The first of three Group 1 feature races at Royal Randwick on Saturday will see a talented field of three-year-old fillies step out in the Flight Stakes.
Rob Heathcote’s Startantes was an eye-catching sixth in last weekend’s Golden Rose, and she has opened a warm favourite in Flight Stakes betting.
Does the Queensland raider have what it takes to win a Sydney Group 1, or will we be crowning a different Flight Stakes winner?
- 3 Units E/W #3 Swift Witness
- Boxed Trifecta of the selection below
Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott’s stable is flying, and I am confident that they can saddle their second Group 1 winner in as many weeks when Swift Witness contests the Flight Stakes.
She stamped herself as a filly to follow, particularly during the summer of her two-year-old season, and she resumed this time with an impressive effort to score in the Group 2 Silver Shadow Stakes.
She was a little flat in the Furious, but she kept on well to fill the minors in the Tea Rose Stakes last time out, and I think that getting out to a mile looks ideal at this point of her prep.
She was very, very good in the Golden Rose, and a repeat of that effort would see Startantes into the finish of the Flight Stakes.
While it is sometimes difficult to line up how well a Queensland-based filly is going in comparison to her southern counterparts, Startantes was clearly showing a lot north of the border earlier this prep.
She won three-consecutive races with something in hand before lobbing into Sydney last weekend.
She has drawn an absolute peach in barrier 6 and with even luck under Sam Clipperton, I really cannot find a reason why she won’t be in the finish again.
Her last-start effort and win in the Tea Rose Stakes suggested that she was the runner to beat, and Four Moves Ahead really only needs to hold her form to be in the finish of the Flight Stakes.
She was excellent during her two-year-old season, winning at Group 2 level and ending her prep with consecutive fourth placings in the Golden Slipper and the Inglis Sires’
Four Moves Ahead will need some luck in running after drawing barrier 14, but Nash is the right jockey for her, and she’s certainly up to the class.
She is yet to show her best form in two starts back this time, but plenty of hype has surrounded She’s All Class’s campaign, and if someone is going to have her peaking on the right day, it’s Chris Waller.
The I Am Invincible filly won the Wyong Magic Millions at just her second career start in December and was put away after filling the minors behind Shaquero on the Gold Coast.
She had just once start in a hit-and-run autumn prep, a close-up second behind Four Moves Ahead in the Sweet Embrace Stakes, and there’s no doubt that she has stripped fitter for her two runs in September.
James McDonald’s decision to stay about for this race certainly doesn’t dent her prospects of winning.