The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Warwick Farm horseman David Pfieffer is looking forward to the feature race in Brisbane on Saturday as he saddles-up his in-form filly I Am Excited against the older sprinters in the Victory Stakes 2018 field at Doomben.
The three-year-old daughter of Snitzel is the 54.5kg lightweight in the weight-for-age Group 2 $200,000 Victory Stakes (1200m) chasing her fourth win from five starts this campaign.
Michael Cahill rides I Am Excited from barrier seven of eight, the filly last seen running a brave third under two lengths beaten by Group 1 winner Catchy in Randwick’s Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) on April 14.
“There were no real excuses in the Arrowfield as she was beaten by a better horse on the day,” Pfieffer admitted to Racing Queensland this week.
Prior to that the up-and-coming chestnut caught the eye with three straight Sydney wins over the autumn carnival including two black-type sprint victories in March.
Saturday has her running in Queensland for the first time and back up to Group 2 class for the first time since September last year.
I Am Excited ran a competitive third to Formality in last year’s Group 2 Furious Stakes (1200m) before seventh place performances in the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1400m) and Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m).
She hasn’t finished outside of the top three since and currently pays $6 in the Victory Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au to upset Godolphin’s short-priced favourite, returning Stradbroke Handicap champ Impending ($1.85) who is the obvious danger.
“She’s got to prove herself at weight-for-age before we look at anything bigger and she is up against the Stradbroke winner, Impending,” Pfieffer said.
“It’s a good field and you have to be scared of Impending.”
History is also against I Am Excited who is out to be the first Victory Stakes winning filly since Wager (2005) who saluted for Gai Waterhouse as the only other to win in the past two decades along with Only Words (2004) for John Hawkes.
Pfieffer though has a freakish strike rate with fillies in Queensland including back the summer of 2009-10 when Graceful Anna won the Group 3 Vo Rogue Plate at Doomben and Magic Millions Trophy on the Gold Coast.
Graceful Anna also retuned that winter and won the Silk Stocking at the gold Coast before a BTC Classic third and QTC Cup fourth led to a luckless 13th only 4.5 lengths beaten in the Stradbroke Handicap.
“I’m not sure why it is but I’m known more for training fillies,” Pfieffer said.
“Perhaps I get it from my old boss, Tony Wildman who was a great trainer.”
Pfieffer also enjoyed a Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes win two years ago with Cradle Me and aptly too out the 2012 Gai Waterhouse Classic at Ipswich with Gai’s Choice.
He believes I Am Excited is “more brilliant” than any of his past Queensland winning fillies however and is keen to see how far she goes.
“I Am Excited is more brilliant than Graceful Anna and Cradle Me who were very tough mares,” he said.
“By the end of her career I expect I Am Excited will have a better record.”
To back your Victory Stakes 2018 selections at the best Brisbane racing odds head to Ladbrokes.com.au this weekend.
Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2021 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.