A field of 16 will take their place in Saturday’s Group 1 King Charles III Stakes on Everest Day at Royal Randwick.  

Formerly known as the George Main, the inaugural edition of the King Charles has attracted the likes of star miler Mr Brightside and recent 7 Stakes winner Think It Over, and Queensland Derby champion, Kovalica. 

Update: Zaaki is a late scratching from the King Charles III Stakes field today due to an elevated blood cell count.  

For our thoughts on every runner in the race, read on below! 

1. Think It Over (4)  

Think It Over broke through for a long overdue win in the 7 Stakes last time out, relishing the slow early speed and proving too much for the likes of Zaaki in the run home.  

His previous efforts in weaker company were okay, but he should have an air of confidence about him now – particularly from a nice soft gate.  

The son of So You Think failed to impress running dead last in a recent trial, but if he can tuck in behind the speed, he should be giving good chase again in the concluding stages.  

2. Mr Brightside (8)  

Mr Brightside can firmly cement his status as the best miler in the world on Saturday.  

The Lindsay Park-trained six-year-old has gone to another level since closing out the autumn with a win in the Doncaster Mile, winning the PB Lawrence on return, and both the Memsie and the Makybe Diva Stakes in back-to-back succession.  

He was simply enormous coming off the speed last time out, and this sets up even more favourably with a very fast tempo expected.  

Coming off a recent trial win, drawn to get back in the run and likely still with plenty in the tank, it’s hard to see him being beaten. 

3. Zaaki (7)   – SCRATCHED

Zaaki also comes out of the 7 Stakes where he was far from disgraced beaten a narrow second by Think It Over.  

Like always, he raced straight to the front and tried hard on the speed, but clearly the slow tempo cost him a stride or two in the end.  

It’s tough to know if he’s still up to racing at this level, but at the same time, it doesn’t look like he’s lost much of a step in two runs back either.

From the gate, I think we’ll see another forward showing where he’ll prove just as tough to run down.  

4. Huetor (12)  

Huetor has found the money three times from five starts here on his home track, but as the price suggests, he’s likely looking for further.  

The dual Group 1 winner has enjoyed a couple of soft trials to get him set for return, but with most of his big wins coming deeper into his prep, this looks short of his best.  

5. Light Infantry Man (6)  

Light Infantry Man is another Maher/Eustace import making his second start down under.  

The five-year-old out of Group 3 winning sire Fast Company has held his own against some of Europe’s top horses over the last 12 months, notably running third in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot earlier in June.  

He was beaten just under two lengths by I Wish I Win in the Golden Eagle last year and although he might need the run, he can’t be taken lightly on that form.  

6. My Oberon (3)  

My Oberon was also down to race in the Toorak at Caulfield on Saturday, but having drawn a much better gate here, this is where Annabel Neasham chooses to head.  

The Irish import has mixed his form so far in work, beaten just over two lengths in the 7 Stakes and the Epsom Handicap last month.  

The seven-year-old was also beaten very narrowly by Mr Brightside in the Doncaster during the autumn, a form line that obviously speaks for itself.  

He’d probably like a little sting out of the track, but at 40-1, he’s arguably the best rough chance in the race.  

7. Buckaroo (10)  

Joseph O’Brien trains this Fastnet Rock entire making the trip to Australia for the first time.  

The lighjtly-raced five-year-old should be ready to fire after running on late for second in a recent Group 2 Leopardstown, while he was also fourth behind Light Infantry Man in a Group 1 in France back in May.  

Where he winds up from the gate is the big query, but this looks another European raider that can’t be taken lightly.  

8. Zeyrek (13)  

Zeyrek presents fitter for three runs back, but this does look a monster assignment rising sharply to Group 1 level from a tricky gate. Hard to entertain.  

9. Nugget (9) 

Nugget has been a frustrating horse to follow this prep, beaten just over a length in the Theo Marks Stakes first-up before a slow start cost him in the Epsom Handicap a couple of weeks ago.  

The fact he ran within a length of Mr Brightside in the Doncaster does read well, but with several chances at weight-for-age gone begging, it’s hard to see him threatening.  

10. Democracy Manifest (16) SCRATCHED

Fan favourite Democracy Manifest gets another crack at a Group 1 after proving himself in the Epsom a couple of weeks ago.  

The son of Flying Artie was in a lovely spot at the 200m mark and arguably should have won, finding clear air late where he was simply no match for the likes of Rediener and Kovalica.  

He’ll take plenty away from that effort, but drawn poorly and up to weight-for-age, this looks a tough ask.

11. Golden Mile (5)  

Golden Mile has gone up a big price for a horse that was beaten less than half a length in the Epsom a couple of weeks ago.  

Blake Shinn gave him a terrific ride that day up on the speed, and although he faded late to run third, Zac Lloyd will likely adopt similar tactics here with a fast tempo expected.  

12. Kovalica (15)  

Kovalica could be the main danger to Mr Brightside in the race.  

The Queensland Derby winner was enormous second-up in the Epsom, diving late down the outside where he was narrowly denied by the equally fast-finishing Rediener.  

Third-up, the son of Ocean Park has won twice and placed on one other occasion, and even from a wide gate, he still has big scope for improvement.  

13. Rediener (1)  

Rediener is massively over the odds for a horse that just came out and won the Epsom.  

Granted, he had everything in his favour that day in terms of lightweight and the race pattern, but the way he savaged the line over the final 100m suggests that might be the start of something special.  

He maps to settle close to midfield again along the rail, and considering this is just his third start of the spring, he’s still got improvement to come. 

14. Fangirl (2)  

Fangirl bypassed this race last year on her way to running second in the Golden Eagle, and although she’s made only brief appearances this spring, she still looks a genuine chance on recent form.  

Her effort last start in the 7 Stakes really caught the eye, taken right back from the wide gate where she was entitled to weaken down the straight, but instead responding well to get up and run third to Think It Over.  

She’s been kept fresh for the run and has since had a quiet Rosehill trial to keep her sharp. Drawn kinder on this occasion, a win wouldn’t shock.  

15. Atishu (11) 

Atishu won the Queen of the Turf by a big margin over the track and trip earlier in the autumn, and she does look set to peak now in her third run back.  

She blew the start and was caught a mile back first-up in the Sheraco Stakes but showed real improvement for second in the Golden Pendant making up good late ground from midfield.  

Her third-up record has always been good, and at current quote, she’s worth including in exotics to run somewhere in the top five.  

16. Hope In Your Heart (14)  

Hope In Your Heart’s effort in the Tramway two back was eye-catching, but she was the victim of a slow tempo in the Epsom where she was only fair to the line for sixth.  

The blinkers come off and she has raced well over the mile previously, but overall, this might be a touch above her.