Winterbottom Stakes: What History Says

24
Nov

BACKGROUND
• The Winterbottom Stakes has been staged since 1952 and is Western Australia’s premier sprint race run under weight-for-age conditions.
• The inaugural event was won by Raconteur over a distance of 1400m. Since 1993 the Winterbottom Stakes has been reduced to 1200m.
• The Winterbottom Stakes has enjoyed Group One status since 2001 when it was taken out by New South Wales galloper, Ortensia.
• Notable winners of the Winterbottom Stakes including Asian Beau, first dual winner Asteroid, Miss Andretti and Takeover Target.
JOCKEY/TRAINER
• Eric Treffone holds the distinction of riding the inaugural Winterbottom Stakes winner on Raconteur. Over a decade late later he added a second trophy when as a trainer he prepared Watersan (1965) to victory.
• Soon after in 1966 Treffone’s brother, Reg Treffone, added his name to the Winterbottom Stakes honour roll following the victory of champion entire, Aquanita.
• Graeme Webster Snr also won the Winterbottom Stakes on two occasions. As a jockey he rode Starglow (1973) and Asian Beau (1979); as a trainer he won with Sir Tinka (1993).
JOCKEY
• Damian Oliver and William Pike are the only riders in the 2016 renewal of the Winterbottom Stakes who have winning race experience.
• Pike won the first of two Winterbottom Stakes with Ellicorsam (2004) before partnering rank outsider, Hadabeclorka (2010).
• Oliver and Fred Kersley’s Marasco were successful in 2006.
• Glenn Smith, Peter Hall and Corey Brown have run placings.
• Apprentice Jake Casey, on Vega Magic, is competing in his first Group 1 event.
TRAINER
• Alana Williams is looking for her second Winterbottom Stakes and first in partnership with, Grant Williams.
• The husband and wife team will pin their faith in State Solicitor and Battle Hero.
• Alana Williams first won the Winterbottom Stakes as a rider when she partnered Fair Alert (2001).
• David Hayes, now in partnership with son Ben Hayes and nephew Tom Dabernig, can join his father, Colin Hayes, who celebrated Winterbottom Stake’s success with Soldier Of Fortune (1981).
• Keen Array and former Perth sprinter, Sheidel, give David Hayes and his team a two-pronged attack.
• Hayes, Peter Gelagotis (Malaguerra), Joe Pride (Terravista) and Gary Moore (Takedown) represent the eastern states invaders who have taken out the Winterbottom in five of the eight previous years.

FAVOURITES
• Malaguerra will look to retain the edge of favourites who since 2000 have won nine of the past 16 Winterbottom Stakes’ including four of the previous five: Buffering (2015-2013), Barakey (2012), Ortensia (2011).

LEAD IN RACE
• Since 2000 six winners of the Winterbottom Stakes have won their lead up races and two were placed.
• Malaguerra, Vega Magic and State Solicitor were last start victors. Terravista and Rock Magic were runner-up.
• BARRIERS
• Malaguerra will look to extend the dominance of barrier one which has won the Winterbottom Stakes on seven occasions since 1966.
• Next pick are barriers two, three, five and eight which will hold Vega Magic, Rock Magic, Terravista and Takedown respectively.
• Regal Commander (7), State Solicitor (11) and Military Reign (12) start from the least successful barrier positions.
GENDER
• Geldings, who comprise 10 of the 12 starters on Saturday, have won the Winterbottom Stakes on 25 occasions.
• Sheidel and Military Reign will fly the flag for mares who have won it 16 times.
TRACK
• Sheidel, with nine from 10, has the best Ascot winning record of the 2016 Winterbottom Stakes entrants.
• Vega Magic has four wins from five starts, Regal Commander is four from 11 attempts and State Solicitor is unbeaten in two attempts at summer headquarters.
DISTANCE
• Over 1200m State Solicitor has lost just once from six outings, Vega Magic has never been out of the money with seven wins and two placings from nine attempts, Malaguerra and First Among Equals are five from seven, Terravista has won five times from 11 starts at the sprint journey and Battle Hero is unbeaten in two starts.

RWWA: Julio Santarelli