Simona seems set to be all the rage in the 1800m Champion Fillies Stakes at Borrowdale Park on Sunday.
Although this is a small field it doesn’t lack interest. I wonder what the opening betting will be?
CHAMPION FILLIES STAKES due off at 15.15 pm
SIMONA – 5 -year-old mare by Gimmethegreenlight (AUS) – Drawn 3 – 60 kgs – MR 90 – Caleb Habib – Bridget Stidolph.
Simona won this race last year, beating Belle Epoque by 1.25 lengths. There were 8 runners in 2017 but of these only Simona is lining up for a repeat performance. She ran off a Merit Rating of 63, last year and carried 54 kgs. Since then a flood has passed under the bridge. Simona has now won 8 races and been placed 9 times from 23 starts. She is the reigning Spey Bridge Champion Older Horse and Horse Of The Year for the 2017/18 season. On Sunday Simona gives away oodles of weight to the other three runners but remains the horse they need to beat.
SOLINSKI – 5-year-old-mare by Fencing Master (GB) – Drawn 4 – 52kgs – MR 70 – Jarryd Penny – Kirk Swanson.
Solinski won five of her seven previous starts, including the 1800m Silver Slipper, the Bloodstock SA 2000, the Zimbabwe Derby and the Zimbabwe Oaks, but has not raced since June 2017. She is coming back from an injury which resulted in this gallant girl missing out on the whole of her four-year-old career and she has not met Simona before. It is a tall ask to expect Solinski to score in this one but…you never know.
IN THE MOOD – 4-year-old filly by Bold Silvano – Drawn 2 -50 kgs – MR 62 – Stalone Sawere – Kirk Swanson.
In The Mood recently won the 1260m Sable Flyers and is an improving sort. Dead-heated with Magical Charm in a 1600m Novice Plate, and finished third to Raven Girl in the 2000m Zimbabwe Oaks. Altogether has won three and placed six times from 9 starts. She has raced against Simona before – on the 29th July over 1600m, finishing four lengths back when in receipt of 4 kgs. Much better off in the weights this time.
MIA FINOLA – 3-year-old-filly by Var (USA) – Drawn 1 – 50 kgs – MR 81 – Brendon McNaughton – Bridget Stidolph.
Mia Finola has hardly put a foot wrong, to date, winning four and being placed four times from 8 starts. Has recently completed a hat-trick but this a different ball game. We will have to wait and see how she fares in this company.
Photograph: Champion Fillies Stakes 2017 won by Simona with Jarryd Penny in the irons.