Racing expert Daniel O’Sullivan has Dissident on top of his 2015 Futurity Stakes tips, but he is not particularly keen to back the talented galloper at his current odds of $1.70.
Dissident suffered a surprised defeat first-up in the Group 2 Australia Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on January 24, but he returned to his best form with a comfortable victory in the Group 1 Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 14.
O’Sullivan told RSN that Dissident can still improve on his Orr Stakes effort and he said that it is tough to see what horse can beat the Sebring entire if he performs anywhere near his best in the Futurity Stakes.
“I ironically came up with the exact same price at $1.60,” O’Sullivan said.
“He really bounced back to something still a little bit short of what he has been doing, but he is on the way there and there is a little bit of scope for him to improve further.
“The simple thing here is that if he runs up to last start or even takes a little step forward then there is nothing in this race that can match him.
“He is a genuine elite level Group 1 weight-for-age horse by all of our standards and all of these horses are at least one level below that or more.
“It is a matter of whether you are comfortable taking that price and I don’t think that there is any huge edge in it.
“I don’t see any scenario where he is going to get any longer on the day unless there is something amiss and in that case you don’t want to be on.
“You certainly couldn’t back anything against Dissident.”
Racing analyst Ralph Horowitz agrees that Dissident is without a doubt the horse to beat in the Futurity Stakes, but he believes that there are enough question marks over the four-year-old not to back him at his current Futurity Stakes odds.
Horowitz told RSN that he is unsure how Dissident will respond if there is plenty of early speed in the Futurity Stakes and he feels that Smokin Joey’s win in the Group 2 Carlyon Cup (1600m) may have been more impressive than Dissident’s Orr Stakes win.
“He hasn’t yet been tested in a really fast run 1400 metre race,” O’Sullivan said.
“The query there is will Gai Waterhouse and Vlad Duric combine to say let’s go really fast on Driefontein and see what Dissident can do.
“He resuming from a bleed at the end of his spring campaign and he was beaten at Moonee Valley when Smokin Joey’s finish was a lot better than him.
“I can’t go with Smokin’ Joey because he will be conceding him a start and is back to 1400, but Dissident’s win in the Orr was off a very moderate tempo and Smokin Joey’s win on the same day was off a very strong mile.
“To me it is a race where you sit back and watch and not participate.”
Dissident ($1.70) remains a clear favourite in the Futurity Stakes betting market with Ladbrokes from Driefontein ($6.50), Entirely Platinum ($7) and Bull Point ($11).