While premier Sydney trainer Peter Snowden has a stranglehold over the BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes at Eagle Farm this weekend thanks to his in-form two-year-olds Benfica and Free Wheeling, he will be without a representative in the QTC Cup with Pinwheel an early scratching from the feature.
One of the eight top showdowns on the Queensland Oaks Day card this Saturday, the $175,000 Group 2 QTC Cup (1300m) originally attracted a capacity field of 16 starters plus five emergencies.
Snowden, however, has pulled the pin on his Lonhro five-year-old Pinwheel contesting the race.
Most recently finishing a game third to Lone Rock in the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville, Pinwheel was the 58kg top-weight of the QTC Cup field.
After the consistent sprinter came up with a horror barrier 20 draw, Snowden was quick to remove Pinwheel from the race.
The big winner in the QTC Cup barrier draw was short-priced favourite Sincero who will get all the luck from the inside alley.
Stephen Farley’s gun three-year-old Umatilla gelding from Wyong is seeking their seventh consecutive win having dominated in all of their races since November of last year.
Most recently Sincero has enjoyed back-to-back wins this year taking out the Listed Gosford Guineas (1200m) by an impressive five lengths back on Anzac Day.
Last start they were the easy winner of the $250,000 Inglis 3YO Guineas (1600m) on May 14 and this scintillating form has also seen Sincero installed as the early favourite to win the $1 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) Saturday week.
After the first acceptors for the Stradbroke were taken on Wednesday morning, Sincero is still not yet assured of a start sitting 19th on the order of entry.
Sincero is set to arrive in Brisbane on Thursday ahead of their debut Queensland run in the QTC Cup and trainer Farley could not be happier with their current condition, form and fitness having given them a demanding workout at home last Saturday morning.
“He worked as good as I’ve ever seen him,” Farley said.
“He looks right on top of his game.
“He has really thrived and looks in great order.”
Although bordering on a Stradbroke start, winning the QTC Cup and the accompanying Stradbroke exemption may not be needed if a handful of horses higher up the ballot for Queensland’s premier sprint do not accept next week.
“He still has to be competitive to warrant a run in the Stradbroke,” Farley said.
“This (the QTC Cup) will be his first time racing in top Group company.
“He will need to step up another gear.”
On Saturday Sincero will partner with Sydney jockey Tim Clark for the first time and is ideally weighted with 52.5kg.
“He won’t know himself with that weight,” Farley said.
This is a substantial drop back in weight from what Sincero has carried to victory recently, the galloper able to perform with up to 60.5kg on their back, and the reason for the jockey change with regular rider Chris O’Brien too heavy to take the QTC Cup mount.
If Sincero does go on to earn a spot in the Stradbroke Handicap field, ace hoop Glen Boss will apply for a temporary leave from his riding commitments in Singapore to return down under for the ride.
“Glen (Boss) is currently riding in Singapore and it didn’t work out (for him to ride in the QTC Cup), he had commitments this weekend,” Farley said.
“If the horse makes the Stradbroke, Glen has said he’ll be more than happy to ride him.”
In other QTC Cup news, Victorian horseman Tony Noonan has decided to start his Redoute’s Choice mare Varenna Miss in the race giving her a shot of making the Stradbroke field.
A winner over 1200m at Doomben a fortnight ago, Varenna Miss was also accepted for the $200,000 Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday, but was the third emergency and drawn in gate 22.
She is rated a $31 roughie for the Stradbroke Handicap.
2011 QTC Cup Final Field & Barriers
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight|
|1||265X124133||PINWHEEL||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||20||58kg|
|2||X18X1727X0||RIGHTFULLY YOURS||Mick Price||Jim Byrne||15||56.5kg|
|3||31120X5720||KENNY’S WORLD||Graeme Murray||Corey Brown||16||56kg|
|4||409X04368X||PHELAN READY||Jason McLachlan||Shane Scriven||13||56kg|
|5||22913651X1||MOTSPUR||Kris Lees||Hugh Bowman||10||55.5kg|
|6||112X4X7585||KING PULSE||Michael Moroney||Ms Lisa Cropp||5||54.5kg|
|7||912260425X||HUME (NZ)||Brian Smith||Ric McMahon||4||54kg|
|8||3X11X12491||VARENNA MISS||Tony Noonan||–||18||53.5kg|
|9||X11228X282||LISTEN SON||Tony Gollan||Larry Cassidy||19||53kg|
|10||X2X1111X11||SINCERO||Stephen Farley||Tim Clark||1||52.5kg|
|11||1X14421X11||CURTANA||Peter G Moody||Stephen Baster||14||52kg|
|12||10X630X018||MILITARY ROSE||Gillian Heinrich||–||7||52kg|
|14||0040X610X8||DEER VALLEY||Steele Ryan||Jason Maskiell||3||52kg|
|15||X11111X674||MEET GEORGE||Brian Smith||–||8||52kg|
|16||13112X441||FALINO||Jeffrey Caught||Chris Munce||11||52kg|
|17e||1X5232X701||BLAZING HEARTS||Danny J Bougoure||–||6||52kg|
|19e||470X1244X2||TIERQUALO||Kelly Doughty||Matthew Palmer||2||52kg|
|20e||8X21112X34||SKATING ON ICE||Les Kelly||–||21||52kg|