Sydney Preview: Coolmore Classic day, 2023

March 10th, 2023

Sydney racing this weekend is highlighted by a Group 1 race for the distaffers and two last chances to get into the world’s richest juvenile race next weekend.

We will focus on the Group 1 at Rosehill Gardens and offer spot plays for the juvenile contests.

Race 8, 12:40 a.m. Saturday ET: Coolmore Classic (G1), 1,500 meters (about 7 1/2 furlongs), 3yo plus fillies and mares

Coolmore Classic Selections

  • #2 Annavisto
  • #4 Mustang Valley
  • #9 Ruthless Dame
  • #1 Hinged

Coolmore Classic Wagers

  • $10 win/$20 show: #2 Annavisto
  • $1 trifecta: 2, 4 with 2, 4, 9 with 1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 14

The best-performed horse in the race is #1 Hinged. She pushed leading male Anamoe to three-quarters of a length two starts back in the Apollo (G2), and then was a decent sixth in the Chipping Norton (G1) two weeks back. This is easier, but she has to concede weight to all.

The most important lead-up for this was the Guy Walter (G2) Feb. 25, won by #3 Hope In Your Heart. She won decisively from #12 Larkspur Run and though she meets the latter on 3.5kg worse terms, Larkspur Run’s horror draw of 17 may suggest the same result.

Running without much luck that day for third was #4 Mustang Valley. The New Zealand Group 1 winner has plenty of ability and meets Hope In Your Heart on 3.5kg better terms; although she would be a better chance if it rains, she will still be competitive.

Melbourne visitor #2 Annavisto may be the one they all need to beat. Second in the Queen of the Turf (G1) last year, she returned with a decisive victory in good time Feb. 18, wiring her opponents. She isn’t helped by drawing gate 15, but she has ample gate speed to overcome that.

The wild card is English visitor #7 Purplepay. From the stable of William Haggas, who has been successful in Australia, she was a Group 2 winner in France last year. On class, she has a great chance, but the likely good track may be her undoing.

Surround (G1) runner-up #9 Ruthless Dame and last-start winner #14 Espiona look the best of the others.

Race 2, 8:55 p.m Friday ET: Pago Pago Stakes (G3), 1,200 meters (about six furlongs), 2-year-old males

A final trial for next week’s A$4.9 million Golden Slipper (G1), this looks fairly open. However, I’m a supporter of #7 Introducing, from the Gai Waterhouse-Adrian Bott stable. He won his debut while looking like he still had a bit to learn and should be better for the outing. His biggest rival looks to be #2 Maharba. Of the four debutants, #11 Gustosisimo looks the best.

  • $10 win/$30 show: #7 Introducing

Race 4, 10:05 p.m. Friday ET: Magic Night Stakes (G3), 1,200 meters, 2-year-old fillies

Another fascinating Golden Slipper lead-up, this time for fillies. #6 Steel City will be well-supported after striking traffic problems in the Blue Diamond (G1) in Melbourne; her biggest problem may be the inside gate. Her trainers Ciaron Maher and David Eustace also bring #16 Tiz Invincible, who is very short in the early markets, given she’s yet to race. Keep an eye on the odds.

First-start maiden winner #7 Tu Qui Santuzza looks a promising type and may improve further from her debut. But I’m supporting #1 Blanc De Blanc; she should enjoy what looks set to be a strongly-run race and may finish over the top of the field.

$10 win/$30 show: #1 Blanc De Blanc