Form expert Daniel O’Sullivan has Chautauqua on top of his 2015 Darley Classic tips and he still believes that the star sprinter represents value at his current quote of $1.65.
Chautauqua was beaten by Terravista in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) last year and he was beaten in both the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) and Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) during the autumn, but he has recorded three wins from as many starts this preparation, which was highlighted by an outstanding victory in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on October 23.
O’Sullivan expects that Chautauqua can improve on his Manikato Stakes performance in the 2015 Darley Classic and if he does that he told RSN that it is very hard to see the Encosta De Lago gelding getting beaten.
“I have Chautauqua at $1.45,” O’Sullivan said.
“I have been through the race in a number of different angles and the reality is that Chautauqua is the only one that can produce a world class sprinting figure.
“Chautauqua was a length off his peaks last start, which are all up the Flemington straight and it is pretty reasonable to forecast him running somewhere between that last start and those figures.
“The reality is that if he does that it is super unlikely that any of these others are going to be able to elevate to match him.
“There best chance is if Chautauqua underperforms to some extent, which is not impossible and we saw Exosphere do that in the Coolmore.
“It does happens, but even making allowances for those things I came up with Chautauqua as a 65 to 70 percent winning chance.
“It still leaves scope to be beaten, but at that $1.65 it is a solid enough edge to back him here.”
Terravista is the only horse that has previously produced similar figures to Chautauqua, but he has been unable to reproduce that effort in the past 12 months and O’Sullivan revealed that the Captain Rio gelding would need to improve significantly on his recent performances in the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on October 3 and the Manikato Stakes.
“Terravista ran up to that level winning this race last year, but since then he has actually regressed quite a bit in his figures to even below his best leading into last year’s race, which is a bit of a concern,” O’Sullivan said.
“I was quite keen on him in the Manikato when he came off a figure in Sydney that looked a nice springboard to push ahead and although he was unlucky in the Manikato, I don’t think you can promote him too heavily.
“The talent is there, but we haven’t seen it since this race last year.”
Chautauqua is currently available at 2015 Darley Classic odds of $1.65 with Ladbrokes and he is a clear favourite from Terravista ($8), Srikandi ($8), Lumosty ($10) and Buffering ($15).
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