The Sweet Embrace Stakes is a Group 2 sprint of 1200 metres staged at Randwick Racecourse in Sydney in late February or early March.
The race is restricted to two-year-old fillies that compete for $250,000 in prizemoney racing under set weight conditions.
Sweet Embrace Stakes Race Details
Race Distance: 1200m
Prize Money: $250,000
How To Bet On The Sweet Embrace Stakes
Our Top 3 Recommended Online Bookmakers To Bet With For The Sweet Embrace Stakes:
Sweet Embrace Stakes Horse Racing Tips
When Is The Sweet Embrace Stakes: 24/2/24
What Time Is The Sweet Embrace Stakes: TBA
Where Is The Sweet Embrace Stakes: Randwick Racecourse
How To Live Stream The Sweet Embrace Stakes
To live stream the Angst Stakes, TAB Account Holders can watch the race live.
More Details About The Sweet Embrace Stakes
The most recent jump of the Sweet Embrace Stakes found Fireburn.
The now three-year-old prodigy is by Rebel Dane out of Mull Over. She has made 10 jumps as of mid-February 2023 for five wins and one placing. So far, she has trialed in 2023, but has not jumped in a race since October of 2022, when she produced fourth place in the Group 1 Flight Stakes. Her prizemoney total is almost $4 million, most of which came from combining the $111,000 she claimed for winning the Sweet Embrace Stakes with the $2.8 million collected from the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes and the $694,000 she received for winning the Group 1 Sires’ Produce Stakes.
Her other wins were minor races leading up to the Sweet Embrace Stakes.
The race is staged at a Saturday Randwick meeting that is something of a first bounce for the major races of the autumn carnivals. It is staged alongside the Group 2 Skyline Stakes, which is the equivalent race for the benefit of juvenile colts and geldings. There is also the Group 2 Guy Walters Stakes for older mares. The main features on the day are the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes and the Group 1 Surround Stakes.
The winner of the Sweet Embrace Stakes is exempt from balloting for the Golden Slipper Stakes and in 2022, Fireburn used the exemption, not that it was truly needed, to win the Golden Slipper Stakes.
The other fillies to fill the Sweet Embrace – Golden Slipper double were Crystal Lily in 2010, Ha Ha in 2001 and Dark Eclipse in 1980.
History of the Sweet Embrace Stakes
The race jumped for the first time in 1979, the first year the Group classification system went into use.
The race name is in honour of Sweet Embrace that won the Golden Slipper Stakes in 1967, jumping for $41 as a maiden, the only time a maiden has won. She was a daughter of Todman, so the ubiquitous Star Kingdom is in the line as her grandsire.
Sweet Embrace supplied two fillies by Boucher, a mare and a colt by Luskin Star and a colt by Imperial Prince, although none of the five foals made a significant impact on racing.
The race was called the Sweet Embrace Stakes until 1999, when the holders of the naming rights for Randwick races sold their souls to a restaurant chain and the race was for one year called the Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon Stakes.
Colour us paranoid, but having a horse race named for a steakhouse is a bit suspect.
Calmer heads prevailed and the race has been the uber-cool name Sweet Embrace Stakes from 2000 forward.
The Sweet Embrace Stakes first jumped at Canterbury, and then began a nomadic existence, moving to Rosehill for a spell, back to Canterbury, followed by Randwick, Warwick Farm, Randwick, Warwick Farm, Randwick and Warwick Farm.
The race has been at Randwick since 2016. Whether it has found a permanent home or not remains to be seen.
The race began as Listed grade, moving to Group 3 in 1987 and Group 2 beginning in 2013.
Venue for the Sweet Embrace Stakes
Royal Randwick Racecourse in Sydney is the current home of the Sweet Embrace Stakes.
Randwick traces its origins back to 1833, a full seven years earlier than Flemington.
No other track in Australia offers more Group grade races than Randwick. There is also The Everest, a special conditions race where barrier slots are sold to the well-heeled, who look for the best sprinter to capture the $6.75 million prize for first place from the $15 million prize pool.
Other important races at Randwick are The All-Aged Stakes, the Queen Elizabeth Stakes, the Epsom Handicap and the Sydney Cup.
The Sweet Embrace Stakes jumps from a chute that bends slightly onto a long straight. The race runs one of Randwick’s sweeping turns before heading onto the home straight for the stretch to the finish line on the east side of the course.
Racing History of the Sweet Embrace Stakes
We did not notice any notable names from our first glance at the list of Sweet Embrace Stakes winners, but there were a few hints of connections to better types and we will be looking for the better two-year-old fillies that went on to achieve in latter campaigns. We will also look for those fillies that went on to be successful producers of good racers.
The first jump of the Sweet Embrace Stakes in 1979 supplied Ingenue as the winner.
As best we could determine, she won two races and the other win was a minor handicap. She did provide us with the immediate connection to Star Kingdom as her grandsire.
After racing, Ingenue supplied 11 foals, the best being Pride Of Ingenue by Proud Knight that won above $250,000.
Dark Eclipse won in 1980 and won the Golden Slipper Stakes to add a Group 1 to her resume and supply the first Sweet Embrace/Golden Slipper Stakes double. It was a good year for the daughter of Baugette. Her other wins for the year were the Group 3 Magic Night Quality Handicap and the Tea Rose Stakes, a Listed grade race at the time that is now Group 2 grade.
She foaled twice by Bletchingly and once by Showdown, but none of her three foals was notable for winning races.
The winner in 1981 was Black Shoes and she was by the same sire, Osmunda, as the 1979 winner, Ingenue.
Black Shoes was the 1981 Champion Two Year Old Filly in Australia. She recorded 1980 wins in the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes and the Group 3 Gimcrack Stakes. She had a Group 1 victory in 1981 by winning the Blue Diamond Stakes.
She supplied four foals, but nothing exceptional or average as racers.
The 1982 winner, Jade Lace was another daughter of Baugette and we are hopeful that she is the last by him to win this race, as it is close to luncheon time and we do not know how many times more we can type baugette, since that is the bread that will make our sandwich.
We learned that Jade Lace had five wins, but we do not see anything better than the Sweet Embrace Stakes on her resume.
She was served by some notables after racing, including Luskin Star, but the best we found was a 1987 colt by Chem named Pontormo that won a bit above $261,000.
We were anticipating a connection to Vain when we saw that the 1984 winner of the Sweet Embrace Stakes was Vain Display, but we received that connection from the 1983 winner, Purpose.
Vain was sire to Purpose.
Purpose made 13 jumps for eight wins and two placings. Five of those wins were as a two-year-old. Other good wins by Purpose were the Group 3 Reisling Slipper Trial and the Group 3 Silver Shadow Stakes.
Purpose supplied nine foals, including three by Sir Tristam, one of which was a 1988 filly named Lady Purpose that won about double the $80,000 for which her mum Purpose claimed.
Vain Display was indeed another daughter of Vain, so to this stage of the Sweet Embrace Stakes, the winners’ list almost seems to be an examination of incestuous Thoroughbred breeding, although we prefer to think of it as simply nepotism.
Vain Display was served by Kenmare and supplied the 1990 colt Keltrice that won almost $500,000, although foals by Bletchingly and Danehill were underachievers. Speed Check was the 1985 winner. She used the ballot exemption to run second to Rory’s Jester in the 1985 Golden Slipper Stakes. Her output as a breeder was inconsequential from a racing perspective.
The first time the Sweet Embrace Stakes jumped as a Group 3 race, 1987, the winner was Postage Due.
She was a daughter of Luskin Star and she won at Group 2 level by taking the 1987 Magic Night Stakes.
We found the best of the winners to date when we looked into the 1989 winner, A Little Kiss.
She was mainly of U.S. lines with some British Isles added to the mix. A distant relative was the legendary U.S. galloper Man O’ War. After she won some top races, including Group 1 wins in the Flight Stakes and the Queensland Oaks, she was sent to the U.S., where she had three jumps without a win.
Her form line of 33 jumps for eight wins and six placings earned her $670,000. Her offspring, six in total, were not exceptional.
No sooner did we praise A Little Kiss than we discovered a million dollar winner named Paklani winning the race in 1990.
She needed only 17 jumps for eight wins and four placings to get above a million. She was third to Canny Lad off her Golden Slipper ballot exemption. Twelve foals by better sires did not supply much.
The 1991 winner was Shadea.
Her best results at Group 1 grade were seconds in the Sires’ Produce Stakes and the Champagne Stakes.
In short, she was average, except that she was the dam of Lonhro, the winner of more than $5.7 million and sire to more great gallopers than we can mention. Lonhro was the result of pairing with Octagonal. Another pairing with Octagonal supplied Niello, a two-time Group 1 winner.
To this stage of the history of the Sweet Embrace Stakes, we have found some better racers and some top breeders, but we now have to skip over many to supply some history of more recent years.
We will begin with the 2001 winner Ha Ha, since she used the ballot exemption from winning the Sweet Embrace Stakes to win the Golden Slipper.
She won almost $3 million from 25 jumps for eight wins and seven placings. She had another Group 1 win in the 2001 Flight Stakes.
Her stud career was much less lustrous than her racing career, despite being served twice by Encosta De Lago and once by Sadlers Wells.
Next, the most recent winner of the Sweet Embrace Stakes to capture the win in the Golden Slipper was 2010’s Crystal Lily.
Winning the Golden Slipper will always supply a big boost to the earnings of any winners and Crystal Lily was no exception.
She made just 15 jumps for four wins and seven placings for just below $2.7 million in prizemoney. She never again won after the Slipper, but she was often placed in higher graded races, including seconds in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes and the Newmarket Handicap, just another victim of Black Caviar.
The 2019 winner was Anaheed by Fastnet Rock.
She won over $1.5 million for 15 jumps for five wins and three placings.
Anaheed was one of those types that could win and Group 2 and Group 3 level regularly, but she never broke through to Group 1 grade and was often well back, with the exception of her third in the Manikato Stakes in 2019.
The 2020 winner, Hungry Heart, retired after 21 jumps for four wins and five placings, which she parlayed into over $1.75 million in prizemoney.
Hungry Heart had a patch of racing following her Sweet Embrace Stakes win that saw her winning the Group 2 Phar Lap Stakes, followed by back-to-back Group 1 wins in the Vinery Stud Stakes and the ATC Oaks in 2021.
The last we will examine for today is the 2021 winner, Four Moves Ahead. She is now retired after 11 jumps for three wins and one placing. The daughter of Snitzel, her ballot exemption was good for fourth place in the 2021 Golden Slipper Stakes.
Four Moves Ahead was not a big earner, a bit above $500,000, but she did manage to win the 2021 Group 3 Tea Rose Stakes.
As the daughter of Snitzel, we expect she will be passing along DNA from the likes of Redoute’s Choice, Danehill and others, including the 1978 U.S. Triple Crown winner, Secretariat.
We were impressed at the quality of fillies we found for winners of the Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes. We are certain we were forced to skip some better types that won at Group 1 level, but an article is not a book and a thorough history of the Sweet Embrace Stakes might require an entire volume.
Sweet Embrace Stakes Past Winners
|2021||Four Moves Ahead|
|2017||One More Honey|
|2005||Carry On Cutie|
|1997||All The Chat|
|1989||A Little Kiss|