The 2015 Makybe Diva Stakes nominations have been released and 22 gallopers remain in contention to run in the Group 1 event that will be held at Flemington on Saturday.
The Makybe Diva Stakes is now a Group 1 race in its own right, but a number of talented gallopers like Mongolian Khan, Fawkner, Mutual Regard and Our Ivanhowe will still use the race to start their 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign as they build to bigger races later in the year.
Mongolian Khan has been set for the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) and he will begin his path to ‘the race that stops a nation’ in the Makybe Diva Stakes this weekend.
The Holy Roman Emperor entire stamped himself as one of the most promising stayers in Australasian when he took out the Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) and Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) and he has been included in the nominations for all the major races during the spring.
Mongolian Khan has not been seen at the races since his Australian Derby triumph, but he has performed well in two barrier trials in New Zealand before he made the trip to Australia.
Fawkner was set to return to the races in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 29, but the Reset gelding was allocated a wide barrier draw and Team Williams elected to scratch him from the race.
The eight-year-old has not been seen at the races since he finished a credible tenth behind Protectionist in the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 4 last year, but he has a good record fresh and he was only narrowly beaten by Dissident in the Makybe Diva Stakes last year.
Our Ivanhowe is one of the most interesting horses in the Makybe Diva Stakes field and he is set to have just his second race start in Australia in the Group 1 event.
The Soldier Hollow entire took out both the Group 1 Grosser Preis Von Baden (2413m) and Group 1 Grosser Preis Von Bayern (2414m) in German before joined the Team Freedman stable, but he failed to fire when he made his Australian racing debut in the Group 3 RA Lee Stakes (1600m) at Morphettville on May 16.
Rounding out the resuming horses in the Makybe Diva Stakes nomination is imported stayer Mutual Regard.
Mutual Regard was brought to Australia by Irish trainer Johnny Murtagh for the Melbourne Cup last year and connections opted to leave the Hernando gelding down under after he finished 14th in the $6 million event.
The six-year-old has joined the John Sadler stable and he has been included in the entries for the Group 1 The Metropolitan (2400m), Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m), Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) and Melbourne Cup.
Alpine Eagle, Awesome Rock, Bagman, Boban, Dandino, Entirely Platinum, Gust Of Wind, Happy Trails, Hi World, Let’s Make Adeal, Magicool, Moriarty, Prince Of Penzance, Rising Romance, Set Square, Smokin’ Joey, Volkstok’n’barrell and Weary have also been included in the 2015 Makybe Diva Stakes nominations.