A new era in Victorian racing will kick off this weekend when the world's richest mile event, the G1 All-Star Mile, debuts at Flemington racecourse with a total purse of AU$5 million (US$3.5 million). In an exciting first-of-its-kind venture, Racing Victoria invited fans to vote for 10 of the 14 starters. The other four, including veteran Happy Clapper, were awarded wildcard spots and are very happy Winx's owners decided to forgo the event.
The first race on All-Star Mile day goes to post at 12:40 p.m., Melbourne time on March 16th (9:40 p.m. EST or 6:40 p.m. PST on Friday March 15th). All the day's action can be live streamed on Sky Racing World's newly launched High Definition (HD) simulcast, which is available across 100 digital platforms, including skyracingworld.com. The day's other feature races include Rosehill's G1 Coolmore Classic, G2 Pago Pago and the G2 Magic Night.
Fans are in for an evening of high-quality competition this Friday as they will see fourteen of Australia's top gallopers chase the All-Star Mile crown and a corresponding place in history. Notably absent from that list is Winx. This creates an opportunity for Happy Clapper, who ran second to the mighty mare for the fourth time in nine meetings in the recent Chipping Norton Stakes, to finally escape the shadow of Australia's top horse.
The Pat Webster-trained Happy Clapper has come into his own as a superstar, winning four times in ten races over the mile, including the Doncaster Mile in 2018 and the 2017 Epsom Handicap. Happy Clapper will jump out from barrier nine (seven if emergencies miss out) as a 4/1 chance in the All-Star Mile.
The Godolphin star filly, Alizee, has been the top pick from the start and currently sits at 2/1 on the betting market. Having blossomed under James Cummings' stewardship, Alizee will make her Flemington track debut, fresh from winning the G1 Futurity Stakes at Caulfield. While its unclear how she'll handle the track, the daughter of Sepoy is no stranger to excelling over a mile, having won the G1 Flight Stakes and Coolmore Legacy at the distance.
Alizee, who will be ridden by Winx's long-time jockey Hugh Bowman, landed wide in barrier 12, but if none of the four emergencies secures a start, she will ease into barrier 10.
Mystic Journey emerged as bookmakers' second-best bet at 7/2 even though she also drew poorly with barrier 16. The three-year-old filly is riding high on her runaway triumph over fellow All-Star Mile contenders Hawkshot and Amphitrite in the G1 Australian Guineas, becoming only the fifth filly to win the race.
Hartnell, at 10/1, will also represent the blue stable under James Cummings. A top-level runner in Australia with 26 Group 1 races under his belt, Hartnell put on a show in last year's Epsom Handicap, winning the Randwick spring mile in record time. He has been flying under the radar since his standout performance, but he demonstrated his pace and fearlessness with a memorable third behind Alizee in the Futurity Stakes. Hartnell drew favorably, landing barrier two.
The rest of the All-Star Mile field is composed of talent that should make for an unforgettable showdown. They include last year's G1 Thousand Guineas champion Amphitrite (10/1), G2 Autumn Stakes winner Hawkshot (10/1), Grunt (16/1), Material Man (25/1), Moss 'n' Dale (25/1), Foundry (100/1), Man of His Word (100/1), Mr Money Bags (150/1), Balf's Choice (150/1) and Urban Ruler (150/1).
The All-Star Mile is available to live-stream in HD on skyracingworld.com and major ADW platforms such as TVG, TwinSpires, Xpressbet, NYRABets, WatchandWager, HPIbet, AmWager, and BetAmerica. Wagering is also available via these ADW platforms. Fans can get free access to live-streaming, past performances and expert picks on all races at skyracingworld.com.
About David Haslett
A former Managing Director of Sportech Racing, David was appointed President and CEO of Sky Racing World in April 2014. The Louisville, Kentucky-based company, a subsidiary of Australian wagering firm Tabcorp, provides Australian, New Zealand, South African and South Korean thoroughbred racing and Australian Harness racing content for simulcast horse-race wagering to multiple North America-facing ADW brands and race-tracks.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2019 Paulick Report.