R&S G1 Preview - Coolmore Classic

The fillies and mares take centre stage at Rosehill on Saturday. Adam Blencowe previews the Group 1 Coolmore Classic.

We must go back to 2011 to find the last favourite to win the Coolmore Classic when Aloha romped through the Rosehill rain to land the race for trainer Mick Price. 

A dozen years on and Price returns with sidekick and fellow Mick, Michael Kent and another favourite for the Coolmore Classic in Annavisto

A wide draw shouldn't worry either Mick or the punters with the effect of barriers over the Rosehill 7 1⁄2 f very small by any measure of results over the past decade. 

Much more important is the effect of pace, and it is pace with which Annavisto is blessed.

She used that pace to full effect winning her prep, Flemington's Frances Tressady, the very race that Aloha used as the steppingstone to the Coolmore in 2011. 

Annavisto was even more convincing at Flemington. Aloha ran to 108 in her prep while Annavisto produced a career-best Timeform rating of 116 there prompting the concern – did she do too much? 

A look back at this time last year might give credence to that concern. Annavisto ran to 115 winning the Frances Tressady in 2022 before tapering away when pitched up to Newcastle for the Emancipation.  

Three prior second up runs were all slight improvements on her fresh form, however, and if her chief concern is that she has run too well then her case must be a good one. 

It's been a long while between favourites in the Coolmore but the drought for three-year-old fillies is an even larger one. We have to go back to 2009 to find the last filly that won the race – another Tressady winner in Typhoon Tracy – and plenty of good ones have tried. 

Zougotcha runs scared of a barrier leaving Ruthless Dame and Sheeza Belter to fly the flag for the classic generation. 

They are rated 113 and 109 by Timeform – Ruthless Dame's Surround run making her the pick of the two on this score and that she has got there in just four starts makes her the one most likely to spike again. 

Spike again she must. In the time since Typhoon Tracy, 38 fillies have tried and failed to win the Coolmore. 29 of those came through the Surround, 10 of those jumping single figures in the betting, and only five placed – that group beat 27% fewer rivals home in the Coolmore than they had in the Surround and slid, on average, five places. 

Many will lean on the poor record of fillies but of course such stats can be cherry-picked. 

Between 2003 and 2009 fillies won five of the seven editions of the race and going into 2010 trends followers would have been chasing the fillies for their hot record. Those punters have had a lean 12 years… 

Punters who have had a much better time of things are those that have played the top of the handicap. 

In the past decade 63 mares have carried 55kgs or more, making up 40% of Coolmore runners overall. That 40% have won 8 of the 10 runnings – twice their share. 

Hinged heads the weights as a result of her consistent form against the best around – Anamoe, Zaaki, I Wish I Win and more Anamoe fill the formbook alongside her name. 

Many will shy away from her as she hasn't won in 10 and she has to give weight all around but both of those are a function of her form. She can be classed as the best mare here and with the best jockey in the saddle. 

The Chipping Norton is a path rarely travelled to the Coolmore, the last to take it Melito, who ran third under topweight in 2009 behind Aloha. 

History doesn't repeat but it so often rhymes! 

Sign up for our free newsletter.

© 2023 Sky Racing World. All rights reserved.