Burning Front headlines VOBIS Gold Bullion field

The second leg of the 2017-18 VOBIS Gold Premier Race Series heads to Park Pakenham this Saturday, 9 December with a list of the highest-rated VOBIS Gold heavyweights set to go up against one another for a shot at the $150,000 prize purse.

Tomorrow's VOBIS Gold Bullion (1400m) sees the most successful VOBIS Gold horse in the scheme’s short history - Burning Front - return to the VOBIS Gold fold to take on last year’s race winner, Grande Rosso.

The $150,000 VOBIS Gold Bullion is one of nine races on Saturday’s Sportsbet Pakenham Cup Day program that will see up to 114 horses compete for close to $1 million in prizemoney and bonuses.

Click here to view notes for each of the 16 runners engaged in the VOBIS Gold Bullion.
Outside of Grande Rosso and Burning Front, there are a number of notable contenders aiming to become Premier Race Series winners alongside the pair who have earned close to $1.8 million between them.

A two-time placegetter in this race, the Pat Carey-trained Dan Zephyr can go two better than this time last year based on his recent form which includes a second to Aeuratus in the $75,000 Programmed China Bowl (1300m) at Ararat last start. The ultra-consistent gelding has a good soft track record and is suited at this distance.

Lining up to contest the three frontrunners is the promising four-year-old Willi Willi – who has been freshened for the race following his last-start win in the $150,000 Super VOBIS Silver Bowl Series Final (1600m) at Flemington in July.

The lightly raced gelding has had two wins from just three starts for trainer Craig Widdison and has already earned himself $142,000 in the process.

Racing Victoria (RV) Racing Operations Manager, Paul Bloodworth, said interest in the 2017 edition of the VOBIS Gold Bullion is strong with a mix of proven gallopers and progressive horses among the acceptances.

“Burning Front has risen to a level not seen before on the VOBIS Gold scene over the last two seasons, winning $481,000 in Premier Race Series prizemoney and bonuses to take his total race earnings ($1.3 million) past that of any other VOBIS Gold horse,” Bloodworth said.

“But he is a little older now – as are Grande Rosso and Dan Zephyr – and I would not be surprised to see a new star emerge from this race in Willi Willi, or another progressive type in Wall Street Wolf who is also starting to develop a very bright profile.”

Bloodworth said that one of the pleasing aspects of Saturday's race was the cross section of training locations the horses are coming from to compete.

"We have trainers from Ballarat, Warrnambool, Moe, Cranbourne, Wodonga, Kyneton, Mornington, Caulfield and Flemington which highlights the opportunities that VOBIS Gold gives trainers and owners to race in high prizemoney events in the form of the VOBIS Gold Premier Race Series," he said.

Following Saturday’s VOBIS Gold Bullion, the Premier Race Series will continue on Saturday, 23 December with the running of the $150,000 VOBIS Gold Carat (1200m) at The Valley.