Surprise outsider Miss Keepsake claimed an upset win in the $400,000 Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday after the hot favourite Dariana remained in the stalls.
The Bart Cummings-trained Dariana was backed into $3.80 pre race, the Redoute’s Choice filly coming off an impressive winter campaign. But the highly fancied three-year-old ruined her chances after acting up in the barriers, putting her head in the gate beside her simultaneous to the gates opening.
Stewards reviewed the situation and despite never leaving the stalls, because she had made the move at the same time as the barrier release, she was ruled as a starter and therefore in a devastating blow was found to have finished dead last.
Despite the favourite not featuring in the Queensland Oaks, the winning filly Miss Keepsake was still impressive. After starting as $31 chance, the Andrew Scott-trained Kiwi overcame a wide barrier draw to storm to victory, running past $5 second-favourite Marheta by a half-neck at the line, with Danaupair Starlet ($14) finishing off the trifecta a further length back.
Miss Keepsake was ridden by champion hoop Chris Munce, who is now the most successful jockey in the race’s history having won four Queensland Oaks. Munce previously won the Oaks with Giovana (2000), Zagalia (2003) and Vouvray (2004).
After a well-timed run, Miss Keepsake made her move heading into the straight, chasing down the leader Marheta in the final strides. Marheta had sat at the front from the 300m mark, but couldn’t hold on after Miss Keepsake’s impressive late burst.
Three-year-old Keeper filly Miss Keepsake has now won four of her seven race starts for $277, 656 in prizemoney, including an unbeaten record of three wins in as many starts in Queensland.
Miss Keepsake and Oaks runner-up Marheta are both likely to take part in this Saturday’s $500,000 Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m), for which the Tony Noonan-trained Kutchinsky is hot pre-race favourite paying $2.90 with Ladbrokes.com.au.
Other top races held at Eagle Farm last Saturday included the $250,000 Group 2 BRC Sire’s Produce Stakes (1400m) where Chris Waller’s odds-on favourite Pressday claimed victory, the $250,000 Group 2 Eagle Farm Cup (2200m) also taken out by premier Sydney trainer Waller with Triple Honour, and the $200,000 Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes (1400m) won by the Peter Moody-trained Set For Fame. Get the full results of these races at Eagle Farm Races.
This weekend the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival comes to an end with Queensland’s premier race, the $1 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m). Get in early and make your selections now to lock in the best odds at Ladbrokes.com.au!
2010 Queensland Oaks Results
MISS KEEPSAKE (NZ)
|Andrew Scott||C Munce||$31||–|
|Michael Moroney||M J Zahra||$5||0.2|
|Patrick Payne||M J Cahill||$14||1.2|
ABSOLUTE JOY (NZ)
|Lee Freedman||D Dunn||$41||2.7|
|John Sargent||D Browne||$6||3.7|
FAIRY OAK (NZ)
|Peter G Moody||L Nolen||$7.50||3.8|
|Chris Waller||J Cassidy||$31||4.8|
AMBITIOUS PRINCESS (NZ)
|Anthony Cummings||D Oliver||$15||5.8|
|Trevor Whittington||L Cassidy||$12||7.5|
|Matt Kropp||J Taylor||$71||7.8|
|John Wallace||J Byrne||$26||8.0|
|John P Thompson||H Bowman||$91||9.5|
|John P Thompson||T Angland||$101||10.0|
|Peter Snowden||K McEvoy||$11||11.8|
MOTHER’S MILK (NZ)
|John P Thompson||T Bell||$101||16.3|
C’MON CUBA (NZ)
|Donna Logan||M J Walker||$61||20.0|
|Paul Perry||D Nikolic||$51||24.3|
|Bart Cummings||S W Arnold||$3.80||–|
|LUCKY SONGS (NZ)|