Rosehill Preview: Vinery steals Tancred spotlight

8 min read

Fillies take centre stage

Rosehill, G1 Vinery Stud S. $500,000. 2000m

The G1 Vinery Stud S. has stolen the spotlight from the G1 Tancred S. despite the latter race carrying three times the prizemoney.

A star crop of 3-year-old fillies have made this year's edition one of the most interesting races of the autumn. Verry Elleegant (NZ) (Zed {NZ}) is undoubtedly an enormous talent but can be as erratic as the spelling of her name. Now with Chris Waller, she put it all together last start in the G2 Phar Lap S. winning by 3.5l over 1500m on the wet track.

A similar performance here should see her claim her first Group 1 win, but you only have to look at her litany of gear changes to know she is a less than straight forward horse to train.

Behind her in the Phar Lap were her rivals here in Seabrook (NZ) (Hinchinbrook), Aristia (Lonhro), Qafila (Not A Single Doubt) and Zalatte (Medaglia D'Oro {USA}).

Seabrook, a Group 1 winner over 1600m in her 2-year-old year, steps out to the 2000m for the first time and has the blinkers removed. Trainer Mick Price won this race last year and has set her for this assignment.

G1 VRC Oaks winner Aristia has been excellent both runs back this campaign and will relish the step up in distance, while Qafila was runner-up behind that filly when they contested the G2 Wakeful S. over the same distance as this during the Melbourne spring. An improved performance from Zalatte would not surprise either.

The other formline is through the G3 Kembla Grange Classic, which Pohutukawa (Medaglia D'Oro {USA}) won impressively. The Godolphin filly has not been out to the 2000m before but on her last start performance it doesn't look likely to be an issue.

Second to her that day was Kris Lees' Frankely Awesome (Frankel {GB}), who rediscovered her form after charging home from the rear of the field, while the lightly-raced Scarlet Dream (Sebring) was third and comes into this race with plenty of scope for improvement.

Scarlet Dream is one of three for Mark Newnham, who also has the Group 1 Surround S., winner Nakeeta Jane (So You Think {NZ}) engaged. Her last-start effort beaten 1.2l in the G1 Randwick Guineas by The Autumn Sun looks a good form reference. VRC Oaks runner-up Greysful Glamour (Stratum) completes Newnham's trio.

It is simply one of the best fillies races you could imagine.

Two G1s in a week for Avilius?

Rosehill, G1 Kia Tancred S, $1.5 million, 2400m

Avilius (GB) (Pivotal {GB}) looks very well-placed to make it a second Group 1 victory in a week. He was a dominant winner of the Ranvet S. and while he rises 400m and is on the quick back-up, he is well off under the weight-for-age conditions of the race.

The in-form Red Cardinal (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}) looks his major threat having reeled off back-to-back wins in the Listed Parramatta Cup and G3 Sky High S. He has always carried a big reputation and his arrival at the stables of Kris Lees has coincided with him finally showing his best form in Australia.

Stablemate Big Duke (Ire) (Raven's Pass {USA}) was runner-up to Red Cardinal in the Parramatta Cup and has since run second in last week's G3 Manion Cup. While the G1 Sydney Cup looks his main autumn aim, he is on the upward trend.

The Kiwi mare Rondinella (NZ) (Ocean Park {NZ}) comes off a last start placing in the weight-for-age G1 New Zealand S. and that form stood up reasonably well with Danzdanzdance (Mastercraftsman {Ire}) running third in the Ranvet last week. She looks fit enough in what is a fairly shallow renewal of this race to contend for the minor placings.

County set for Tulloch test

Rosehill, G2 TAB Tulloch S. $200,000, 2000m

Dual Group 1 winning Madison County (NZ) (Pins) looks the benchmark in the G2 Tulloch S, having made an impression in his first Australian start when fourth in the G1 Randwick Guineas.

Madison County winning the G1 County Levin Classic

This race looks a notch below that class with his main challenge expected from the another Kiwi in In a Twinkling (Fastnet Rock). That horse comes back from a second in the recent G1 NZ Derby and while he was heroic in defeat that day, the drop back in distance here is a slight concern. It’s a similar story for the horse that ran third in that race, Platinum Invador (NZ) (Redwood {GB})

Cossetot (Epaulette) has been ultra-consistent, emerging through his Listed Tasmanian Derby win to be placed in successive Group 2 races in Melbourne. There is a slight query over his class, but he is a tough and fit campaigner.

Star mare drops in class

Rosehill, G2 Jim Beam Emancipation S. $200,000, 1500m

Alizee (Sepoy) drops back in class and to her own sex here in what looks the perfect race for her. Last seen when third in the All-Star Mile at Flemington, prior to that Alizee won the G1 Futurity S. which looks top form for this.

Dyslexic (Foxwedge) is the progressive mare in the race having finished a close-up third against the boys in the G2 Ajax S. last time and is expected to take significant improvement here but will need to, to beat Alizee, even with a 5kg weight advantage.

Princess Posh (Canford Cliffs {Ire}) is in excellent form and is coming off a last start third in the G1 Coolmore Classic last time out, while Daysee Doom (Domesday) dodged that race because of the wet track and does boast a good record second-up.

Juveniles step out in distance

Rosehill, G3 The Schweppervescence, $160,000, 1400m

With the G1 Inglis Sires' and G1 Champagne S. upcoming, this race looks a crucial lead-up. Bellevue Hill (Pierro) led until the shadows of the post in the G2 Todman S. and the 1400m looks suitable.

La Tene (Helmet) has the experience over the 1400m having won the G2 VRC Sires' Produce last time out and given Godolphin's dominance of the 2-year-old races, can not be discounted. Strasbourg (I Am Invincible) has upside and should improve up to this distance, as should Rome (Pierro), who hasn’t run a bad race in his three-start career.

Moss gets conditions to suit

Rosehill, G3 Bisley Workwear Neville Sellwood S. $160,000, 2000m

Moss 'N' Dale (NZ) (Castledale {Ire}) didn't quite measure up to the class of the All-Star Mile but onto a soft track and up to 2000m, looks in a good position to add a fourth stakes win to his resume.

Goathland (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}) has been in great touch for Kim Waugh and comes off a third in the G3 Sky High into this race, while dual G1 Australian Cup winner Harlem (GB) (Champs Elysees {GB}) has done nothing wrong although carries 4kg more than his rivals here and has generally saved his best form for Melbourne and dry tracks.

Slipper champ looks for rebound

Rosehill, G3 E-Group Security Star Kingdom S. $160,000, 1200m

Last year's G1 Golden Slipper S. winner Estijaab (Snitzel) hasn’t quite lived up to her lofty reputation this campaign but has not been far away in both her runs. This certainly looks a much easier race and significantly she is up to 1200m, which should suit her much better.

Her main challenge is expected to come from Godolphin's Trekking (Street Cry {Ire}), who was fourth on resumption in the G3 Maurice McCarten S. last time out.

Ardossan (Redoute's Choice) looks an interesting prospect having discovered his best back in New Zealand with a couple of wins before a last start third in the G1 BCD Sprint at Te Rapa. He didn’t measure up when prepared by Mick Price last spring, but appears to have his confidence back with Stephen Marsh.

Mask ready for Doncaster audition

Rosehill, G3 PFD Food Services Doncaster Prelude, $160,000, 1500m

Getting a spot in the G1 Doncaster Mile this year won't be easy, with a host of aspirants putting forward their auditions in an incredibly open race here.

Mask Of Time (Ire) (Holy Roman Emperor {Ire}) has come back in great order for Ciaron Maher and David Eustace, finishing a narrow second in the G2 Ajax S. and he deserves favouritism here.

He confronts an army of six runners from Chris Waller's stable, including Seaway (NZ) (Ocean Park {NZ}), who is a horse on the up, despite his last-start failure in the Ajax S.

It also looks a good race for Kaonic (NZ) (Savabeel), fourth in the Ajax, and Tom Melbourne {Ire}) who drops back in grade from his past couple of runs.

The best of Siege Of Quebec (Fastnet Rock), which includes a Group 1 placing over the 1600m last campaign, would be good enough to win this.