2018 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes
Saturday 13th October 2018
Race 8: 4.35pm (AEST)
2000 metres, open, WFA
21015 1. BENBATL (1), J: PAT COSGRAVE, W: 59 KGS, 6.00
X8173 2. HUMIDOR (7), J: DAMIAN LANE, W: 59 KGS, 7.50
56X02 3. TOSEN BASIL (2), J: JOHN ALLEN, W: 59 KGS, 11.00
7X006 4. HARLEM (6), J: REGAN BAYLISS, W: 59 KGS, 91.00
2433X 5. THE CLIFFSOFMOHER (8), J: MARK ZAHRA, W: 59 KGS, 11.00
16X21 6. HOMESMAN (10), J: JORDAN CHILDS, W: 59 KGS, 9.00
110X4 7. BLAIR HOUSE (11), J: JAMES DOYLE, W: 59 KGS, 11.00
X2131 8. NIGHT’S WATCH (3), J: BEN ALLEN, W: 59 KGS, 9.50
40250 9. INVICTUS PRINCE (4), J: CRAIG WILLIAMS, W: 59 KGS, 101.00
4X322 10. D’ARGENTO (12), J: JAMES MCDONALD, W: 58 KGS, 4.60
31407 11. SEDANZER (9), J: STEPHEN BASTER, W: 57 KGS, 41.00
1X613 12. UNFORGOTTEN (5), J: MICHAEL WALKER, W: 56 KGS, 5.00
Form and Predictions
This years edition of the Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes looks like an absolute cracker. A number of international gallopers are racing this weekend, all doing their best to get into form before the three big races: Caulfield Cup, W.S Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup.
It wasn’t so long ago that we saw only three horses contest the 2016 Caulfield Stakes, with Winx scaring off all other rivals bar two. Now we are back to a decent race with a decent field, chances galore from horses 1 to 12.
All eyes will be on the British and Irish gallopers, in particular BENBATL, BLAIR HOUSE, CLIFFS OF MOHER, plus ex pat HOMESMAN. This should be a fascinating contest, with the first pair resuming their Dubai/Meydan rivalry from earlier in the year.
Cliffs Of Moher is gearing up for a tilt at the Melbourne Cup and really needs to get racing miles under his belt. Homesman won the Underwood Stakes last start and appears to be a horse on a mission.
The two early favourites will be Sydney stablemates from the Chris Waller yard: D’ARGENTO and UNFORGOTTEN, both Group 1 winners last season.
D’Argento has been in good form, but he meets an international quality field here, so it will be intriguing to see where he stacks up. It’s not clear whether his best distance is 1600m (1 mile) or 2000m (1 m, 4f), but he did win the Rosehill Guineas at the latter distance as a three-year-old. He’ll be easy to spot, the grey entire is a flashy individual.
Unforgotten is currently one of Australia’s best mares other than her stablemate Winx, so she is in esteemed company. She could go close. A winner of the ATC Oaks back in the autumn over 2400m, she’s capable and versatile over distance.
We shouldn’t forget the Darren Weir pairing of HUMIDOR and TOSEN BASIL. Humidor needs no introduction as he is an elite racehorse. He always goes well at Caulfield and because of the quality line-up, his market price could be attractive to many. Tosen Basil returned to something close to his Japanese reputation and form, with a fine second in the Underwood Stakes back on Sept 30th (video below). His starting price is out beyond A$10, certainly an enticement from a betting perspective.
For me though, I’m going with the British contingent.
Betting Gods Picks
Blair House, Benbatl, Unforgotten
Video Reference Guide
2018 Jebel Hatta (Blair House, Benbatl)
2018 Underwood Stakes (Blair House, Homesman, Humidor, Tosen Basil)