2015 Sapphire Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw

April 8th, 2015

A talented field of 13 fillies and mare has been confirmed for Saturday’s Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick, highlighted by the inclusion of some of the Autumn Carnival’s most exciting prospects.

Avoid Lightning has been confirmed in the 2015 Sapphire Stakes final field. Photo: Steve Hart

Avoid Lightning has been confirmed in the 2015 Sapphire Stakes final field. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia

Avoid Lightning was unable to figure when tenth in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) last time out on March 21st, but will appreciate the step-up in distance and step back in class for the 2015 Sapphire Stakes.

Posting ten wins and a further seven minor place finishes through her 25 career starts to date, Avoid Lightning arguably found career-best form to date through the 2014 racing calendar, highlighted by a credible third in the Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) and success in each of the Listed June Stakes (1100m) and Group 3 The Nivison (1200m).

Returning for third in the Group 2 Millie Fox Stakes (1300m) this time, the Blevic mare will leave from barrier 8 in the 2015 Sapphire Stakes; a race for which she ran second last year.

Shamalia carries winning form into the 2015 Sapphire Stakes and poses a huge threat from barrier 6 with leading jockey Hugh Bowman confirmed to take the ride.

Unable to secure much of a consistent run of form through spring, co-trainer James Cummings was thrilled with the condition of the Shamardal mare prior to her return in the Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) on March 21st and his confidence was repaid when the four-year-old hit the line two lengths in the clear of Mossfun.

Three-year-old Onemorezeta has steadily built to the task over three starts this time and is arguably offered her best chance of success to date in being charged with carrying just 54kgs.

Securing several impressive results through her maiden racing preparation through spring, capped by consecutive wins in the Shop With The TAB Handicap (1000m) and Group 3 Gucci Stakes (1100m), the Onemorenomore filly was unlucky to be blocked late when fifth in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) first-up this time.

Having since placed fourth in the Listed Fireball Stakes (1100m) and third in the Listed Gosford Guineas (1200m), Onemorezeta will have to overcome the slightly wide barrier 9 but is sure to be boosted by the addition of veteran hoop Jim Cassidy.

Bound For Earth has only appeared on course once competitively this year but is sure to take valuable condition from the run when contesting the 2015 Sapphire Stakes.

A notable performer for trainer David Vandyke through the 2014 Autumn Carnival, Bound For Earth ran fourth in each of the Group 3 Kevin Hayes Stakes (1200m) and Group 2 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) before being beaten by the bob of a head in the Listed Darby Munro Stakes (1200m).

Having placed fourth in the Birthday Card Stakes first-up, Bound For Earth will likely receive the run of the race from barrier 5.

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2015 Sapphire Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Hcp Rating
1 1384x69x88 VILLA VERDE Anthony Cummings Brenton Avdulla 2 56kg 102
2 5x4428x9x4 BOUND FOR EARTH David Vandyke Blake Shinn 5 56kg 92
3 12113x1x30 AVOID LIGHTNING Les Bridge Tim Clark 8 55.5kg 107
4 x44180x413 GRIANTE David Brideoake Steven Arnold 1 55.5kg 100
5 21x44571x3 POLITENESS Robert Smerdon Nicholas Hall 7 55.5kg 98
6 148x0310x1 SHAMALIA Bart & James Cummings Hugh Bowman 6 55kg 95
7 7151542×85 FINE BUBBLES Kris Lees Zac Purton 12 55kg 91
8 x63311x359 ATMOSPHERICAL David Pfieffer Glen Boss (late alt) 4 54kg 99
9 32x52x1115 CHLOE IN PARIS Ciaron Maher Damien Oliver 11 54kg 97
10 7x85040x20 PERON Peter G Moody Tommy Berry 10 54kg 96
11 5233x6046x BELLE DE COEUR Chris Waller Joao Moreira 13 54kg 87
12 9x111x543 ONEMOREZETA Kris Lees Jim Cassidy 9 54kg 85
13 5161×17101 FINE MIST Bede Murray Jason Collett 3 53kg 82