Trainer Desleigh Forster looks set to abort a trip to Sydney for the Villiers Stakes and will keep Cylinder Beach at home to run in the Listed $100,000 Tailored Furniture Solutions Brisbane Handicap (1600m) at Doomben on Saturday.
A start in the Group 2 $250,000 Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on Saturday was on the cards after Cylinder Beach scored an impressive first win in the Listed $100,000 Sky Racing Tattersall’s Recognition Stakes (140m) at Eagle Farm on November 26.
But Forster has had a rethink and can see thee Brisbane Handicap as an easier option for the four year old.
“I am 90 per cent certain at this stage Cylinder Beach will be staying for the Brisbane Handicap as his final lead-up to the Bernborough and will miss the Villiers,” Forster told AAP.
“Two of our best milers in Hopfgarten and Rudy are heading to the Villiers so the Brisbane Handicap won’t be strong.
“I wouldn’t imagine too many southern horses will come for the Brisbane Handicap.
“There is only $50,000 difference in prize money but I suppose there is a $100,000 bonus for winning the Villiers and Bernborough.”
Forster has earmarked the Listed $250,000 Bernborough Handicap (16oom) at Eagle Farm on December 31 as Cylinder Beach’s main Summer Carnival target.
The Eagle Farm trainer said that Cylinder Beach has come through his run in the Recognition Stakes in fine style and Brad Pengelly will be the new rider in the Brisbane Handicap.
“He really has come up well after the Recognition Stakes. He should get about 56 kilos in the Brisbane Handicap which will mean Brad Pengelly, who has been riding him work, can reclaim the ride,” Forster said.
Cylinder Beach was having his first run back in the Recognition Stakes after finishing fifteenth in the in the Group 1 $600,000 Channel Seven Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm on June 11 and finished strongly for Luke Tarrant to record a length and a half win over the Robert Heathcote trained Hopfgarten.
Cylinder Beach showed some promising form during the Winter Carnival as a three year old and was almost sold to Hong Kong but Forster is happy the deal fell through.
“He was going to Hong Kong but it fell through and I’m glad he’s still here,” Forster said.
As a three year old Cylinder Beach got Forster excited during the Winter when he won the Group 3 $125,000 ANTEC Gunsynd Classic (1630m) at Doomben and followed that up with a second to Mackintosh in the Group 3 $125,000 Mitty’s Rough Habit Plate (2000m) at Doomben.
Cylinder Beach then lost form at his next two runs for a ninth in the Group 3 $150,000 Mullins Lawyers Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) at Doomben before running down the track in the Queensland Derby.