Rob Heathcote’s special little filly Startantes...
Tony Gollan’s Eagle Farm specialist Vega One is tipped to relish a return to Brisbane’s premier track on Saturday with the four-year-old narrow favourite in pre-field 2020 Victory Stakes betting.
Twenty class sprinters are currently nominated for this season’s Group 2 $175,000 Victory Stakes (1200m) running at Eagle Farm on the weekend as part of a reduced Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival line-up.
A likely lead-up into the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) back at the track on June 6, the Victory Stakes is shaping-up as a hotly contested affair and the all-in markets are tight.
A winner of two of his previous three starts at the track, he comes off back-to-back fourths this prep after winning the $1 million Magic Millions Cup (1400m) at the Gold Coast in January.
One of the key contenders looking ahead to the 2020 Stradbroke Handicap, Vega One was last seen running just a length back fourth behind Tambo’s Mate in Doomben’s Group 3 BRC Sprint (1200m).
Gollan is after his first Victory Stakes success since taking out the 2014 edition with his star sprinter Temple Of Boom and plenty looks in favour of Vega One to get the job done.
Gollan has also nominated for his smart mare Outback Barbie who is the equal $5.50 second elect in the all-in Victory Stakes markets after her first-up third in the BRC Sprint.
The four-year-old daughter of Spirit Of Boom was under a length beaten in her first run back since winning the $1 million Magic Millions QTIS race at the Gold Coast at the start of the year, but she has an Eagle Farm hoodoo to overcome on the weekend second-up.
From four previous starts at the track she is yet to finish in the money with all her best efforts in Brisbane coming at sister track Doomben, but the bookies are taking no chances.
The other $5.50 second pick is fellow BRC Sprint graduate, the fifth-placed Kementari for the powerhouse Godolphin stable.
James Cummings’ Group 1 winner will carry the 58kg topweight in the Victory Stakes at set weights plus penalties, the Lonhro five-year-old racing fourth-up after spending a year on the sidelines.
He was very good in Brisbane last time out carrying 61kg beaten only a length and will improve off that making him a big danger this weekend against a similar line-up of rivals.
The BRC Sprint winner Tambo’s Mate currently pays $8.50 to do the double, the Stuart Kendrick-trained Mossman four-year-old undefeated over the 1200m at Eagle Farm ahead of the Group 2 this weekend.
He will be meeting the horses he beat home last time out worse weight-wise however going up from 54kg to 57kg, but remains a genuine top three hope in what looks to be a wide-open race.
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