Makybe Diva Stakes betting at Ladbrokes.com.au indicates that the James Cummings trained warhorse Hartnell is ready to fire when he leads the field out in another Group 1 contest at Flemington today.

Hartnell, above, has firmed in the betting for the 2019 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Hartnell, above, has firmed in the betting for the 2019 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Hartnell’s price was put up at $15 when the final field for the Group 1 $750,000 PFD Food Services Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) was released on Wednesday, but on race morning the multiple Group 1 winner is on the third line of betting at $9.50.

The Cox Plate favourite Mystic Journey heads the Makybe Diva Stakes betting at $2.10 ahead of Memsie Stakes winner Scales Of Justice at $4.50.

Hartnell will be having his third 2019 Spring Carnival outing in the Makybe Diva Stakes and Cummings said that the veteran Group 1 performer is ready to fire.

“We really wanted to make sure for the Makybe Diva that he is ready to fire, but it’s a little bit of a fork in the road for him,” Cummings said.

“We like to keep him a little bit on the fresh side, but he’s really fit now third-up and without talking ourselves into it, it’s a race where he can produce his best.”

Cummings said that Hartnell’s performance in the Makybe Diva Stakes will determine what direction he takes for the rest of the Spring Carnival and he is not ruling out a third appearance in the Group 1 $5m Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley on October 26.

“We’ve got our options open with him, but he’s really ready to go while the Cox Plate has been mentioned in dispatches too,” Cummings said.

“He’s been able to produce that one big run for us every preparation.”

“We could go to the Underwood, he holds a nomination for the Epsom or we can keep him fresh and go to a race like the Toorak.”

Hartnell has been around the minor prizemoney at his two runs back this preparation with a first up third for Hugh Bowman in the Group 2 $200,000 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 17 followed by a second up fourth for Craig Williams in the Group 1 $1m New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield a fortnight ago.

Craig Williams takes the ride again on Hartnell who will jump from gate eleven in the fifteen horse Makybe Diva Stakes field.

Betting for the 2019 Makybe Diva Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2.20 Mystic Journey, $4.20 Scales Of Justice, $9.50 Hartnell, $12 Yucatan, Kings Will Dream, $21 Humidor, $26 Rostropovich, $31 Mr Quickie, $34 Night’s Watch,  Fifty Stars, $41 Qafila, $51 Gailo Chop, $71 Oohood, $101 Gatting, $201 Sound.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.