1. Regal Power
This Pierro gelding is resuming from a 22 week spell and ran 4th at Caulfield when last first-up. At his last two starts he ran 2nd in the Group 1 Australian Cup over 2000m, then won the All Star Mile over 1600m at Caulfield on 14 March. He is a talented galloper and although he is better over further, he should go well first up and should be in the finish.
2. Kings Will Dream
He resumes after an 18 week spell, and in 2018 he resumed from a spell to run 4th in this race. Last campaign he was racing in Group 1 company which included 3rd in the Group 1 Orr Stakes at this track and distance. He should never be underestimated.
3. Streets of Avalon
Last start he resumed from a spell for 2nd in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes on 25 July. He has an excellent record at this track and distance with 4 wins and 3 places from 9 races here, including a win in the Group 1 Futurity Stakes back in February. He doesn’t have a good record on rain-affected going, but has to be included as one of the main chances provided the track doesn’t get too much rain.
4. Cape Of Good Hope
This horse is bred for distance and resumes here. He is probably heading for longer targets in the Spring Carnival and will find this too short. Not here.
One of two Godolphin runners in the race (the other is Savatiano), this gelding resumes after 19 weeks and has a very good first-up record. He also goes well on soft going. He has only raced the Melbourne way of going once before, when he finished 3rd in the Group 1 Kennedy Cantala over 1600m at Flemington last November. He will make his presence felt.
Although he won the Listed Winter Championship Final over 1600m at Flemington on 4 July, he has not been going terribly well in much weaker races. On the positive side he does go well on soft tracks.
Last start he led all the way for an impressive 2.5 length win at this rack and distance on 25 July. He has 3 wins at this track and can handle softer going. One for the multiples.
8. Mystic Journey
She won this race in 2019 and has won 11 of her 18 starts. At the end of last campaign she finished 5th in the Group 1 Cox Plate then 5th in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes. She is here to defend her title and I think she can do it. My number one pick.
9. Arcadia Queen
A smart mare that has won 6 of her 9 starts – 5 wins in Western Australia including the Group 2 WA Guineas and the Group 1 Railway Stakes, plus the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes in Sydney. She hasn’t raced for 43 weeks and is having her first run for a new trainer, but has to be rated a good chance.
Last week this mare was scratched from the Missile Stakes and hasn’t raced for 15 weeks but won a recent trial.She flies when she is fresh and won the Group 2 Millie Fox Stakes over 1300m at her last first-up start. She will be a strong contender.
She resumes after a 21 week spell and hasn’t had a win for a long time. This looks too hard.