Eleven runners remain in contention for Saturday’s 2016 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield following the scratching of The Cleaner; offering punters exceptional value from a betting standpoint and several key opportunities to place a winning wager.
Three-year-old Mahuta remains a clear $3.50 favourite in 2016 Bletchingly Stakes betting markets with leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au, ahead of Fast ‘N’ Rocking ($3.50) and classy mare Runway Star ($7).
Will Mahuta justify his resounding favouritism amongst punters and win the 2016 Bletchingly Stakes, or will one of his talented rivals post an upset?
Lord Of The Sky ($8)
Lord Of The Sky is something of an inconsistent runner but is a proven performer at the class, distance and course, and is sure to have taken plenty of benefit from a first-up run for fourth in the Group 3 Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m) a fortnight ago. Unlucky not to have posted a win at the highest level, Lord Of The Sky was beaten in a photo by Chautauqua in the 2015 edition of the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) before again finishing second in the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m). The Danerich entire is sure to be boosted by the return of Damien Oliver to the saddle and will be given every opportunity from the outset from the ideal barrier 5.
Mahuta undoubtedly has the class to win the Bletchingly Stakes first-up, but trainer Darren Weir is confident he will take benefit from the run, with a view towards early Spring Carnival targets. Posting consecutive wins in the Listed Gothic Stakes (1400m), Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) and Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) through a breakout 2015 spring campaign, Mahuta returned in January for another impressive win in the Gold Coast Magic Millions 3.y.o Guineas (1400m). Continuing his slick run through the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m), Mahuta had clearly had enough by the time he ran fourteenth in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) most recently on March 5th.
Smokin’ Joey ($17)
2015 Bletchingly Stakes winning Smokin’ Joey has reportedly returned to excellent condition leading his title defence this weekend, and represents terrific value for money at current $17 odds for success or $4.40 to finish in the first three. A Group 1 winner having taken out the 2014 edition of The Goodwood (1200m), the Encosta De Lago gelding failed to make anything of an autumn preparation upon resuming this year but will jump from barrier 4 on Saturday and will be partnered by notable hoop Michael Walker.
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