The partnership of Lee Freedman and Graeme Rogerson will remain as the trainer of Queensland Oaks chance Dowager Queen even though the filly changed ownership after passing through the Magic Millions sale ring at the Gold Coast on Tuesday.
Magic Millions’ Gerry Harvey paid $710,000 for Dowager Queen at the National Broodmare Select Sale when the filly was offered for sale by her previous owner Max Whitby.
The Savabeel filly was brought to Australia from New Zealand with the Group 1 $400,000 Treasury Casino Queensland Oaks (2400m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday as her main mission and will still contest the fillies classic under the care of Freedman and Rogerson.
Whitby would have loved to see Dowager Queen go around in the Oaks with his colours but the timing of the Sales threw that plan out the window with the successful sale of the filly.
“There’s three reasons why,” Whitby said.
“The first is that they switched the sale and it’s before the Oaks this year. Our intention was to race her in the Oaks but she was always going to go through the ring.”
“The second is that Rogie is tidying up his part of his racing involvement with me and the third is that I’ve got a couple more Dowers at home as well as the mother and I just want to showcase her in Australia.”
Whitby was very pleased with Dowager Queen’s run in the Group 3 $175,000 Hidden Dragon The Roses (2000m) at Doomben on May 19 when she made up ground to finish three and a quarter lengths eleventh to Invest and is on target for the Oaks.
“After the Doomben Roses I think she’ll go very close,” Whitby said.
Dowager Queen has three Group 1 placings to her credit including a second to Mosheen in the $1m Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington during last year’s Melbourne Cup Carnival and Saturday’s Oaks will be her third run back from a short break.
Glyn Schofield has retained the mount on Dowager Queen who has drawn barrier five in a capacity field of eighteen plus five emergencies and is currently at $15 in the market order.
The Kiwi fillies are dominating the betting with the Shaune Ritchie trained Miss Artistic ($4.40) drawing barrier twelve and John Sargent’s Quintessential ($4.60) coming out of gate one.
Angel Of Mercy, Invest and Scorpio Queen share the next line of betting at $7.
The Clarry Conners trained Invest’s chances took a nosedive, coming up with barrier twenty-two in the original draw, but with all five emergencies drawn inside her will still have to start one from the outside in the big field and will need a first class ride from Peter Mertens.
The Dehere filly is going for three wins on the trot after taking out the Group 1 $400,000 Schweppes Oaks (2000m) at Morphettville on April 28 before coming to Queensland to take out the Roses at Doomben.