Group 1 Racing At Randwick

Picture: Darren England/
Queensland champion Buffering will be one of the stars in action at Randwick. Picture: Darren England/

Fifteen three-year-olds will contest the $600,000 Royal Randwick Guineas over 1600m on Saturday. A number of the leading hopes have drawn wide – Peter Moody’s Dissident has barrier 13, Trent Busuttin’s El Roca is next door in 14, while Gai Waterhouse’s Romantic Touch will start from the outside gate (15). Waterhouse also has Woodbine and Bull Point entered.

Second-up from a spell, classy Kiwi, Atlante, has gate five, while Murray Baker’s other hope Show The World has also drawn well in barrier 7. Bart and James Cummings have a live hope in Eurozone, which is coming off a close fourth in the Australian Guineas.

The other Group 1 event is the Canterbury Stakes run over 1300m at Weight-For-Age. Between them, trainers Chris Waller and Guy Walter have seven of the 10 starters in the race. The two of Waller’s runners in the market are favourite Zoustar and gallant mare Red Tracer. Three-year-old Zoustar is returning to the track after completing three straight wins, culminating in an impressive victory in the Coolmore Stud Stakes during the Melbourne Spring Carnival. On that day, he beat Not Listen’tome (second favourite on Saturday) by an ever-widening two-lengths down the Flemington straight-six. 

Another interesting race is the Group 2 Challenge Stakes. Back from three consecutive Group 1 successes in Melbourne and Perth, Queensland champion Buffering has been displaced by smart mare Snitzerland as favourite. Trained by Gerald Ryan, Snitzerland won the Lightning over the 1000m last month to take her record to 8 wins and 4 seconds in 17 starts, with almost $1.9 in stakes. The ‘Bulldog from Brisbane’ has 15 wins and 14 placings from 38 starts for $4.1m in prizemoney. Buffering is super fresh, having won four and placed twice in six goes first-up. He’s notched three wins and a third from four starts over the distance.

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