This Saturday in Brisbane the Spear Chief Handicap 2016 kicks off Group racing on the Tattersall’s Tiara Day card with betting on the Eagle Farm clash led by top weight Hopfgarten.
Jumping from barrier seven in the small eight-starter field for this year’s $100,000 Listed FKG Group Spear Chief Handicap (1500m), the local Robert Heathcote-trained Hopfgarten has Damian Browne aboard on a hefty 60.5kg.
The Mossman five-year-old ran second two back at Doomben behind Mighty Lucky in the Group 3 Lord Mayors Cup (1615m) before success in the Listed The Wayne Wilson Mile (1600m) on Stradbroke Day a fortnight ago.
In The Wayne Wilson mile Hopfgarten carried 58.5kg, so goes up a notable two kilos for this weekend’s run, but he overcame a wide barrier 16 of 17 draw and faces a much smaller field in the Spear Chief.
The bookies are taking no chances with the five-time Eagle Farm winner who will be hard to hold out over 1500m, Hopfgarten sitting top of the latest Spear Chief Handicap odds at Ladbrokes.com.au paying $2.60 despite his weight.
Occupying the second line of Spear Chief Handicap betting this Queensland Winter Racing Carnival at $3.60 is Amovatio who has just half a kilo less carrying 60kg from barrier five.
Hugh Bowman partners Chris Waller’s smart Al Maher five-year-old again after riding him for a third in The Wayne Wilson Mile last time out, form tipped to hold up this weekend in the rematch.
That was Amovatio’s maiden Eagle Farm run, the galloper chasing his first win since the Group 3 Hawkesbury Cup (1600m) in late April.
The early market mover is Waller’s other runner Tales Of Grimm backed in early from $6.50 to $6.
Kerrin McEvoy partners the veteran seven-year-old import who finished runner-up in last year’s Hawkesbury Cup before being sidelined for nearly a year.
He has been out of the money in all four of his starts since, but was far from disgraced at Rosehill on June 4 on a Heavy (10) track when a close fourth over 1800m behind Foreign Prince carrying 58.5kg, three kilos more than his Spear Chief weight.
Rounding out the single-figure hopes at $6.50 is Beckham, a 54kg light-weight hope jumping from barrier four with Jeff Lloyd aboard.
The in-form local Pins stallion is prepared by Liam Birchley and has his first Eagle Farm run on the weekend.
Beckham won over 1350m at Doomben two back before the five-year-old’s run last Saturday at Ipswich when a length away second behind classy Sydney visitor Ninth Legion in the Listed Eye Liner Stakes (1350m).
The other best fancied at more generous prices are Heathcote’s other runner Bewhatyouwannabe ($11) who Michael Cahill stays aboard despite a last start 16th in The Wayne Wilson and the Kris Lees-trained Mossman mare from Newcastle Electric Power ($13).
See below for the full Spear Chief Handicap 2016 odds, fixed win betting open online now at Ladbrokes.com.au where quoting the code BETBONUS will see your first deposit matched dollar for dollar up to $500 in bonuses for a short time only!