Global Weekly Preview: Prepare to celebrate a new galaxy of stars

J A McGrath

Don’t let anybody tell you that racing is currently deprived of talent on the world stage. Truth is those would-be champions of 2018 are waiting in the wings, poised to step forward to make their mark.

Six weeks is a long time in this game, as I am certain we are going to learn all over again very soon.

Meydan on Thursday gave us a ‘taster’ of the quality of horse likely to dominate in Dubai, while Australia is set to embark on another important Autumn Carnival, and the countdown has already commenced for the G1 Kentucky Derby.

It’s all about to happen — on a global scale.

Saturday’s G1 C F Orr Stakes at Caulfield, Melbourne, is the first race of that status in Australia this year. 

Hence, it has every chance of living up to its G1 billing, as a collection of in-form, fit sprinter/ milers line up against a cluster of middle-distance types, who are just starting fresh campaigns.

Godolphin’s Hartnell continues in his role as flagship for the stable but he comes up against the G1 Emirates Stakes winner Tosen Stardom in a strong 13-runner field.

The race lost a potential draw in Black Heart Bart, last year’s Orr Stakes winner, who was withdrawn after developing a foot abscess.

But Shillelagh, last year’s G1 Cantala Stakes at Flemington in November, has been publicly talked-up by trainer Chris Waller as having a serious winning chance.

With Classic hopes being unleashed in America, and soon Europe, too, plus the pride of UAE racing establishing a pecking order, it is clear that a new galaxy of stars is about to be discovered.