Caulfield set to host 10th annual celebration of Victoria's racing and breeding industries

Victorian Owners and Breeders Raceday (VOBRD) will offer almost $2.9 million in prizemoney and bonuses this Saturday, 27 April when Caulfield hosts the 10th annual celebration of the state’s thriving racing and breeding industries.

The raceday will again be headlined by the $1 million TBV VOBIS Platinum Showdown (1200m) for two-year-old sprinters and the $500,000 IRT VOBIS Platinum Guineas (1600m) for three-year-old milers, which are both open exclusively to horses nominated to the VOBIS Gold program and sired by VOBIS Sires stallions.

The hot favourite for the sixth edition of The Showdown is Lindsay Park’s flying filly Bold Bastille, who races in the distinctive navy blue and pale yellow colours of prominent owner Ozzie Kheir. The daughter of Brazen Beau has accumulated almost $700,000 in prizemoney – including $42,000 in VOBIS bonuses – after winning four of her five career starts. She heads into the $1 million feature off the back of a dominant victory in the VOBIS Gold Rush (1000m) under Luke Currie, who retains the ride on Saturday. 

The VOBIS Platinum Guineas has drawn a field of 12, with leading trainers Ciaron Maher (Sioux Nation filly Socks Nation), Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr (Toronado filly Stormstout) and Tony and Calvin McEvoy (last year’s Showdown runner-up Elphinstone) all intent on winning the $500,000 contest for the first time. 

“Owners and breeders play such an important role in racing’s ecosystem, and Saturday’s raceday is recognition of their vital contribution,” said Matt Welsh, Racing Victoria’s Executive General Manager – Racing.  

“This is one of the strongest cards assembled for Victorian Owners and Breeders Raceday. Headlined by Bold Bastille in The Showdown, there’s a host of exciting and progressive gallopers chasing almost $3 million in prizemoney across the card.”

“The Victorian breeding industry is booming,” said James O’Brien, President of Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria (TBV). 

“This year in particular we have seen the winners of both the Blue Diamond Stakes and the Golden Slipper being sired by Victorian stallions. This, once again, demonstrates the versatility of Victorian stallions and shows that there is no better time to breed in Victoria.

“In addition to the quality horses, we also have great prizemoney and bonuses on offer on the raceday. This Saturday is guaranteed to be a day of outstanding races and filled with a lot of fun, and we can’t wait to celebrate with everyone involved in the Victorian breeding and racing industry.”

The undercard features five more races from the VOBIS Gold Premier Race Series, with the quintet offering in excess of $1 million in prizemoney and bonuses. Notable runners include last year’s Showdown heroine Shesallshenanigans (trained by Simon Zahra), who bids to break through the $1 million prizemoney barrier with victory in the $175,000 Cylinder VOBIS Gold Dash (1200m).

Another former winner of The Showdown, Matt Cumani’s Avenel Equine Hospital VOBIS Gold Heath (2000m) contender Khoekhoe, is also edging closer to the $1 million mark thanks chiefly to his six career victories which include a last-start win in the Terang Cup (2156m).

The 2022 VOBIS Platinum Guineas winner Chartres (trained by Matt Laurie) also lines up in the Sheen Panel Service VOBIS Gold Mile (1600m); whilst Regardsmaree (Nick Ryan) is chasing a second victory in the Yulong VOBIS Gold Sprint (1200m), having won the race in 2022 (with minor placegetter The Astrologist looking to turn the tables this year).

The VOBIS program offers over $30 million in prizemoney, bonuses and vouchers to eligible horses.  The latest addition to the VOBIS stable, VOBIS Platinum aims to reward owners, trainers and breeders and stimulate reinvestment in the Victorian industry. 

Since its inception in 2022, the program has seen more than $3 million in VOBIS Platinum vouchers won by owners, with nearly $1.2 million redeemed so far.