The curtain closes on the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival this Saturday with two final Group 1s including the Champagne Stakes (Race 7) at Royal Randwick.

Inglis Sires' winner Manaal

Michael Freedman’s Inglis Sires’ winning filly Manaal takes on the boys again in the 2024 Champagne Stakes field on Saturday. Photo: Steve Hart.

This $1 million showdown for two-year-olds represents the final leg of the juvenile Triple Crown.

A small but high-quality field of eight horses has been assembled, with the unbeaten filly Manaal installed as the early favourite at $2.35 through Ladbrokes.

Drawn in gate four with Jamie Kah taking the reins, Manaal boasts an unblemished record at Randwick, having won all three of her starts here, including a thrilling victory in the Group 1 Inglis Sires’ last fortnight.

Although the margin was narrow that day, her ability to perform on a Heavy (8) track suggests the firmer going on Saturday should have her running out a mile no worries.

John O’Shea‘s colt Linebacker is the closest challenger in the markets at $3.

This son of Super Seth is undefeated in his two career starts, but faces a significant step up in class after a narrow win in the Group 3 T.L. Baillieu.

Tommy Berry will be in the saddle for Linebacker as he tackles the mile distance for the first time.

Two other runners are attracting attention at single-figure odds: Godolphin‘s Broadsiding ($5.50) and Anode ($8) trained by Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott.

Too Darn Hot colt Broadsiding has experience over the 1600m distance, having broken his maiden status at Randwick last Saturday in the Fernhill Handicap.

He’ll be aiming to become the first horse since Prized Icon (2016) to complete the Fernhill Handicap – Champagne Stakes double.

Anode, meanwhile, comes into the race with a record of two seconds and a seventh in his four starts.

He’ll be hoping for a return to drier track conditions after struggling on the Heavy track in the Sires’.

The Champagne Stakes is shaping up to be a fascinating contest, with Manaal facing a challenge from several talented colts.

The weather could also play a role, with rain forecast potentially impacting the track conditions.

The race is scheduled for 3:00 pm (AEST) on Saturday.

2024 Champagne Stakes Field

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Probable Weight Penalty Hcp Rating
1 13227 ANODE Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott Adam Hyeronimus 3 56.5kg
2 11 LINEBACKER (NZ) John O’Shea Tommy Berry 5 56.5kg
3 4331 BROADSIDING James Cummings James McDonald 7 56.5kg
4 4×2616 FEARLESS Peter & Paul Snowden Michael Dee 2 56.5kg
5 32 EL CASTELLO Anthony Cummings Tyler Schiller 8 56.5kg
6 489 TENBURY WELLS Brad Widdup Zac Lloyd (a) 6 56.5kg
7 1×2151 MANAAL Michael Freedman Ms Jamie Kah 4 54.5kg
8 2701 IN HER EYES Leon & Troy Corstens Dylan Gibbons (a) 1 54.5kg

Table Credit: Racing Australia.

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About The Author

Lucy Henderson

Lucy is an experienced horse racing journalist that has been a crucial member of the team for the better part of a decade. She has taken great delight in covering champion mares Black Caviar and Winx throughout their careers and always has a soft spot for a winning filly.