2016 Apollo Stakes Nominations Released

February 8th, 2016

Sixteen runners have been included in nominations for Saturday’s Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m); highlighted by the pending appearance of several previous winners at the highest level of Australian racing at Royal Randwick on Saturday.

Boban is one of five in 2016 Apollo Stakes nominations for Chris Waller. Photo: Steve Hart

Boban is one of five in 2016 Apollo Stakes nominations for Chris Waller. Photo: Steve Hart

Leading trainer Chris Waller has included five of his stable’s stars in 2016 Apollo Stakes nominations including Boban and Winx.

Winner of five Group 1 titles, Boban returned to racing in exceptional form during the 2015 Brisbane Winter Carnival; winning the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) before placing a close second in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m).

Resuming in spring for success in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) first-up, the Bernardini gelding placed fourth in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) but failed to make anything of an impact in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) on November 7th.

Winx has fast become the stable star of the Waller camp and will be very hard to beat in the Apollo Stakes first-up.

Returning to the paddock after breaking through for a maiden win at the highest level in the Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2200m) in winter, Winx resumed for success in the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes (1300m) before taking out each of the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) and Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m).

Suited to the conditions of the Apollo Stakes, Winx has been confirmed to be partnered by leading and regular hoop Hugh Bowman on Saturday.

Godolphin are also set to hold a strong hand after trainer John O’Shea included Hauraki and Magic Hurricane in Apollo Stakes nominations.

Capping a standout three-year-old preparation with success in the Group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) and second in the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m), Hauraki clearly required a couple of runs when resuming in spring but placed second in the Group 3 Craven Plate (2000m) and a credible eighth in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) most notably.

Magic Hurricane was one of the stronger and more consistent Godolphin runners in spring and will launch his Group 1 The BMW (2400m) campaign in the Apollo Stakes.

Placing third in a Rosehill minor over 1400m on August 15th, the Hurricane Run gelding returned to winning form in the Listed Premier’s Cup (1800m) a fortnight later.

Placing second to Preferment in the Group 2 Hill Stakes (2000m) on September 19th, Magic Hurricane has not been seen at the races since breaking through for a maiden Group 1 success in The Metropolitan (2400m) on October 3rd.

Joe Pride has been pleased with the benefit taken by Tiger Tees since a first-up run for fourth in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) on January 30th and has included the veteran in 2016 Apollo Stakes nominations.

A Group 1 winner having taken out the 2014 edition of The Galaxy (1100m), Tiger Tees has been set for similar races this time and should prove tough to beat on a wet track in the Apollo Stakes, should that eventuate.

The 2016 Apollo Stakes final field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.

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2016 Apollo Stakes Nominations

# Last 10 Horse Sex Age Trainer Hcp Rating
1 70x12x149x BOBAN G 6 Chris Waller 116
2 21x692330x BOHEMIAN LILY (NZ) M 4 Gai Waterhouse 98
3 1x711x6013 CENTRE PIVOT G 5 Peter Robl 102
4 52x0x3399x DIBAYANI (IRE) G 6 David Hayes & Tom Dabernig 105
5 31x075003x GRAND MARSHAL (GB) G 6 Chris Waller 106
6 141x98046x GUST OF WIND (NZ) M 4 John Sargent 105
7 0212x0728x HAURAKI G 4 John O’Shea 104
8 210x09936x LEEBAZ (NZ) G 6 Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes 104
9 55x143121x MAGIC HURRICANE (IRE) G 6 John O’Shea 107
10 9x5383482x MESSENE G 7 Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes 107
11 111x2511x PRESS STATEMENT C 3 Chris Waller 109
12 1x400x0x65 RIVER LAD G 8 Kris Lees 107
13 x120x281x2 SOLICIT M 5 Gerald Ryan 104
14 2x80x568x4 TIGER TEES (NZ) G 8 Joseph Pride 107
15 42x758701x WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ) G 7 Chris Waller 110
16 15211x111x WINX M 4 Chris Waller 116