Winx Stakes 2022 Preview: Contenders, Betting & Winner Trends

Mo’unga will bid to defend his crown when he heads to Royal Randwick to compete in the Group 1 Winx Stakes on Saturday.

Prize money has increased by 50% for this year’s race, which has helped to attract a star-studded field. Mo’unga is among the favourites for glory, but he faces a fierce battle for supremacy with the likes of Anamoe, Fangirl and Forbidden Love.

Read on to learn more about the Winx Stakes, including its history, the race features, the leading contenders for 2022 and some key winner trends.


Race History

The historic race was initially named the Warwick Stakes. It was first held back in 1923, when Starburst saluted at Warwick Farm Racecourse. The venue alternated between Warwick Farm and Randwick during the ensuing decades, before eventually settling at Randwick in 2014.

It achieved Group 2 status when the group system was adopted in 1979. Gypsy Kingdom was successful that year, and the legendary Kingston Town won it three years in a row after that.

The wondermare Winx won the race three years in a row from 2016 to 2018. It was renamed in her honour in 2018, and it was also bumped up to a Group 1 race. She finished ahead of Invictus Prince to claim a hat-trick that year. 


Winx Stakes Notable Winners

There have been several famous winners of this race over the years:


  • Limerick | The New Zealand gelding won 22 races of a wide variety of distances in the 1920s, including three victories in the Warwick Stakes from 1927 to 1929.
  • San Domenico | This highly-rated thoroughbred was inducted into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame in 2007 after winning 14 races, including the Warwick Stakes in 1950 and 1951.
  • Tulloch | The most successful sire in Australian history after retiring to stud. Tulloch won this race in 1957, and he was among the first five members of the Australian Racing Hall of Fame, along with 1946 winner Bernborough.
  • Sky High | An outstanding racehorse that won this race in 1961 and 1962, along with victories in the Golden Slipper Stakes, the VRC Derby, VRC Lightning Stakes and the Epsom Handicap, before becoming Australia’s second highest stakes-winner when retired to stud.
  • Kingston Town | This Champion Racehorse famously won three Cox Plates in a row, along with three Warwick Stakes wins.
  • Super Impose | Another Australian Racing Hall of Inductee who won the Cox Plate and lots of Group 1 races.
  • Lonhro | The 2004 Australian Racehorse of the Year won 11 Group 1 races and earned a Timeform rating of 128.
  • Winx | Chris Waller’s mare won 33 consecutive races, including a world record 28 Group 1 victories, from 1300m to 2200m. The highlights include four Cox Plates, and she was named Australian Racehorse of the Year four times.
  • Verry Elleegant | The Melbourne Cup winner prevailed at the Winx Stakes in 2020 before going on to clinch the race that stops a nation.


Winx Stakes 2021 Winner 

Verry Elleegant started as the $4.20 favourite to win a second consecutive Winx Stakes last year. However, she ended up a quarter of a length behind Mo’unga following an intense battle down the home straight.

Mo’unga displayed real grit and determination to fend off Verry Elleegant last year, and it will be fascinating to see if he can defend his crown on Saturday. 


Winx Stakes 2022 Time & Date

The Winx Stakes 2022 will take place at Royal Randwick on Saturday, August 20. It is scheduled to take place at 3:45pm.


Race Features 

The Winx Stakes is run over a distance of 1400m on the right-handed turf track at Randwick. It is run under weight-for-age conditions.


Winx Stakes 2022 Field & Contenders 

Fifteen elite runners will line up for the Group 1 Winx Stakes on Saturday. The field includes nine Group 1 winners. These are the leading contenders:



The James Cummings-trained four-year-old is the favourite for the 2022 Winx Stakes. He will seek to smash through the $5 million barrier in career prize money on Saturday, having already landed some impressive victories and placings.

Anamoe finished second in the Golden Slipper in his two-year-old season, before winning the Group 1 Sire’s Produce Stakes at Randwick. He went on to salute in The Run to the Rose, the Caulfield Guineas, the Hobartville Stakes and the Rosehill Guineas as a three-year-old, so he is a multiple Group 1 winner.

He was unlucky not to add the Cox Plate to his collection, as he finished second to State of Rest. Jockey Craig Williams protested due to interference, but it was controversially dismissed by the stewards. He will now seek a ninth career win in the Winx Stakes.



Mo’unga is the second favourite as he seeks to defend his crown this weekend. The form guide makes grim reading, as he finished last in a field of 10 on a trial run earlier this month, eight lengths behind Best of Bordeaux in the 1000m heat.

However, there were mitigating circumstances. He trialled without blinkers, and jockey Tommy Berry pointed to an issue with cones on the track. “I am more than happy with Mo’unga going into Saturday’s race than I was before he won the Winx Stakes last year,” said a defiant Berry in his post-race interview.



Waller, the trainer of Winx and Verry Elleegant, has put forward Fangirl and Hinged as he bids to win this race for the seventh time in 12 years. Fangirl finished ahead of Hinged to win the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes at Newcastle in March, and she also won the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes at Randwick in February. She will be primed for the Epsom Handicap and the Empire Rose Stakes if she performs well on Saturday.


Forbidden Love

This mare is a specialist over 1400m at Randwick, having won the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes and the Group 2 Guy Walter Stakes here in the autumn. She was underwhelming when finishing three lengths behind $101 roughie Hard Empire in the Missile Stakes at Randwick on her return to action, but she expected to improve under new rider Rachel King.



Cascadian is a stablemate to Anamoe, giving Cummings a strong hand in this race. The eight-year-old gelding won the Group 1 All Aged Stakes over the same distance at Randwick in April, so he will carry momentum into this race. He has also won the Group 1 Doncaster Mile at Randwick, so he likes it here.



Duais is the early favourite for the Caulfield Cup and Melbourne Cup, so punters will be keen to see how she gets on. She has three Group 1 victories under her belt already, but they all came at 2000m or beyond, so this race may be a little short for her. Yet she is $12.00 to win it in our fixed-odds betting and $3.40 to place, so she cannot be written off.



Pronfondo endured a winless autumn, but the son of Deep Impact won the Group 1 Spring Champion at Randwick last October, and trainer Richard Litt hopes he can return to his best form on Saturday. Profondo likes a dry track, as do Anamoe and Mo’unga for that matter, so punters might like to keep an eye on the weather. Rain is forecast on Friday night in Sydney, so the condition of the track will be an important consideration.

Winx Stakes 2022 Odds

Fixed Win Fixed Place
Anamoe 2.5 1.4
Mo’unga 5.5 2
Fangirl 6.5 2.25
Forbidden Love 6.5 2.25
Cascadian 11 3.2
Duais 12 3.4
Profondo 12 3.4
Hilal 15 3.9
Nimalee 15 3.9
Hinged 16 4
Icebath 26 5.5
Benaud 51 9
Special Reward 51 9
Zeyrek 51 9
Stockman 101 13



Winx Stakes Prize Money

Prize money for the Winx Stakes has increased by 50% to $750,000 this year. It was $250,000 in 2017, but it doubled after it became the Group 1 Winx Stakes the following year, and it has now reached its highest level. It was part of a broader cash injection from Racing NSW, which aims to dominate the spring.


Winx Stakes Winner Trends 

  • Five-year-olds have enjoyed the greatest level of success in this race, winning it 10 times during the past 30 years. Six-year-olds are next, with eight wins.
  • Twenty-two of the last 30 winners were first up, while the rest were second-up. The last horse to win with a race under his belt was Tiger Tees in 2014.
  • Mares have won this race just eight times. However, Royal Descent, Winx and Verry Ellegant have all won it since 2015.
  • Sixteen favourites have won the Winx Stakes/Warwick Stakes since 1983, and six have finished second.


Winx Stakes Tips 

Forbidden Love to place at $2.25 looks appealing. She is five years old, making her the perfect age for this race, and she loves running over 1400m at Randwick. Her fixed-odds price drifted after an underwhelming trial, but she should bounce back on Saturday and give the likes of Anamoe and Mo’unga a run for their money.


**Odds quoted are accurate at the time of writing but are subject to change.