John Sadler had once considered resuming Vain Queen in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) last Saturday but realised he made the right decision to save the five-year-old mare for the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) a week later when he watched Lankan Rupee tear up the field and beat his rivals home in under one minute.
“After watching Lankan Rupee, I’m really pleased I didn’t run her,” Sadler told TVN.
“I thought maybe a Group 1 placing for her at weight-for-age, but it will be better if we can win a Group 1 on Saturday.”
Vain Queen is one of 20 sprinters nominated for the 2015 Oakleigh Plate, which is one of three Group One races running at Caulfield this Saturday.
The mare ran straight through from April to November last year after she finished fourth three times in a row when she stepped up to black-type racing for the first time. She broke through to the winner’s circle on November 6, dominantly winning the Group 3 GH Mumm Stakes (1100m) by three and a half lengths.
Vain Queen was ridden quietly settling just behind the pace in sixth place. She was full of running at the 400m and angled into the clear at 300m before bursting to the front shortly afterwards. From there she raced away to win impressively.
Sadler admits it took the mare a while to come to hand and win the GH Mumm Stakes but believes she’s primed and in the perfect condition ahead of the 2015 Oakleigh Plate.
The mare enjoyed a round of trackwork this morning at Caulfield, running her final 400m in just 22 seconds.
“I’m not saying she’ll win, but I’m really pleased with her,” Sadler said.
“I feel very confident after this morning that she’s going to run a great race.
“I was pretty pleased with the way she pulled up. I think she’s going into the race as one of the serious chances.”
Damian Lane is set to ride Vain Queen for the first time in the Oakleigh Plate and the pair will carry 54kg, which is one kilogram less than she won the GH Mumm Stakes with.
The final field and barrier draw for the race will be released on Wednesday morning but you can already back Vain Queen for $6.50 in the Oakleigh Plate futures odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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