Runner by Runner: Winterbottom Stakes

1. Overpass (58.5kg)

Trainer: Bjorn Baker
Jockey: Joshua Parr
Barrier: 11

Has the A-Grade Premium form to his name, is the highest rated horse in the race, the best suited at WFA and after the barrier draw a wide but seemingly favourable alley. He is drawn inside of all the other speed horses (Oscar’s Fortune, Man Crush, Phanta, Snowdome) and from there Josh Parr should have no trouble sliding across the face of the field and then finding the fence first or allowing a speedy Oscar’s Fortune to cross him and use him as a bunny to follow into the race. First-up in September 2022 he finished second to Nature Strip, first-up in April he took out the inaugural $4,000,000 Quokka holding out star WA filly Amelia’s Jewel and then first-up this preparation he finished second to Private Eye in The Shorts at Group Two Level over 1100m. He’s high speed, he’s tough, he’s proven at Ascot and he’s awfully hard to beat.

2. Red Can Man (58.5kg)

Trainer: Steve Wolfe
Jockey: Paul Harvey
Barrier: 10

May be getting close to his Swan Song as a 7 year old. In the end with a handicap rating of m107 he can’t contest Handicap races anymore so he’s forced to wait around for the SWP features and the WFA features. He was the best weighted horse in the country first-up in the Listed Crawford Stakes when winning over 1000m and has tried hard in his two runs since in the Prince of Wales and the Colonel Reeves. He’s won his connections over $1.4m since debuting as a 2 year old back in 2019 and has successfully flown the flag for our State in Victoria winning a Group 3 Monash Stakes. He’s as tough as they come but in the end 7 of his 9 wins have come either first-up or second-up in a preparation and it would take a serious training performance to produce a career best at this stage of his career.

3. Savatoxl (58.5kg)

Trainer: Will Savage
Jockey: Holly Watson
Barrier: 8

Extremely well travelled 8 year old who in the last 2 calendars years has won a Group One Goodwood at Morphettville, a Group 2 Schillaci at Caulfield, an Open WFA at Alice Springs and a Group 3 McKay Stakes at Morphettville. Since that most recent victory in the McKay Stakes back in May he has had another five runs of which four have been at WFA. He returns to the races off an 84 day freshen and comes back from 1600m at Moonee Valley to 1200m at Ascot after travelling down by float from the Northern Territory. He’s got speed and he’s drawn the ‘best’ barrier of any of the on-pacers but he would need to turn the clock back and produce a 2021/2022 like Savatoxl performance to be right there in the finish of a Winterbottom.

4. Hot Zed (58.5kg)

Trainer: Lou Luciani
Jockey: Jason Whiting
Barrier: 2

Is living proof that the market frequently does not know. 36 starts, 11 victories at $5, $4.40, $5.50, $14, $10, $12, $2.15 (outlier), $19, $6, $10 and $14. That’s an average winning SP of $9 and if you take out the one and only time he was properly ‘respected’ by the market in the Carbine Club when going around nearly even money then he’s won another 10 races at an average price of $10. Remarkable. He’s not fashionable, he’s not fancy, he doesn’t have any glitz or glam, he’s just a marvellous race horse who continues to turn up and get the job done. He is now the winner of a Listed Carbine Club, Listed Scenic Blast, Listed Pinjarra Classic and a Group Three Colonel Reeves Stakes (Lou Luciani’s sixth according to the record books). Watch his run in the 2022 Winterbottom; watch his run in the 2023 Quokka; he’s as good a chance as WA has.

5. Resortman (58.5kg)

Trainer: Michael Lane
Jockey: Brad Rawiller
Barrier: 9

One of the forgotten locals in the Winterbottom. If you judge him off his 2022 winter, spring and summer carnivals in what was a break out season then there’s a case to be made for him. In 2022 he won at handicap, SWP and WFA bringing home trophies in the Listed H.G Bolton Sprint (1200), Listed Idyllic Prince Stakes (1300), Listed Farnley Stakes (1400) and Group Three Eurythmic Stakes before heading on a Railway Stakes / Gold Rush campaign. After a four month freshen he was produced first-up in the Group Three Roma Cup over 1200m at WFA and was an eyecatching fourth behind Amelia’s Jewel, Red Can Man and Acromantula before finishing 2.2L off Overpass in a Quokka when running the third fastest L600 behind only Amelia’s Jewel and Bella Nipotina. Don’t dismiss at odds.

6. Laverrod (58.5kg)

Trainer: Sean & Jake Casey
Jockey: Jordan Turner
Barrier: 15

Got a lovely tow around from barrier 1 first-up when settling fourth and finishing fourth behind Snowdome, Man Crush and Red Can Man. He then proceeded to the Colonel Reeves and the barrier draw had him beaten before the gates even opened. He finished 10th and was some 3.5L off Hot Zed. With the loss of William Pike and the barrier he’s drawn it’s hard to see him finishing in the first half on Saturday. As good and honest as he has been ultimately he hasn’t won a race since winning at Caulfield back in 2021. Since then he has had 10 runs over four preparations without success. Hard to make a case for him.

7. Snowdome (58.5kg)

Trainer: Neville Parnham
Jockey: Chris Parnham
Barrier: 18

Has always looked like he would make his way up to this level at some stage in his career. Won a WA Sires over 1400m as a 2 year old and that probably in some ways ‘ruined’ his 3 year old Summer because he went down the wrong programming pathway towards a WA Guineas at 1600m rather than towards a Placid Ark Stakes at 1200m. Things have changed significantly since then and in eight runs since has never raced beyond 1200m and has never finished further back than third. He has successfully made his way through the grades as a winner of a 66+, 72+ and 78+ before proving himself at WFA when winning the Group 3 Prince Of Wales Stakes in a thrilling battle with Man Crush over the final 200m. Skipped the Colonel Reeves to come deliberately into the Winterbottom 4 weeks between runs but the barrier draw is a bitter blow to his chances.

8. Triple Missile (58.5kg)

Trainer: Lindsey Smith
Jockey: Damien Oliver
Barrier: 1

Is no stranger to WA having won five races in the State as a 3 year old before heading over East with Lindsey Smith in May 2022. In Victoria he has won a BM 100 over 1400 at Flemington, a $150,000 Open Handicap over 1200m at Swan Hill and finished second behind Argentia (beating home the Gold Rush winner The Astrologist) in a Chatham Stakes at Group 3 Level over 1200m and first-up this preparation finished second at Group Two Level over 1200m at Flemington in the Gilgai Stakes behind Star Patrol. He then went 28 days between runs into the Chatham Stakes and now 28 days into the Winterbottom. This is actually his first time at WFA and if there was one gate that Lindsey Smith and owner Neil Irvine probably didn’t want it was barrier 1. Likely to be cluttered away back in heavy traffic. Looks like he’ll need Ollie to add another highlight to the reel.

9. Phanta (58.5kg)

Trainer: Chris & Michael Gangemi
Jockey: Brad Parnham
Barrier: 17

Has been (yet another) wonderful acquisition by Team Gangemi as a tried horse. Since being purchased as a 4 year old he has won six races for his new connections highlighted by a breakthrough preparation over winter at Belmont Park which saw him victorious in an H.G Bolton Stakes (1200), Belmont Newmarket (1200) and placed in the Idyllic Prince and Birthday Stakes. Is a horse with well document feet troubles who has historically done his best racing on rain affected surfaces (5 of 7 career wins on Soft tracks). Went down fighting to Baby Paris in the Birthday Stakes off a 35 day freshen and they follow the same pathway here by heading into the Winterbottom 37 days between runs. Not his preferred track/surface. Not a pretty barrier. Not a nice map.

10. Clemenceau (58.5kg)

Trainer: Chris & Michael Gangemi
Jockey: Jarrad Noske
Barrier: 14

Prolific winner early doors when winning four of his first five outings going from a Hawksbury maiden to a Moonee Valley C1, a Flemington 3yo BM70 and a BM78 in the space of 5 months. Biggest win came in a BM100 (Fujitsu General Choisir Handicap) which for the WA readers would be ~a 93+ handicap and after the luxurious 3kg claim for Zac Lloys he carried only 50kg and he went straight past them on straightening. In the 2023 calendar year he has had four starts over East including a narrow defeat at Group 3 Level in the Kingdom Stakes and one start in WA when finishing 2.7L off Hot Zed and behind fellow Winterbottom rivals Go Forward, My Bella Mae and Red Can Man. Off his trial and his WA debut you’d say he’ll find these too slick. Not sure where he’s at.

11. Man Crush (58.5kg)

Trainer: Luke Fernie
Jockey: Michael Poy
Barrier: 12

One tough nut when he can find the fence in running. Four career wins: Crystal Slipper on debut from the breeze, 2 year old 1000 when leading all the way, 3 year old Pinjarra Magic Millions when leading all the way and a 66+ 1200 when leading all the way. Showed that this was more than just an observation when racing well outside his weight division in the Group Three Prince of Wales Stakes at WFA when going down a nose to Snowdome in a driving finish. He looked in trouble from the moment they straightened for home and yet by the time they reached the finishing post he was just on the wrong side of the bob. Forget he went around in the Colonel Reeves when uncharacteristically missing away. Will need to step cleanly and then burn across in a sandwich between Oscar’s Fortune and Overpass. Not an easy task.

12. Go Forward (58.5kg)

Trainer: Chris & Michael Gangemi
Jockey: Laqdar Ramoly
Barrier: 6

Has bullied his way into the field ahead of Corn Cob to be acceptor #16 in the Winterbottom. Has shown in his last three runs that he is the kind of animal who will run the same race in a 66+ as he will do at WFA. Four starts ago (30 September) in a ratings race he carried 59kg and finished 1.7L off Sofia’s Symphony, Rumour Says and Cut The Talk and less than 2 months later in the Colonel Reeves (18 November) he has carried 55kg and finished fourth behind Hot Zed, Ghost Who Walks and Nerodio beating home My Bella Mae, Red Can Man, Clemenceau, Man Crush and Laverrod in the process. Has actually picked up 7 ratings points in his last three outings missing the money on each occasion but he’s been stiff not to pick up a Listed or Group placing when re-assessing the replays. In the end he would have carried 56kg in the 78+ 1200 on the same day. Wrong race on paper but understand why he’s here.

13. My Bella Mae (56.5kg)

Trainer: Dion Luciani
Jockey: Patrick Carbery
Barrier: 5

A bit of a similar profile to stablemate Oscar’s Fortune in the sense that she took them all by storm early doors winning a 3 year old midweeker, 3 year old Saturday and a Listed Placid Ark Stakes in her first three career outings before heading into the 2022 Winterbottom Stakes as a filly with 51.5kg when going around a $9 chance and finishing ninth beaten just under 4L. Returned 2 months later in a blaze of glory winning another 3 year old Plate and a Listed Cyril Flower Stakes before embarking on an ultimately unsuccessful trip to victory a month later. She was a great return behind Red Can Man in the Cyril Flower, a luckless and eye-catching fifth behind Snowdome in the Prince of Wales and then backed heavily in the Colonel Reeves when going far below expectation running a floundering fifth after getting the split at the perfect time. Clearly prefers to be saved up for a run but jury is well and truly out now.

14. Flying Missile (56.5kg)

Trainer: Neville Parnham
Jockey: Steven Parnham
Barrier: 3

Just your typical Neville Parnham mare: consistent, unassuming and rarely runs a bad race. She has amassed over $600,000 in stake money and Westspeed bonus’ with four individual wins as a 2 year old, a Listed Placid Ark Stakes victory as a 3 year old, two 72+ ratings wins as a 4 year old and an 84+ win as a 5 year old. She resumed in the Jungle Mist Classic in what looked a very suitable Fillies & Mares SWP feature over 1200m when held up on straightening until the 200. Probably a harsh assessment but thought she could have picked up a little better once clear. First time to WFA and looks outclassed, however, she’s drawn a gate to track the speed for a long way.

15. Ripcord (54.5kg)

Trainer: Luke Fernie
Jockey: Clint Johnston-Porter
Barrier: 7

One of two Three Year Olds who bring huge intrigue into WA’s WFA Sprint Feature. Burst onto the scene as a 2 year old when winning on debut in a Perth Stakes over 1100m at Listed Level before going on to finish third in a Karrakatta Plate behind Super Smink and Live To Tell. Has had four runs this season as a 3 year old including finishing second to Almighty Class in the inaugural Max Simmonds Stakes and then picking up his second Listed Feature in the $500,000 Placid Ark Stakes when charging home over the top of Oscar’s Fortune and recording the fastest overall L1000, 800, 600, 400 & 200 of the race. If Luke Fernie could have selected a barrier of his own freewill you would guess it would be between 6 & 8 and on Tuesday morning at Breakfast With The Stars part owner Maria Manfredini drew 7. Perfect gate, perfect preparation and brings genuine intrigue.

16. Oscar’s Fortune (54.5kg)

Trainer: Dion Luciani
Jockey: William Pike
Barrier: 13

Suffered defeat for the first time in the Placid Ark Stakes and had a few excuses in review: the rail movement at the 600m marker caused a distinct change of speed and probably forced William Pike’s hand in releasing the handbrake on the top of the bend rather than allowing himself to balance into the home straight and it was a rare summer Ascot meeting where the fence wasn’t the place to be. Prior to that he was 4 from 4 over 1000m and with his racing pattern he’ll always have supporters. Has real X-Factor but is still doing a few little things wrong and doesn’t quite seem to know what racing is all about just yet. Probably all coming a bit soon for him but with his brilliant gate speed he’ll find himself in the firing line and be right there for a long way in running.


Pre-barrier draw Overpass was getting shorter and shorter in betting once final fields were announced on Monday and then post-barrier draw it’s becoming ominous. Apart from Savatoxl and to a lesser extent Flying Missile he is drawn inside of every horse they would want to have drawn inside. He’s got Oscar’s Fortune and Man Crush and Phanta and Snowdome all drawn to his outside and it gives Josh Parr options galore to either burn across and find the fence or to allow whichever ones he wants to cross him and then present at the right time on straightening. Biggest danger could be the X-Factor 3 year old Ripcord who launched in the last 200 to win the $500,000 Placid Ark Stakes.

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