Just nine runners have been confirmed in the final field for this weekend’s Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley Racecourse, highlighted by the return of the world’s leading sprinter Lankan Rupee.
Without doubt the standout performer of 2014 so-far, Lankan Rupee returned to the track with an impressive four length victory in the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) on February 8th before securing three incredible and commanding victories at the highest level of Australian racing back-to-back; winning each of the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m), Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) and Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) most recently.
Securing an impressive total of nine wins and three minor places from just 16 competitive starts, the Redoute’s Choice gelding will have to overcome the wide barrier 9, but should have no issue securing a resounding first-up victory in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes.
Arguably the biggest winner at Wednesday’s barrier draw for the 2014 McEwen Stakes, Eloping will leave from the ideal barrier 2 and has been confirmed to be partnered by Linda Meech for this first time competitively.
Stamping her claims as a serious black type contender over her maiden racing campaign, the Choisir filly won each of her first two starts including the Listed Blue Diamond Preview (1000m) before finishing second to standout filly Earthquake in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) on February 8th.
Continuing to build in form and class on her way to a credible seventh in the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) and return to the winner’s circle in the Group 3 Royal Randwick Stakes (1200m), Eloping won a strong Cranbourne barrier trial on August 19th and appears to be in great form ahead of her racing return.
A notable performer over his most recent preparation, It Is Written has not been seen at the races since finishing eighth in the Listed DC McKay Stakes (1100m) on April 26th, and has been confirmed in the final field for the 2014 McEwen Stakes.
Claiming a commendable total of eight wins and nine minor places from just 34 competitive starts so far, It Is Written began his most recent campaign with a hard-fought fourth in the Group 3 Theshark.com.au Stakes (1100m) on August 31st last year, finishing third in the Listed Drummond Golf Stakes (1200m) on Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes Day before returning to the winner’s circle in the Listed Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m) on September 29th.
Continuing to build in class and form over a total of fourteen starts, the Written Tycoon gelding was arguably most impressive when third behind Richie’s Vibe and Moment Of Change in the Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m) on January 24th.
Allocated the ideal barrier 4, It Is Written has been confirmed to be partnered by Matthew Allen in the 2013 McEwen Stakes.
Leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au is currently offering the best odds on the 2014 McEwen Stakes, for which Lankan Rupee is clear $1.20 favourite ahead of Eloping; interestingly figuring as the only other runner currently offered at a quote of less-than $10.
Open an account and deposit at Ladbrokes.com.au today to claim a bonus bet of up to $250 in time for the McEwen Stakes!
2014 McEwen Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||1311x1111x||LANKAN RUPEE||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||9||58.5kg||118|
|2||695735108x||IT IS WRITTEN||Robbie Griffiths||Matthew Allen||4||58.5kg||100|
|3||3x19x5937x||UNPRETENTIOUS||Nikki Burke||Craig Williams||5||58.5kg||102|
|4||5712238410||OUR NKWAZI||Shawn Mathrick||Dwayne Dunn||8||58.5kg||90|
|5||079×035546||ACADEMY JACK||Dale Short||Nicholas Hall||6||58.5kg||82|
|6||1210x2x||CAUTHEN (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Steven Arnold||3||58.5kg||82|
|7||64x32512x3||ANGELIC LIGHT||Robbie Griffiths||Ryan Maloney||1||56.5kg||93|
|8||5x212x16||ORUJO||John O’Shea||Tommy Berry||7||52kg||71|
|9||11241714x||ELOPING||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||Ms Linda Meech||2||50kg||88|