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Brisbane’s Robert Heathcote knows he doesn’t have the classiest horse in Saturday’s 2017 Ipswich Cup field, but knows the muddy conditions will be right up the alley of Kaiser Franz.
Heathcote didn’t originally have the $175,000 Listed Ipswich Cup (2150m) on the winter agenda for his known mudlark but has made a late call to run the son of Savabeel on the weekend.
Two back Kaiser Franz came from nowhere at Eagle Farm to charge home as a $51 roughie in the Group 3 Premier’s Cup (2200m), relishing the Heavy (8) track.
On a Good (4) Doomben track last weekend the six-year-old wasn’t nearly as effective, Kaiser Franz only managing to finish nine lengths back 10th behind Chocante in the Group 2 Brisbane Cup (2200m).
“I was disappointed when the Brisbane Cup was switched from Eagle Farm to Brisbane as he goes well on the bigger track with the softer surface,” Heathcote told Racing Queensland this week.
“Two runs ago he was struggling to win in Benchmark races and a lot of people were surprised when he won the Group 3 race.
“But I suspected he would handle Eagle Farm better than the others in the Premier’s Cup and he did.”
Heaving rainfall across the state this week however sees Ipswich in the Heavy range and that has Heathcote hopeful if not confident Kaiser Chief can surprise again.
“It wasn’t our plan to go to this race,” he said.
“The only reason he is running is because the track is going to be wet.
“What he lacks in ability he makes up for on a wet track.”
The galloper has had five previous runs at Ipswich for a win and two thirds and gets into the Ipswich Cup field on the 54kg minimum.
Jockey Robbie Fradd continue his recent association with Kaiser Franz on Saturday, the duo drawn barrier one in the 15 horse line-up.
The latest Ipswich Cup odds online at Ladbrokes.com.au have Heathcote’s wet-tracker listed as a $19 shot to hand his trainer with a third win following the previous success of Our Lukas in 2009 and 2010.
Markets are led by the Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Wanted mare Sort After ($3.80) with Waterhouse chasing her third Ipswich Cup win.
Benzini, coming off a Brisbane Cup fourth last weekend, carries the 60kg top weight but is also being kept safe in Ipswich Cup betting at $4.60.
Heathcote confirmed that after Saturday Kaiser Franz would likely continue onto his original end-of-prep targets racing in the $175,000 Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) on July 1 followed by the $150,000 Listed Queensland Cup (3200m) back at the Sunshine Coast over the two miles a fortnight later.
“His goal all along has been the Caloundra Cup followed by the Queensland Cup,” he said.
Along with the Premier’s Cup upset, Heathcote also enjoyed a Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival feature win with Bidii Babe in the Listed Bright Shadow Stakes (1200m) on May 20 at Doomben.
“I’m happy with what we’ve achieved against the interstate and overseas horses during the winter,” he said.
“Bidii Babe won a Listed race and Kaiser Franz won a Group 3 so it’s not a bad effort at this time of the year.
“Any race you pick up at carnival time is a bonus.”
To back Kaiser Franz this weekend for an upset Ipswich Cup result at the right price head to Ladbrokes.com.au now.
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