlier this year.
Of the locals, Vega Magic ($12) and State Solicitor ($10) are last-start winners while Rock Magic ($8) was a 0.1L second to Vega Magic last run. Rock Magic boasts an impressive record of 12 wins and ten minors from 34 starts and has two wins and four placings from his six runs this time in.
Vega Magic is a last-start Group 3 winner over 1100m with eight wins from 12 career starts. He’s won seven times over 1200m and four from five at Ascot. State Solicitor has six wins from seven career starts with his first start his only blemish. He’s won five times at the distance and is two from two at the track. This is a huge jump in grade though being his first attempt at any black type.
First Among Equals ($23) has five wins over the distance and has been 4L and 2.5L behind Vega Magic and Rock Magic at his last two runs. Battle Hero ($61) has a string of seconds behind Wink and a Nod plus a victory over Magnifisio and Luckgray earlier in the year and was a 1L third to Rock Magic last start. He’s as bolters odds but could be one for the multiples while Military Reign ($71) and Regal Commander ($126) have fair records but seem outclassed in a Group 1 Weight-For-Age.
Suggested Bet: Back Malaguerra to win
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