Epaulette’s Chance to Join Stradbroke Elite

By: Isaac Ling
June 7th, 2013

If Epaulette can silence the critics and win Saturday’s prestigious Stradbroke Handicap, he will do more than just add another Group 1 to his resume and secure the $1 million winner’s cheque for Darley.

Epaulette has to overcome history in the Stradbroke. Photo by: Steve Hart.

If the Doomben 10,000 winner can overcome both his wide barrier and his hefty 56kg impost, he will cement his place in the history books.

Just three Doomben 10,000 winners have gone on to win the Stradbroke in the same year, with the Bart Cummings-trained Campaign King the last to do so in 1988.

The enormity of the task is shown by the duration between those to achieve the feat, with Spedito in 1975 and Winfreux in 1965 the only others to do so.

But it’s not just the elusive double that will earn him a place in Queensland racing history, it’s his weight.

With 56kg, the classy colt has a chance to equal the weight-carrying record for three-year-olds in Queensland’s biggest race.

Not since Divide And Rule lugged 56kg to victory in 1970 has a three-year-old carried such a weight successfully.

His trainer Peter Snowden, who himself is trying to win the Stradbroke for the first time, believes the dual Group 1 winner is a chance of smashing through the history barriers.

“He’s more than capable, even with that weight, of winning,” Snowden told News Limited.

“He’s been right alongside the superstars All Too Hard and Pierro. He’s only a shandy off being at the very top level.”

Snowden knows what it feels like to get close in the lucrative sprint, having seen 2011 Doomben 10,000 winner Beaded run down in the dying stages in his effort to record the elusive double.

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