Premiership winning jockey Craig Williams will replace the suspended Damien Oliver on the favourite Vega Magic in the Group 1 $1m Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 2.

Craig Williams will ride Vega Magic, above, in the Memsie Stakes at Caulfield. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Craig Williams will ride Vega Magic, above, in the Memsie Stakes at Caulfield. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Oliver was aboard Vega Magic when he resumed for a tough first up win with 60.5kg on his back in the Listed $120,000 Regal Roller Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield last Saturday which prompted bookies at to installed him as the $5.50 favourite for the first Group 1 of the new racing season.

Oliver was hoping that his fourteen meeting careless riding suspension that he was handed down at last Wednesday’s Sandown meeting would be reduced so he could partner The Lindsay Park trained Vega Magic in the Memsie Stakes but today’s appeal was dismissed.

The three times Melbourne Cup winning jockey was able to ride at Caulfield last Saturday before beginning his suspension that will terminate at midnight on September 2, after the running of the Memsie Stakes.

Sky Sports Radio this afternoon tweeted that Craig Williams would now take the mount on the former West Australian trained Sprinter.

‘Jockey Craig Williams will now ride Vega Magic in Saturday weeks million dollar Memsie at Caulfield after no success at appeal for Olly,” Sky Sports Radio tweeted.

Ironically it was Williams aboard Esperance who was on the receiving end of most of the interference caused when Oliver allowed his mount Redcore to shift in at the 900m in the Sheamus Mills Bloodstock Handicap (1200m) at Sandown last Wednesday.

Williams has already had success on Vega Magic and rode him to victory at his first start for the Lindsay Park Team of David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig when he won the Group 1 $1m Darley Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville during the 2017 Adelaide Autumn Carnival.

David Hayes not only thinks that Vega Magic is a great chance of winning his second Group 1 trophy in the Memsie Stake, he is also eyeing off a slot in the $10m The Everest (1200m) at Randwick on October 14 for the five year old chestnut.

“He has won over 1400 metres and he will go for the Memsie,” David Hayes said.

“He will be freshened up and hopefully somebody wants him for The Everest.

“I am thinking that he will run huge in the Memsie and he will get snapped up.

“We will dangle carrots everywhere.”

The Darren Weir trained multiple Group 1 winner Black Heart Bart and Kris Lees’ Le Romain are also high up in the Memsie Stakes market order at $6 each just ahead of Australian Guineas winner Hey Doc at $7 and Yankee Rose at $8.

Early market order for the Memsie Stakes at $5.50 Vega Magic $6 Black Heart Bart, Le Romain, $7 Hey Doc, $8 Yankee Rose, $9 Brave Smash, $11 I Am A Star, $13 Humidor, $15 Foxplay, Happy Clapper, Star Exhibit, $17 Ability, Lucky Hussler, Tosen Stardom, Ugo Foscolo, $21 He’s Our Rokkii, $26 or better the rest.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.

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