A less-than capacity field of 17 runners have been nominated for this weekend’s Group 3 Kingston Town Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse, highlighted by several leading staying prospects of the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival.
Confirming the 2014 Melbourne Cup as the hopeful target this time in, trainer Gai Waterhouse has nominated Greatwood for the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes.
Beginning his racing tenure under the guidance of renowned European trainer Luca Cumani before transferring to the care of Waterhouse at the conclusion of 2013, Greatwood has gained a name as a particularly consistent racehorse having finished outside the places just twice in ten starts.
Debuting with a strong third amongst classy competition in the Canterbury Hurlstone RSL Handicap (1400m) on August 16th, the Manduro gelding charged home to win the Listed Premier’s Cup (1800m) on August 30th and is a leading chance of continuing his strong run of form in the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes.
Also included in nominations for the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes is classy Team Hawkes-trained stayer La Amistad.
Considered a leading chance for success in the featured Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) in October, La Amistad steadily built to the task over five races in autumn; finishing a forgettable tenth in the Smart Track Australia Handicap (1400m) first-up and eighth in another minor over 1700m before securing three consecutive race wins, including the Listed WJ McKell Cup (2400m) most notably on May 24th.
Returning to racing for third in the Listed Rowley Mile (1600m) at Hawkesbury on August 21st, the Redoute’s Choice mare will be a particularly good chance of Kingston Town Stakes success if allocated a good barrier.
Trainer Chris Waller is set to dominate the final field for the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes, including a total of six of his stable’s runner in nominations, arguably highlighted by the likes of Opinion and Who Shot Thebarman.
Securing five race wins and four minor places over 22 competitive starts so far, Opinion has returned to racing in career-best form this year; winning the Listed Parramatta Cup (1900m) on March 1st and finishing second in all of the Listed Randwick City Stakes (2000m), Group 3 NE Manion Cup (2400m) and Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) most notably through autumn.
Quickly building to the task over two starts this time in, Opinion arguably offers Waller his best chance of success in the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes.
A standout performer in his native New Zealand over the 2013/14 summer and autumn, Who Shot Thebarman finished second in the Group 3 Manawatu Cup (2300m) on December 21st before securing back-to-back victories in the Group 2 Avondale Gold Cup (2400m) and Group 1 Auckland Cup (3200m).
While unable to figure in contention in three Australian starts so far, Waller is confident the step-up to 2000m for the Kingston Town Stakes will play directly into the strengths of Who Shot Thebarman this weekend.
A final field and barrier draw for the 2014 Kingston Town Stakes is due to be released on Wednesday morning.
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2014 Kingston Town Stakes Nominations
|1||CELTIC PRINCE (NZ)||Bjorn Baker||94|
|2||DEANE MARTIN (NZ)||Bruce Wallace||89|
|4||GREATWOOD (GB)||Gai Waterhouse||97|
|5||HE’S YOUR MAN (FR)||Chris Waller||98|
|8||IGGI POP (NZ)||John Sargent||93|
|9||KINGDOMS (NZ)||Brian Smith||96|
|10||LA AMISTAD||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||100|
|11||LAIDBACK LARRY (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||89|
|12||LUCKY CHAPPY (IRE)||Chris Waller||96|
|13||OPINION (IRE)||Chris Waller||102|
|15||TRADE COMMISSIONER (IRE)||Chris Waller||94|
|16||WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ)||Chris Waller||103|
|17||WORLD WIDE||Bede Murray||82|