Talented trio add their names to an All-Star cast

The field for the 2024 All-Star Mile is taking shape with Group 1 winner Cascadian (pictured), Kiwi contender Aegon and Cinderella story Ayrton the latest horses to receive a wildcard.

Twelve months after chasing home Mr Brightside at The Valley, Cascadian will be looking to go one better when the All-Star Mile heads to Caulfield under its annual rotation policy on Saturday, 16 March.

Owned by the powerful Godolphin operation, Cascadian used his mighty run in the All-Star Mile as a springboard to success in the Group 1 TAB Australian Cup (2000m) – a run of results which saw him collect more than $2.5 million in prizemoney in the space of seven days.

The $3 million Australian Cup at Flemington on Saturday, 30 March is again firmly on Cascadian’s radar, but in the more immediate future he will attempt to win a first All-Star Mile for his trainer James Cummings, the grandson of legendary horseman Bart.      

After marking his return with a luckless run in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m), Cascadian stepped up to the mile in the Group 1 Verry Elleegant Stakes last Saturday at Randwick where he flashed home from last at the 800-metre mark to finish fourth behind Think It’s Over.

With two weeks until the All-Star Mile and another fortnight until the Australian Cup, the gelding is again set to be a force in two of the Victorian Festival of Racing’s feature contests.

Like Cascadian, Aegon will be lining up in the All-Star Mile for the second successive year after he too received a wildcard to contest the $4 million marquee race. 

The Group 1 winner finished ninth last year, but if he can build on his runner-up finish behind La Crique in last Saturday’s Otaki-Maori Classic (1600m) – where he just beat home fellow All-Star Mile contender Desert Lightning – Aegon is sure make his presence felt.

The same applies to Ayrton, who boasts a tremendous record at Caulfield having registered six of his nine career wins at this year’s host venue.

The six-year-old, who is trained by Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr and owned by the successful Roll The Dice Racing syndicate, is lucky to be racing at all after suffering a near-fatal spider bite.

But the tough gelding continues to defy the odds and he would have come extremely close to securing an automatic berth in the All-Star Mile had he got clear running room in last Saturday’s ‘win and you’re in’ Group 2 Blamey Stakes (1600m).

That eye-catching performance, coupled with his victory in the Listed Barton Stakes (1400m) at the start of the year and a highly creditable run behind Mr Brightside in the Group 1 Sportsbet C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m), persuaded the All-Star Mile wildcard panel that his form warranted a place in the field.


As of 7 March, the field was made up of:

Mr Brightside – Ben, Will and JD Hayes (wildcard)

Buffalo River – Mike Moroney (C.F. Orr Stakes)

Pride of Jenni – Ciaron Maher (wildcard)

Jimmysstar – Ciaron Maher (wildcard)

Desert Lightning – Peter and Dawn Williams (Aotearoa Classic)

Dom to Shoot – Sean and Jake Casey (wildcard)

Munhamek – Nick Ryan (wildcard)

Cascadian – James Cummings (wildcard)

Aegon – Andrew Forsman (wildcard)

Ayrton – Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr (wildcard) 



Dine in style

To elevate your raceday experience, the Melbourne Racing Club (MRC) is offering an exclusive dining offer for guests with access to the members-only Promenade Tiered Dining for all Victorian owners and connections.

Guests will be able to enjoy a first-class dining experience on All-Star Mile Raceday, with diners afforded uninterrupted views of the winning post, home straight and mounting yard – all for the special price of $205 per person.

For bookings, please click here

For a more casual experience, the Caulfield front lawn is the place to be as an ‘All-Star Fiesta’ transforms the area into a colourful day party with live music, delicious eats and vibrant entertainment.

Book now at https://mrc.racing.com/calendar/2024-03-16/all-star-mile-race-day