Skip to content

09/06/2012 – Stradbroke Handicap/Queensland Derby Day Preview

June 9, 2012

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks, since Singapore, pretty much forgetting racing. Apart from a quick stint on the Dubai Racing Channel on Epsom Oaks day, it has been a time of relative calm.

However, I couldn’t let Queensland’s biggest day of racing go by without offering my thoughts on the big card from Brisbane. This time 12 months ago, I was trackside as Sincero burst through to win the Stradbroke Handicap. Today was a good time to reflect on an article I wrote back then, about the joys of racehorse ownership. Click here to read.

This year, I’ll be watching in the early hours of the morning from London. But I’m almost looking forward to this year’s card more. I think the Stradbroke is extremely open, the Derby looks alright while the Brisbane Cup is very strong.

I’m going to look at the final four races on the card.

Race 5 – GROUP 1 THE T.J. SMITH (1600m)

The final Group 1 for the juveniles this season. On paper it looks a one act affair with Sizzling looking to take this race after winning the Champagne Classic and the Sires Produce Stakes. But I’m keen on one at each way odds here. DONNA CATTIVA was a good run last start in the Gibson Carmichael Stakes at Flemington. She lost momentum at a crucial stage. She has the right form, in my opinion, to figure here and $21 with TAB Sportsbet looks a good price. SIZZLING is obviously the one to beat. And if the form holds up, he should win. BOBAN and KABAYAN are two horses who should appreciate the trip and look to have the scope to measure up, so I’d be including them in any multiples, but go Donna Cattiva!

12 – DONNA CATTIVA
1 – SIZZLING
8 – BOBAN
10 – KABAYAN

Race 6 – GROUP 1 QUEENSLAND DERBY (2400m)

As always, this looks to be an open affair. It will be interesting as the winner likely qualifies for the Cups – a golden ticket in this age of high class imports. I’m keen on OTI’s RED SHIFT to beat home the more fancied OTI runner in Brambles and win the Derby. He wasn’t hopeless in the Grand Prix and he’ll be improved for the run. Plus, I’m hopeful the Virgin Islands form will hold up. VATUVEI will appreciate getting out to 2400m. The added pace here should also suit him. I’m expecting him to be around the mark. ZABEELIONAIRE finally put it all together in the South Australian Derby, another run like that should see him in the mix. And while I’m not overly sure of the Queensland Oaks form, I have to throw QUINTESSENTIAL in – when fillies strike form, it is always a good sign!

12 – RED SHIFT
4 – VATUVEI
1 – ZABEELIONAIRE
16 – QUINTESSENTIAL

Race 7 – GROUP 1 STRADBROKE HANDICAP (1400m)

Nice little race this year. Not sure if it is the classiest Stradbroke I’ve seen but it’s definitely a competitive race. And for a race like the Stradbroke, I think that’s exactly what we want to see – an open event with plenty of hopes. I’ve been on WEALTH PRINCESS since the markets opened – I got 50-1 – so I’m very hopeful she can do the deed today! At odds, I’m keen on HAPPY ZERO. On his best, he’d win this and his weight for age runs haven’t been too bad at all – back to handicap conditions over 1400m should suit, he’s way over the odds at $61 with TAB Sportsbet. He’s my sneaky each way. SEA SIREN is obviously in great form, she has to set a weight carrying record for a filly but she drops back from weight for age so it isn’t a huge test anyway. She only needs to improve slightly to win here. Luck in running will tell her tale though. And I think SPIRIT OF BOOM is the right sort of horse for the race, he’s going well enough and he can win. Open race.

17 – WEALTH PRINCESS
3 – HAPPY ZERO
6 – SEA SIREN
10 – SPIRIT OF BOOM

Race 8 – GROUP 2 BRISBANE CUP (2400m)

Aside from Crossthestart in 2010, the Brisbane Cup has been responsible for some great results since it was brought back to 2400m in 2007. That first year, it was won by Newport, an eventual The Metropolitan winner. 2008 winner Viewed went on to win a Melbourne Cup and a Caulfield Cup. Scenic Shot won in 2009, before winning the Mackinnon Stakes later in the year, while Tullamore won last year before running third in the Caulfield Cup. Second last year was Group 1 winner Glass Harmonium. The point is, this race has been a great guide to the spring since it has dropped in distance. And this year’s race looks a very good edition, so you’d expect some form to come from the race. The two favourites are the weight for age horses – the import Mawingo and Peter Moody’s Lights of Heaven. On form, it is hard to see them being beaten – but which to go for? In the end, I reckon LIGHTS OF HEAVEN is the one. I think she’s finally fulfilling the potential she’s always had as a stayer, and I can’t wait to see her in this before she steps out in the spring. MAWINGO won the Doomben Cup in good style, this is his spring test but he should qualify for the Melbourne Cup here – even if he doesn’t win the race. Finding two behind them are difficult, as it is so open. DANCE WITH HER is racing so well, this is a big step up but I do love a mare in form – and she’s going so consistently that I could see her running a big race here. And IRONSTEIN is slowly finding his best form, that formula saw him win the Queen Elizabeth Stakes in the spring so he bears close watching here.

3 – LIGHTS OF HEAVEN
2 – MAWINGO
8 – DANCE WITH HER
6 – IRONSTEIN

Best of luck today!

No comments yet

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: