In-form jockey James McDonald is giving his mount Bow Creek a good chance of upsetting glamour mare Winx in the Group 1 $3m The Star Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on the first day of ‘The Championships’ on Saturday.
The Chris Waller trained Winx is lining up for her ninth consecutive win and is the $1.90 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for the Doncaster Mile while Bow Creek is marked as a $14 chance coming off a last start eighth to Preferment in the Group 1 $1.5m Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 12.
But Bow Creek with Damien Oliver in the saddle was a most impressive winner two runs back and after missing the start was able to score a one and a half lengths win over Fenway in the Group 2 $200,000 Crown Golden Ale Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 27.
Winx has collected four Group 1 trophies from her last five starts, including a win in the Group 1 $3m Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley during the 2015 Melbourne Spring Carnival and a last start win in the Group 1 $1m China Horse Club George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill two weeks ago.
McDonald has only ridden Bow Creek on two occasions last Spring Carnival for a second to Turn Me Loose in the Group 2 $200,000 Schweppes Crystal Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley followed by a twelfth to the same horse again in the Group 1 $1m Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington.
But Godolphin’s number one rider who carried the royal blue colours to victory four times at Rosehill last Saturday has a high opinion of the John O’Shea trained English import and is not ruling out an upset win over the short priced favourite.
“I think he’s a very good horse and if there’s one horse in the Godolphin yard that I think could upset Winx, it’s him with his freaky turn of foot,” McDonald told Racing.com’s Racing Ahead on RSN 927.
“If the real Bow Creek turns up he’ll give that field a run for their money. It’s just whether he does or not as he’s a tricky bugger that’s definitely got a mind of his own.
“If he’s sorted out his barrier manners – well, he’s been giving away two or three lengths everytime, which you can’t do in a Doncaster – but he drops to 54.5kg, which I think is a winnable weight for this type of horse.”
Doncaster Mile market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $1.90 Winx, $8 Kermadec, $9 Azkadellia, $11 Happy Clapper, $14 Bow Creek, $17 First Seal, $21 Volkstok’N’Barrell, He Or She, $26 Turn Me Loose, Good Project, $51 Stratum Star, Rudy, $91 Ecuador, $126 Vergara, $201 Aomen.