Surround Stakes Tips: Who history points to winning
- The Surround Stakes (1400m) is one of two Group 1 races at Randwick.
The Surround Stakes (1400m) is one of two Group 1 races at Randwick on Saturday February 29 and pits the three-year-old fillies up against one another.
The race was granted Group 1 status in 2018 and on that occasion it was the Anthony Freedman-trained Shoals that took out the $500,000 affair. First Seal, More Joyous and Gold Edition are other big names that grace the honour roll.
In taking a look at the recent trends of the Surround Stakes, there are a number of things to consider when trying to find a winner.
The ideal lead up form reference has always been the Light Fingers Stakes (1200m), usually run two weeks earlier at Randwick. This year, Flit claimed that race from Lyre and Kiamichi.
Eight of the past 11 winners have come out of the Light Fingers Stakes, including Nakeeta Jane last year. Nakeeta Jane and More Joyous are the only to have completed the double in that time period.
First Seal finished runner-up in that lead up before going on to claim the Surround in 2015, defeating Winx, who finished 5th.
The 2018 winner, Shoals, finished down the track in the Kevin Hayes Stakes (1200m) at Flemington, while in 2017, La Bella Diosa arrived on the scene having taken out the NZ 1000 Guineas (1600m), prior to her win in the Surround.
The favourite in early markets with sportsbet this year is Funstar at $3.40. Funstar resumes after a spring campaign that culminated with a win in the Flight Stakes (1600m). Flit is at $3.90, while Lyre is at $7. Those two are split by the New Zealand contender, Probabeel, at $7.
There have been some mixed results for favourite backers in recent years. Five of the past 11 favourites have scored, including More Joyous, Streama (2012) and First Seal. That trio started at $1.50 or under.
However, More Strawberries was rolled as a $1.40 chance in 2011, while Guelph went down as a $2.60 shot in 2014. Shoals scored at odds of $12 in 2018 with Shumookh only managing 7th as a $3 shot. Nakeeta Jane arrived in time as a $3.60 favourite last year.
The average price of the winning horses over the past 10 years is $7.25 but that number is inflated somewhat by Thump, who scored as a $25 shot in 2014. Nine of the past 11 winners have scored at single figure odds.
An interesting statistic is that all bar two of the winners in the past 10 years have drawn between barriers 1 to 3. This year, Missile Mantra, Lyre and Heart Of The Oak occupy those spots.
Successful trainers in the race include Gai Waterhouse and Peter Snowden. None of those two have a runner. Chris Waller is yet to claim the Surround and takes Funstar and Betcha Flying in the race.
James Cummings takes Flit and Kiamichi into the race for the powerful Godolphin stable, who won with Ghisoni four years ago when John O’Shea was the head trainer. Anthony Freedman has another Godolphin runner, Lyre, and was successful with Shoals two years ago.
Selection according to trends.