Sunshine Coast horseman John Zielke is hoping a change of jockey will also bring a change of luck for his late Ipswich Cup 2016 entry Worthy Cause on Saturday in Queensland.
After initially planning to send his Choisir stallion out for a spell ahead of a Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival bid later in the year, Zielke made the late call to press on with Worthy Cause in the $175,000 Listed Channel 7 Ipswich Cup (2150m).
The four-year-old was a late entry after the small field size, which is down to just 10 starters after the early scratching of the Shawn Mathrick-trained Adirondack (10).
“When I saw there were only 10 original nominations I said to the owners we might as well push on for a start,” Zielke told AAP.
“We will still have time to get him ready for the spring.”
Worthy Cause will jump from barrier seven carrying 58kg and Bobby El-Issa, who has been riding for Zielke over the winter carnival, comes aboard for the run in place of apprentice Luke Dittman.
“Luke has had no luck on Worthy Cause and it might be a case of change of rider and change of luck,” Zielke said.
“One thing I don’t expect Worthy Cause to have any trouble with is the 2150 metres around Ipswich.”
Dittman has partnered Worthy Cause for his eight most recent runs dating back to Cox Plate Day last spring when the galloper crossed fifth to subsequent Emirates Stakes winner Turn Me Loose in the Group 2 Crystal Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley.
That run came two after the horse’s latest victory in Flemington’s Listed Headquarters Stakes (1400m) in October last year.
This campaign Worthy Cause has been brave in defeat, but luckless runs have led to a number of unplaced runs.
After a first-up second to Hopfgarten in Black-Type company in late April, the galloper was a close fourth at the Gold Coast in the Listed Prime Minister’s Cup (1400m).
He then travelled to Brisbane for a fifth, again beaten under two lengths, behind Mighty Lucky in Doomben’s Group 3 Lord Mayors Cup (1615m).
His latest run was just last Saturday at Eagle Farm on Stradbroke Handicap Day, Zielke happy to make excuses for his fifth when crossing three lengths off Hopfgarten this time in the Listed The Wayne Wilson Mile (1600m).
“He just hasn’t been able to win,” Zielke said.
“Things have gone wrong and they happened again last Saturday when he was fifth in the Wayne Wilson Handicap.
“A lot of people have said he probably should have won. It has been the story of the entire campaign.”
As for his upcoming spring campaign, Zielke said Worthy Cause would stick to a similar path as he did last season.
“We will follow a similar path this spring. I feel he is up to that class,” he said.
Worthy Cause currently pays $6 in the latest Ipswich Cup odds through Ladbrokes.com.au, markets firmly led by the David Vandyke-trained Maurus ($2.45) whose last run was a close fifth to Our Ivanhowe in the Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on May 21.
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