Interlocuter favoured to claim G2 Villiers

Villiers Stakes favourite Interlocuter.
Godolphin galloper Interlocuter is a warm favourite to win the Villiers Stakes at Randwick.

Interlocuter can continue to justify his move to Australian racing from France when the Godolphin import steps up in class for the Villiers Stakes at Randwick.

After being taken through his grades, the five-year-old is now poised to make his black-type debut in Saturday’s Group 2 feature over 1600m.

Interlocuter seeks his fourth successive win – and an exemption into April’s $3 million Doncaster Mile – when he drops back in trip to take on a high quality field as the favourite.

“He’s been able to flow through his grades really nicely and there’s no he deserves his chance in a Stakes race,” trainer James Cummings said.

“The pressure is on now that he’s favourite here in the Villiers which always seems to be a hotly contested race, but he’s performed so well right from the day he got off the plane.”

Godolphin’s head trainer still acknowledged Interlocuter faced a stiff challenge despite being installed as the $3 favourite.

Irish import Mister Sea Wolf, who finished second in the Group Three Festival Stakes when making his Australia debut on December 2 is on the second line of betting at $6.

Queensland visitor Crack Me Up ($8) and Cabeza De Vaca ($9) are the only other single-figure.

“He’s going to have to get to the next level to be looking good against those horses,” Cummings said.

Interlocuter started his winning sequence over 2100m in Wyong in April.

A month earlier Interlocuter had his first start in Australia in a 1600m race at Newcastle.

He covered that distance again on October 7 when making a successful return from a freshen up at Randwick.

Interlocuter has had another mini-break following his win in the November Topaz Handicap (1900m) on November 18 and Cummings was confident he was primed to handle a shorter assignment.

“His last couple of runs have been in longer races, but he’s freshened up comfortably,” he said.

Godolphin are also represented by six-year-old gelding Federal ($17), who is seeking his first win for 17 starts.

Federal ran sixth in the Festival Stakes where he wasn’t helped by a soft track.

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