Jockey Glen Boss is set to announce his decision later today on whether he will ride beaten Doomben 10,000 favourite Rebel Dane or up-and-coming filly Srikandi in Saturday week’s Stradbroke Handicap 2014.
Boss was aboard both horses for their runs at Doomben on the weekend and now has a tough call to make ahead of the $1.36 million Group 1 AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 7.
Having won Queensland’s richest race just once from 17 rides, Boss will get another shot this Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.
He will be aboard either Gary Portelli’s four-year-old California Dane stallion Rebel Dane or Ciaron Maher’s three-year-old Dubawi filly Srikandi.
Latest Stradbroke Handicap 2014 odds are led by Srikandi at $4.60 despite connections having only until this Wednesday to pay the hefty $23,000 late entry fee for the currently not-nominated filly to run.
She put in the perfect Stradbroke trial over the weekend however with an all-too-easy Group 3 Glenlogan Park Stakes (1350m) victory.
That was her sixth win from seven starts and followed on from two other Queensland stakes races, including the Listed Junamo Stakes (1200m) also at Doomben, for which Boss was aboard.
Boss was full of praise for Srikandi after the Glenlogan on Saturday, but still wasn’t 100 percent convinced she could make the step up successfully to the Stradbroke on the back of what she’d done to date.
While confident she’s a very exciting filly, when she didn’t surge to the line in the Glenlogan Boss’s confidence that she could join the likes of Dane Ripper, Private Steer and La Montagna as Stradbroke Handicap winning fillies over the past 20 years was cut down.
He could then be leaning towards partnering with Sydney visitor Rebel Dane, $6 second pick, who finished a luckless fourth to Tony Gollan’s champion sprinter Spirit Of Boom in the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) on Saturday.
Rebel Dane hadn’t raced since an unplaced effort in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) in Sydney a month earlier, and ran excellent late sectionals to come from the back of the field into fourth just three quarters off the 10,000 winner.
Stradbroke Handicap 2014 weights are set for release today, something that could also influence Boss’s decision with Srikandi likely to get just the 50.5kg minimum.
Rebel Dane meanwhile is expected to receive around 55-56kg.
Spirit Of Boom is another possible Stradbroke Handicap acceptor with a decision pending the handicap announcement, the dual Group 1 hero at $6.50 to win on the back of their 10,000 victory.
One horse out of Stradbroke contention meanwhile is Robert Heathcote’s brave galloper Buffering, third in the Doomben 10,000 for the second year in a row on Saturday.
The six-year-old was gallant in defeat in yet another Brisbane Group 1 but will not be backing up in the Stradbroke, a race he’s contested for the past three years.
He’s carried 58kg in the past two editions of the Straddie, but having won three times at elite level since Heathcote believes their likely 59kg this year would prove too much so will turn him out until the spring.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au for all the latest on the Stradbroke.
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