Doncaster Mile tips and best bets
The Doncaster Mile takes place this Saturday at Royal Randwick on a bumper day of racing that sees the race sandwiched between the Group One TJ Smith Stakes and the Group One Australian Derby.
Run over a distance of 1600m the Doncaster Mile gives middle distance runners 3 years or older the chance to compete for $3m in prize money under weight for age conditions.
First run in 1866 the Doncaster Handicap (now known as Mile) is steeped in racing history with some huge racing names including Winx, Sunline and Emancipation and even Wakeful back in 1901 winning editions of the race during stellar racing careers.
More recently Mr. Brightside was the winner of the 2022 Doncaster Mile when the Ben and JD Hayes runner defeated I’m Thunderstruck and Icebath in a true staying battle. Mr Brightside returns in 2023 having most recently won the $5m All Star Mile and looking be the first horse to go back to back in Australia’s premier mile races.
Out to stop Mr Brightside are a host of international runners with Andrew Forsman and William Haggis both having live chances in the race. There are also strong showings from the big local stables with the likes of Waller, Maher & Eustace, The Freedmans and Waterhouse & Bott all having solid chances.
We take a look through the race betting and select our top picks for the 2023 Doncaster Mile.
2023 Doncaster Handicap Race Overview
An expected capacity field of 20 runners are expected to tackle the 1600m race and looking at the betting it looks to be a very open edition of the race with a number of runners having strong claim to the Doncaster Mile title.
With such a big field there are some solid market prices about for this years edition of the Doncaster Mile with last years winner Mr. Brightside leading the betting at $6 and only three other runners in single figures for the race.
Those runners include All Star Mile Favourite and Futurity Stakes winner Alligator Blood who sits on the second line of betting at $8.50. Also at the $8.50 mark is Chris Waller trained Fangirl who partners with international acclaimed jockey Joao Moreira for the first time.
The only other runner in single figures is another Waller runner in Zougotcha who get into the race carrying 50.5kgs. The filly has been in good form this prep and will jump from barrier 13 as $9.50 third favourite.
Of the best of the rest its the juniors who lead the market with Godolphins Golden Mile, Converge for Waterhouse and Bott as well as Osipenko and Lindermann for Chris Waller who are hot on the heels of the favourites.
2023 Doncaster Mile Top Selections and Best Bet
With 20 runners expected to contest the 2023 Doncaster Mile we narrow down the field to select our Outside Chance, The Main Danger and our Best Bet for the race.
2023 Doncaster Mile Outside Chance - 13. Golden Mile (11)
Trainer - James Cummings
Price - $18.00
There are plenty of chances you could describe as an outside chance in this Doncaster Mile field however we’re happy to have a look at Godolphin trained Golden Mile here at the $18.00 mark after getting barrier 11 in the draw on Tuesday.
Godolphin has got a solid crop of three year olds at the moment and Golden Mile looks to be flying under the rader with stablemates In Secret and Aft Cabin leading the three year old charge. Not to mention stablemate Anamoe flying round the track in his final season.
Willing to forgive his last start where he finished 3.9 lengths of Anamoe in the George Ryder carrying 56kgs. At one stage he looked to be on par with his stablemate before falling away in the closing stages.
Where we’re more interested is now he’s back over 1600m for the first time this campaign and drops 5kgs in weight since his last run can he produce the same gutsy performance that saw him win the Callender-Purcell over the same course and distance.
Worth an eachway chance back at this distance.
2023 Doncaster Mile Main Danger - 17. Protagonist (8)
Trainer - William Haggis
Price - $10.00
Our main danger to our best bet for the Doncaster Mile this year is the William Haggis trained Protagonist.
He has travelled down under as part of the William Haggis stable who saw Dubai Honour trash the Ranvet Stakes field last time out. Where the danger looms with Protagonist is that he travels down under having won at Group 2 grade in the UK when carrying 59kgs plus.
On Saturday he will head to the track once again but this time carrying just 50kgs under the ride of Ben Thompson. Even by Australian standards that is a significant drop from the 55kgs he carried last time out when winning the Group 3 Sky High over 2000m.
Haggis doesn’t bring runners down under to sit on the bench and from barrier 8 is likely to be close to the speed and give a good showing. Gets in significantly under weight here and looked to have plenty in the tank when winning last time out.
2023 Doncaster Mile Top Selection and Best Bet - 5. Fangirl (19)
Trainer - Chris Waller
Price - $8.50
Our top selection for the 2023 Doncaster Mile is Fangirl who comes into the race having strung together an awesome campaign so far without finding the line first in each of her three starts and the main reason for that - Anamoe.
Her run in the George Ryder was huge when travelling from near last to fly late and finish within a length of Anamoe. If she weren’t held up at the 200m mark you could argue she would have gone on to win that race as she was eating up the ground in the closing stages.
It was another hard luck story in the Chipping Norton when again she finished behind Anamoe. It’s hard to argue she would have caught him that day but once again got held up and had to switch lanes to get a run late.
In the Doncaster Mile she gets the chance to race against a field without Anamoe who has stopped her claiming victory on her last two outings. The booking of Joao Moreira is a huge plus and if anyone can avoid traffic its this guy.
The wide barrier doesn’t concern have jumped from barrier 17 in the Golden Eagle and managed to finished second, once again, behind Anamoe.
Has every chance here and if she’d have won at least one or two of those last outings might well be favourite.
Best Bet - Back Fangirl to win or each way.