horse racing info

TJ Smith Stakes

The TJ Smith Stakes is a Group 1 weight-for-age race held each year in April at Randwick racecourse in Sydney, New South Wales. The race is run over a distance of 1200 metres and worth $2,500,000 in prize money. The 2020 TJ Smith Stakes was won by Nature Strip from Santa Ana Lane with Redzel third.

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With the introduction of The Championships to the Sydney autumn racing carnival, the TJ Smith Stakes takes its place on the first day, alongside the feature race of the day, the Group 1 Doncaster Handicap.

TJ Smith Stakes info

Date: Saturday 4th April 2020
Track: Randwick racecourse, Sydney
Distance: 1200 metres
Race Type: Weight-for-age
Status: Group 1
Prize Money: $2,500,000
2020 Winner: Nature Strip

The TJ Smith Stakes is a good quality weight-for-age race over the sprint distance of 1200m and tends to attract the best sprinters going around at this time of year. It has grown to become a race for good horses and is named after legendary Sydney trainer, and father of Gai Waterhouse, Tommy Smith.

The level weight conditions favour the best horses in the race and more often than not, with any luck in running, the best horses will figure in the finish due to the weight advantage. A number of classy gallopers have won the TJ Smith Stakes over the years including champion mare Black Caviar (2013 & 2011), Takeover Target (2009) and Apache Cat (2008).

Races such as the Group 2 Canterbury Stakes and Group 1 George Ryder Stakes are typical lead up events, while the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap in Melbourne has provided multiple recent winners in Chautaqua (2015), Lankan Rupee (2014) and Black Caviar (2011).

The upcoming Group 1 All Aged Stakes on the final day of the Sydney autumn racing carnival may be on the cards for horses contesting this event. The most recent horse to win the TJ Smith Stakes & All Aged Stakes double is Trapeze Artist, with Bentley Biscuit (2007) and Shamekha (2005) prior to that.

Classy mare Melito (2010) travelled to Eagle Farm in Brisbane after winning this race and finished second in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap before winning the Group 1 Winter Stakes.

Santa Ana Lane (2019) ran fifth in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap over 1200m at Flemington in Melbourne before heading to Sydney to score an outstanding victory in this event for the Anthony Freedman stable.

Recent TJ Smith Stakes winners include Trapeze Artist (2018) and three-time champion Chautauqua (2015-2017) in successive years.

2019 TJ Smith Stakes result

1. $7.50 Santa Ana Lane 58.5 Mark Zahra
2. $4.00 Osborne Bulls 58.5 Hugh Bowman
3. $6.00 Sunlight 54.5 Luke Currie

then followed
4. $101.00 Champagne Cuddles 56.5 Damian Lane
5. $6.50 Pierata 58.5 Tommy Berry
6. $11.00 Redzel 58.5 Kerrin McEvoy
7. $5.00 Trapeze Artist 58.5 Blake Shinn
8. $10.00 Shoals 56.5 Tim Clark
9. $41.00 Ball Of Muscle 58.5 Glyn Schofield
10. $26.00 Vega Magic 58.5 Damien Oliver
11. $81.00 Fell Swoop 58.5 James McDonald

Margins: 3.5 len, 0.1 len
Time: 1:10.65

Other group races on TJ Smith Stakes Day include the Group 2 Chairmans Handicap, Group 3 PJ Bell Stakes, Group 3 ATC Carbine Club Stakes, Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes and Group 3 Kindergarten Stakes.

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TJ Smith Stakes winners & placegetters

Year Winner 2nd 3rd Time
2020 Nature Strip Santa Ana Lane Redzel 1:11.1
2019 Santa Ana Lane Osborne Bulls Sunlight 1:10.6
2018 Trapeze Artist Redzel In Her Time 1:08.2
2017 Chautauqua English Fell Swoop 1:12.4
2016 Chautauqua Fell Swoop English 1:10.1
2015 Chautauqua Lord Of The Sky Terravista 1:11.0
2014 Lankan Rupee Rebel Dane Buffering 1:12.1
2013 Black Caviar Epaulette Bel Sprinter 1:09.6
2012 Master Of Design Rain Affair Hallowell Belle 1:08.8
2011 Black Caviar Hay List Triple Honour 1:08.7
2010 Melito Hot Danish Mic Mac 1:09.2
2009 Takeover Target Northern Meteor Apache Cat 1:09.0
2008 Apache Cat Reigning To Win Takeover Target 1:11.8
2007 Bentley Biscuit Black Ink Virage De Fortune 1:10.6
2006 Red Oog Glamour Puss Snitzel 1:09.8
2005 Shamekha Fastnet Rock Only Words 1:12.1
2004 Dilly Dally Legally Bay Mistegic 1:09.9
2003 Spinning Hill Yell Bel Esprit 1:10.7
2002 Phoenix Park Fair Embrace Spinning Hill 1:10.3
2001 Century Kid Spinning Hill Falvelon 1:09.8
2000 Shy Hero Easy Rocking High Rolling 1:39.3
1999 Ab Initio Padstow Life Of Riley 1:10.7
1998 La Baraka Masked Party Coogee Walk 1:11.6
1997 Mahogany Ruffles Clang 1:09.1