Pierata has the chance to claim a maiden Group 1 win in the All Aged Stakes. Photo by: Steve Hart

2019 All Aged Stakes Day Tips & Preview

All Aged Stakes Day is often the afterthought of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival tacked on the end of The Championships, but both the All Aged Stakes and the Champagne Stakes have drawn strong fields this Saturday.

The All Aged Stakes is a particular favourite of mine because it is always so gloriously random. 

You get a mix of sprinters, horses dropping back from the mile of the Doncaster Mile and in 2019 there is even an international runner.

It wasn’t the best day for my tips last weekend, I’ve had a genuine stinker, but I’m confident that I can bounce back on All Aged Stakes Day. 

Highway Handicap (1200m)
Amorita

I’m not a huge fan of the Highway Handicap, I don’t actually know anybody that is, but I’m happy to bet in any race that I’m confident I’ve found the winner in and that is definitely the case in this contest. No trainer, except for maybe Matthew Dale, has a better record than Matthew Dunn in the Highway Handicap and he’ll have another winner in the form of Amorita. Amorita returned to the races with a classy win at Grafton and she has now recorded three wins from her six race starts. She will win again this Saturday. 

Ranvet Power Formula Sprint (1200m)
Tribal Wisdom

It is only fitting that a very average race, has a very average name. I’m landed with Tribal Wisdom on top, but to be perfectly honest I’ve got no real confidence. Tribal Wisdom was outclassed in The Galaxy first-up, but this is a obviously genuine drop in quality. He is a horse that is capable of producing a high-rating performance on his day and he has trialed nicely ahead of this contest. If he can return to his best form, he will prove tough to beat, but I won’t be going broke backing him. 

Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m)
The Chosen One

Murray Baker may be my favourite trainer in the world and when he brings a horse to Australia I always want to back it. He hasn’t had his best Carnival, but I think that The Chosen One can deliver him a win in the Frank Packer Plate. The Chosen One drops back to 2000 metres after he savaged the line to finish fourth in the Australian Derby last start. He won the Manawatu Classic over this trip in New Zealand and this really isn’t the strongest race. This is his chance to claim a maiden Australian race win.

Group 3 J H B Carr Stakes
Into The Abyss

I don’t feel good about this tip because Into The Abyss does have some highly catty qualities and she had let me down in the past. In saying that, the J H B Carr Stakes is traditionally a weak race and I am willing to give her one more chance. She ran the best closing sectionals when she finished second behind Multaja in the PJ Bell Stakes and there is no horse of that quality in this field. If she doesn’t win this race, she will go straight in my never again file. 

Group 3 JRA Plate (2000m)
Taikomochi

Every punter has their favourite trainers and one of mine is Gai Waterhouse. Is she a nutter? Yes. Does she ridiculously spruik every horse? Yes. Is she a bloody good trainer? Yes. Taikomochi is the type of progressive stayer that thrives under the care of Waterhouse  and he has improved each time that he has been seen at the races. He showed plenty of toughness to win the Neville Sellwood Stakes at Rosehill Gardens last start and I really don’t think that this race is much tougher. She will go straight to the front and will prove tough to run down!

Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m)
Castelvecchio

The Champagne Stakes has been a stinker in recent years, so it is good to see it bounce back in quality somewhat in 2019. This might make me look like an idiot, but I’m confident that this is a two horse race and I would be shocked if Castelvecchio or Loving Gaby did not get the job done. Loving Gaby may have finished in front of Castelvecchio in the Sires’ Produce Stakes, but it was Castelvecchio that was actually the better run in that contest. He has always given the impression that he will relish the step-up to 1600 metres and he may never have a better chance to claim a Group 1 win. 

Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m)
Pierata

The All Aged Stakes has drawn a fascinating field and it really does shape up as an intriguing betting race. I’m a bit dirty on James Cummings for scratching Home Of The Brave, as I really did think that he was an excellent chance. Godolphin still have a strong hand with Osborne Bulls and D’Bai and I’ve made my love for both Cummings and Charlie Appleby known in the past, but I’m taking them on with Pierata. This is a risk for me because I may be a jinx for Pierata. When I back him, he flops and when I don’t back him he wins. So I apologize in advance to both Gregory Hickman and connections, but I simply can’t look past him at the current price. Pierata was not disgraced when he finished fifth in the TJ Smith Stakes a fortnight ago and his final 200 metres was actually superior to that of Osborne Bulls. The step-up to 1400 metres suits him at this stage of his campaign and he does have tactical versatility. He has an excellent chance to claim a maiden Group 1 win and I hope that he can do so carrying my money. 

Group 3 Hall Mark Stakes (1200m)
Home Of The Brave

While I was upset with James Cummings, for scratching Home Of The Brave from the All Aged Stakes, it does make him close to a moral in the Hall Mark Stakes and he does look like the good thing of the day. He beat a strong field to win the Theo Marks Stakes, his only race start in Sydney, and he was not beaten far in the Ladbrokes Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes in the Spring. His two barrier trials ahead of his return to the races have been excellent and the majority of his best form, both in Europe and Australia, has been fresh. On his best form, he does have a genuine edge over the rest of this field and I expect him to get the job done. 

Jcdecaux Handicap (1400m)
Star Of The Seas

This is a very tough way to finish the day and I am praying that Star Of The Seas does get a run in this contest. He needs a couple of scratchings to earn a start, but if he does get into this race he will prove tough to beat. Star Of The Seas has now recorded two wins on the trot and he has not missed the placings in any of his eight race starts. He is a serious race horse and there is no reason that he can’t continue on his winning ways.