THE SPRING CHAMPION STAKES – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
HISTORY: First run in 1971 when won by Gay Icarus. Before 1978 run in autumn and known as Australasian Champion Stakes.
THE BIGGEST NAMES TO WIN IT: It’s A Dundeel (2012), Tie The Knot (1997), Nothin’ Leica Dane (1995), Stylish Century (1989), Beau Zam (1987), Sir Dapper (1983) and Kingston Town (1979).
* Vanbrugh might not be an out-and-out stayer but it hasn’t stopped bookmakers from making him an odds-on chance to continue trainer Chris Waller’s phenomenal spring.
* Waller also has Devil Hawk in the race and his representation is matched for numbers by Brisbane trainer Desleigh Forster who saddles up Too Good To Refuse and I’m Belucci.
* Glyn Schofield was an able deputy when he filled in on Kermadec to win the George Main Stakes and he takes over from Hugh Bowman on Vanbrugh.
* Young trainer Luke Price will have his first Group One runner in Gloaming Stakes placegetter Man Of Choice.
* Monaco Consul in 2009 last horse to complete Spring Champion-Victoria Derby double.
* Nothin’ Leica Dane also managed feat in 1995, as well as being placed in that year’s Melbourne Cup.
* No filly has won but First Seal came close last year when second to Sweynesse.
“He’s matured a lot this horse. He’s such a sensible horse for a colt because he just does everything you ask him … which is important for big days. Nothing worries him.” – Robbie Fradd on Too Good To Refuse.
“If things go his way he’s got enough ability and stamina to win a race like this but you’ve got to catch him on his day” – Tye Angland on Devil Hawk.