Melbourne trainer Ciaron Maher has confirmed his Stradbroke Handicap placegetter Srikandi will bypass Sydney’s The Championships in the autumn and instead be saved for a Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival 2015 raid.
The four-year-old daughter of Dubawi was an ultra-consistent force during the Queensland winter this year, Maher hoping she can repeat if not improve on those feats 12 months on.
A winner of six of her eight starts to date, the lightly-raced mare hasn’t raced since her close third when only a length off the winner River Lad in the Group 1 AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 7.
Next year’s Stradbroke Handicap is worth $2 million in prize money and is again on the agenda for Srikandi.
Leading up to Queensland’s richest race, Srikandi enjoyed five wins on the trot including three in the sunshine state.
The first was also her maiden black-type assignment when easily defeating La Pieta by two and a half lengths at the Gold Coast on a Heavy (8) track in the Listed Silk Stocking (1200m).
That led into a Doomben run when winning by the same margin, this time on a Dead (4) in the Listed Juanmo Stakes (1200m) in May.
Her first Group 3 start then followed only seven days later when, back at Doomben, Srikandi beat home Belle De Coeur in a speedy effort on a Good (3) in the Glenlogan Park Stakes (1350m) one run before her Stradbroke start.
The Caulfield-based Maher gave Srikandi a trial at Cranbourne on September 22 but she hasn’t had any other official runs since.
While The Championships at Royal Randwick loomed as a possible option in April for the excellent sprinter, Maher confirmed to TVN on Monday she would be better suited for the Brisbane Group 1s the following month.
“She appreciates going that way (right-handed) and she’s proven she fires at that time of year, so she won’t be seen until the Brisbane races,” he said.
The Stradbroke Handicap, run in 2015 on June 6, was her only Group 1 run this year.
That changes next campaign with Maher naming four possible assignments with the Group 1 $500,000 Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) on May 9, the $750,000 Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) on May 23 as well as the mares-only $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) after the Stradbroke on June 20 also on the agenda.
“She is still in the paddock (spelling) but she will come back in next week and we’ll start on her then,” Maher said.
To back Srikandi at the best odds throughout the winter make sure you’ve got an account open online at Ladbrokes.com.au where for a short time only a $25 deposit will get you a $75 bonus bet giving you $100 to play with this summer!