Aegon, Ayrton handed All-Star Mile wildcard entry

Ayrton on the way to the barriers prior to the running of the TAB Stakes at Flemington. (Photo by George Sal/Racing Photos)

The lineup for the 2024 All-Star Mile (1600m) is taking shape, with the inclusion of New Zealand’s Group 1 victors Aegon and Ayrton, who secured wildcards on Tuesday.

Aegon, hailing from trainer Andrew Forsman’s stable, will be making his second consecutive appearance in the All-Star Mile after his recent third-place finish in the Group 1 WFA Classic (1600m).

Despite an unplaced performance last year, where he failed to make an impact at Moonee Valley, Aegon is eager for redemption in the $4 million feature at Caulfield on Saturday, March 16.

Joining him is fellow Kiwi competitor Desert Lightning, whom he narrowly defeated in Group 1 company behind La Crique.

Ayrton, trained by Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr and owned by the Roll The Dice Racing syndicate, has had an impressive record at Caulfield, with six out of his nine victories achieved at the course.

Despite facing a near-fatal spider bite setback, the resilient six-year-old gelding, guided by jockey Jamie Kah, has continued to defy expectations.

Ayrton’s standout performance in the recent Blamey Stakes (1600m), where he was unlucky due to lack of running room, showcased his potential for the All-Star Mile.

His consistent form, highlighted by a victory in the Listed Barton Stakes (1400m) earlier this year and a commendable run in the Group 1 C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m), has earned him a well-deserved wildcard entry into the race.

Horse racing bookmakers have both Aegon and Ayrton rated as a +1400 chance for the 2024 All-Star Mile.

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