View our 2020 Missile Stakes preview.
The Missile Stakes was first held as a Principal Race at Rosehill over 1100m in 1978 and was won by a horse called Idol. In 1980 the race became a Group 3 race, it was not run in 1981 and from 2010 onwards the distance was increased to 1200m. In 2012 it was moved from Rosehill to Warwick Farm, but was only run there for one year. From 2013 it was run at Randwick and it became a Group 2 race from 2014 onwards. In 2019 the race returned to its original home of Rosehill, where it currently remains. In 2020 it was changed to set weights plus penalties for the first time, as all previous races were at weight-for-age.
Taking place at the start of the racing year, it is the first Group race in Sydney and usually attracts horses that are starting their spring campaign off. Many horses run in the Missile Stakes first-up and continue on to tougher assignments in the Sydney and Melbourne Spring Racing Carnivals Some horses are finishing a successful winter campaign.
The Missile Stakes is the main race of the meeting which also includes the Listed The Rosebud which is a 1200m race for three-year-olds leading up to the Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes over 1400m. Horses that run well in the Missile Stakes may go on to contest the Group 1 1400m Winx Stakes at Randwick two weeks later, the Group 2 1600m Chelmsford Stakes in September or the Group 2 1200m Priemere Stakes in early October.