The 2016 Millie Fox Stakes field has been released and talented mares First Seal and Catkins are set to do battle in the Group 2 event at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
First Seal will carry the top weight of 58 kilograms in the Millie Fox Stakes and she is set to make her first appearance at the races since she finished sixth in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 11.
The daughter of Fastnet Rock was set to return to the races in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Royal Randwick on August 22, but she was pulled out of the race due to a foot abscess and he spring campaign was over before it even started after she had surgery to remove Keratone from her foot.
First Seal showed that she was ready to return to the races when she performed well in two barrier trials at Royal Randwick on January 29 and Warwick Farm on February 8 and trainer John Thompson is hopeful that she is in for a big autumn campaign.
Catkins started her 2015 Spring Racing Carnival preparation with a fast-finishing win in the Group 3 Sheraco Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on September 12, but she was unable to replicate that form in the Group 2 Golden Pendant (1400m) at the same venue on September 26 and she was sent to the spelling paddock after she failed to fire in the Group 2 Tristarc Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on October 17.
The Dubawi mare was given a soft barrier trial at Warwick Farm on January 25, but she defeated a strong field to win a trial over 1100 metres at the same venue on February 8 to give the indication that she is ready for a return to racing.
Catkins is joined in the 2016 Millie Fox Stakes field by stablemates Telepathic and Ballet Suite.
Ballet Suite has not been seen at the races since she failed to fire in the Group 3 Summoned Stakes (1500m) at Sandown on November 14, while Telepathic was given a freshen-up following her flat effort in the Listed Gosford Cup (2100m) on January 8.
The Breeders Classic is always a key lead-up to the Millie Fox Stakes and winner Amicus has not been included in the field, but placegetters Press Report and I’ve Got The Looks are both set to back-up this weekend.
The 2016 Millie Fox Stakes field is rounded out by Anthony Cummings-trained Skyline Blush, who will return to the races for the first time since she finished fifth in the Group 3 Angst Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on October 10.