Melbourne Cup winning jockey Corey Brown has been given permission to declare 1kg overweight on lightweight chance D’Argento in the Group 1 $3m The Star Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on day one of The Championships on Saturday.
The Chris Waller trained D’Argento had been handicapped with the featherweight of 49kg but the three year old will now carry 50kg after Racing New South Wales Stewards agreed to let Brown ride at that weight.
Racing New South Wales released the following statement confirming the decision.
“Please be advised that Racing NSW Stewards have acceded to an application to permit jockey Corey Brown to ride D’Argento at 50kg in Saturday’s The Star Doncaster Mile, 1kg over the 49kg handicapped weight.”
Lightweight jockey Brown was called upon to ride D’Argento in the Doncaster Mile after Waller decide to take on the older horses under handicap conditions after Hugh Bowman steered the grey colt to victory in the Group 1 $600,000 Sky Racing Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill on March 24.
Waller had the option of running D’Argento in either the Doncaster Mile under handicap conditions against the older horses or stick to his own age group and run in the Group 1 $2m Harrolds Australian Derby (2400m) at Randwick on the same day.
Waller has had great success in the past of dropping horses back to the 1600m of the Doncaster Mile after winning or running well at 2000m at their previous starts and the premiership winning trainer believes that D’Argento falls into that category.
“Given this has been a successful pathway to the Doncaster in the past for the stable I am confident that he has done the groundwork to be very competitive in this race,” Waller said.
“D’Argento is a serious colt with an extremely bright future and despite winning his Group One at 2000m I do feel he can be equally as effective at the 1600m distance.”
Waller has won the Doncaster Mile on six previous occasions, the latest was with the mighty mare Winx in 2016, as well as with Kermadec (2015), Sacred Falls (2013, 2014), Rangirangdoo (2010) and Triple Honour (2008).
Waller will saddle up six runners in the 2018 Doncaster Mile, with D’Argento the most fancied in the betting at Ladbrokes.com.au at $7 ahead of his stablemates Tom Melbourne and Comin’ Through at $17, Endless Drama at $26, Egg Tart at $34 and Mister Sea Wolf at $71.
D’Argento was out of luck at the barrier draw and Brown will be looking for some early luck in running from barrier fifteen in the sixteen horse field to try to slot in and find some cover before easing to the centre of the track in the straight to give the three year old a clear run to the line.
The James Cummings trained Randwick Guineas winner Kementari sits at the top of the Doncaster Mile betting at $3.50 ahead of Canterbury Stakes winner Happy Clapper at $5.