Sydney’s Bjorn Baker is trying to wrap his head around winning $2 million in prize money in just over two weeks with one horse – Winning Rupert – who chases his fifth win from as many starts in Saturday’s Vo Rogue Plate in Brisbane.
The crack three-year-old is a beautifully bred son of Written Tycoon who continued his undefeated record with win number four at Doomben on December 17 in the Listed Gold Edition Plate (1200m).
Like his previous start at Eagle Farm earlier in the month, the winning margin was far from narrow as the chestnut colt put five and a half lengths on his closest Gold Edition Plate rival Deep Image.
A Group 2 winner during the winter in the Champagne Classic (1200m), Winning Rupert is back to Group class on New Year’s Eve taking on eleven rivals in the $200,000 Group 3 BRC Vo Rogue Plate (1300m).
While the $128,000 first prize is far from lucrative, Winning Rupert is in line for the $500,000 UBET series bonus following his earlier wins in the opening two legs of the 3YO Summer Crown.
Should the colt continue his winning ways on January 14 at the Gold Coast Racecourse, he is in for a huge pay day.
Winning Rupert is the pre-field favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for the $2 million Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (1400m), which has $1.2 million first prize on offer.
“It’s amazing money if he can do it, like winning Lotto, everything has gone right so far but he’s still got to win those next two races,” Baker told G1x this week.
“It’s very rare to get this opportunity, I suppose it’s even more rare to be able to attempt it with a horse like this.
“To be able to net close to $2 million in two weeks at this time of year with sales on and clients coming on board, it just helps everybody.”
Jockey Jeff Lloyd retains the ride in the Vo Rogue Plate on the sure-to-be favourite who is drawn a treat in gate five.
Baker describes Winning Rupert as “pretty special” and said while the nerves are there, he believes the best is yet to come for the untapped star.
“There might be some nerves there on Saturday just hoping he does everything right, and the same on the Gold Coast, but I think he is pretty special,” he said.
“I think he’s better ridden with a sit, that’s how we’ve trained him. The day he gets to take a sit is the day we’ll see the best of him.”
The other notable Magic Millions 3YO Guineas-bound youngster taking on Winning Rupert in the Vo Rogue Plate on Saturday is the John & Chris Meagher-trained Billy The Kid.
The son of Savabeel comes off back-to-back Eagle Farm wins in November including his latest over 1400m by over two lengths.
Jockey Luke Dittman is back aboard on the weekend, but must overcome the outside barrier 12 draw to win the Group 3.
Billy The Kid is joined in the Vo Rogue Plate this summer by stablemate Rich Affair who comes off a distant fourth first-up to Winning Rupert in the Gold Edition Plate.