The Darwin Turf Club has released the nominations and weights for the 2013 Darwin Cup (2000m) that will be run on Monday August 5th.
The headline act is Hawks Bay who has been set a tough assignment as he searches for his third straight victory in the Northern Territory’s biggest race with the handicapper allocating the son of Black Hawk the top weight of 65kg.
Hawks Bay clearly relishes the hot conditions in Darwin and has become something of a Darwin Cup specialist after winning the race in 2011 and 2012 and finishing second in 2009 and 2010.
The gelding is expected to be well found in betting but will need to improve significantly from his last start effort in the Metric Mile (1600m), where he finished a disappointing seventh.
Spartan Eagle was an incredibly impressive winner of the Metric Mile and has got into the Darwin Cup carrying the minimum weight of 54kg.
The Niello gelding has won all four of his race starts since returning to Darwin in June and destroyed a strong field to win the key Darwin Cup lead-up race by six lengths on Saturday, making him the clear favourite in Darwin Cup betting markets.
Also backing up from the Metric Mile will be Palmyra Boy who led home the rest of the field behind Spartan Eagle.
The veteran gelding has not been victorious for over a year but has recorded a number of strong results in some of the Northern Territory’s biggest races in recent years.
Victorian stayers Red Colossus, Thumbtacks and Extra Zero are all set to head to Darwin in search of cup glory.
Red Colossus has been in Darwin since he finished eleventh behind Second Effort in the Wangoom Handicap (1200m) and was victorious in the NTTAB Gold Cup (1300m) but was disappointing in the Chief Minister’s Cup (1600m) and Carbine Club Handicap (1100m).
The son of Testa Rossa will appreciate the rise in distance but has been allocated 61kg by the handicapper.
Thumbtacks has been in consistent form this campaign and is sure to be a leading contender if he takes part in the $200,000 race.
The son of Pin finished fourth in the Listed Centenary Mercedes-Benz (1600m) as well as the Hiraji Handicap (1600m) at Flemington and will face easier competition in the Darwin Cup.
Extra Zero made his Northern Territory debut in the Metric Mile but finished second last and has not won since his victory in the 2012 Albury Gold Cup (2000m).
The 2013 Darwin Cup is set to be a very interesting race and you will be able to find the updated betting market at bookmaker.com.au when the final field is released later in the week.
Sign-up and deposit at the leading online bookie before the Darwin Cup to receive a $500 bonus bet that can be used on the race.
|1||HAWKS BAY||Neil Dyer||3||65kg||110|
|2||RED COLOSSUS||John Stanton||4||61kg||96|
|3||THUMBTACKS (NZ)||Mark Nyhan||5||60.5kg||95|
|4||EXTRA ZERO||David Hayes||6||60kg||94|
|5||THE RUFFIAN||Sheila Arnold||7||57.5kg||89|
|6||CONSTANT FORCE||Bill & Symon Wilde||8||57kg||88|
|7||THE BIG STEEL||Stephen Brown||1||57kg||88|
|9||BOLTON (NZ)||Stephen Brown||10||55kg||84|
|10||GENEROUS BEAU||Todd Balfour||11||55kg||84|
|11||HOST OF THE PARTY||Stephen Brown||2||54.5kg||83|
|13||BEL SIR||Neil Dyer||19||54kg||70|
|15||FRANK THE RIPPER||Daniel J Clarke||23||54kg||64|
|18||IGLES STAR||Chris Pollard||12||54kg||82|
|19||LE BEAU CHEVAL||Greg Connor||17||54kg||74|
|20||MR JANSZ||Russell Bell||21||54kg||69|
|21||PALMYRA BOY||Neil Dyer||15||54kg||79|
|22||PORT VELL (NZ)||Greg Connor||13||54kg||82|
|23||SPARTAN EAGLE||Bob Richard||14||54kg||79|