LAST YEAR'S WINNER - TAMARKUZ
- Trainer: Kiaran McLaughlin
- Jockey: Mike Smith
- Owner: Shadwell Stable
- Odds: 14/1
- Betting Stats
- Favourites: 1/6 (16.7%) | Level stake loss -71.7%
- Odds on Favs: 1/2 (50.0%) | Level stake loss -15.0%
- Median winning price: 9.1/1
This race still struggles to gain its own identity. Goldencents, who was clearly the best dirt miler in US, was unable to give it a foothold despite his tenacious front running displays where he turned this into an eight furlong super long-sprint!
How has the favourite fared?
In its California incarnations this been won by three runners priced at under 13/2 and all of them were in the first three in the betting. The other three winners scored at prices of just shy of 12/1 and up. Goldencents in 2014 is the only other winning favourite and all the rest failed to get in the frame. Dortmund was sent to post as 0.7/1 favourite last year but could not deliver.
Run record and class clues
Tamarkuz shipped in from New York last year having finished 2nd in a pair of graded stakes. He did have some back class too with a win in the Godolphin Mile (G2) at Meydan in 2015 on his CV. Goldencents took both his races off identical preps, taking in the three major summer sprints in the Golden State before stretching out. However, he is the only runner who has been able to stretch his sprinter speed to the mile and runners who have failed to stay in top grade races over a trip of nine furlongs or longer often have a class edge.
Three of the winners have been trained in the West and three have been shippers. Five of six had won either a G1 or G2 but only one of the six came into this off a winning prep.
Although half of the winners here have carried their early foot to the wire, two of those scores came from the exceptional Goldencents. Long sprinters have the choice of this race or the Sprint and if a number enter here a speed duel could set it up for a closer.
Tamarkuz became the oldest winners of this division when annexing this as a six-year-old last year but four of the six runnings in California have gone to four-year-olds.
With sprinters tending to blaze from the gate leading to strung out fields the draw has not been too influential with a fair spread of in the frame positions across the starting gate.
- Shippers have not been disadvantaged shipping West.
- The market may not be the best guide.
- A sole stretch out sprinter could be at an advantage but beware them getting burned in the speed war.
- A last out win is not essential.
- The draw has not been a determining factor.