The Queen Of The Turf Stakes is running at Randwick on April 11, which is day 2 of The Championships series in Sydney.
Headlining the first acceptances is the Gai Waterhouse-trained Cosmic Endeavour. The four-year-old mare was one of the feature horses in last month’s nominations but her worth has grown exponentially since winning the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) on Saturday. It was the second win at the highest level for the mare, who won the Group 2 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) last June during the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.
Following an eight month spell, Cosmic Endeavour resumed in the Group 3 Triscay Stakes (1200m) on February 14, which she finished just outside the placings in fourth. The mare boxed on well but her hefty 60kg weight told.
Two weeks later the mare ran second in the Group 3 Guy Walter Stakes (1400m), challenging winner Danesiri at the 100m mark before fighting on gamely. Just seven days later she lined up in the Canterbury Stakes, winning half a length from Catkins, who is also in the first acceptances.
Chris Waller’s popular grey mare also remains in contention for the Queen Of Turf Stakes on the back of two first-up wins and a close Group One second. Catkins successfully defended her title in the Group 2 Breeders Classic (1200m) on February 7 before winning the Group 2 Millie Fox Stakes (1300m) three weeks later.
Catkins still remains without a win at the highest level of racing despite six attempts. The mare has come close four times, placing in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) twice as well as the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and most recently the Canterbury Stakes, and is deserving of the success.
The mare is one of seven Waller-trained horses in the Queen Of The Turf Stakes first acceptances, down from 11 that were initially nominated.
Waller’s remaining chances includes dual Group One runner-up Royal Descent, who finished second in the George Main Stakes (1600m) and Epsom Handicap (1600m) during the spring. The five-year-old resumed in the Canterbury Stakes on Saturday, finishing second last. He also accepted with three-year-olds Amicus, Winx, and Wine Tales, who are also nominated for the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) running on the same day.
Those that Waller has opted not to run in the Queen Of The Turf Stakes are Arinosa, Calming Influence, Champagne Cath, and Rezoned.
Darren Weir’s Lucia Valentia has had a rough start to the autumn, running unplaced in both the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) and Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m). Meanwhile Nigel Blackiston’s Suavito is a new contender after winning the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) first-up on February 28.
Other notable fillies and mares featured in the first acceptances include Myer Classic winner Bonaria, Clarry Conners’ Dear Demi, Triscay Stakes winner Thump, and Group 2 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) winner Fontein Ruby.
|2||ANY DAY WILL DO||David Vandyke||57kg||84|
|3||ARABIAN GOLD||David Vandyke||57kg||105|
|5||BROOK ROAD||Kris Lees||57kg||90|
|7||COSMIC ENDEAVOUR||Gai Waterhouse||57kg||112|
|8||DANESIRI||John P Thompson||57kg||99|
|9||DEAR DEMI||Clarry Conners||57kg||109|
|10||DIADEME (NZ)||Murray Baker||57kg||102|
|11||DIAMOND DRILLE||Gai Waterhouse||57kg||105|
|12||DOUBLE DEE||Jason Warren||57kg||N/A|
|13||FOOTY FAN||Wade Slinkard||57kg||82|
|14||GIRL GUIDE||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||57kg||N/A|
|15||GIRL IN FLIGHT||Robbie Griffiths||57kg||N/A|
|16||GYPSY DIAMOND||Peter & Paul Snowden||57kg||N/A|
|17||HERA (NZ)||Kris Lees||57kg||94|
|18||INTIMATE MOMENT (NZ)||Chris Waller||57kg||87|
|19||JIAYUGUAN (IRE)||John P Thompson||57kg||72|
|20||JUST A BLUR||Barbara Joseph & Paul Jones||57kg||76|
|21||LUCIA VALENTINA (NZ)||Kris Lees||57kg||111|
|22||LUCKY LAGO||Peter & Paul Snowden||57kg||87|
|23||MAHARA||Peter & Paul Snowden||57kg||97|
|25||MARIANNE (NZ)||Peter & Paul Snowden||57kg||87|
|26||MY SABEEL (NZ)||Kevin Moses||57kg||89|
|27||PLUCKY BELLE||Peter G Moody||57kg||99|
|29||QUAYSIDE||Peter G Moody||57kg||N/A|
|31||ROLE MODEL (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||57kg||81|
|32||ROYAL DESCENT||Chris Waller||57kg||111|
|33||SCORPIO QUEEN||Kris Lees||57kg||91|
|34||SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (NZ)||Murray Baker||57kg||N/A|
|35||STAR FASHION||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||57kg||N/A|
|36||SUAVITO (NZ)||Nigel Blackiston||57kg||N/A|
|37||TARLOSHAN (NZ)||Graeme Boyd||57kg||94|
|38||TELEPATHIC (NZ)||Chris Waller||57kg||85|
|42||ADRIFT (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg||90|
|44||BOHEMIAN LILY (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg||N/A|
|45||FIRST SEAL||John P Thompson||54.5kg||106|
|46||FONTEIN RUBY||Robert Smerdon||54.5kg||N/A|
|47||PEGGY JEAN||Gerald Ryan||54.5kg||92|
|48||SABATINI||Lee & Shannon Hope||54.5kg||N/A|
|49||SLIGHTLY SWEET||Jason Coyle||54.5kg||86|
|51||SWEET AND SPEEDY||Peter G Moody||54.5kg||N/A|
|52||TAHNI DANCER||Clinton McDonald||54.5kg||76|
|53||THINKING OF YOU (NZ)||Peter G Moody||54.5kg||76|
|54||TOP SIGHT||Ciaron Maher||54.5kg||N/A|
|56||WAWAIL||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||54.5kg||85|
|57||WINE TALES||Chris Waller||54.5kg||76|
|58||WINTER SWEET||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg||N/A|