Connect with us


J-Mac declares Coolangatta the benchmark for Millions



The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained filly has been the standout juvenile so far this season in her only start but it was enough for McDonald to cut short a trip to Hong Kong earlier in the month to make sure he had 14 days back in Australia before crossing the border to Queensland. Rated an even-money favourite for the $2m Magic Millions 2YO Classic in January, she is sure to shorten into Winx-like odds if she is to win, as expected in Sunday’s Group 3 B.J McLachlan Stakes (1200m), where she is a red-hot $1.33 chance. Opening the shortest-priced favourite ($2.50) in Magic Millions history when markets opened last month, Coolangatta has only firmed after her impressive barrier trial earlier in the month. Only Capitalist (2016) has been shorter for the Magic Millions at this point after he was turned into $1.70 following his win in the Wyong Classic before he went on to win at $1.40 on race day. “She had the big target, she is heading towards the Magic Millions and I wanted to be on her in the lead ups, I am hoping she is the one,” McDonald said of making sure he was in Queensland on Boxing Day. “She is the $2 favourite (for Magic Millions).”Despite mega bucks on offer at the Hong Kong International Races three weeks ago, McDonald was quick to fly back to Australia following the International Jockeys Championship at Happy Valley on the Wednesday night to make it back, with Coolangatta on his mind. “The requirements up there (Hong Kong) were very tough, you had to stay in your hotel for the whole week so I wasn’t too keen to do than and then obviously she (Coolangatta) was always there and heading to Queensland to race on Boxing Day,” McDonald said.Since Testa Rossa won at $1.65 in the 2YO Classic in 1999, only Capitalist has won the race as an odds on favourite, territory Coolangatta is sure to enter if she is to win on Sunday. While McDonald has not sat on the filly since her win in the Group 3 Gimcrack (1000m) in October, he has put his faith in Maher to get her up north fit and firing.“I haven’t sat on her lately but obviously she won really well so it is a matter of hoping she has come back in just as good order,” he said. “From what I have seen I think she is (the benchmark), obviously there will be a few later ones put their hand up towards the (Golden) Slipper but she looks the one so far for Magic Millions. I think she can handle the stuff that the trip throws at her.”Previous winners Exhilarates (2019), Sunlight (2018) and Houtzen (2017) had all been well found in the markets by Christmas time, with no better than $5 on offer for them at this point in time before they went on to win, putting Coolangatta in good company. TAB reports Coolangatta currently accounts for 40 per cent of their hold on the Magic Millions with Wyong Classic winner Soaring Ambition slashed from $101 to $11 following her win last week. Bright Blue Sky ($6.50 on Sunday) has been pushed from $11 to $13 for the January 15 feature while Swiss Exile ($9 on Sunday) has been well supported from $101 to $15 despite not yet securing a spot in the field.

Source link

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.