Despite there being only seven runners in this year’s Schillaci Stakes, it shapes up as one of the most intriguing races on the card. Returning from spells are Not Listnin’tome, twice Group 1 placed from six starts, exciting colt Rubrick, and 2013’s Golden Slipper winner Overreach. All have trialled well recently and whilst the three dominate the betting, early markets can’t decide which one of them poses the biggest threat. Not Listnin’tome is $3.70, Rubrick $3.30F, and Overreach $4.20.
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1. SESSIONS – J McDonald (7) 58kgs
With two good barrier trials under his belt, punters were expecting the Godolphin runner to make it back to back victories in the The Shorts (1100m) three weeks ago. He settled back and as they swung for home, looked set to unleash a big finish but instead, he just kept closing in the run to the line, finishing fourth (3.2 lengths) behind Terravista. Second up last prep run a close fourth in the G1 The Galaxy but only had 56.5kgs there. It’s now been a year since his last win and he has missed a place in his last six outings.
2. ICONIC – N Hall (2) 58.5kgs
Produced a big finish from the second half of the field to claim the Listed Carlyon Stakes (1000m) first up from a spell with, Angels Beach, Angelic Light and Shamal Wind – all good since, rounding out the top four. Four weeks later the Bel Esprit gelding travelled to Adelaide, lining up in the Listed Wylie Quality as the 2/1 favourite. Again he settled back but this time, left his run too late, closing well for third, two lengths behind Whitlam. Will find this race, where he carries an extra 1.5kgs more than last start, no easier.
3. NOT LISTENIN’TOME – D Oliver (6)
It’s been seven months since we last saw this lightly raced 4yo gelding race. On that occasion he ran second to Appearance, who was at the time was at the peak of her powers, in the G1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m). That was the second time in his short career the son of Dylan Thomas has been placed at the elite level and he looked set for a big return judging by his recent barrier trial effort at Rosehill. Sure to be right in the mix.
4. OVERREACH – T Berry (6)
Last year’s Golden Slipper winner will make her long awaited return to racing, her first start in a year and a half. She trialled in brilliant fashion for trainer Gai Waterhouse in Sydney three weeks ago, scooting over the 740m in good time and winning by six lengths. Waterhouse has had the Exceed And Excel filly in and out of the stable on several occasions over the past twelve months and must now be satisfied that she’s back to her best. Cannot be underestimated.
5. PLATELET – B Melham (3)
Rounded out her last campaign with three consecutive seconds, the last two of which were at Group 1 level – the Robert Sangster and Goodwood Handicap. Resumes here with no trial and although she won first up last prep, that was over 955m at the Valley and in easier class of race. Her second up record is stronger and against a smart field here, will be better for the run.
6. GREGERS – C Williams (4)
Won a fillies and mares race comfortably first up and was given every chance in the run when winning the G2 Cockram Stakes (1200m) at her following start. She then stepped up to the 1400m journey of the G2 Let’s Elope Stakes but from an on-pace position, couldn’t quite hold out the later challengers of Commanding Jewel, Dear Demi and co., running sixth (1.7 lengths). Freshened up with a month off for the return to 1000m and will get her chance from gate four.
7. RUBRICK – K McEvoy (1)
The boom 2yo returns and with great anticipation given his smart barrier trial last week at Rosehill. The impeccably bred son of Encosta De Lago won his first two start in smart style before running fourth (2.8 lengths) in the G1 Blue Diamond Stakes behind Earthquake where, from a wide gate, he had to use too much juice in the early stages. Will have to ensure he holds the fence here from the jump and with only 53kgs on his back, will give the something to chase if he can.
It’ll be on as soon as the gates crush back here. Rubrick will have to hold the inside and push forward whilst Gregers and Overreach keeping him honest. It’ll provide the perfect trail for Not Listnin’tome. Overreach’s trial was impressive and genuinely hoping she returns with a big run.