The 5 most exciting races

form analyst, autumn racing carnival, queen elizabeth stakes

The Autumn Racing Carnival is here! We’re in for a bumper few months of racing with all of the superstars of the Australian turf.

Each of the Champion Bets racing analysts will of course be heavily engaged over the Autumn Racing Carnival. Trevor Lawson, Cameron O’Brien, The Professor and Gareth Phillips cover all the big meetings between them, and they’re raring to go for the big races of the Autumn Racing Carnival. Here are five we’re particularly pumped for… and a look at some legendary editions of the past.

1. Black Caviar Lightning

Flemington, Sat 19th Feb. Group 1 WFA, 1000m. $1 million.

It’s technically not even autumn yet but it’s hard to not be excited about this race. The race is named after the legendary unbeaten sprinter and in 2022, the field assembled does justice to that honour. The majority of the country’s top sprinters will take part including Nature Strip, Eduardo, Profiteer, Home Affairs, Gytrash and more.

History highlight Pretty hard to go past the legend herself. She won this three straight times but her first win in 2011 was the standout when she made very good sprinters look like picnic horses.

2. All-Star Mile

Flemington, Sat 19th March. WFA, 1600m. $5 million.

It’s only in its fourth year and there were doubters in the early days, but Racing Victoria’s new marquee race seems to have gained a solid footing. The quality of the race is of course up to the punters who vote for it, but prior to the close of voting the top of the leaderboard includes names like Verry Elleegant, Zaaki, I’m Thunderstruck, Espiona, Probabeel and Behemoth… so there’s certainly scope for a cracking field.

History highlight The first All-Star Mile produced the best story so far. Three-year-old filly Mystic Journey, purchased by her trainer for just $11,000, managed to top her prior Australian Guineas win with a stunning All-Star Mile victory.

3. Golden Slipper

Rosehill, Sat 19th March. Group 1, set weights, two-year-olds, 1200m. $5 million.

The two-year-old classic is always a must-watch. It’s the richest race in the world for two-year-olds and with another boost in 2022 to $5 million, it’s going to stay that way!

History highlight Manikato slaughtered them in the 1978 Golden Slipper, which was just the start of an incredible career.

4. TJ Smith Stakes 

Randwick, Sat 2nd April. Group 1 WFA, 1200m. $2.5 million.

Those star sprinters lining up in the Lightning might take slightly different paths throughout the autumn, but there’s no doubt the best of them will wind up in the TJ. It’s a relatively new race, but the high stakes ($2.5 million prizemoney) that it now commands mean the best sprinters are always there. The Everest might be worth $15 million, but the field for this race is usually just as good.

History highlight You could go a number of ways here with so many great horses having this race (including Black Caviar, no less), but Santa Ana Lane’s 2019 demolition job is still a fantastic watch.

5. Queen Elizabeth Stakes

Randwick, Sat 9th April. Group 1 WFA, 2000m. $4 million.

When The Championships started in 2014 they needed a marquee race, and they landed on the Queen Elizabeth. The resultant $4 million purse attracts the best, with the great Winx making the race her own in recent years. But the history of the race traces all the way back to 1851, and the honour roll of winners is as good as any: Archer, Tim Whiffler, The Barb, Carbine, Wakeful, Phar Lap, Tulloch, Might and Power, More Joyous and Winx.

History highlight Again, there are plenty of options for great wins here (though some of them came in the years before film!). Winx won this race three times but for a single dominant performance, you can’t go past Might And Power’s jaw-dropping win in 1998.

Autumn Racing Carnival 2022: G1 and $1m races
Date Track Race Distance Prizemoney Conditions
Sat 12 Feb Caul CF Orr Stakes (G1) 1400 $750k WFA
Sat 19 Feb Flem Black Caviar Lightning (G1) 1000 $1m WFA
Sat 26 Feb Caul Blue Diamond Stakes (G1) 1200 $1.5m 2YO, SW
Sat 26 Feb Caul Oakleigh Plate (G1) 1100 $750k Handicap
Sat 26 Feb Caul Futurity Stakes (G1) 1400 $750k WFA
Sat 26 Feb Rand Chipping Norton Stakes (G1) 1600 $600k 3YO+, WFA
Sat 26 Feb Rand Surround Stakes (G1) 1400 $500k 3YO fillies, SW
Sat 5 Mar Flem Australian Guineas (G1) 1600 $1m 3YO, SW
Sat 5 Mar Rand Randwick Guineas (G1) 1600 $1m 3YO, SW
Sat 5 Mar Rand Canterbury Stakes (G1) 1300 $500k 3YO+, WFA
Sat 12 Mar Flem Newmarket Handicap (G1) 1200 $1.5m Handicap
Sat 12 Mar Flem Australian Cup (G1) 2000 $1.5m WFA
Sat 12 Mar Rose Coolmore Classic (G1) 1500 $600k 3YO+ fillies & mares, quality
Sat 19 Mar Flem All-Star Mile 1600 $5m WFA
Sat 19 Mar Rose Golden Slipper Stakes (G1) 1200 $5m 2YO, SW
Sat 19 Mar Rose George Ryder Stakes (G1) 1500 $1m 3YO+, WFA
Sat 19 Mar Rose The Galaxy (G1) 1100 $700k 3YO+, handicap
Sat 19 Mar Rose Ranvet Stakes (G1) 2000 $700k 3YO+, WFA
Sat 19 Mar Rose Rosehill Guineas (G1) 2000 $600k 3YO, SW
Fri 25 Mar MV William Reid Stakes (G1) 1200 $1m WFA
Sat 26 Mar Rose HE Tancred Stakes (G1) 2400 $1.5m 3YO+, WFA
Sat 26 Mar Rose Vinery Stud Stakes (G1) 2000 $500k 3YO fillies, SW
Sat 2 Apr Rand Doncaster Handicap (G1) 1600 $3m 3YO+, handicap
Sat 2 Apr Rand TJ Smith Stakes (G1) 1200 $2.5m WFA
Sat 2 Apr Rand Australian Derby (G1) 2400 $2m 3YO, SW
Sat 2 Apr Rand ATC Sires Produce Stakes (G1) 1400 $1m 2YO, SW
Sat 9 Apr Rand Queen Elizabeth Stakes (G1) 2000 $4m 3YO+, WFA
Sat 9 Apr Rand Sydney Cup (G1) 3200 $2m 3YO+, handicap
Sat 9 Apr Rand ATC Oaks (G1) 2400 $1m 3YO fillies, SW
Sat 9 Apr Rand Queen Of The Turf Stakes (G1) 1600 $1m 3YO+ fillies & mares, WFA
Sat 9 Apr Rand Percy Sykes Stakes (G2) 1200 $1m 2YO fillies, SWP
Sat 9 Apr Rand Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (G2) 1200 $1m 3YO, SW
Sat 16 Apr Rand All Aged Stakes (G1) 1400 $600k WFA
Sat 16 Apr Rand Champagne Stakes (G1) 1600 $500k 2YO, SW


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