Two fillies from the big gun stables of Chris Waller and Darren Weir, Savacool and Sopressa, share favouritism in the betting for the 2018 Group 1 $500,000 Schweppes Oaks (Australasian Oaks) (2000m) at Morphettville on Saturday.
Bookies at Ladbrokes.com.au have Savacool and Sopressa each marked at $5.50 and both fillies are coming off last start wins.
The Chris Waller trained Savacool took her record to three wins from six starts with her victory in a 1600m three year old Handicap at Caulfield on April 14 while Darren Weir’s filly Sopressa is coming off a last start win in the Group 3 $120,000 Schweppervescence Stakes (1800m) at Morphettville on April 21.
Savacool has continued to impress the Waller stable and Melbourne foreperson Jo Taylor said that the Savabeel filly was impressive in winning a Flemington jump out last Friday with Damien Oliver in the saddle.
“She was fitted with blinkers today for the jump out and he (Oliver) said she responded really well once he asked her to quicken,” Taylor told racing.com.
“He’s certainly pleased with where she’s at just a week out from the Oaks.”
“We just wanted her to settle nicely in a comfortable position and then we asked Ollie to get her to quicken up nicely and remind her to keep her mind on the job.”
“She then just went to the line quite comfortably without doing too much. She’s a nice fit horse and she didn’t need a hard hit out today.”
As well as Sopressa, Weir will also have two other strong Australasian Oaks chances with Think Bleue ($6) and Pleasuring ($13).
Pleasuring (barrier 11) finished fourth to Sopressa (barrier 1) in the Schweppervescence Stakes but Weir said the result could have been different if the barriers had been reversed.
“I think if you swap the barriers, you swap the result, so that evens them up,” Weir said.
“And Think Bleue is similar to them, so I think it will all come down to barriers.
“There’ll probably be horses as good as them in the race so it will come down to which one gets the good run.”
Think Bleue is the winner of four of her last five starts and will be chasing a hat trick of wins in the Australasian Oaks following her wins in the Group 3 $150,000 Alexandra Stakes (1600m) at The Valley on March 23 and in a 1720m three year old Handicap at Flemington on Anzac Day.
The final field for the 2018 Australasian Oaks will be released on Tuesday May 1.
Early betting for the 2018 Australasian Oaks at Ladbrokes.com.au: $5.50 Savacool, Sopressa, $6 Think Bleue, $6.50 Aloisia, $11 Bring Me Roses, Sheezdashing, Temple Of Bel, $13 Miss Admiration, Pleasuring, $17 Earth Angel, Semari, $18 Truly Discreet, $21 Belle Du Nord, Jungle Fish, Palazzo Vecchio, Pretty To Sea, Pure Scot, Snogging, $26 or better the rest.