Saturday, 19 May 2012
: The trifecta from the recent Hollindale Stakes clash again in today's Group 1 Kirks Doomben Cup but that trio may be no match for the very much in form Manighar.
Photo by Racing and Sports
The Group 2 Hollindale Stakes was the first weight for age feature on the Queensland winter carnival menu taken out by star Kiwi mare Shez Sinsational
in a tight finish over another mare Lights Of Heaven
with the import Mawingo
running on into third.
And while there's no doubt that trio should be fighting out the finish of today's 2000m feature at Doomben, the fresh Manighar looks the one they all have to beat.
The former UK stayer, now with leading trainer Peter Moody, has been in sparkling form over the autumn including a win in the Group 1 Australian Cup over this journey at Flemington.
At the time the rating returned was a career best Timeform
figure but he has since gone to that level again and beyond in all three runs since.
He matched the figure when making his Sydney autumn carnival debut in the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes, charging home to score a narrow win over Rangirangdoo, then edged slightly ahead to 125 in the Group 1 BMW Stakes.
Bringing up his third straight weight for age Group 1 win over 2000m, Manighar
by raced on the speed in the BMW and simply proved too tough for 2010 Melbourne Cup winner Americain.
He then tackled the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes and didn't have a lot of luck.
Settling fifth on the inside, he ran into traffic and was shuffled back before gaining some clear running and hitting the line well, finishing runner up behind the star mare More Joyous.
Despite the defeat, he returned a Timeform figure of 126 which augers well for today's seemingly easier race.
Trainer Peter Moody has kept the grey fresh for today's run and on his top form through the autumn need only return to the figures from his last five runs to be going close in this race.
Stable rider Luke Nolen takes the ride on Manighar again today and he has drawn ideally in barrier one.
With even luck in the straight he'll be hard to hold out again.
Moody has a strong hand in the race with the talented mare Lights Of Heaven engaged again.
Just missing out in the Hollindale Stakes, the mare will be fitter for the two runs back from a spell and can turn the tables on Shez Sinsational.
Trying to record her first Group 1 success since winning the Schweppes Oaks in Adelaide as a three-year-old, Lights Of Heaven has drawn ideally in barrier six and should be prominent throughout.
Her Hollindale Stakes figure of 119 was a career best but with just two runs under her belt this time in could well improve that a few points today.
The one time 2011 Caulfield Cup favourite, although not quite living up to expectations in the spring, will have benefitted from the good summer spell and looks set for a big winter campaign.
If her Hollindale run is anything to go by, she will be a force in all the weight for age features over the comings two months.
The Kiwi mare Shez Sinsational is on top of her game and looks a big hope again.
The mare has had a long but very successful campaign, winning the Group 1 Zabeel Classic at Ellerslie, the Group 1 International Stakes at Te Rapa and the Group 1 Auckland Cup at Ellerslie among them.
The last time the mare was in Brisbane she finished runner up in the Group 1 Queensland Derby behind Shootoff.
After a let up she returned to Australia to win the Hollindale, racing on the speed throughout, and recording a career best Timeform figure of 119.
She will be fitter for that run and despite a wide gate this afternoon will take running down.
Imported galloper Mawingo ran on nicely in the Hollindale Stakes at just his second run “down under” and can only be fitter.
The former German Group 3 winner made his Australian debut at Flemington over a mile and despite the short journey powered home for an impressive two length win.
He stepped up sharply in class last time and after racing fifth throughout warmed up late to finish a 3.5 length third behind the two mares.
He will be fitter again, looks likely to appreciate the longer journey and has drawn for a good run for Nash Rawiller.
The four-year-old returned a 117 Timeform figure in the Hollindale and can improve on that here.
Sydney galloper Foreteller is fitter for three runs from a break and on his Hollindale Stakes run, when an eye catching fourth, he looks set to run well at each way odds again.
The former French stayer, a Group 3 winner in Melbourne in the spring, went back from the outside gate in the Hollindale and after turning near last made a long sweeping run into fourth, just behind Mawingo.
He has drawn better today and will appreciate the extra furlong.
Scenic Shot, who won this race last year and back in 2009, has never returned a figure quite up to Manighar's recent run of form, his best being last year's success in this race returning 122 and looks tested this afternoon.