Last start Caulfield winner Azkadellia has drawn nicely at barrier four in Group 1 $600,000 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Azkadellia is one of the eleven mares and two fillies to make up the thirteen acceptors for the Coolmore Classic which boasts four individual Group 1 winners, Lucia Valentina, Politeness, Amicus and Tinto.
Azkadellia showed her class with a come from behind last stride win in the Group 3 $150,000 Premier Signs Mannerism Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 27 and trainer Ciaron Maher immediately confirmed a start in the Coolmore Classic.
“We just thought her whole prep’s been based around having her pretty right for that (the Coolmore),” Maher told racing,com.
“She backed up in the spring pretty well, so depending on what she does next start, she can maybe go to the Queen of the Turf after that.”
“She’s always shown that real X-factor about her.”
Damien Oliver steered Azkadellia to her Mannerism Stakes win but will ride at Flemington this weekend at the Australian Cup-Newmarket Handicap meeting, leaving Hong Kong based Brett Prebble to secure the ride.
The unbeaten Ghisoni is one of two fillies in the Coolmore Classic and trainer John O’Shea thinks she has the potential to step up from a last start all the way win against her own age in the Group 2 $175,000 Coolmore Surround Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on February 27 to Group 1 company.
Ghisoni has drawn barrier eight with lightweight jockey Corey Brown taking over from stable rider James McDonald who was unable to get down to the 50kg.
O’Shea will also saddle up the other filly in the race, Pearls, who has drawn barrier two with apprentice Winona Costin in the saddle.
McDonald has picked up the ride on two time Group 1 winner Lucia Valentina who will lead the field out in the Coolmore Classic.
Lucia Valentina has drawn barrier seven and trainer Kris Lees is expecting a gold first performance from the five year old mare.
“She’s a very good fresh horse, especially given her versatility over the longer trips,” Lees told The Daily Telegraph.
“She galloped on Monday morning and worked really well, which is off the back of a nice trial win last week.”
Group 1 Myer Classic winner Politeness is fitter for two runs back from a spell but will have to overcome the outside barrier with Tommy Berry taking over from top Melbourne jockey Dwayne Dunn.
The Gerald Ryan trained Solicit will step out as one of the main chances in the Coolmore Classic and has a great chance to claim her first Group 1 trophy coming off a last start all the way win in the Group 2 $175,000 Guy Walter Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on February 27.
Kerrin McEvoy will continue his association with the Street Cry mare who will jump from gate six.
Sydney’s premier trainer Chris Waller will saddle up two runners, Thousand Guineas winner Amicus and the improving Telepathic.
Tim Clark rides Amicus, taking over from Hugh Bowman who will be riding at Flemington, and has drawn poorly at twelve while Jason Collett will be able to give Telepathic every chance from barrier three.
Coolmore Classic finale field: 1 Lucia Valentina, (7), 2 Politeness (13), 3 Solicit (6), 4 Amicus (12), 5 Tinto (9), 6 Peeping (10), 7 Azkadellia (4), 8 Telepathic (3), 9 Zanbagh (1), 10 Slightly Sweet (11), 11 Vergara (5), 12 Ghisoni (8), 13 Pearls (2).