The weekend’s feature race favourite Big Duke...
A dozen fillies remain in the mix for Saturday week’s Queensland Derby 2019 following first acceptances for the Eagle Farm feature on Stradbroke Handicap Day.
Racing Queensland took first declarations for all three Group 1 races running at the Farm on June 8 including those for the Group 1 $600,000 Channel 7 Queensland Derby (2400m) on Wednesday.
It looks an open edition of the three-years-old staying race this Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival and the fillies are out in force looking to be the first to beat the boys since Dariana back in 2010.
Of the 12 fillies among the Queensland Derby first declarations in 2019 the best fancied in futures markets at Ladbrokes.com.au currently is Mark Newnham’s daughter of Sebring, Scarlet Dream ($8).
Runner-up to Verry Elleegant in Randwick’s Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m) back in mid-April, Scarlet Dream was last seen racing at Doomben when 2.5 lengths back seventh in the Group 2 The Roses (2000m).
She will bypass this weekend’s Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2200m) at Doomben and is being saved for the mile-and-a-half run against the colts and geldings seven days later.
Another filly high-up the all-in Queensland Derby odds at $10 who is running in the 2019 Queensland Oaks on Saturday is the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace-trained Etana.
The Shamus Award filly took out The Roses on May 18 and gets the chance at the possible Oaks – Derby double.
Maher & Eustace, who are enjoying a stellar raid on the Brisbane Carnival this winter, also paid the Derby first acceptance fee for outside hope Not A Single Cent.
Other standout Queensland Derby entered fillies include Kris Lees’ daughter of Hinchinbrook Aliferous who ran second in The Roses, her stablemate Angel Of Heaven coming off a second to Fun Fact in the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) against the boys, Kiwi visitor Our Intrigue for Doomben 10,000 – Kingsford-Smith Cup double winning trainer Tony Pike and Duchess Of Lennox who are all part of this Saturday’s Queensland Oaks field.
Duchess Of Lennox is one of three Chris Waller-trained Queensland Derby first acceptors.
Waller prepared last year’s Queensland Oaks winner Youngstar who finished a game third after getting caught back in the field behind Dark Dream seven days later in the Queensland Derby.
The leading Sydney-based horseman of Winx fame could follow a similar end-of-campaign path with Reliable Man grey Duchess Of Lennox all going well on Saturday.
“We won’t close the door on [the Derby],” he told Racenet this week.
“It is perfect. A lot of these fillies have wide draws and if we ride them conservatively and they have no luck, they could be jumping out of their skin come Monday.”
Waller also has the current favourite in Queensland Derby betting, Nobu ($4.60), another grey progeny by Reliable Man who was last seen winning a 2000m BM74 at Randwick with 59.5kg.
Also among the Queensland Derby first declarations are the likes of SA Derby third placegetter Mr Quickie, the Grand Prix winner Fun Fact and Team Snowden’s So You Think colt Carif.
The official Queensland Derby 2019 final field and barriers are out on Wednesday June 5 making now the time to back your early tips at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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