Chris Waller’s Sydney raider Murphy’s Delight has opened clear favourite in Queensland Cup 2016 betting for the two mile winter feature at Eagle Farm Racecourse on Saturday.
A field of just 10 stayers line-up in this year’s $100,000 Listed Variety Queensland Cup (3200m) running as Eagle Farm Race 4 at 2:07pm (AEST).
Sitting top of the Queensland Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au paying a firming $2.20 (in from $2.70), Waller’s Hurricane Run six-year-old Murphy’s Delight has his second look at the distance on the weekend.
The Irish-bred galloper was runner-up to stablemate Opinion, a former Sydney Cup placegetter, in the Stayers Cup (3200m) at Randwick two back.
He dropped in distance last start on June 25 returning to the track for a third over 2600m carrying 59kg ahead of the Queensland Cup, his first run at Eagle Farm.
The step back up to two miles should suit as will the drop down notably in weights to 55kg with Jim Byrne to ride the Queensland Cup favourite from barrier eight.
Occupying the second line of Queensland Cup betting this season at $3.70 is Jiayuguan, scratched from Thursday’s Listed Grafton Cup (2350m) in favour of the longer run on Saturday.
John Thompson’s Teofilo mare comes off two fourth place efforts at Rosehill, the latest behind Tuchanchoo a fortnight back in the Listed Winter Cup (2400m).
The five-year-old sees further than the mile and a half for the first time in Brisbane this Saturday and rises from 54kg to 57kg, but Thompson remains convinced this is the race for her as she looks to show her ability over the distance with Queensland’s Damian Browne aboard.
Rounding out the single-figure Queensland Cup hopes this year are Viva Espana ($7) in the outside alley but with plenty of metres to overcome the gate and the 59kg top weight Instrumentalist ($8).
Mt Gambier’s Wayne Walters prepares Dubawi mare Viva Espana who comes off back-to-back seconds over 2200m at Doomben ahead of her attempt at a maiden win over further than 2000m.
Instrumentalist meanwhile is a former Waller-trained import now with Sunshine Coast horseman Dale Healey, the seven-year-old third in the Ipswich Cup (2150m) two back before a last start fourth to Amexed in the Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) on July 2.
He had just 54kg for those recent runs however and has a tough task ahead going up to 59kg in the Queensland Cup with apprentice James Orman continuing his association.
At more generous odds and after an upset Queensland Cup result this winter are the likes of the Brian Smith-trained Eighth Wonder mare My Diamantine ($12) out to atone for her eighth in the Caloundra Cup, Liam Birchley’s dual runner-up over the two miles Pop ‘N’ Scotch ($13) and the rails-drawn Tunes ($14).
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