In boxing parlance the $125,000 Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m) is being hailed as a heavyweight showdown between Luckygray and Magnifisio.
In one corner there is triple Group One champion, Luckygray. The eight-year-old launches his comeback to racing after a 12-month injury layoff.
Luckygray has not raced since taking out last year’s Roma Cup for trainer, Trevor Andrews. He is primed to land a blow first up after winning two trials.
In the opposing corner is gun mare, Magnifisio. The six-year-old daughter of Magnus added her name to the Roma Cup honour roll in 2014.
Magnifisio is poised to go toe-to-toe with Luckygray after consecutive wins in the Sheila Gwynne Classic (1400m) and Northam Stakes (1100m).
Trainer Vaughn Sigley, who puts the polish on Magnifisio, said he was looking forward to Saturday’s Roma Cup battle.
“She is a first class mare and it’s always good to have them running at their top and showing what they can do,” Sigley said.
“I have been nothing short of being rapt with her and how she has come through her winter campaign.
“Luckygray is probably the best horse in WA and he looked a treat the other day, but I think we can win.
“Everything will have to go our way against a horse like him, but I’m really looking forward to the race.”
Magnifisio and stable mate, Dawn Approach, headline Sigley’s Roma Cup assault.
Dawn Approach is aiming to go one better after he gave, Luckygray, a huge fright in last year’s Roma Cup, before going down by a long-head.
The gelding should be at his peak third run in this campaign and does race well at Belmont Park, three placings from as many starts.
Dawn Approach will have to turn the tables on, Magnifisio, after being overrun in the Northam Stakes, fading to second from the turn.
But Sigley says, Dawn Approach, who has amassed over half-a-million dollars in prize money, should not be underestimated.
“Dawn Approach will improve on that run at Northam,” Sigley said.
“His work on Wednesday was exceptional.
“I couldn’t be happier with both of them.”
Luckygray, to be ridden by regular race rider, Shaun O’Donnell and Dawn Approach, in the hands of, Pat Carbery, will carry 58.5kg.
Magnifisio drops 2kg to 56.5kg, her lowest weight this preparation. Jason Brown retains the mount.
RWWA: Julio Santarelli