Connections of four-year-old stayer Zabeelionaire have confirmed he will be among those named in the field for Saturday’s Group 1 2013 Doomben Cup (2000m) but they are hardly oozing with confidence about his chances.
Part-owner Brad Spicer told AAP they are making the trip north in the hope they will get a race run to suit the horse who settles towards the back of the field.
He said he is hoping there will be plenty of pace on up front in the $500,000 weight-for-age feature.
“We’re coming up just hoping it’s going to be a fast run Doomben Cup because that’s the only way he can figure in the finish,” Spicer said.
The son of Zabeel won last May’s Group 1 South Australian Derby but has failed to claim victory since.
Zabeelionaire has had two starts this preparation and after a horror first-up run he finished third to Whisper Downs at Flemington on May 4.
Spicer was disappointed with the first-up performance but has new-found optimism after the Flemington performance.
“I was very disappointed with his first-up run but his second-up run was much better…Nick Hall got off after the race and said he’s back on track,” he said.
Zabeelionaire has won three of 20 starts and is currently a $21 chance in Doomben Cup betting.
Chris Waller’s import Foreteller and Peter Moody-trained mare Lights Of Heaven share favouritism at $3.50 for the major Queensland feature.
Lights Of Heaven defeated Foreteller by a half-length in traditional lead-up the Hollindale Stakes at the Gold Coast last Saturday week and is out to go one better after finishing second last year.
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