2016 Sunline Stakes Field and Barrier Draw

March 22nd, 2016

Thirteen mares have been confirmed in the final field for Thursday’s 2016 Group 2 Sunline Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley Racecourse, highlighted by the inclusion of some of the Autumn Carnival’s most exciting racing prospects.

Noble Protector has been confirmed in the 2016 Sunline Stakes final field. Photo: Adrienne Bicknell

Noble Protector has been confirmed in the 2016 Sunline Stakes final field. Photo: Adrienne Bicknell

Noble Protector posted a dominant win in the Sunline Stakes in 2015 and has been confirmed in the field for a title defence on Thursday night.

Noble Protector has been a strong and consistent performer for her entire racing career since first appearing on course competitively in her native Great Britain in 2013; posting five wins and six minors through seventeen starts.

Winning each of the Group 3 Schweppervescence Trophy (1600m) and Sunline Stakes upon resuming in 2015, the Haafhd mare returned to the paddock after placing third in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) on Day 2 of The Championships.

While unable to make much of an impact through a short spring campaign and having thrown the jockey at the beginning of the Schweppervescence Trophy first-up this time, trainer Robert Smerdon is pleased with the condition of Noble Protector and is confident she is ready to run a big race in the Sunline Stakes.

Smerdon will launch a two-pronged attack on the 2016 Sunline Stakes after also confirming Ungrateful Ellen in the final field.

Fenway has arguably been the stable star for Lee & Shannon Hope through recent seasons and should prove tough to beat in the Sunline Stakes despite drawing the outside barrier 13.

Winning the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) and finishing second in the Group 1 Australasian Oaks (2000m) during a standout autumn campaign, Fenway resumed in spring for success in the Group 2 Stock Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley most and finished second in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) most notably.

Having taken plenty of benefit from a first-up run for ninth in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) on February 13th, the High Chaparral mare ran a close second to Bow Creek in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) before running on for fourth in the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) last time out.

Blake Shinn retains the ride on the mare, who is arguably the class horse of the 2016 Sunline Stakes field.

Wawail is a noted Moonee Valley performer and will leave from the rails draw in the 2016 Sunline Stakes with champion hoop Damien Oliver in the saddle.

Resuming this time for fourth in the Group 3 Bellmaine Stakes (1200m) on February 13th, Wawail was unlucky to be blocked and sixth in the Group 3 Mannerism Stakes (1400m) but responded in the best way possible with a comfortable one length win in the Group 3 Frances Tressady Stakes (1400m) on March 5th.

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2016 Sunline Stakes Final Field and Barrier Draw

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Hcp Rating
1 2x9102x924 FENWAY Lee & Shannon Hope Blake Shinn 13 57kg 108
2 4291410×34 MISS ROSE DE LAGO Danny O’Brien James McDonald 2 57kg 96
3 39x022x461 WAWAIL David Hayes & Tom Dabernig Damien Oliver 1 57kg 99
4 4x113x00xL NOBLE PROTECTOR (GB) Robert Smerdon Craig Williams 8 57kg 104
5 91128×1383 CHOOSE Lee & Shannon Hope Craig Newitt 5 57kg 92
6 x84315x544 DIG A PONY Peter G Moody Luke Nolen 12 57kg 83
7 3198×43342 METAPHORICAL Peter G Moody Luke Currie 7 57kg 93
8 32x84446x5 UNGRATEFUL ELLEN Robert Smerdon Mark Zahra 3 57kg 85
9 321411×071 FELICIENNE Darren Weir Harry Coffey (a) 9 57kg 93
10 600x3210x3 ANFITRIONA Peter G Moody Daniel Stackhouse 6 57kg 78
11 5031325×53 JAPHILS John Sadler Stephen Baster 11 57kg 80
12 50×2322159 ANAPHORA Tony Noonan Jake Noonan 10 57kg 81
13 1x4x59058x HOLY COW Michael Kent Nicholas Hall 4 57kg 70