Godolphin’s number one weight for age performer Hartnell has drawn barrier eight in the Group 1 $750,000 PFD Food Services Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
A field of twelve has been assembled for the race named after the three times Melbourne Cup winner and in-form jockey Kerrin McEvoy will be partnering Hartnell under race conditions for the first time.
“It’s pretty exciting to get the call up for such a high-quality horse as Hartnell,” McEvoy said.
“I rode him for the first time in a jump out at Flemington last month and even though we weren’t out to do anything spectacular, he gave me a really good feel, the feel of a top horse.”
Hartnell had a break after running second to super mare Winx in the Group 1 $4m Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on April 8 and returned to the race track in winning form with an effortless first up victory in the Group 2 $200,000 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 19.
Hartnell will be facing a much stronger field in the Makybe Diva Stakes and will again be up against the Darren Weir trained Black Heart Bart who finished third in the P.B. Lawrence Stakes.
Black Heart Bart has had one more run leading into the Makybe Diva Stakes and chased home the Lindsay Park trained Vega Magic when runner up in the Group 1 $1m New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 2.
Regular rider Brad Rawiller will again be aboard Black Heart Bart who has drawn next to Hartnell in barrier seven.
Weir will also saddle up Gailo Chop (Mark Zahra, barrier 1) and Humidor (Damian Lane, 10) in the Makybe Diva Stakes.
The Tony McEvoy trained Hey Doc came up with the outside gate with Luke Currie booked to ride again after the pair combined for a first up win in the Group 3 $150,000 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) down the Flemington straight on August 12 followed by a fourth in the Memsie Stakes.
The 2016 Australian Derby winner Tavago will be making a belated Spring Carnival appearance after being scratched from the Group 2 $250,000 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at The Valley last Saturday because of a minor leg injury.
Damien Oliver takes the ride on the Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young trained Tavago who will jump from barrier six.
Final field for the 2017 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m)
|#||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||123x2822x1||HARTNELL (GB)||James Cummings||Kerrin McEvoy||8||59kg||115|
|2||x211x75x32||BLACK HEART BART||Darren Weir||Brad Rawiller||7||59kg||115|
|3||1x11202x25||LE ROMAIN||Kris Lees||Ben Melham||5||59kg||115|
|4||61x00x518x||TAVAGO (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Damien Oliver||6||59kg||110|
|5||x181x37x01||GAILO CHOP (FR)||Darren Weir||Mark Zahra||1||59kg||110|
|6||9x42212x68||HUMIDOR (NZ)||Darren Weir||Damian Lane||10||59kg||112|
|7||601121x5x7||VENTURA STORM (IRE)||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Regan Bayliss||4||59kg||106|
|8||93337311×6||JON SNOW (NZ)||Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman||Stephen Baster||3||58.5kg||108|
|9||4x31196x14||HEY DOC||Tony McEvoy||Luke Currie||12||58.5kg||108|
|10||433x5126x6||INFERENCE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dwayne Dunn||9||58.5kg||105|
|11||4282x060x0||SEABURGE||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Craig Williams||2||58.5kg||105|
|12||70312612×0||SINGLE GAZE||Nick Olive||Ms Kathy O’Hara||11||57kg||108|