2014 Cox Plate Field Released

October 21st, 2014

After much conjecture and debate the Moonee Valley Racing Club has released the 2014 Cox Plate field and a capacity field of 14 horses will contest the Australasian Weight-For-Age Championship at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

Fawkner, Criterion and Side Glance will all clash in the 2014 Cox Plate at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

Fawkner, Criterion and Side Glance will all clash in the 2014 Cox Plate at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

A total of 16 horses were included in the final acceptances for the Cox Plate, but the Moonee Valley Racing Club committee opted against allowing Cranbourne Cup winner Mourinho and promising three-year-old Chivalry to contest the Group 1 event.

The most controversial inclusion in the 2014 Cox Plate field was that of Gai Waterhouse-trained Wandjina, who was granted a start in the race despite only recording one race win from his nine career starts.

Wandjina missed the placings in the first four runs of his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, but his third place finish behind Shooting To Win and Rich Enuff was enough to convince connections to give him an opportunity in the Cox Plate.

The promising colt will be joined in the Cox Plate by two other three-year-olds in the form of Almalad and Sweynesse.

Almalad took out the Group 2 Stutt Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on September 26, but failed to fire in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m), while Sweynesse had his undefeated record blemished when he finished third behind Hampton Court and First Seal in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on October 11.

The Caulfield Stakes is set to be the key form reference to the 2014 Cox Plate and Fawkner, Criterion, Side Glance, Sacred Falls, Happy Trails and Foreteller are all set to back-up in the Australasian Weight-For-Age Championship on Saturday.

Fawkner started his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a second place finish behind Dissident in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on September 13 before he stamped himself as a clear favourite for the Cox Plate by taking out the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on October 11.

Criterion has had mixed form during his spring preparation to date, but the Sebring entire got himself back into Cox Plate contention with a fast-finishing second in the Caulfield Stakes and has the chance to become the first horse since Bonecrusher in 1986 to complete the Australian Derby/Cox Plate double.

Side Glance led from the front in the Caulfield Stakes before finishing a brave third, while Sacred Falls, Happy Trails and Foreteller all made up good ground in the final stages of the race.

Royal Descent is taking a different form line into the Cox Plate after finishing a narrow second in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Royal Randwick on October 4, her fourth straight second place finish, while Guest Of Honour will be having his second start in Australia after finishing ninth in the Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600n) at Caulfield on October 11.

The most interesting runner in the 2014 Cox Plate field is Coolmore-owned entire Adelaide, who has performed strongly right around the world during his 2014 European racing season.

Adelaide took out the Group 1 Secretariat Stakes (2011m) in the United States on August 16 and finished a more than credible third in the Group 2 Prix Niel (2400m) at Longchamp on September 14.

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2014 Cox Plate Field & Barrier Draw

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight
1 x4412x4414 SACRED FALLS (NZ) Chris Waller Zac Purton 9 59kg
2 75316x7x21 FAWKNER Robert Hickmott Nicholas Hall 4 59kg
3 15×7459333 SIDE GLANCE (GB) Andrew Balding Jamie Spencer 7 59kg
4 7412×58205 HAPPY TRAILS Paul Beshara Damien Oliver 2 59kg
5 45389×4318 FORETELLER (GB) Chris Waller Tommy Berry 1 59kg
6 251×212111 THE CLEANER Mick Burles Steven Arnold 14 59kg
7 397x4x11x9 GUEST OF HONOUR (IRE) Marco Botti Craig Williams 10 59kg
8 42811×3722 CRITERION (NZ) David Payne Hugh Bowman 6 57.5kg
9 x11114x459 SILENT ACHIEVER (NZ) Roger James Nash Rawiller 11 57kg
10 x4525x2222 ROYAL DESCENT Chris Waller Glen Boss 3 57kg
11 1×212213 ADELAIDE (IRE) Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore 13 56kg
12 1x11x9418 ALMALAD Gai Waterhouse Craig Newitt 8 49.5kg
13 1×1113 SWEYNESSE John O’Shea Chad Schofield 12 49.5kg
14 x144x40473 WANDJINA Gai Waterhouse 5 49.5kg