Hawk­spur chases trio

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - SPORT - Ray Thomas

HAWK­SPUR is striv­ing to be­come the first horse in al­most 50 years to win three suc­ces­sive Chelms­ford Stakes at Royal Rand­wick on Satur­day.

The Chris Waller-trained Hawk­spur has man­aged only two wins in the past two years and both were in the 1600m Chelms­ford Stakes.

Hawk­spur was un­placed in his come­back run this cam­paign be­hind sta­ble­mate Royal De­scent in the War­wick Stakes but will be fit­ter for the Group 2 weight­for-age race, first run back in 1895.

Only three horses have won a hat-trick of Chelms­ford Stakes – the last was Ro­man Con­sul in 1967-68-69.

Hawk­spur will face some tough op­po­si­tion in­clud­ing Royal De­scent, Por­nichet and Messene, who ran 1-2-3 in the War­wick Stakes, and also Don­caster Mile win­ner Ker­madec.

Mel­bourne Cup hero Pro­tec­tion­ist is also set to re­turn in the race.

LU­CIA TRAMWAY RE­TURN THE Chelms­ford Stakes race day also fea­tures the Tramway Stakes where top mare Lu­cia Valentina is sched­uled to re­sume in the 1400m sprint. Lu­cia Valentina won the Tramway to kick­start a suc­cess­ful spring cam­paign last year that in­cluded a Group 1 Turnbull Stakes win and a third plac­ing in the Caulfield Cup.

Trainer Joe Pride has duo Ball Of Mus­cle and Craftiness ready to sprint well fresh in the Con­corde Stakes (1000m), Speak Fondly is the filly to beat in the Fu­ri­ous Stakes (1400m), and Voilier is ready to win the Ming Dy­nasty Qual­ity (1400m).

POR­NICHET TOP PICK MY TIP for this week­end is to fol­low Por­nichet in the Chelms­ford Stakes.

He was an ex­cel­lent sec­ond when re­sum­ing be­hind Royal De­scent in the War­wick Stakes and will be much bet­ter suited over the Royal Rand­wick 1600m course on Satur­day, Septem­ber 5.

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