Shiraz has drifted out to 2015 Concorde Stakes odds of $4.60, but jockey Hugh Bowman remains confident that the promising sprinter can win the Group 3 event at Royal Randwick this weekend.
Shiraz opened as a $4.20 favourite when the 2015 Concorde Stakes field was released earlier in the week, but there has been very little support for the six-year-old, while there has been a great deal of money for Joe Pride-trained Ball Of Muscle ($4.60 into $4).
Bowman rode Shiraz for the first time when he scored a very comfortable win in the Primo Smallgoods Handicap (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on July 18 and he missed the ride on the Zariz gelding when he took out the Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on August 8, but Bowman was still most impressed with the performance of the Concorde Stakes contender.
“I was impressed with his run in Melbourne,” Bowman said.
“He appeared to just go a little keen without himself up the straight, but to get off the canvass and win to me stands up in good stead.
“It is another step-up in class for him again this weekend, but he is a quality horse and I know that the McEvoy stable have a very high opinion of him.
“He will be there with a shot for sure.”
Ball Of Muscle has been a clear market mover in Concorde Stakes betting markets and he is set to start the $125,000 as a favourite.
The half-brother to both Tiger Tees and Terravista is yet to miss a placing in his 13 race starts and he went to another level during the 2015 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival, where he finished second in the Group 2 Victory Stakes (1200m) at the Gold Coast on April 25 before he took out the Group 2 QTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben on May 30.
Ball Of Muscle is joined in the 2015 Concorde Stakes field by stablemate Craftiness, who has remained steady at a quote of $4.60 since betting was opened for the race, while talented mare Atmospherical is on the fourth line of betting at a quote of $4.80.
The only other horse that is available at single figure Concorde Stakes odds is the progressive Fell Swoop, who is set to make his debut at Group level after recording two impressive wins at Rosehill Gardens on August 1 and Royal Randwick on August 22.
There has been a sprinkling of support for Wouldnt It Be Nice ($41 into $34) in the Concorde Stakes betting market at Ladbrokes, while Aeronautical ($17 out to $26) and Happy Galaxy ($51 out to $61) have both been on the drift.