|What||Makybe Diva Stakes Day 2021|
|Where||Flemington Racecourse – 448 Epsom Rd, Flemington VIC 3031|
|When||Saturday, September 11, 2021|
|First Race||12:30pm AEST|
|Feature Race||Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes – Race 8|
A bumper nine-part card is scheduled for Flemington on Saturday afternoon, and HorseBetting’s Victorian form analyst presents his best bets and top quaddie numbers for Makybe Diva Stakes Day. The track is rated a Soft 5 with the rail returning to the true position for the entire circuit, and racing is set to get underway at 12:30pm AEST.
Race 1: Handicap (2500m)
The opening event at Flemington sees a small field of nine compete over 2500m, which includes the return of the classy Pondus. The Robert Hickmott-trained import will need to carry 60.5kg, giving a 6.5kg swing to his rivals, including the in-form Tooradin. With three wins and three runner-up performances to his name from six runs this campaign, the five-year-old son of Americain is racing in career-best form and will take some beating with just 54kg on his back. He took the smart Hosier to within a whisker over 2000m at Flemington two starts back on August 7. With the significant weight advantage over the favourite, we expect Tooradin to get us off to a winning start on Makybe Diva Stakes Day.
Race 2: Exford Plate (1400m)
The Listed Exford Plate sees our best bet of the day go around in Artorius, who returned in eye-catching style at Caulfield on August 28. The Blue Diamond Stakes winner is clearly the class runner in the race and is one of the few three-year-olds to hold a nomination for the Cox Plate. He flew home upon resumption over 1200m in the H.D.F. McNeil Stakes at Caulfield with 59.5kg on his back when narrowly defeated by Bruckner, who had a 2.5kg weight advantage. Artorious steps up to 1400m, which he is clearly searching for, and from barrier six under Luke Currie it seems like only bad luck will see him get beaten on Saturday.
Race 3: Poseidon Stakes (1100m)
The Listed Poseidon Stakes looks to be a genuine match race between Vain Stakes winner Ingratiating and the resuming Finance Tycoon. Both of these colts will build towards Group 1 races later in the spring, but this looks a perfect grading race to see where they are at. We have settled on Ingratiating, who looks perfectly placed to turn the tables on a rival who got the better of him in the Group 3 Maribyrnong Plate on Melbourne Cup Day last year. Ingratiating’s win at Caulfield on August 14 was breathtaking, and considering Damien Oliver thinks there is not much between he and stablemate Anamoe, he clearly has plenty of untapped ability which we should see this spring.
Race 4: Cap D’Antibes Stakes (1100m)
All About Eve is set to resume in the Listed Cap D’Antibes Stakes, and despite plenty of above-average fillies going around, she is sure to run a smart race first-up. With the likes of Dosh, Glistening and Crystal Bound in the race, All About Eve is set to get a cracking tempo to sit off. She has shown a sharp turn of foot in the past, and with a win over the smart Mac ‘N’ Cheese in her career, she clearly has the talent to give this race a proper shake. The three-year-old Star Turn filly found a way to get herself in trouble at Caulfield and then Swan Hill last campaign, but if she sees clear air in the running – and, crucially, in the last 400m – she can finish over the top of her more fancied rivals.
Race 5: The Sofitel (1400m)
Ayrton is in for his biggest test yet when he steps out in The Sofitel. We expect him to get the job done on talent alone, but proven Group types like Crosshaven, Cherry Tortoni and Harbour Views will prove to be no easy beats. From barrier six under John Allen, Ayrton should have no issue in finding a spot in the first half a dozen with cover and in doing so may just get the most economical run imaginable. Look for Allen to get him moving at the 400m mark. With the sharp turn of foot we all know he possesses, Ayrton could finish a touch better than some of his rivals who may be looking for further.
Race 6: Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m)
The Group 2 Let’s Elope Stakes opens the quaddie and pits quality mares Instant Celebrity, Annavisto, Mystic Journey and Turaath against one another over 1400m. With Turaath just holding off Annavisto last time out at Caulfield on August 28 and the uncertainty around Mystic Journey, we have settled on Instant Celebrity as our top selection. Having gone within a half-length of defeating Probabeel at Caulfield in the Group 3 Cockram Stakes, we expect the proven class of the Robert Sangster Stakes winner to be the difference. She will be giving her rivals a fair start from the back of the field, but armed with a powerful sprint – and a gun jockey in Craig Williams – she’ll prove hard to hold out.
Race 7: Bobbie Lewis Quality (1200m)
The Group 2 Bobbie Lewis Quality pits 14 quality sprinters against one another down the infamous Flemington Six. Zoutori is set to resume off a 20-week spell, and with four wins and two minor placings from eight first-up runs, we know he will put on a good show. Having chased home the likes of Portland Sky, Nature Strip, Masked Crusader and Savatiano last campaign, he is sure to appreciate coming up against slightly lower quality sprinters. He went within a length of claiming the Oakleigh Plate during the autumn when lugging 58kg, so we know he will handle the 59.5kg. With four wins from nine goes at the Flemington 1200m, we expect to see Zoutori finish better than his rivals and kick off his spring in fine style.
Race 8: Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m)
The feature event of the day brings together 10 Group 1 winners in a field of 13. Mo’unga showed a stunning turn of foot to get the better of Verry Elleegant in the Winx Stakes last time out, so that’s where our money is going. This will be his first crack at Flemington, but the long straight should suit him down to the ground. Look for Jye McNeil to have the son of Savabeel building through the gears at the right time and finishing over the top of a cracker field that includes the likes of Inspirational Girl, Sir Dragonet and Tofane.
Race 9: Handicap (1700m)
Despite drawing barrier 19 in the final race of the day, the James Cummings-trained Ziegfeld looks a smart play in the get-out stakes. Damien Oliver will need to go forward on the four-year-old son of New Approach, a role Ziegfeld is more than accustomed too. He settled up on speed last time out at Caulfield on August 28 and finished half a length behind No Effort when running second. He looks like he will get the lead uncontested, and with plenty of his rivals looking to get over further ground throughout their campaign, we expect race fitness and the preference of the 1700m to be the difference on the back of a perfect front-running steer from Ollie.
Saturday quaddie tips for Flemington
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