Group 1 winning mare Yosei’s racing pattern won’t be changed after drawing the outside barrier in the Group 1 $1m Carlton Draught-Railway Stakes (1600m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Yosei will jump from gate sixteen after coming up with eighteen in the original draw which included two emergencies but trainer Stuart Webb expects jockey Michael Rodd will just ease over behind the field and ride Yosei for luck,which is her usual pattern.
“I would imagine when they jump, Michael will just pop over her neck and they will go back and try and get on the fence,” Webb said.
“There’s been plenty of times she’s drawn barrier one and settled last and that would be the plan for Saturday.”
Even though Yosei hasn’t won since taking out the Group 1 $500,000 Sky Racing Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) at Eagle Farm in June last year, the five year old mare has been placed twice at Group 1 level, a third behind More Joyous in this year’s $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on April 21 and a third to Solzhenitsyn in the $400,000 David Jones Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield on October 13.
And Yosei put in her customary late charge to finish fourth to Happy Trails at her last start in the Group 1 $1m Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on the last day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Yosei has won at Group 1 level on three occasions and as well as winning the Tatts Tiarra, she is also the winner of the $500,000 Inglis Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) at Randwick in the Autumn of 2010 and the $500,000 Schweppes Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield in the Spring the same year and Webb is very proud of her achievements.
“She’s been a great competitor. She’s done it from her two-year-old days,” Webb said.
“She’s run in 20 Group 1 races and, after Saturday, she’ll have run in every mainland Australian state at that level.”
Local hero Luckygray has a tough task ahead to score back to back Railway Stakes wins after gaining last year’s race on protest from New Zealand trained He’s Remarkable.
As well as drawing gate twelve in the original draw, Luckygray is jumping up to 58kg after only carrying 53kg to victory last year.
“Last year I came through the back door and won a race that qualified him,” trainer Gino Poletti said.
“All he needs is a trouble-free run so that he can show his wares. If the 58 bogs him down … so be it.”
Luckygray was undefeated from three runs in the Winter at Belmont but failed to fire in two runs in Melbourne in the early part of the Spring.
But the Bradbury’s Luck five year old was quick to bounce back to winning form and scored first up at Ascot in the Group 2 $200,000 Waroa-Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) on November 10.
With that win under his belt, Luckygray has been installed the $3.40 favourite for the Railway Stakes in front of another locally trained galloper Ranger at $6.50 and Gai Waterhouse’s Fat Al at $7.
Yosei is at the good odds of $15 with Playing God, courtesy of her wide barrier draw.