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The Champagne Stakes is a Group 1 race, held for two-year-olds, at Royal Randwick Racecourse. The $600k mile feature is the third and final leg of the 2YO Triple Crown, preceded by the Group 1 Golden Slipper, and the Group 1 Sires Produce Stakes.
This year, the Gary Portelli trained Fireburn, is looking to take out the illustrious Triple Crown, after her dominant win in both the Slipper and the Sires Produce. The last horse to complete the 2YO Triple Crown, was champion colt Pierro, back in 2012.
The market for this year’s Champagne Stakes suggests Fireburn all but has the race and the Triple Crown sewn up. Dabble currently has her $1.55 favourite ahead of She’s Extreme at $3.90. At this stage, the only other runner in single figures is Williamsburg, at $8.00.
However, as we know with horse racing, anything can happen, and the mile may test this field of 2YOs, as their preparations near an end. So, we have dissected each of the horses’ chances for you! Read on below to find our runner by runner preview of the 2022 Champagne Stakes along with The Shark’s best tips.
1. Let’srollthedice (4) – $11
Jockey – Damian Lane 56.5kg
Trainer – Danny O’Brien
Was a dominant maiden winner in early March, before taking a huge leap to score a strong win in G2 company at Flemington. He was then sent east to Sydney where he got back and made good late headway in the G1 Sires Produce behind Fireburn.
He steps up to a mile now, and should get a firmer racing surface here, which should aid his chances. Has to find 5+ lengths on his last effort, if he is to beat the favourite, but he does get a few things in his favour this time round.
2. Williamsburg (3) – $8.00
Jockey – Kerrin McEvoy 56.5kg
Trainer – Gerald Ryan & Sterling Alexiou
Well bred colt, who has relished the wet tracks in recent weeks. Comes into this after a strong win in Listed company at this track and distance. Doubt he will get the heavy surface he has been victorious on at his last couple, but will present rock hard fit and has no problems at the trip.
3. Counttheheadlights (5) – $26
Jockey – John Allen 56.5kg
Trainer – Ciaron Maher & David Eustace
Won well on debut, before finishing midfield in both the Blue Diamond Prelude, and the Blue Diamond Stakes. Resumed from a little freshen in the Sires Produce, where he got back and made steady ground to the line.
“It makes our job a little bit more difficult with a small field.”
Can She’s Extreme turn the tables on Fireburn in Saturday’s Group 1 Champagne Stakes at Randwick? @TommyBerry21 hopes so, plus his thoughts on Mo’unga in the All Aged. @tabcomau @gregprichard pic.twitter.com/VybSKu0JL6
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) April 14, 2022
Steps up to the mile now, which on breeding looks a big query, but judging off his recent runs seems no issue. Probably needs to find a few lengths to win this, but shouldn’t be far away from the action, and comes from a strong yard.
4. Wealthy Investor (1) – $126
Jockey – Joshua Parr 56.5kg
Trainer – Damien Lane
Ran some good races last prep over sprint trips, but has been completely outclassed this time in, the latest behind Fireburn. Capable of winning races, but highly doubt this will be one of them.
5. Fireburn (2) – $1.55F
Jockey – Brenton Avdulla 54.5kg
Trainer – Gary Portelli
Got the job done off a freshen up in the Sweet Embrace Stakes, and proved it was no fluke in the Golden Slipper. She was dominant on that occasion after overcoming trouble in the run. She then blew them away again last start in the Sires Produce.
The step up to a mile looks no problem at all, and although the track might not be as wet as it has been, she is a two time winner on the dry. Looks hard to find a negative next to her name, and if she has one more run in her, she will be mighty hard to beat yet again.
6. She’s Extreme (6) – $3.90
Jockey – Tommy Berry 54.5kg
Trainer – Anthony Cummings
Dominant winner of the Magic Night Stakes, before a luckless run in the Golden Slipper, where she was well fancied in the market. She then finished a good 2nd in the Sires Produce last start behind Fireburn. Gets out to a mile now which looks suitable, and she looks the main danger to the favourite judging by her last effort.
Although this year’s Champagne Stakes is only a small six horse field, it promises to be a great race. As always, these small fields become very tactical affairs, and can throw up a rough result.
After Fireburn’s efforts in recent weeks, it’s hard to believe that will be the case here though. Her Golden Slipper win was outstanding, and her Sires Produce win was just as brilliant. The mile looks no issue, and with even luck in running, she will be the one they have to beat.
She’s Extreme has had two starts at Randwick, and finished runner-up behind Fireburn on both occasions. She will be looking to go one better here and looks the main danger on paper.
Five rivals stand in Fireburn’s way as she bids for the rare two-year-old triple crown in Saturday’s Group 1 Champagne Stakes at Royal Randwick. 👇👑 pic.twitter.com/zDACMoXgZE
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) April 13, 2022
Victorian colt Let’srollthedice, and local hope Williamsburg look next best, and should both see out a strong mile, and Counttheheadlights can’t be completely ruled out.
At the end of the day, it looks quite simple, if Fireburn turns up here and delivers something similar to her last couple of starts, she wins.
As punters taking $1.55, we won’t be winning enough to put down a deposit on a new Rolls Royce, but it is hard to tip against her. Perhaps a first four in the small field may be the best play for some value.
Best Champagne Stakes Tip: 5. Fireburn – Win ($1.55)
Champagne Stakes numbers: 5-6-1-2
If you need more news, information and tips, head over to our Champagne Stakes page for all your punting needs!
*Odds correct at time of writing, courtesy of Dabble.