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Sydney’s Bjorn Baker believes his mare Egyptian Symbol is deserving of a shot in Saturday’s Group 1 sprint feature in Brisbane when she takes on a gun field in the Stradbroke Handicap 2017.
A four-year-old daughter of Stratum, Egyptian Symbol will line-up at Doomben Racecourse for the first time in the $1.5 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) three runs into her latest campaign.
It will be her second elite level test in three starts after she was far from disgraced first-up in Adelaide on May 6 crossing just over two lengths back for fifth behind Secret Agenda in the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m).
Second-up Egyptian Symbol went to Eagle Farm on May 27 and ran a narrow second to Eckstein in the Group 3 Glenlogan Park Stakes (1300m) on a Heavy (8) track.
This weekend she’s back in Brisbane looking for her first win since the Wyong Magic Millions 3YO & 4YO Stakes (1200m) last December.
A super-consistent performer, her other most notable career win was a Group 3 success over the 1200m at Randwick in mid-October last year.
Yet to win over further than 1200m, Egyptian Symbol has strong place form over Saturday’s distance with a second and two thirds from five previous runs over 1300m – 1400m.
“She is in good order and deserves her spot in the Stradbroke field,” Baker, who has Glyn Schofield booked for the Stradbroke ride on Egyptian Symbol, told Racenet this week.
In her lead-up run the mare carried 57.5kg and will enjoy coming right back to just 53.5kg in the Stradbroke Handicap weights as she looks to join Mid Summer Music (2012) and Srikandi (2015) as the latest female gallopers to take out the winter showdown.
Baker will also have the second emergency awaiting a scratching to make the starting line-up in this year’s Stradbroke Handicap field with fellow four-year-old mare Bonny O’Reilly.
The flying daughter of O’Reilly made it five wins on the trot last Saturday at Doomben with her dominant performance as the punters’ pick in the Listed Helen Coughlan Stakes (1200m).
Baker was originally tossing up running Bonny O’Reilly in a tougher race on Queensland Oaks Day, the Group 2 Moreton Cup (1200m), but said he had no regrets about allowing her to score an easier black-type win despite it meaning she was likely to miss a Stradbroke run.
“At the end of the day I took the soft option, rather than having a go at the Moreton Cup which could have got us into the Stradbroke,” Baker said.
“But I have no regrets.
“At the end of the day, that is racing, what will be will be.”
Updated Stradbroke Handicap 2017 odds are set for release shortly at Ladbrokes.com.au making now the time to sign-up with Australia’s premier bookmaker.
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