Adrian Bott, the racing manager for trainer Gai Waterhouse, has confirmed that Group 1 winning mare Driefontein will take her place in the 2014 Doomben 10,000 field on Saturday.
Driefontein made a slow start to her autumn campaign, finishing sixth in the Group 2 Breeders Classic (1200m) and fifth in the Group 2 Millie Fox Stakes (1300m), but found her best form when sent to Adelaide; taking out the Group 3 Irwin Stakes (1100m) at Morphettville on April 12 before scoring her maiden win at Group 1 level in the Robert Sangster Classic (1200m) a fortnight later.
The Fastnet Rock mare tired badly in the final stakes of the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 10, finishing 15th, but Bott told TVN that the four-year-old had taken no harm from the tough run and would start in the Doomben 10,000 this weekend.
“She was checked-out and found to be in fantastic order and Gai could see no reason why we shouldn’t press on to Brisbane,” Bott said.
“She has been up there for a week and will run in the Doomben 10,000 on Saturday.
“We’ve got options after this too if she is still holding together and there’s always the Stradbroke and the Tatt’s Tiara.
“With these mares in form it’s hard to stop them when they are racing so well.”
Driefontein has only raced in Brisbane on one occasion, when she beat Sizzling and Snipzu to take out the 2011 Group 3 B.J. McLachlan Stakes (1200m) at Doomben, but has recorded some of the biggest wins of her racing career in Queensland.
After winning the B.J. McLachlan Stakes, Driefontein pressed on to the Magic Millions Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast and was awarded the race on protest from stablemate No Looking Back and she returned to the Gold Coast the following year and finished third behind Saluter and Sizzling in the Gold Coast Guineas.
Driefontein was entered in the Magic Millions Fillies And Mares Quality (1300m) earlier this year and was forced to lump the top-weight of 61 kilograms , but overcame the hefty weight to record one of the most impressive wins of her career.
Rebel Dane ($3.80) remains a narrow favourite in 2014 Doomben 10,000 betting markets from Buffering ($4), Spirit Of Boom ($9) and Knoydart ($9), while Driefontein is available at a quote of $17.