Only seven nominations have been taken for Saturday’s 2016 Group 1 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes (2000m); highlighted by the pending appearance of champion mare Winx for the third time this season.
Winx has been the standout of Australian racing for more than a year and has posted a commendable career total of fifteen wins and three minors through only twenty-one competitive appearances.
Resuming last spring for success in the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes (1300m), Winx comfortably won the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) before ending her campaign with a career-best performance for a dominant win in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m).
Returning to racing this year for a typically-strong win in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m), the Street Cry mare subsequently won each of the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m), Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) and Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m).
Having comfortably won the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) first-up this time, Winx was again barely troubled when she won the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) last time out on September 17th.
Black Heart Bart is arguably the only runner that has displayed the kind of form that could topple Winx this season, and the Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes is likely-to-be the first meeting between the pair after Darren Weir included the star runner in nominations.
A former Perth galloper, Black Heart Bart has found career-best form since he was transferred to the care of Weir prior to this year’s Autumn Carnival.
Given little chance of success in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) first-up on March 12th, the Blackfriars gelding mustered an impressive turn of foot to finish a close second.
Returning to winning form in the Group 3 Victoria Handicap (1400m), Black Heart Bart again finished second in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) before finally breaking through for a maiden win at the highest level in the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m).
Having been sent to the paddock after finishing second in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m), Black Heart Bart resumed this time for success in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) on August 27th.
Placing second to stable mate Palentino in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) on September 10th, Black Heart Bart demolished a strong field in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) a fortnight ago.
Group 1 winners Lucia Valentina and The United States are both chasing Cox Plate glory this season and have been included in 2016 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes nominations.
Lucia Valentina stormed home to win the major Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) on April 9th and has so far finished fourth in the Warwick Stakes and third in the Underwood Stakes this time in.
The United States won the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and finished second in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes in autumn, and is sure to have taken plenty of benefit from his first-up run for sixth in the Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) first-up on September 3rd.
The 2016 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
Open an account and bet with Ladbrokes.com.au to take advantage of the best 2016 Caulfield Stakes odds!
2016 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes Nominations
|#||Last 10||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp Rating|
|1||x21212x121||BLACK HEART BART||G||6||Darren Weir||116|
|3||0069x031x2||GALLANTE (IRE)||G||6||Robert Hickmott||108|
|4||5x2018x732||HE OR SHE||G||6||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||107|
|5||8915x41x43||LUCIA VALENTINA (NZ)||M||6||Kris Lees||114|
|6||610x5212x6||THE UNITED STATES (IRE)||H||7||Robert Hickmott||111|