Battle lines drawn between Redoute’s and Encosta

Redoute’s Choice has increased his lead over Encosta de Lago by $54,000 in the last seven days as the race for the Australian sires’ premiership goes into its final fortnight.

Redoute’s Choice was $228,000 ahead of Coolmore’s reigning champion last Friday and he is $282,000 in front leading into this weekend’s racing.

Redoute’s Choice gelding Exclusive Choice won the $100,000 Slickpix Silver Bowl Final at Flemington last Saturday to give the Arrowfield stallion some breathing space.  I’m Ruthless (Eagle Farm) and Antique Rose (Belmont Park) also scored city wins for him last Saturday while Encosta went winless in town on the weekend.

Exclusive Choice (3g Redoute’s Choice – Zeparty by Zeditave) is owned by Pinecliff Racing principal Jonathan Munz.  He also raced Redoute’s Choice stakes winner Shark Bite who recently transferred from NSW to stand at Eliza Park in 2010.

Exclusive Choice is trained in tandem by Jim Conlon and Rod Doulas.  “Jim sent Exclusive Choice over a couple of hurdles to sharpen him up,” Douglas said.  “He got things his way and won the $100,000 race we set him for so everyone’s happy.”

Arrowfield included.  They bred Exclusive Choice and sold him for $500,000 at the 2008 Inglis Easter yearling sale.  

“He’s been a bit unlucky in his career but looks like he’s on track now,” Douglas added.  “He’s better suited on bigger tracks and the Silver Bowl could be the launching pad to better races next season.”

Exclusive Choice is from Zeparty, an unraced half-sister to G1 AJC Galaxy winner Masked Party (Marscay) and G1 NZ Telegraph Hcp winner Festal (Vain).

Encosta de Lago will struggle to make any inroads in the capital cities this Saturday.  He doesn’t have any runners at Doomben but neither does Redoute’s Choice.

Encosta de Lago filly Seduced is his only starter at Morphettville (Race 7).  There are no Redoute’s runners in Adelaide.

In Melbourne, Peter Moody will saddle up Achievements (Race 2) who is the only Redoute’s rep at Caulfield.

In Race 5, the Gerald Ryan trained gelding Regal Banter (Encosta De Lago) will go out at each-way odds in the Slickpix Cup.

The battle lines will be drawn at Rosehill where both sires will be in the firing line for winners.  Redoute’s Choice can kick-start the card with Tom’s Choice and Crossbow in Race 1.

We Betcha (Encosta De Lago) will be one of the favourites in Race 3 and Clarry Connors has accepted with Mothwing (Encosta De Lago) in Races 6 & 7.

Redoute’s Choice is double-handed in Race 7 with Electric Dreams and Dystopia.

Encosta de Lago has won the last two Australian titles and can never be discounted but he faces a herculean task to make it a hat-trick in 2009-10.