A classy list of ten runners has been confirmed to contest this weekend’s featured Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick, offering punters exceptional value from a betting standpoint and several key opportunities to place a winning bet.
Having returned to racing in great form this season, classy three-year-old Panzer Division currently featured as favourite in George Main Stakes betting markets at generous $4.60 odds, ahead of Royal Descent ($5), Sacred Falls and Lucia Valentina; currently sharing the third line of betting at $5.50 odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Will Panzer Division justify favouritism and win the 2014 George Main Stakes, or will one of his classy rivals find the line in the clear?
Lucia Valentina ($5.50)
Securing an impressive total of four wins and three minor places from just ten competitive starts to date, Lucia Valentina has returned to the track in typically blistering form this time in and is a great chance of paying out on $5.50 odds for the George Main Stakes. Beginning her career under the guidance of Kiwi trainer Stephen Marsh before transferring to the care of Kris Lees at start of this year, the Savabeel mare ran on for third in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) first-up, and while appearing to be severely outclassed when twelfth in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) on March 22nd, responded in the best way possible when charging home to win the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) on April 5th; returning to the paddock after claiming third in the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m). Displaying a keen turn of foot to win the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) first-up, Lucia Valentina is a great chance of success from barrier 6 this weekend.
The winner of the 2013 edition of the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m), Hawkspur was touted as one to watch over the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, but was largely unable to live up to the hype which seemed to follow his campaign everywhere. Finishing third in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) and fourth in both the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) most notably over autumn, the Purrealist gelding more than stamped his claims as a serious spring contender again last time out; charging home to win the Group 2 Chelsmford Stakes (1600m). Allocated the ideal barrier 4, punters may find value in including Hawkspur as a selection in a George Main Stakes Trifecta or Quinella bet.
Gypsy Diamond ($31)
A standout performer over the 2014 Autumn Carnival, Gypsy Diamond without doubt offers punters the best value for success on all runners confirmed for the 2014 George Main Stakes and is more than worth consideration for a bet at $11 odds to win, or $7.70 to run a place. Running on for second in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) first-up this year, the Not A Single Doubt filly appeared to be losing form when fourth in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) and ninth in the Coolmore Classic, however returned to the fore when winning the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) and finishing a close second in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) on April 19th. While yet to figure over two starts this time in, trainers Peter and Paul Snowden are confident Gypsy Diamond’s strong work produced over the last week will translate into a competitive performance in the George Main Stakes.
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