The world’s number one rated sprinter Chautauqua dominates the betting for the Group 1 $1m Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
Punters look set to forgive Chautauqua’s first up defeat in the Group 1 $500,000 Charter Keck Cramer Moir Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on September 30 when fourth as favourite to Extreme Choice and give him another chance to find the winner’s stall again.
Ladbrokes.com.au have Chautauqua marked as the $2.30 favourite to win back to back Manikato Stakes after the grey beat Srikandi and Rebel Dane in last year’s running of the Group 1 sprint.
Lightweight chance Capitalist is on the second line of betting at $6 but has failed to win at two attempts since claiming the Group 1 $3.5m Longines Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill during the Sydney Autumn Carnival.
Also under double figures in the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott Group 1 winning mare English at $6 and $9 chance Lucky Hussler who is a Group 1 winner over the same course and distance as the Manikato Stakes after taking out the 2015 $400,000 William Reid Stakes.
While most participants would enjoy the luxury of having the inside gate, race jockey Dwayne Dunn can see the rails draw making his job a little harder because of Chautauqua’s style of racing back in the field.
“It is what it is and I just have to deal with the issues that surround me now,” Dunn said.
“It would have been nice to draw in the middle of them or just a bit wider, because you like to get him into clear running and wind them in.
“It just changes the dynamics of the race a little bit now and I’ve got a job ahead of me to work out which way is going to be the best option.
“He probably has to slice up underneath a couple going through the corner I would suggest but if they do go fast enough, it will give me the option to go around them.
“It looks like Buffering finds the top, Capitalist sits outside him and the rest find formation. It might be break-neck speed early and that will change where I have to be and what I need to do.”
Seven times Group 1 winner Buffering is a three times winner over this course and distance and is certain to go forward for Damian Browne from barrier two while the John O’Shea trained Holler has also won twice over the Manikato Stakes course and distance and is likely to try to match motors with Buffering.
Market order for the Manikato Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2.30 Chautauqua, $6 Capitalist, $8.50 English, $9 Lucky Hussler, $11 Buffering, $12 Fell Swoop, $13 Holler, $15 The Quarterback, $19 Under The Louvre, $41 Rebel Dane, Japonisme.