Three-year-old Fenway was unlucky to be ruled out of the Australian Oaks at Randwick three weeks ago as a result of injury, but headlines a classy list of 38 nominations for Saturday’s Group 1 Australasian Oaks (2000m) at Morphettville.
Posting two wins and one minor place finish for trainers Lee and Shannon Hope over her short but impressive six start career, Fenway immediately announced her racing arrival when winning the Bendigo RSL Maiden (1400m) on debut with ease in October; progressing to fourth in a Caulfield minor over 1600m and returning to the paddock after placing third in the Group 2 Wakeful Stakes (2000m).
Unlucky to finish just outside the places in fourth in both the Group 3 The Vanity (1400m) and Group 3 Schweppervescence Trophy (1600m) upon resuming this time, the daughter of High Chaparral jumped from the gates well in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) most recently on March 28th; displaying a keen turn of foot and maintaining a strong-enough sprint to secure her maiden win at the highest level.
Fontein Ruby has returned to exceptional form this time in and is sure to lay a great account for herself in the 2015 Australasian Oaks.
Finishing outside the first three only a handful of times through sixteen competitive starts, Fontein Ruby stamped her claims as a serious race horse through the 2014 Spring Carnival; most notably via successes in the Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m) and Group 3 Caulfield Classic (2000m).
Running in the minors in both the Group 3 Kevin Hayes Stakes (1200m) and Group 2 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) upon resuming this time, the Turffontein filly failed to beat a single runner home in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) on March 7th but will be chasing her maiden career hat-track on Saturday after winning each of the Listed Alexandra Stakes (1600m) and Vobis Gold Reef (1600m) most recently.
While yet to hit peak condition this time in, Lady Sharapova displayed a good affiliation with the Morphettville track when third in the Listed Port Adelaide Guineas (1800m) last time out and looks likely to relish a step-up to 2000m for the 2015 Australasian Oaks.
Securing several commendable results without really troubling the leading fillies of her age group, Lady Sharapova is three-times placed amongst black type company and has reportedly worked well in the lead-up to Saturday’s feature.
Leading trainer Chris Waller is set to be offered two good chances of success at the highest level this weekend after including Ballet Suite and Wine Tales in 2015 Australasian Oaks nominations.
Winning each of her first two starts this time in, Ballet Suite produced a commendable kick to place a credible fourth in the Vinery Stud Stakes but arguably did not get the distance when eighth in the Australian Oaks (2400m) last start.
Having steadily build to the task over four starts this time, Wine Tales ran sixth in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) and second in the Group 3 Keith F Nolan Classic (1600m); receiving an ideal tune up for her maiden Group 1 tilt when second in the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) a fortnight ago.
A capacity 2015 Australasian Oaks final field of 16 is expected to be released following a barrier draw by midday, Wednesday.