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Friday December 14th 2018

Plenty of festive fancies in the Villiers Stakes

Christmas is coming and with ballot-free exemption into next year’s Doncaster Mile the 2018 Villers Stakes is full of festive fancies at Randwick on Saturday.

The Anthony and Edward Cummings trained Sky Boy has opened favourite after four straight wins. The four year old gelding has been in our little black form book for a while. This is easily the toughest test of racing career to date but he has taken giant steps so is surely going to be involved in the finish.

My Nordic HeroGaulois will carry the 53kg minimum in the Villiers Stakes. Trained by James Cummings the Street Cry gelding ran a great second place with 59kg on his back in a 1500m BenchMark 88 Handicap at Rosehill on December 1st and his significant drop in weight here could be the deciding factor in what looks a fascinating contest.

My Nordic Hero eased clear to win the Festival Stakes in a no mistaking an eye-catching performance under Hugh Bowman but we fear the wide barrier draw on Saturday. Bowman rides again and for that reason the odds read pretty appealingly.

Doubt Defying is very interesting and could grab the spotlight at a nice tipsy price. This horse has been the model of consistency winning the the Cellarbrations Handicap and the Ladbrokes Sale Cup before sixth in the Mackinnon Stakes last start. Should be tip-top having been freshened-up and live on course from barrier three.

Fabrizio, Red Excitement, Duca Valentinois, Grande Rosso, Aloisia, Interlocuter, Satono Rasen, Sambro, Goodfella, Articus and Fierce Impact complete the list of festive fancies for the Group 2 Villiers Stakes at Royal Randwick on Saturday 15th December 2018.

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