Sweet Solera Stakes Betting

The Sweet Solera Stakes is a Group 3 sprint conducted on a Saturday in early August each year at Newmarket Racecourse. This is the featured race of British Legion Poppy Day, which supports the Royal British Legionís annual Poppy Appeal. Funds raised here are used to provide welfare, comradeship, representation and Remembrance for the Armed Forces community. A special ďAt The RacesĒ themed workshop is also conducted in the Garden Enclosure.

The £50,000 Sweet Solera Stakes is open exclusively to two-year-old Thoroughbred fillies, covering a distance of seven furlongs on the straight turf of the famous July Course. Each runner carries a weight of eight stone twelve pounds, with penalties applied to winners of previous races, amounting to five pounds for any Group 1 or Group 2 success and three pounds for a previous Group 3 victory.

The event is named after Sweet Solera, the 1961 winner of both the 1,000 Guineas and the Epsom Oaks. It was first run in 1987 at the Listed level, and Dry Cane was the first sponsor. Subsequent backers over the next 15 years included Gilbey`s Gin, Fay/Richwhite, Columbus, Owens Orchid, Enza New Zealand and Milcars.

In 2004, the event was promoted to Group 3 status, and the following year Swynford Paddocks Hotel took up the title role. They were replaced in 2007 by skybet.com, who have been the primary sponsor ever since.

Although no filly has the opportunity to compete in the Sweet Solera Stakes twice, many immediately go on to victory in other races for two-year-olds, such as the May Hill Stakes at Doncaster in September. Among recent winners of both events were Nasheej in 2005, Rainbow View in 2008 and White Moonstone in 2010. The latter two also succeeded in the Filliesí Mile at Ascot in late September, as did Soviet Song in 2002.

The most successful jockey at the Sweet Solera Stakes with four wins to his credit is Michael Hills. He was in the saddle as Catwalk found the finish post first in 1996 and then won atop Peaceful paradise in 2000, Bay Tree in 2003 and English Ballet in 2006.

That last winner for Hills was schooled by his father Barry, who ranks number one among trainers here with four victories. The elder Hillsí other wins came with Muklah in 2001, Bay Tree in 2003 and Maids Causeway in 2004.

Since the turn of the new millennium, bookmakers have had difficulty predicting the results of the Sweet Solera Stakes. In fact, through 2007 no favourite came in first here. Then, the oddsmakers caught fire and forecast every one of the next three winners in 2008-10. They had Rainbow View rated correctly as the favourite at 6/4, followed by Long Lashes at 2/1 in 2009 and White Moonstone as the joint favourite at 11/4.

On the other hand, double-digit winners are a rarity here. The last long-odds starter to pay out in first place was Diamond White at 25/1 in 1997. Although two-year-old fillies are probably the most difficult runners of all to handicap, given their lack of history and form, in the past eight years, the top three in the betting have accounted for every single winner.

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