Despite some gloomy predictions the 2011 Danehill Stakes final field has attracted a reasonable sized field for this Saturday at Flemington Racecourse.
It was originally feared the entry of super star colt Sepoy would scare away a heap of the rivals leaving barely anyone left to race against on the day.
Thankfully that hasn’t occurred, in fact there’s a couple of horses which could even cause the champion juvenile a couple of headaches.
One such runner is the Jason McLachlan trained Absalon.
The Brisbane based runner has only has the two starts so far in his career but he’s won them both in good style.
Owned by Gerry Harvey there was always a bit of hype around him but it wasn’t expected he’d be racing in group races this early in his career.
To put his wins in perspective they are a long way off even being comparable to that of Sepoy, but as the old saying goes all they can do is win.
His first was on debut on the synthetic track at Caloundra, the second in the Dalrello Stakes at Doomben, a race in which he proved too good for the well performed Mahisara.
Masthead is another one which could show a bit of cheek, he was a player during the autumn and his fourth in the Golden Slipper showed he’s a genuine one to watch.
He’s a horse that also finished fourth in the VRC Sire’s Produce Stakes and third in the Blue Diamond.
Sure he’ll need to improve, but probably not as much as many of the others.
The other genuine contenders come in the form of the two fillies Mosheen and Hallowell Belle.
Mosheen was second in the Golden Slipper as a massive outsider and at just her third start there’s a mountain of improvement to come.
This is her first up run for the season though so just how much fitness she has remains to be seen.
That won’t be an issue for Hallowell Belle though, she’s had two runs this campaign and after wining on debut ran a strong second last start.
While all of these horses still are just chances when compared to Sepoy, at least they have a chance and at least Sepoy won’t have things all his own way this weekend.
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2011 Danehill Stakes Field, Barriers & Weight
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||1X11121X1||SEPOY||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||3||58kg||111|
|2||24X1344X||MASTHEAD||Anthony Freedman||Craig Williams||5||56.5kg||78|
|3||11X||ABSALON||Jason McLachlan||Brad Rawiller||2||55.5kg||70|
|4||142483X3||GRAND BRITANNIA||Robbie Laing||Glen Boss||1||55kg||76|
|5||24||UNIQUE QUALITY||Frankie Stockdale||Peter Mertens||7||55kg||65|
|6||90X2835||MISTER MILTON||Norman Waymouth||Damien Oliver||4||55kg||62|
|7||12X3||MOSHEEN||Robert Smerdon||Danny Nikolic||6||53kg||97|
|8||2X32X12||HALLOWELL BELLE||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||8||53kg||82|