Brisbane’s Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara 2014 this coming winter emerged as a genuine goal for the Steve Englebrecht-trained Reply Churlish following their fourth straight win on the weekend.
The Warwick Farm-based Englebrecht has a number of elite level goals for his progressive O’Reilly mare over the autumn – winter season after her stunning form this last prep.
A rising five-year-old, Reply Churlish made it four on the trot on Saturday when she held on in a narrow effort to take out the first at Rosehill Gardens.
Stepping up to 1800m for the first time she was given a gun front running ride from Peter Robl.
It proved a winning decision to take her into the lead early with Reply Churlish able to hold on to beat home the Chris Waller-trained Forever Crazy ($9) by a nose and salute as the $2.60 favourite in the $85,000 Australian Turf Club Handicap (1800m).
“Peter and I discussed it before the race and I told him to make them run it,” Englebrecht told AAP after the win.
Bjorn Baker’s Easter Island ($12) was then just a long neck further back for third in a blanket finish.
The victory followed three other wins for Reply Churlish, a $120,000 buy from the 2011 William Inglis and Son Australian Easter Yearling Sales, since a stellar five length effort first-up effort at Canberra to break her maiden status.
Their trainer harbours growing hopes they’ll develop into a nice Group 1 mare next prep starting during the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
“It was great to see her step up to Saturday company and give us options for the autumn and the winter,” he said.
During the autumn they could be set for the $400,000 Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1500m) back at Rosehill on April 5, Englebrecht keen to keep her back to a more comfortable trip of a mile or less.
“She won’t be stretching past a mile (1600m) for a while,” he said on Saturday.
“She only just got there (on Saturday) but a head is as good as a furlong.”
Longer term plans then include a possible trip to Queensland for the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.
Her big goal there to see out her campaign would be $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 21, a race that’s been happy hunting ground for interstate raiders over the years.
“There are some nice mares’ race in Sydney at black-type level and a great series of races in Brisbane heading to the Tatt’s Tiara,” Englebrecht said.
“And I don’t think she will have any problems with the wet tracks they can get up there.
“It’s been a good season so far. To get a horse to win four in a row is something. I’m lucky to get one consecutive win.”
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