A capacity field of 16 plus one emergency has been declared for the VRC St Leger at Flemington.
The staying test, at Listed level for three-year-olds, is the last of its kind run in Australia although the ATC version was reintroduced this season, but is also open to older stayers.
The VRC St Leger on Wednesday was first run in 1857 and pre-dates the Melbourne Cup with the Victoria Derby, first held in 1855, the oldest feature race.
Those three races were once described as the pinnacle on the Victorian racing scene, but the St Leger has lost some of its glory in recent years.
From its beginnings it was regarded as one of Australia’s principal races and when Group classification came into being in 1979 was awarded Group Two status which it carried until 1990 before being downgraded to Group Three and then Listed level in 2006.
Two of the legends of the Australian turf, Phar Lap and Tulluch, won the race during their illustrious careers while there have been multiple horses to have won both the St Leger and Melbourne Cup with Gurner’s Lane in 1982 the latest to do so.
Lindsay Park has four runners on Wednesday and will be looking to add to its tally after David Hayes last won the race with Berlioz in 2009.
Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott have two runners, Runaway and Delos, with Waterhouse looking to repeat her wins of 2013 and 2014 with Hippopus and Order Of The Sun.
Godolphin trainer James Cummings is chasing his first success with Astoria after his grandfather Bart Cummings won the race a record seven times.