Leading racing analyst Daniel O’Sullivan has Fawkner and Dissident on top of his 2014 Caulfield Stakes, but is leaning the way of Fawkner at his current quote for the Group 1 event at Caulfield tomorrow.
Fawkner returned to racing in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on September 13 and was narrowly denied a second Group 1 win by Dissident, but O’Sullivan told RSN this morning that he believes the Reset gelding will have taken plenty of benefit out of the run and can turn-the-tables on his rival in the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m).
“It is a very difficult race and you can look at any number of places,” O’Sullivan said.
“I settled on Fawkner.
“He has the form through Dissident last star, he was first-up and what is interesting is that he has followed the same pattern as last year when he had one run in the autumn and then returned in the spring.
“Last spring he improved at every race start and he comes into this race here with a lovely run behind Dissident, which we know is established as the premium form going around at the moment.
“He has the proven ability over 2000 metres, which there is a slight question mark over Dissident, and he looks to map with a really good run in the first half of the field.
“I think at $5.50 there is a reasonable sort of edge in his price and I think that he is more of a $4.80 chance.”
While O’Sullivan is happy to have Fawkner on top of his selections, he admits that Sacred Falls and Dissident both have plenty of talent and the pair have been the best-backed runners in 2014 Caulfield Stakes betting markets.
O’Sullivan said that you can’t possibly knock Dissident based on his performances in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m), Makybe Diva Stakes and Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1600m) and has a high opinion of Sacred Falls, but believes that he will get too far back in the early stages of the race.
“Sacred Falls is a very sort of genuine hope, but from that barrier I can’t see him being anywhere except way back at the tail of the field and it is very hard to win from there,” O’Sullivan said.
“You can’t knock Dissident and his rating is up there as the best horse in Australia at the moment and he goes to the 2000 which is a little bit of a query and something we are not going to know the answer to until after the race.
“There is plenty of respect there, but with the price difference between him and Fawkner makes me lean to Fawkner.”
Fawkner is currently available at Caulfield Stakes odds of $5, but Sacred Falls ($4.40) remains a narrow favourite from Dissident ($4.60) with Ladbrokes Australia.