Despite his filly having had just two of her 13 career starts on rain-affected tracks, Mornington-based trainer Jason Warren is confident the current wet weather conditions in Brisbane will play perfectly into the hand of Proper Madam when she runs in Saturday’s Queensland Oaks 2013.
The Stratum three-year-old has won just two of her bakers’ dozen of runs so far, the first being her race debut at Pakenham in February of 2012.
Her second was then a second-up effort at Caulfield last July when Proper Madam lapped up the ground on the Heavy (8) track to win an Inglis Bonus Handicap.
Since then things have been a bit hit and miss for the lovely natured racehorse.
Her three most recent runs have been in in Adelaide including her luckless eighth to Maybe Discreet when defeated 5.5 lengths in the Group 1 Schweppes Oaks (2000m) on April 27.
“She clipped heels and nearly fell in the early stages but still ran the fastest last 600 metres of the race so it was a good effort,” Warren said of her Schweppes Oaks run.
Proper Madam’s last effort was a nice fourth crossing just half a length off Wowee in the Group 3 SA Fillies Classic (2500m) on a Good (3) at Morphettville on May 11, Warren confident she can run well again over the mile and a half this weekend.
“She was going better on the line than anything in the (SA Fillies Classic) race and when she came back from Adelaide in such terrific order we thought we’d have a crack at Queensland,” Warren said.
“She won her first start as a two-year-old over 1000 metres but she’s always indicated she’d get over ground and she’s very clean-winded.
“When I started to stretch her out over more ground she always finished off her races really well.”
She’s accepted to make her Queensland debut in the $400,000 Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) after connections paid the late entry based on the weather forecast and where Warren believes the roomy Eagle Farm course, the distance and the likely soft track will all be to her liking.
“We’re not coming to Brisbane to make up the numbers,” Warren said.
“We couldn’t afford to spend that money on the late entry fee as well as the flight up if we thought we were just a rough hope.”
The latest Queensland Oaks odds are led by Dear Demi ($3.40) and Gondokoro ($4) who both drew ideally with barriers three and one.
Proper Madam meanwhile is one of the double figure chances in the 18-horse field paying $21 to score an upset Queensland Oaks result from out wide in barrier 16.
Should more rain come to the ‘sunshine’ state over the next two days however a downgrade to the current Dead-rated Eagle Farm course would mean Proper Madam’s double digit gate might not be so bad.
“The wetter the better for her,” Warren said.
“Slow is her preferred rating and that’s why we thought we’d roll the dice because it’s generally wet up there each year.”
Warren is also confident she will handle the Queensland way of racing (clockwise) after she worked well on Tuesday morning at the Gold Coast.
“She has settled in really well at the Gold Coast and she had one run in Sydney last year (when sixth at Canterbury in August) so going this way won’t be foreign to her,” Warren said.
There’s also the little statistic that shows four of the past 11 Queensland Oaks winners started at $16 or longer in the markets.
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