Darley Champions Sprint Tips & Preview 2023

Darley Champions Stakes


Looking for Darley Champions Sprint tips and best bets? We dissect times and form to find the winner of the 2023 Darley Champions Sprint at Flemington.


It is the New Zealand mare, Imperatriz, that dominates the market with Dabble at the $1.90 quote, ahead of the Godolphin galloper, In Secret, at $4.40. It is a race dominated by the fairer sex with another couple of mares next in line. Asfoora is at $8.50, while the dazzling Giga Kick Stakes (1300m) winner, Bella Nipotina, is at $13. 

There are 11 contenders in action for the first of the three Group 1 races on Champions Day and Star Patrol and Espiona are both at $14, while Front Page, Buenos Noches and Airman are at $26. Lofty Strike ($51) and C’est Magique ($91) round out the field. 


Imperatriz has had three runs at her current preparation, winning twice over the 1000m at Moonee Valley before destroying the likes of I Am Me in the Manikato Stakes (1200m) on Cox Plate day. The Mark Walker-trained five-year-old went 12.8 lengths faster than standard at the Valley, which is the best last start figure of any runner. 

Is there a chink in her armour? The daughter of I Am Invincible is yet to tackle the Flemington straight but is six from eight at the trip and four from five in Australia, tasting defeat behind Artorius in a blinding finish earlier this year at Randwick in the Canterbury Stakes (1300m). 

In Secret has had two runs over the 1200m at Flemington for two Group 1 wins. She went 15 lengths faster than standard benchmark when claiming the Newmarket Handicap earlier this year and produced the fastest late splits at her most recent start when 4th in the Everest (1200m), going 9.9 lengths faster than standard off what was a slow early tempo. 

Buenos Noches was 8th in the Everest and did have a couple of excuses. Espiona was 7th in the Everest when never really getting a clear crack at them. She has since come out and won the Invitation (1400m) at Randwick. 

Asfoora was no match for Imperatriz in the Moir Stakes two starts ago and has since come out and claimed the Schillaci Stakes (1100m) by three lengths, going 12.3 lengths faster than standard. She has won eight of 14 and is a previous Flemington winner. 

Bella Nipotina produced a barnstorming finish to claim the Giga Kick Stakes last weekend. She was 3rd behind I Am Me in the Everest consolation race, the Sydney Stakes (1200m) at her start prior. The Maher/Eustace mare went 10.5 lengths faster than standard last time but is yet to win in seven attempts at Flemington. 

Star Patrol loves the Flemington 1200m and comes in with two wins at the track and trip, going 14.2 lengths faster than standard to claim the Bobbie Lewis Quality two starts ago before winning the Gilgai Stakes. 

Front Page is another last start winner and went 8.6 lengths faster than standard to claim the Kosciuszko (1200m) at Randwick on October 14. He was three lengths off In Secret in the Newmarket earlier this year. Lofty Strike was runner-up in that race but will need to improve off a first up 6th in the Caulfield Sprint. 


Star Patrol looks over the odds for mine. He has had six runs down the straight for four wins and a runner-up behind the handy, Passive Aggressive. Only failure came in the Newmarket but he seems to be going much better this time around. He will settle just behind them from barrier 6 and presents appeal at the price.