Winners and Past Results for the Moonga Stakes
Started in 1988, the Moonga Stakes is a 1400 metre Group 3 race hosted by Melbourne Racing Club. The event is held under set weight conditions with penalties for horses aged four and above. The Moonga Stakes is worth $125,000 and held annually at Caulfield Racecourse in Melbourne as part of MRC's three day racing carnival in October.
It is hosted on the same day as MRC's most prestigious race, the Group 1 Caulfield Cup, which is also the final day of the carnival. The inaugural race was won by the illustrious Vo Rogue. It was a listed race till 1993, after which it was upgraded to Group 3. The Moonga Stakes in recent times has also been called the Betfair Stakes.
The Moonga Stakes usually fields horses who are handy gallopers with the ability to place well in a major race. Horses competing here usually go on to similar or stronger races during the carnival. The 2011 winner, Love Conquers All, came into this event after winning the Group 2 The Shorts at Rosehill Racecourse, and placing third in the Group 2 Premiere Stakes over 1200 M at Randwick. The horse then went on to place 5th in the Emirates Stakes at Flemington Racecourse.
The 2011 runner up, Albert the Fat, came into the race from a 2nd in The Shorts at Rosehill. He then went on to win the 1600 M Group 1 Emirates Stakes at Flemington, a month later.
2010 winner Rothera, came into this event after winning or placing 2nd in various handicap and listed events throughout the year. The gelding came fourth in the Group 2 at Hollindale Stakes, and then won the Fujitsu Open Handicap. After winning the Moonga Stakes, Rothera has not done so well in the races competed.
Hurtle Myrtle, who placed 5th in 2011, after placing 2nd in the Premiere Stakes at Randwick , went on win the 1600 M Group 1 Myer Classic. In a strange case of coincidence, Gathering who placed 5th in the Moonga Stacks in 2010, after winning the Listed Herald Sun Superstable Stakes at Flemington, went on to win the 1600 M Group 1 Railway Stakes at Ascot Racecourse. He came sixth in the Group 2 Crystal Mile at Moonee Valley, just before winning at Ascot.
Some of the horses who have gone on to achieve greater success include Assertive Lad in 2002, Flavour in 2001, and Rough Habit in 1992.
2012 Moonga Stakes
Whateverwhenever started this race as a $17 outsider, but the Queensland mare surprised many with a narrow win. The five-year-old raced midfield through the middle stages of the 1400 metre event with jockey Craig Williams happy to wait until the turn to make a move. Further back, the hot-favourite King's Rose started an ominous looking run around the outside of the field and swept to the lead, looking a likely winner with 200 metres to go. But Whateverwhenever was able to take advantage of a split between runners and ran down King's Rose to win by a neck. McClintock was a length back in third.
2012 Moonga Stakes result
2. King's Rose
4. Mister Milton
5. Happy Zero
8. Renewed Vitality
9. Strike The Stars
10. Full Of Spirit
||Moonga Stakes Winners
||Love Conquers All
||Lord Of The Dance