After spending 20 months outside of the winners’ circle connections of Brisbane galloper Doubtful Jack are hoping they can return to form and be competitive in Saturday’s $175,000 Listed Eye Liner Stakes (1350m) on Ipswich Cup Day.
The now Kelly Schweida-trained Not A Single Doubt six-year-old hasn’t won a race since they were prepared in Melbourne by Peter Moody taking out a 1207m handicap at Mornington in the wet way back in October of 2011.
Following that was a second to the world’s best mare, his then stablemate and since-retired Black Caviar in that year’s Group 2 Schweppes Stakes.
Doubtful Jack would go on to meet the queen of the turf twice more when third in the 2012 Australia Stakes and sixth in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes in February last year.
While those runs are going back a bit Schweida believes the horse is still capable of a good stakes run, the 2013 Eye Liner Stakes to be their first black type assignment for the Eagle Farm-based trainer.
“He’s got form around Black Caviar, even though it’s a while ago, but at his best he’d be right in a race like this,” Schweida said.
Schweida has started Doubtful Jack eight times to date starting with a fourth to Shamrock Slipper first-up in the Gold Coat Magic Millions Sprint in January.
Since then their best effort was actually their last start on May 22 when a close second beaten under half a length by Pellegrini in a 1300m handicap at the Sunshine Coast.
They head west of Brisbane now and get their first look at Ipswich Racecourse for the Eye Liner, Doubtful Jack to jump from gate six with apprentice jockey Priscilla Schmidt in the saddle, Schmidt having ridden them to a nice third behind Joint Chiefs and Prost at Doomben in early March.
That effort was on a Heavy (8) track and Schweida is hoping Ipswich can stay in the Heavy – Slow range for the weekend’s feature meet to aid his galloper.
“No doubt his chances are better in the wet and his last run at Caloundra was quite good considering he hadn’t raced for nearly two months,” he said.
They get in on the 54kg minimum too with the field and weights led by Gary Kennewell’s Group 1 runner-up Conservatorium (59kg) looking to score a consolation win after being balloted out of last weekend’s Stradbroke Handicap at Eagle Farm.
The rails-drawn Dances On Stars, a last start second to Cox Plate-bound Sizzling in the Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1400m), tops the latest Eye Liner Stakes odds at $3.50.
Further down the markets punters can find double figure chance Doubtful Jack at $21.
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