History Says – Orr Stakes

History says, to borrow a saying popular with tipsters, whatever beats Shamus Award home in Saturday’s Sportingbet C.F. Orr Stakes at Caulfield will win the $400,000 Group 1.

No three-year-old might have won the Orr and Cox Plate, as Shamus Award famously did in October, in the same season since the Orr attained Group 1 status in 1993 but not many have had a crack.

In fact, Savabeel is the only one to have tried, finishing second behind Elvstroem in 2005.

Most of the older Cox Plate winners who have contested the Orr in the past two decades have also finished top-two.

Four other Cox Plate winners have had a crack at the Orr in that time and Northerly’s fourth behind Yell in 2003 is the only time one hasn’t filled a quinella spot.

Northerly also resumed in the Orr in 2002, following his initial Cox Plate success, finishing second to Barkada, while Saintly and Maldivian are the other Cox Plate winners to run in the Orr in the same season since 1993 and they both completed the double.

All up, eight Cox Plate winners have won the Orr Stakes – which was first run in 1925 – in the same season, although filly Surround is the only three-year-old to have achieved the feat.

All Too Hard registered a win for the three-year-olds last season, arresting a nine-year drought for the generation that won all six Orr Stakes between 1998 and 2003.

Eurozone is the only other three-year-old engaged in this year’s Orr following Robbie Laing’s last-minute decision to keep Polanski to his own age group in the Autumn Stakes.

Eurozone and Shamus Award are both first-up and Form Focus data reveals that has been the winning formula in the Orr Stakes in recent years with seven of the past 10 winners being first up from a spell.

The other three were second-up after resuming in the Group 2 Australia Stakes at Moonee Valley, a formline Moment of Change takes into this year’s race.

The Peter Moody-trained Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes winner opened favourite with the TAB and the Orr has also been a fabulous race for favourite backers with 18 of the past 31 winners starting popular elect, including the past four.

Story by Brad Bishop, to view full Racing Victoria story click here

Photo by Racepixvic, to view their website click here