The 2017 Queensland Oaks Form Guide is essential reading for punters and racing fans ahead of the Group 1 feature race at Doomben on Saturday afternoon.
Originally planned to run over the 2400m course at Eagle Farm, the 2017 Queensland Oaks will instead be contested at Doomben and 2200m, as a result of the unsafe track conditions at the race’s traditional home.
Kenedna, Egg Tart, Dawn Wall and Ana Royale lead an outstanding and capacity Queensland Oaks field and we have analysed each filly in detail, in order to help you field the race winner.
Kenedna has returned to racing in outstanding form this year and should prove extremely tough to beat in the Queensland Oaks. Winner of the Group 3 The Vanity (1400m) on February 18th, the Not A Single Doubt filly placed third in the talent-rich Group 2 Kewney Stakes (1400m) before posting consecutive wins in the Listed Laelia Stakes (1600m) and Group 3 Auraria Stakes (1800m). Second behind fellow Queensland Oaks acceptor Egg Tart in the Group 1 Australasian Oaks (2000m) on May 6th, Kenedna arrived in Brisbane for a smart win in the Group 2 The Roses (2000m) a fortnight ago and is primed for a strong campaign swansong on Saturday.
Egg Tart carries winning Group 1 form into the Queensland Oaks and is undoubtedly the filly to beat at Doomben on Saturday. Winner of her first three starts this time in, which included a dominant three-length triumph in the Auckland Racing Club Trophy (1600m) on April 25th, the Sebring filly was at her brilliant best when she flew home to win the Australasian Oaks last time. Trainer Chris Waller elected to saddle Egg Tart in a barrier trial in place of an appearance in The Roses and she has the notable advantage of in-form hoop Kerrin McEvoy aboard once more in the Queensland Oaks.
The second entrant for Waller in the Queensland Oaks field, Dawn Wall also carries excellent form into this race and is not without a chance, despite drawing the wide and awkward barrier 16. Debuting for fifth in a Randwick minor over 1400m on January 2nd, the Fastnet Rock filly posted a maiden race win in #TheRaces Maiden (15500m) on February 3rd before repeating that effort in a Rosehill race over 1800m three weeks later. Making a successful transition to black type company with a strong win in the Group 3 Kembla Grange Classic (1600m) on March 10th, Dawn Wall failed to fire in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m), but returned to winning form in the Listed Gold Coast Bracelet (1800m) on May 6th.
Ana Royale is a proven and tough stayer, but the filly may find some issue in stepping back to 2200m after her last start at 2500m. Amidst a long and busy preparation spanning eight starts and back to late January, the Anacheeva filly ran third in the talent-rich Vobis Gold Reef (1600m) on April 22nd before savaging the line for third in the Australasian Oaks. Having stormed home to win the Group 3 SA Fillies’ Classic (2500m) last time out on May 20th, Ana Royale will leave from a central draw and will be partnered by in-form hoop Mark Zahra.
Invincibella has produced a number of competitive performances this time in, but she will undoubtedly have to find her best form yet if she is a winning chance in this Queensland Oaks field. The I Am Invincible filly ran second in the Group 3 JB Carr Stakes (1400m) on April 15th, before placing fourth in the Gold Coast Bracelet and sixth in The Roses. There is something of a query at the distance this weekend, but the filly is drawn ideally in barrier 6.
Another entrant for Waller is the Queensland Oaks field, Oklahoma Girl appears to have plenty of upside and is a live chance in the feature race, particularly at the distance. Twice a winner at a mile in April, the Fastnet Rock filly ran on to finish third after a slow start in the Sydney Markets Foundation BM78 (1800m) on May 6th, before savaging the line for a close second in The Roses last time out. Proven against a good portion of her Queensland Oaks rivals, Oklahoma Girl has Blake Shinn in the saddle and could receive the run of the race from barrier 7.
Perilous Love carries strong form into the Queensland Oaks and appears as though she is peaking at the right time for an upset. A consistent performer in Queensland minors throughout the early stages of her current campaign, the Love Conquers All filly placed a credible sixth in the Listed Princess Stakes (1600m) on April 22nd before finishing mid-pack in the Gold Coast Bracelet. Hitting the line well for third in The Roses a fortnight ago, Perilous Love has the notable advantage of leading hoop Jeff Lloyd in the saddle on Saturday and should receive a nice trail into the race from barrier 9.
Cross Stitch is yet to be tested in black type company, but the Pins filly has quickly built to the task this time and is worthy of her position in the Queensland Oaks field. Fourth in a pair of Sydney minors over 1900m and 1800m respectively, Cross Stitch hit the line well for second in the EML BM78 (2000m) at Randwick last weekend; a performance which Chris Waller deemed good enough to warrant backing up into this race. Tim Clark takes the ride from barrier 2.
Pygmy is another filly who faces a big step up in class this weekend, but has won well at her two most recent starts and is not without a chance, if she can overcome the outside barrier in the Queensland Oaks. Second in a Kembla Grange race over 2000m on April 15th, the daughter of New Approach savaged the line for a near five-length win in the Dapto Leagues Club Plate (2000m) on May 2nd before repeating the effort in the Lander Toyota BM70 (2000m) last time out on May 18th.
Isn’t She Elegant
Isn’t She Elegant has been a strong and consistent performer this season and is saddled by the in-form Ben Currie stable. Winner of a classy Gold Coast race over 1800m on April 15th, the Trusting filly placed third in the Novotel Brisbane Airport Handicap (2237m) on May 3rd, before returning to winning form in the Jack Duggan BM70 (2000m) last weekend.
Sharp Speedo has been right there in her four most-recent starts, but she is another horse who faces a huge step up in class into this Queensland Oaks field and will require plenty of things to go her way. Second in three starts through April and May, the Captain Sonador filly recorded a smart win in the Channel 7 Handicap (2190m) last time out on May 24th.
Blanco Cara has shown good ability in patches and she probably faces too great a task in winning at Group 1 level, this early into her racing career. Fifth in the Gold Coast Bracelet, the Cape Blanco filly returned to New South Wales for a comfortable win in the Newcastle & Lake Macquarie Star Plate (2340m) on May 20th.
Former New Zealand-based trainers Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young have saddled several outstanding three-year-olds through recent seasons and have confirmed the competitive Shenandoah in the Queensland Oaks field. Bred to get the trip, the daughter of Darci Brahma placed third in the TAB/ATA Women Trainers BM84 (2000m) on May 6th before hitting the line well to finish fourth in The Roses at her last start. With champion hoop Damien Oliver in the saddle, Shenandoah will leave from the ideal barrier 3.
Baysa beat a smart field to the line at Wyong last time out and will have no issue in stepping up to 2200m in the Queensland Oaks. The daughter of Mastercraftsman undoubtedly faces her biggest task to date in this race, but her breeding suggests that she could be right up to the mark and she should be able to find a good position in transit from the rails draw.
Mia Rosa was smart to the line for fifth in The Roses last time out and while she’s probably not a winning chance on Saturday, is deserving of her position in the Queensland Oaks field. The Makfi filly returned to the races for a maiden win in the Stewart Griffin Memorial Plate (1400m) on April 25th and is positioned well to find a good run in transit from barrier 5.
The final filly to be confirmed for a start in the Queensland Oaks field, Kirini is probably lucky to be taking her place and will need to produce a career-best performance to come close. The Medaglia D’oro filly was last seen finishing second in the Newcastle minor over 2340m on May 20th.
The locally-trained Lipstick Lover is unlucky not to have been confirmed in the Queensland Oaks field, but is capable of a competitive performance in the race if she gains a start. The I Am Invincible filly ran third in the Sky Thoroughbred Central Handicap (1300m) first-up on April 29th, before taking out the 1Equine Handicap (1600m) and finishing mid-pack in The Roses most recently.
Namib will probably face too great a task in the Queensland Oaks, should she gain a start. The Artie Schiller filly finishing towards the tail of the field in the Gold Coast Bracelet and failed to returning to winning form at Ipswich in her most recent start.
Miabla has form around some of Queensland’s better three-year-old fillies this season, but she finished third in a Gold Coast minor over 1800m at her last start and probably can’t win the Queensland Oaks if she gains a start.