A talented and less-than-capacity field of fifteen has been confirmed for Saturday’s 2016 Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse; highlighted by the inclusion of several previous winners at the highest level of racing.
Chris Waller has dominated the 2016 Ajax Stakes field having confirmed four of his stable stars for a start, including Good Project and Sadler’s Lake.
Failing to finish outside the first three through six impressive Spring Carnival starts, Good Project finished second to Malaguerra in the Lavazza Short Black (1400m) at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day before posting a maiden win at the highest level in the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) in Perth.
Trialling well in the lead-up to his competitive return this time, the Not A Single Doubt entire resumed this time for an impressive third in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) and will relish a step-up to 1500m in the Ajax Stakes.
Sadler’s Lake will make his racing return in the 2016 Ajax Stakes and should find a good position in transit from barrier 7.
Winning the Group 3 Bill Ritchie Handicap (1400m) early in his spring campaign, Sadler’s Lake continued to impress through his next few starts but returned to the paddock after fading for seventh in the Listed Cup Day Plate (1800m).
Puccini has returned to good form since transferring to the care of Darren Weir and could very well receive the run on the race in the Ajax Stakes from barrier 3, with Brett Prebble aboard.
Running second in the Group 3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) in the late stages of the Spring Carnival, Puccini needed the run when tenth in a Flemington minor over 1400m first-up but savaged the line for third in the Group 3 Shaftsbury Avenue Stakes (1400m) on March 6th.
Big Money was luckless in his last start, but has found winning black type form this time and has been confirmed in the Ajax Stakes field.
Capping a strong winter campaign a credible seventh in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m), Big Money resumed this time for third in the Listed Summer Sprint (1000m) before again placing third in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) on January 30th.
Beating a talented field to the line in the Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) on February 13th, the Choisir gelding is reportedly peaking in form for the 2016 Ajax Stakes.
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2016 Ajax Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||x9607x3310||BIG MONEY||Rodney Northam||Robert Thompson||11||59kg||107|
|2||533x652x44||GENERALIFE||John O’Shea||James McDonald||5||58.5kg||106|
|3||11x572217x||EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (GB)||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||13||58kg||105|
|4||7x123121x3||GOOD PROJECT||Chris Waller||Brenton Avdulla||15||57.5kg||104|
|5||19x87x23x6||IT’S SOMEWHAT (USA)||John O’Shea||Sam Clipperton||14||57.5kg||104|
|6||27x57523x2||ROCK STURDY||Joseph Pride||Jason Collett||2||57.5kg||104|
|7||x10042x5x8||KOOL KOMPANY (IRE)||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||6||57kg||103|
|8||2x249000x9||WEARY (FR)||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||1||57kg||103|
|9||x000820x03||PUCCINI (NZ)||Darren Weir||Brett Prebble||3||55.5kg||100|
|10||154x11947x||SADLER’S LAKE||Chris Waller||Tim Clark||7||55.5kg||100|
|11||1180×05052||RED EXCITEMENT||Gerald Ryan||–||9||55kg||99|
|12||0x3320099x||RUDY||Helen Page||Thomas Huet||4||55kg||99|
|13||250513310x||CASINO DANCER||Mike Van Gestel||Ms Winona Costin (a)||10||53.5kg||100|
|14||35649×0243||DANCES ON STARS (NZ)||Gerald Ryan||Christian Reith||8||53.5kg||96|
|15||7x60x7x139||ALPHA BEAT||Anthony Cummings||Daniel Moor||12||53kg||86|