Trainer Mike Moroney is keen to test out his up and coming three year old Alabama Express against the older horses in the Group 1 $500,000 Neds C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Alabama Express is one of three three-year-olds among the seventeen C.F. Orr Stakes nominations with the James Cummings trained Microphone and Colin Little’s Vega Knight the other two youngsters in the mix.
The lightly raced Alabama Express is the winner of three of his six race starts and Moroney would like to test the Redoute’s Choice colt in Group 1 weight for age company after he resumed for a handy two lengths win against his own age over 1100m down the Flemington straight on January 18.
Alabama Express has already tasted Stakes success with a win in the Listed $175,000 Polytrack Gothic Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Caulfield Cup Day during the 2019 Melbourne Spring Carnival but the colt will be facing a huge rise in class if Moroney decides to tackle weight for age company.
“My advice to the owners, and I’m one of them — but nowhere near the biggest — is to run him in the Group 1,” Moroney told the Herald Sun.
“He’s a stallion prospect, he’s already got value, but he can improve his value by a fair bit.”
“He’s going to have to improve being a colt against the older horses but I’d like to have a go at the Group 1.”
“He’s won over 1400m before at Caulfield. He’s up to the better three-year-olds; whether he’s up to older weight-for-age horses we’ll find out.
“He’s a pretty good horse and he can make his own luck racing on the speed. I know he’s one of the better three-year-olds (so) I suppose if the race is too strong he can run in the three-year-old race.”
Alabama Express is also among the seventeen nominations for the Group 2 $200,000 Hyland Race Colours Autumn Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
The nominations for the C.F. Orr Stakes are loaded with Group 1 winners and includes Avilius, Begood Toya Mother, Fierce Impact, Hey Doc, Kings Will Dream, Levendi, Microphone and Scales Of Justice.
Alabama Express is well fancied in the betting for C.F. Orr Stakes and is sharing the second line at $6 with Begood Toya Mother behind the early favourite Scales Of Justice at $3.40
Early betting for the 2020 C.F. Orr Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.40 Scales Of Justice, $6 Alabama Express, Begood Toya Mother, $7 Hey Doc, $8 Microphone, $9 Fierce Impact, $11 Avilius, $14 Night’s Watch, $15 Ringerdingding, $21 Fifty Stars, $26 Kings Will Dream, $31 So Si Bon, $34 Mirage Dancer, $51 Streets Of Avalon, Vega Knight, $61 Levendi, $101 Sircconi.
Nominations for the 2020 C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m)
|#||Last 10||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Hcp Rating|
|1||1x2517x1||ALABAMA EXPRESS||C||3||Michael Moroney||81|
|2||511x42147x||AVILIUS (GB)||G||6||James Cummings||116|
|3||1111x161x7||BEGOOD TOYA MOTHER||G||5||Daniel Bowman||107|
|4||x6720x211x||FIERCE IMPACT (JPN)||H||6||Matthew Smith||112|
|5||0x6768256x||FIFTY STARS (IRE)||H||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||107|
|6||1x7x58x312||HEY DOC||G||6||Tony & Calvin McEvoy||113|
|7||36Px58166x||KINGS WILL DREAM (IRE)||G||6||Chris Waller||110|
|10||0x1322x30x||MIRAGE DANCER (GB)||H||6||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||110|
|11||000x59260x||NIGHT’S WATCH (NZ)||G||6||Chris Waller||105|
|13||x53x1215x1||SCALES OF JUSTICE||G||7||Lindsey Smith||114|
|15||50x125040x||SO SI BON||G||6||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||104|
|16||x5040189x3||STREETS OF AVALON||G||5||Shane Nichols||103|
|17||7313027x||VEGAS KNIGHT||G||3||Colin Little||72|