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Kingsford-Smith Cup winner Impending has been elevated to top weight for the Group 1 $1.5m Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben on June 9 following first acceptances.

Impending, above, is the new top weight for the 2018 Stradbroke Handicap after first acceptances. Photo by Steve Hart.

Impending, above, is the new top weight for the 2018 Stradbroke Handicap after first acceptances. Photo by Steve Hart.

The James Cummings trained Impending was given 57.5kg when weights were released early in the week with Kris Lees’ multiple Group 1 winner Le Romain being allocatd the top weight of 58kg.

Lees has abandoned a Stradbroke Handicap start for Le Romain who has returned to his Newcastle base, leaving Impending at the top of the thirty 1st acceptances for the Stradbroke Handicap.

As well as Le Romain, several other high profile sprinters are absent from the first acceptances’ list and include the Doomben 10,000 winner English, Galaxy winner In Her Time and Lindsay Park’s dual Group 1 winner Vega Magic.

Trainer Anthony Freedman has accepted with Santa Ana Lane (55.5kg) who collected his second Group 1 trophy with an outstanding win in the Group 1 $1m Darley Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 19.

Victoria’s leading trainer Darren Weir has four horses in the top eighteen in the order of entry among the first acceptors, Lucky Hussler (4th), Voodoo Lad (12th), Peaceful State (16th) and Danon Liberty (18th) while Handsome Thief, twenty-sixth in the order of entry, could leap frog his stablemates and be exempt from the ballot for the Stradbroke Handicap if he can win the Group 2 $175,000 Moreton Cup (1200m) at the Sunshine Coast on Saturday.

Bjorn Baker’s brilliant three year old filly Champagne Cuddles is also among the first acceptances and is number seven in the order of entry and with only 50kg sits at the top of the Stradbroke Handicap market order at $4.40 with Ladbrokes.com.au just ahead of Impending at $4.80.

Champaign Cuddles put in a terrific Stradbroke Handicap trial with an eye catching third behind Impending and Le Romain in the Group 1 $700,000 Altus Traffic Kingsford-Smith Cup (1350m) at Doomben last Saturday.

The final field for the 2018 Stradbroke Handicap will be released on Wednesday, June 6.

Early betting for the 2018 Stradbroke Handicap at Ladbrokes.com.au: $4.40 Champagne Cuddles, $4.80 Impending, $8 Perast, $9 Care To Think, $14 Danon Liberty, Invincible Gem, Peaceful State, Santa Ana Lane, $16 Osburne Bulls, $18 Spieth, $21 Shillelagh, Voodoo Lad, $26 Crack Me Up, Foxplay, $31 Burning Passion, Super Cash, $34 Endless Drama, $41 Hansome Thief, I’m A Rippa, Invincibella, Lucky Hussler, Moss ‘N’ Dale, Pecans, $61 or better the rest.

First acceptances for the 2018 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m)

# Last 10 Horse Sex Age Trainer Ballot Weight
1 341x23x121 IMPENDING H 4 James Cummings 1= 57.5kg
2 x341x6x031 SANTA ANA LANE G 5 Anthony Freedman 1= 55.5kg
3 3715×57911 PERAST C 3 Paul Perry 1= 50kg
4 5x6001056x LUCKY HUSSLER G 8 Darren Weir 4 56kg
5 3475×38485 FOXPLAY M 4 Chris Waller 5 53kg
6 x731x076x4 SHILLELAGH (NZ) M 6 Chris Waller 6 52.5kg
7 1x32222x13 CHAMPAGNE CUDDLES F 3 Bjorn Baker 7 50kg
8 x21419140x CRACK ME UP (NZ) G 4 Liam Birchley 8 53.5kg
9 0x188x1x04 SUPER CASH M 5 Andrew Noblet 9 51.5kg
10 x360x31495 ENDLESS DRAMA (IRE) H 6 Chris Waller 10 53.5kg
11 12x13x3503 INVINCIBLE GEM M 4 Kris Lees 11 51.5kg
12 x257x145x0 VOODOO LAD G 6 Darren Weir 12 53.5kg
13 290x2860x5 SPIETH (NZ) H 5 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 13 53.5kg
14 641241×289 MOST IMPORTANT G 5 Tony Gollan 14 53kg
15 11x1112x67 CARE TO THINK G 4 Matthew Dunn 15 52.5kg
16 312×172011 PEACEFUL STATE C 3 Darren Weir 16 50.5kg
17 15330×3717 BURNING PASSION G 6 Mark Newnham 17 52kg
18 x2x533x98x DANON LIBERTY (JPN) H 6 Darren Weir 18 51.5kg
19 1121×13121 OSBORNE BULLS G 4 James Cummings 19 51.5kg
20 8211313×71 MOSS ’N’ DALE (NZ) G 5 Peter Gelagotis 20 51kg
21 5x877x2411 FRENCH EMOTION M 6 Chris Waller 21 51kg
22 2x21121x15 PECANS M 4 Joseph Pride 22 51kg
23 6×11113127 WIDGEE TURF G 4 Patrick Payne 23 51kg
24 132741×432 INVINCIBELLA M 4 Chris Waller 24 51kg
25 0x21812x31 I’M A RIPPA G 4 Tony Gollan 25 51kg
26 1×32721617 HANDSOME THIEF (IRE) G 5 Darren Weir 26 51kg
27 x133231110 TOUGHERTHANTHEREST G 4 Chris Waller 27 51kg
28 8485313×11 SIREN’S FURY M 4 Jason Coyle 28 51kg
29 25x3317x30 SYLPHEED M 4 Toby Edmonds 29 51kg
30 11x336x715 HAVASAY G 5 Liam Birchley 30 51kg

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.