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Makybe Diva Stakes Tips: Expert guide to finding the Flemington Group 1 winner

  • Who will win the Makybe Diva Stakes?

Although Saturday’s Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington is full of classy gallopers, there is absolutely no doubt as to who stands tallest on that list.

The handicap rating has Hartnell, Black Heart Bart and Le Romain equal on 115, but Hartnell easily had Bart’s measure when both horses where resuming in the PB Lawrence Stakes (1400m), and Bart subsequently defeated Le Romain in the Memsie Stakes where the pair finished 2nd and 3rd respectively behind Vega Magic.

As well as his previous accomplishments, a look at Hartnell’s form last spring reveals what a high-class galloper he really is.

In six starts last spring, the son of Authorized finished runner-up to Winx in the Warwick Stakes (1400m), won the Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) by 7.8 lengths, he was just as impressive winning the Hill Stakes (1800m) by 5.8 lengths and then he travelled to Melbourne and belted subsequent Caulfield Cup winner Jameka by 3.3 lengths in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m).

He then finished runner-up to Winx in the Cox Plate (2040m) before putting in arguably his gutsiest performance when 3rd in the Melbourne Cup (3200m).

His second-up effort in the Chelmsford Stakes last campaign was one of the easiest victories you will see, and if he brings that form on Saturday, nothing will get near him.

But at $1.75, there really isn’t a lot of value backing him. 

Unfortunately for punters, Black Heart Bart and Le Romain are likely to fill the placings and there is just as little value in backing the pair for the Place.

Le Romain comes into the race fourth-up, and he’s finished runner-up in all four third-up runs – so it’s hard to see him missing the placings.

Black Heart Bart still has upside and is one of the most consistent gallopers in the country, and if the track stays in the Good range, he should be fighting it out too.

The best value may be to take a Trifecta with Hartnell to win, and Bart and Le Romain boxed for 2nd and 3rd.

Makybe Diva Stakes Facts:

The Makybe Diva Stakes was known as the Craiglee Stakes between 1948 and 2006 before being named after three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva from 2007 onwards.

It was first won by Lungi during its inaugural running and was a Principal Race from 1948 to 1978.

The race then received Group 2 status when claimed by Dulcify in 1979 and was eventually upgraded to Group 1 status in 2013 when taken out by Foreteller.

A number of outstanding types have claimed the Makybe Diva Stakes and notable winners include Comic Court (1949), Sailor’s Guide (1956-57), Lord (1961), Light Fingers (1965), Tobin Bronze (1966), Rain Lover (1969), Ming Dynasty (1977), Dulcify (1979), Rose Of Kingston (1982), Zabeel (1990), Mannerism (1993), Mahogany (1994), Jeune (1995), Sky Heights (1999), Northerly (2002), Weekend Hussler (2008), Shocking (2010), Southern Speed (2012) and Dissident (2014).

Following the Makybe Diva Stakes many of the runners will press on to tackle the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield two weeks later or the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington three weeks later.

Those runners then battle it out in either the Caulfield Cup (2400m) or Cox Plate (2040m).

Barriers hardly impact on the outcome of the race although, barrier 1 has the best strike rate in the past 30 years with five winners, while barriers 6 and 11 are next best with four winners apiece.


*Over 18s only. Wagering requirements apply. State exclusions apply to some offers. Exc. NSW, SA, WA & VIC. Please read the T&Cs of each offer with each bookmaker.

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Makybe Diva Stakes Tips: Expert guide to finding the Flemington Group 1 winner

The Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) takes place annually at Flemington Racecourse and is worth $400,000 in prizemoney.

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