Robert Smerdon will throw exciting filly Shamal Wind into the Group 1 cauldron against the older horses in the 2013 Oakleigh Plate (1100m).
While there were easier options for the three-year-old in her own age group, Smerdon said the $400,00 sprint was “worth having a crack at” given her condition.
The daughter of Dubawi is coming off a tough first-up win at Moonee Valley on February 8 which Smerdon believes holds in her great stead for the biggest test of her career on Saturday.
”A lot of people expected her to go to Moonee Valley and win easily,” Smerdon told Racing Victoria.
“But I thought her effort was good because she was a three-year-old taking on the older mares and was a bit underdone so I was happy to come away with a win.”
Shamal Wind burst on to the scene last spring with a five-length win at Ballarat before heading to Flemington to take out the Listed Heritage Stakes by two lengths in November.
The exciting galloper has a terrific weight advantage in Saturday’s handicap sprint where she will carry the minimum of 50.5kg.
Joint topweights are last year’s winner Woorim and Ortensia who have both received 58kg.
Shamal Wind is one of two Smerdon-trained runners to contest the Oakleigh Plate with Lone Rock also set to line up.
The five-year-old mare will be running first-up after a disappointing spring campaign.
But the daughter of Fastnet Rock is a Group 1 winner and is well weighted with 54.5kg.
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