After much anticipation over the ins and outs for this year’s race the official 2013 Stradbroke Handicap field has been announced with a capacity field of gallopers set to face off in the Eagle Farm feature this Saturday.
Due to run as Race 8 at 3:40pm (AEST) the $1.36 million Group 1 AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) field has 18 confirmed starters plus five emergencies eager for their chance to run in the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival showcase race.
One of the surprising non-acceptors was the Peter Snowden-trained Gold Coast Guineas winner Academus who had been sweating on a start in Queensland’s richest race sitting 21st on the ballot.
Despite rating them a top light-weight chance if they made the field with just 51.5kg Snowden has opted not to pay the final acceptance fee with Academus not one of the emergency runners.
Instead he will take on a much easier field in the third race of the day having been accepted for in the $125,000 Listed Daybreak Lover (1600m).
Snowden will still be represented in the Stradbroke Handicap 2013 field however by the punters’ pick Epaulette who comes off a win in the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m).
The only concern for the classy Commands colt however is their 56kg weight allocation.
Heading the Stradbroke Handicap field and weights meanwhile is Rob Heathcote’s perennial Group 1 minor place-getter Buffering (58kg) who will be ridden by Damian Browne as the Mossman five-year-old lines up in their 16th elite level assignment.
Buffering is one of the top four fancies for the Stradbroke too after their nice third in the Doomben 10,000 where they carried 59kg to the winners’ 57kg.
They are trailing a crop of three-year-olds in the Stradbroke Handicap betting markets however with the form of the youngsters outstanding this season.
Along with Epaulette the other highly fancied three-year-olds to take it out on Saturday are the Kelly Schweida-trained Better Than Ready (52.5kg) tipped to improve on their Doomben 10,000 fifth with that nice light weight, Kelso Wood’s Queensland Guineas winning stablemate Sizzling (52kg) and the Anthony Cummings-trained Sydney raider Your Song (54kg) who will be ridden by Peter Robl as they vie for the BTC Cup – Stradbroke double.
Other top local chances along with Buffering, Better Than Ready and Sizzling meanwhile are Kelso Wood’s other two runners Belltone (53.5kg) coming off a win in the Group 3 BRC Sprint (1350m) at Doomben on May 18; and Group 2 Sunline Stakes winner Spirit Song (52.5kg) who was a disappointing 12th in the Listed Chief De Beers in Brisbane last time out.
There is also Buffering’s stablemate Solzhenitsyn (56kg) who shouldn’t be discounted after their narrow win carrying 59kg in the Group 3 Lord Mayor’s Cup (1600m) last month.
After his in-form mare Arinosa was ruled out of the Stradbroke with a foot abscess yesterday, Sydney’s leading trainer Chris Waller could still be represented in the race with the first emergency Riva De Lago needing just one pre-start scratching to gain a run.
The other Stradbroke Handicap emergencies are then Adelaide raider Conservatorium, Phelan Ready, Celtic Dancer and the Gai Waterhouse-trained Miss Stellabelle.
The 2013 Stradbroke Handicap barrier draw is due to take place live at 11am (AEST) and will be published right here at Races.com.au so stay tuned.
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2013 Stradbroke Handicap Final Field
Eagle Farm Race 8 – 3:40pm (AEST) – 08/06/2013
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.|
|1||2x1168x143||BUFFERING||Robert Heathcote||Damian Browne||0||58kg|
|2||0x3113x261||EPAULETTE||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||0||56kg|
|3||13136×3071||SOLZHENITSYN (NZ)||Robert Heathcote||Michael Rodd||0||56kg|
|4||3618×22734||STREAMA||Guy Walter||Glen Boss||0||54.5kg|
|5||x2401150x7||MY QUEST FOR PEACE (IRE)||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||0||54.5kg|
|6||x1x400x511||LINTON||John Sadler||Nicholas Hall||0||54.5kg|
|7||x150x23663||DECISION TIME||Clarry Conners||Hugh Bowman||0||54.5kg|
|8||311283×16||YOUR SONG||Anthony Cummings||Peter Robl||0||54kg|
|9||273×366264||SPIRIT OF BOOM||Tony Gollan||Michael Cahill||0||54kg|
|10||053x950x00||HAPPY ZERO||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dwayne Dunn||0||54kg|
|11||0x942x6107||HOT SNITZEL||Gerald Ryan||–||0||54kg|
|12||783040×309||YOSEI||Stuart Webb||Ms Michelle Payne||0||53.5kg|
|13||52117x0x51||BELLTONE||Kelso Wood||Christian Reith||0||53.5kg|
|14||010×635110||FAMOUS SEAMUS (NZ)||Noel Mayfield-Smith||Glen Colless||0||53.5kg|
|15||6x10x77501||FONTELINA||Anthony Cummings||Jim Cassidy||0||53.5kg|
|16||2230×62180||SPIRIT SONG||Kelso Wood||Michael Walker||0||52.5kg|
|17||311×215135||BETTER THAN READY||Kelly Schweida||Craig Newitt||0||52.5kg|
|18||x46122x561||SIZZLING||Kelso Wood||Chris Munce||0||52kg|
|19e||6×23511222||RIVA DE LAGO||Chris Waller||–||0||52.5kg|
|20e||x72532x522||CONSERVATORIUM||Gary Kennewell||Joe Bowditch||0||52.5kg|
|21e||06x2237x69||PHELAN READY||Jason McLachlan||Timothy Bell||0||52.5kg|
|22e||09690×8838||CELTIC DANCER||Noel J Doyle||–||0||52kg|
|23e||340×732435||MISS STELLABELLE||Gai Waterhouse||Jim Byrne||0||52kg|