A good track has been predicted for the running of Saturday’s Group 1 $500,000 Treasury Brisbane Queensland Oaks (2200m) which will be decided at Doomben for the second time in three years.
Track manager Jim Roberts has been put under the pump all week after it was announced on Monday that this Saturday’s Queensland Oaks meeting and next week’s Stradbroke Handicap meeting had been transferred to Doomben from Eagle Farm.
Racing Queensland made the decision early in the week after there was widespread criticism about the Eagle Farm track for the Kingsford-Smith Cup Race Day last Saturday when the horses had to run on a substandard surface for Group 1 racing.
The Eagle Farm track was posted as a heavy 8 even though there had been no rainfall for the preceding seven days and it was obvious that a large percentage of horses fail to handle the shifty surface.
Champion mare Winx won the 2015 Queensland Oaks when it was run at Doomben while the Eagle Farm track was undergoing a complete redevelopment and the Group 1 classic for the fillies will be run at the reduced distance of 2200m again, down from the traditional 2400m.
There has been no rainfall this week and Roberts has put up the Good 4 rating on Thursday with a chance of an upgrade on Saturday.
“The weather is definitely on our side at the moment,” Roberts said.
“The track is in pretty good condition, I am pretty happy with it.”
“At the moment I have it rated a Good 4. The only way that would change is if we had a rain event and I don’t think that is going to happen. The weather forecast at the moment is pretty good.”
“I am tipping it will be a Good 3 on Saturday morning and maybe even a chance of an upgrade later in the day.”
Roberts said he will push the rail out to 5m for the Queensland Oaks Race Day from the 2.5m it was in on Doomben Cup on May 20 and then bring it back to 0.5m for Stradbroke Handicap Day.
“The rail position this Saturday will be 5m and then we will probably go into half a metre for the Stradbroke,” Roberts said.
Sydney’s champion trainer Chris Waller will saddle up seven runners in the Queensland Oaks with his filly Egg Tart sitting at the top of the market order at $3.30 with Ladbrokes.com.au.
Stablemates Dawn Wall at $7.50 and Oklahoma Girl at $9 are also well in contention while Waller’s other four runners are at double figure odds with Invincibella, Cross Stitch and Baysa all at $26 while Kirini is one of the outsiders of the field at $51.
The Darren Weir trained Kenedna is on the second line of betting at $4.80 and Stuart Webb’s SA Fillies Classic winner Ana Royale is solid at $7.