The 2014 Memsie Stakes field has been released, with 11 talented gallopers set to contest the first Group 1 of the 2014/2015 racing season at Caulfield on Saturday.
The Group 2 Missile Stakes (1200m) that was run at Royal Randwick on August 9 is set to be the key form race for the Memsie Stakes after Sweet Idea, Messene and Boban were included in the final field for the Group 1 event.
Sweet Idea scored a narrow victory in the Missile Stakes and has the chance to record her maiden win at Group 1 level in the Memsie Stakes, but has drawn slightly awkwardly for jockey Craig Newitt in barrier 10.
Messene was set to contest the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Royal Randwick last weekend, after finishing second in the Missile Stakes, but was saved for a tilt at the Memsie Stakes because Team Hawkes did not want to run the son of Lonhro on a heavy track.
The six-year-old will be having just his second start at Group 1 level this weekend and Team Hawkes are set to use the Memsie Stakes as a guide to which way they will go with Messene (barrier four) during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival.
Boban missed the start before flying home to finish a close fourth in the Missile Stakes and he is another galloper that was removed from the Warwick Stakes field last weekend due to the heavy track.
Trainer Chris Waller believes that the Memsie Stakes is an excellent race for the triple Group 1 winner and he will jump from barrier nine with regular jockey Glyn Schofield on his back this weekend.
Another galloper that is set to have a slight fitness edge heading into the Memsie Stakes is Peter Moody-trained Moment Of Change, who resumed with a tough second behind Hard Stride in the Listed Regal Roller Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on August 16.
Moment Of Change is a Caulfield 1400 metres specialist and he recorded Group 1 victories in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, Orr Stakes and Futurity Stakes over his favourite track and distance.
Trainer Peter Moody is very bullish about the chances of Moment Of Change in the Memsie Stakes, but the Barely A Moment gelding may need to do a bit of work early to take up the running from barrier eight.
Popular grey Puissance De Lune will also be having the second race start of his spring campaign and he drew ideally in barrier one, while Cox Plate runner-up Happy Trails has also drawn towards the inside of the field.
The Memsie Stakes is always a popular starting point for horses heading towards races like the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m), Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) and Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) and the 2014 edition of the race is no exception.
Silent Achiever (barrier three) has not been seen at the races since she finished fourth in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on April 19, but she finished a close second in a barrier trial over 1100 metres at Taupo last week and looks set for a big spring campaign.
The O’Reilly mare beat home just a single runner in the Memsie Stakes last year, but trainer Roger James believes that run was better than it looked on paper and is hopeful that the six-year-old can finish in the placings this weekend.
Super Cool (barrier seven) finished third behind glamour mare Atlantic Jewel in the Memsie Stakes last year and will begin his spring campaign in the Group 1 event for the second year in a row.
The Fastnet Rock gelding has not been seen at the races since he finished a credible ninth in the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m), but he has impressed Mark Kavanagh with his trackwork and the leading Melbourne trainer believes that the five-year-old is capable of returning to the form that he showed when he took out the 2013 Australian Cup.
Promising stayer Sertorius (barrier 11) will also start his spring preparation in the Memsie Stakes, while Royal Randwick Guineas winner Dissident (barrier five) will also be returning to the races after he was scratched from the Warwick Stakes last weekend.