Flemington horses aiming to land first Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile win for Victoria

25 January 2022 Written by VRC

The Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile has quickly developed a reputation as a race of dreams, a contest that attracts the very best from across Australia and New Zealand to go head-to-head in the world's richest 1600m event.

However, one notable aspect is missing from the honour roll: a local victory.

To date, winners have been trained in Tasmania (Mystic Journey), Western Australia (Regal Power) and New South Wales (Mugatoo), with a Victorian-trained horse yet to win the $5 million race.

This year, Flemington-trained horses from nine different stables will be leading the way in an attempt to capture Victoria's first success in the Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile.

Chris Waller heads the list with 15, by far the most of any trainer, with another Flemington stable in Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott sitting second with six entrants. Between them, they account for more than a quarter of the 78 entries.

Waller's team ranges from three Melbourne Cup Carnival winners - Lexus Melbourne Cup heroine Verry Elleegant, Paramount+ Carbine Club Stakes winner Fangirl and the very exciting Espiona, who took out the Off The Track Desirable Stakes - to a host of three-year-olds like Group 1 placegetters Coastwatch, Giannis and Hinged.

He also includes top-class mare Hungry Heart among his arsenal, as well as recent New Zealand acquisition Mana Nui.

Group 1 winners Converge and Shout The Bar lead the charge for Waterhouse and Bott, but perhaps the most interesting entrant is Silent Impact, a winner in Sydney last weekend who has only had four starts.

Among other Flemington trainers, Peter and Paul Snowden are also well-represented with three nominations, including Caulfield Guineas runner-up Captivant.

Godolphin head trainer James Cummings has two entrants - last year's TAB Empire Rose Stakes winner Colette and Cascadian, whose turn to win a big Flemington mile is coming having finished third, second and third in the last three Kennedy Cantalas at the course and distance, beaten less than a neck on each occasion.

Anthony and Sam Freedman (Extreme Flight, Sinawann) and Michael Moroney (Poland, Tofane) both have a brace entered, while Ben and JD Hayes (Mr Brightside), Danny O'Brien (Callsign Mav) and Simon Zahra (Age Of Chivalry) have one apiece.

Victoria Racing Club (VRC) Chief Executive Officer Steve Rosich believes that Flemington horses will have every opportunity to take the crown in what looms as an exciting and competitive Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile.

"The nominations are headlined by Melbourne Cup Carnival superstars in Verry Eleegant and Zaaki so there is no doubt the final field for the richest mile race in the world will be a quality one in this Flemington instalment," said Mr Rosich.

"Of the 78 quality entrants that can now be voted on for the Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile, nine Flemington trainers feature with horses including Verry Elleegant, Mr Brightside and Colette.

"Melbourne is the sporting capital of the world and in March, Flemington will be the focus with three consecutive Saturdays of premium racing, food and entertainment."

Voting is now underway for the Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile, with Australian and New Zealand residents able to cast ballots until Sunday, February 13.

Image caption: Mr Brightside (black cap) and Cascadian (blue) are among the Flemington-trained entries for the Seppelt Wines All-Star Mile.