Houtzen and Menari head Black Opal Nominations

Twenty two nominations have been received for Sunday’s $300,000 Mercedes Benz Canberra Black Opal Stakes (1200m).


Many are strong fancies for the $3.5 million Golden Slipper Stakes to be run at Rosehill two weeks later.


These include the flying Queenslander Houtzen who is currently on the second-line of Slipper betting at $8.0 and Gerald Ryan’s Menari ($8.50) and Chauffeur ($16.0).


The Peter and Paul Snowden yard have three entered, Kahn, Invader and Gunnison.


Muraaqeb has been nominated as expected by the Team Hayes establishment and fellow Victorian trainer Ciaron Maher has Jukebox in.


Last start plunge winner Limbo Soul is one of two nominations from the Tim Martin yard.


Godolphin (John O’Shea) has nominated Marsupial and Trekking and Reflectivity shapes as the Team Hawkes runner and From Within is the sole Chris Waller entrant.  


A number of the top-rating Opal hopes are also nominated for the Riesling and the Todman Stakes at Randwick on Saturday, but with very heavy track conditions predicted, the Black Opal may prove a more attractive option for these leading Slipper aspirants.