A good barrier draw will assist Champagne...
Brisbane horseman Liam Birchley will use Saturday’s Bribie Handicap as a summer lead-up into the Gold Coast’s Magic Millions Race Day 2018 with his consistent sprinter Havasay.
The Rothesay five-year-old hasn’t had a run since making it four wins on the trot on September 2 saluting as the odds-on favourite in a 1200m handicap at the Doomben track.
Havasay is back first-up returning to Doomben Racecourse on the weekend chasing his fifth win in succession in the Listed $100,000 Bribie Handicap (1050m).
“It is consistently a strong race and it will give us a very good idea where we are at,” Birchley told AAP speaking of the time-honoured Bribie Handicap sprint race.
Drawn midfield in gate eight with the in-form Matthew McGillivray reuniting with the gelding, Havasay is looking for his maiden win over less than 1200m.
“Not many horses win four races in a row anywhere,” Birchley said of Havasay.
“But he really started to live up to the ability I always knew he had. He had a relatively light four-year-old season and it is paying off.
“Even as a two-year-old we thought enough of him to run him in some Listed races before he had won a race at all.
“It took him a while to win a race. But now he has struck form I am confident he can go on with it.”
It is a pretty tough resuming run for the galloper carrying 56kg in a field of short-distance specialists, but Birchley said the countdown to Magic Millions Day on January 13 had forced them to find a race to kick things off in.
“I really have to start him on Saturday the way the programming falls,” he said.
“Time is starting to run out and we will then have to find another race for him before the Millions day.”
Havasay ran just one and a quarter-lengths back sixth to Madotti in last summer’s $1 million Magic Millions QTIS (1300m) and gets the chance to atone in either that or the $1 million Magic Millions Cup (1400m) next month all going to plan.
“I will probably accept in the Magic Millions QTIS race and Magic Million Cup with him.” Birchley said.
Birchley has a total of four final acceptors across the Doomben card on Saturday, while is major player of the weekend will be Crack Me Up racing in Sydney’s Group 2 $250,000 Villiers Stakes (1600m).
Winner of the Listed Recognition Stakes (1350m) two back, Mossman four-year-old Crack Me Up is on the quick turnaround after his close fourth under a length off the winner in Doomben’s Listed Brisbane Handicap (1600m) last Saturday.
He sits as a $7 chance and early market mover in the Villiers Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au for the race offering the winner a 2018 Doncaster Mile ballot exemption, betting led by the Godolphin-raced flyer Interlocuter ($3.30).
To get behind Birchley’s summer hopefuls at the best weekend racing odds visit our preferred online sportsbook Ladbrokes.com.au today.
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