Williams booked for Charmed Harmony in Bletchingly Stakes

By: Mark Mazzaglia
July 26th, 2016

Premiership front runner Craig Williams will resume his battle with his main rival Dwayne Dunn at Caulfield on Saturday and has picked up the ride on Charmed Harmony in the Group 3 $150,000 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m).

Craig Williams will ride Charmed Harmony, above, in the Bletchingly Stakes at Caulfield. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Craig Williams will ride Charmed Harmony, above, in the Bletchingly Stakes at Caulfield. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Williams, who is chasing his fifth Melbourne jockey’s premiership, currently leads the field with sixty-eight wins on the board, three ahead of Dun who is searching for his first title.

Dunn gets his chance to close the gap at Ladbrokes Park at Sandown on Wednesday with eight rides on the nine race program while Williams can resume riding on Saturday, the last metropolitan meeting for the 2015 – 2016 season, after missing Wednesday’s meeting due to a careless riding suspension from last Saturday at Flemington.

While Williams will be desperate to make every post a winner, trainer John Saddler is not that confident that Charmed Harmony will help his premiership hopes.

Charmed Harmony was sent for a short break after running last of eighteen in the Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 11 and Sadler is happy with the way the gelding spelled.

“He had a couple of weeks off in Queensland and did really well and I’ve been very happy with him since he’s been back in work,” Sadler told racing.com.

While Charmed Harmony is regarded as a Caulfield specialist with three wins and three seconds from nine starts there, Saddler is thinking the six year old will need the run to tune him up for the rest of the Spring Carnival and he would be better suited when he steps up to 1400m.

“I feel the horse will probably need the run as he’s being set for the Peter Lawrence and then the Memsie Stakes,” Sadler said.

“Everybody knows his form here at Caulfield over 1400m is pretty good and I think you can dismiss his two runs in Queensland, he obviously doesn’t handle racing in that direction.

“I can see him running well Saturday but I’d have thought he’d need the run. He goes pretty well fresh but I’d be looking at him as a better chance in the Lawrence in a fortnight once he’s had a run.”

Williams was aboard Charmed Harmony in a gallop on Tuesday Morning at Caulfield and was happy with the way he felt.

“Craig Williams came out to ride him in his work (Tuesday) morning and he was very happy with him,” Sadler said.

Sadler is expecting Charmed Harmony to race well but thinks he will be better suited over the 1400m at Caulfield in the  Group 2 $200,000 P.B. Lawrence Stakes on August 13 and in the Group 1 $500,000 Memsie Stakes two weeks later.

“I can see him running well Saturday but I’d have thought he’d need the run. He goes pretty well fresh but I’d be looking at him as a better chance in the Lawrence in a fortnight once he’s had a run.”

The Bletchingly Stakes is shaping up to be a tough encounter with several top class gallopers among the fourteen nominations, including Mahuta, Smokin’ Joey, The Cleaner, Fast ‘N’ Rocking and Lord Off The Sky.

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