The favourites found success at Doomben on Saturday, with Brook Road winning the Listed Travel Associates Classic (1200m) for which she was $2.50 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Beating home a maximum capacity field of 16 mares and fillies, Brook Road won half a length ahead of Tinto and Playtime thanks to an impressive turn of foot in the straight.
The Kris Lees-trained mare is based at Broadmeadow in Newcastle and made her first trip up to Brisbane for the 2014 Travel Associates Classic after finishing runner-up in the Group 3 Nivison (1200m) on October 18.
She is set to return home for a spell before being aimed at a campaign in the autumn.
“It’s a pretty big thing for a lightly raced mare to come up here and beat our best mares and I think Kris has got some nice races in mind for her next year,” stable representative Mel Eggleston told Sky Racing.
Brook Road may have won the 2014 Travel Associates Classic but it was actually runner-up Tinto that made the biggest impression.
The Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) winner drifted out to a $26 shot due to carrying the top weight of 59.5kg and making her first start since the winter carnival. She seemed to justify her odds when running last in the race but quickly turned it around to storm home from last to second, beaten just half a length by Brook Road.
She has now proven to be a successful sprinter, stayer and everything in between.
The mare’s trainer Rex Lipp revealed after the race that the $200,000 Magic Millions Stayers Cup (1800m) at the Gold Coast on January 10 is Tinto’s main goal this campaign, and her run in the Travel Associates Classic puts her on-target.
Her Magic Millions lead-up race is still undecided, but the trainer has plenty of options to choose from including the Bernborough Handicap over the mile at Toowoomba.
“To be honest, that run didn’t surprise me in the least,” Lipp said.
“She’s still pretty big and fat but that hit-out will do her the world of good.
“There’s another fillies’ and mares’ race here in a fortnight over 1350 metres but she’d probably get the 59.5kg again.
“Another option is the Bernborough Handicap at home in Toowoomba over the mile then she can step up to the 1800m metres at the Coast.”
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