Mornington trainer Tony Noonan and connections could be tempted to make a late entry into the Queensland Oaks 2015 for smart filly Anaphora after her success at Caulfield in Melbourne over the weekend.
While the daughter of Dylan Thomas is not among the official 85 original nominations taken last week for the $500,000 Group 1 Treasury Casino & Hotel Queensland Oaks (2200m) run at Doomben Racecourse on May 30, the feature is still very much an option for Anaphora.
Noonan confirmed they were still looking at an Oaks-bid with the up-and-comer following her narrow mile win at Caulfield on Saturday.
Ridden by Vlad Duric, she backed up from a third at Seymour over 1417m in a Benchmark 64 to beat home the Jason Warren-trained Violent Show by a mere nose in the No Fuss Events Handicap, which was her first look at the 1600m.
Noonan had his confidence in Anaphora restored as she took advantage of a near-side blinker added to her gear for the first time as well as a good pace to come from last on the turn for home to storm to the line first.
Looking ahead he is now keen to test her over 2000m and beyond, with her final Oaks lead-up still to be determined.
“She’ll only have one more run before the Oaks,” Noonan confirmed post-win on Saturday.
“She’s got to improve a lot still but she’s lightly-raced and on the up.
“There’s a three-year-old race over a mile and a quarter and also a three-year-old race here (Caulfield) in a fortnight so whether we go there (to Brisbane) or stay here to try and win that, we’ll see.
“She’ll tell us whether she’s worth spending the money on the Gray Line bus to go up to Brisbane because that’s all I can afford as a veteran trainer.”
Current Queensland Oaks betting markets at bookies around the country have the Chris Waller-trained Street Cry filly Winx leading the way after her second to Gust Of Wind in the Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on April 11.
Her stablemate Ballet Suite, fourth in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) before an ATC Oaks eighth, is the next best fancied just ahead of New Zealand Oaks runner-up Platinum Witness who is yet to race down under.
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