Trainer Tony Gollan and jockey Tegan Harrison will team up again with Brave Ali in the Listed $175,000 Channel 7 Ipswich Cup (2150m) at Ipswich on Saturday.
Gollan and Harrison were a whisker away from winning the Doomben 10000 – Stradbroke Handicap double with Temple Of Boom who was runner up in both Group 1 races.
But a Winter Carnival feature race win is on the cards with the in-form Brave Ali who is one of the main chances in the Ipswich Cup.
Gollan has already had plenty of success over the Carnival highlighted by the win of Spirit Of Boom who beat his stablemate in the Group 1 $650,000 James Boag’s Premium Doomben 10000 (1350m) at Doomben on May 24.
Then Temple Of Boom was able to turn the tables on Spirit Of Boom who finished fourth in the Group 1 $1.36m AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 7, but Harrison and Temple Of Boom couldn’t hold off the late challenge of Damien Oliver on River Lad.
Tamworth trainer Craig Martin bought Brave Ali to Brisbane and with Harrison aboard scored over 2100m at Doomben on March 29.
Brave Ali was then transferred to Gollan stable and with Harrison in the saddle again won over 2030m at Doomben on April 26.
The rejuvenated country stayer was racing in the best form of his career and Gollan had no hesitation is stepping the seven year old up to Listed company when he won the Listed $80,000 50 Years Of Ramsay Health Care JRA Tails Stakes (2128m) at Eagle Farm on April 26 with Harrison again.
Brave Ali then performed well again with a third to Pretty Pins in the Group 3 $125,000 Landfill Logistics Chairman’s Handicap (2000m) at Doomben on May 10 with Gollan then setting his sights on the Ipswich Cup, the Listed $175,000 Caloundra Cup (2400m) at the Sunshine Coast on June 28 and the Listed $150,000 Grafton Cup (2350m) at Grafton on July 10.
“We decided to bypass the guts of the carnival with him because these races are more where he’s at,” Gollan told the Sportsman.
“He does love a bit of the sting out of the ground and that’s the reason for the freshen-up to get ready for Grafton.”
“Providing his form is still where it was when he left off that’s where we will head.”
Gollan is not worried by the fact that Brave Ali hasn’t been to the races since his third in the Chairman’s Handicap on May 10 and said that the seven year old has been kept up to the mark with plenty of track work.
“He goes about his business, he’s a very common trackworker so you never get a guide on him and he is no different now,” Gollan said.
“He’s jumping around the stable like a two year old so he is feeling well in himself and we are just backing his ability to stay to overcome the time in between runs.”
“I think the freshness in his legs will suit him well.”
Brave Ali is on the second line of betting for the Ipswich Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au at $6.50 with Victorian galloper Garud with the Gerald Ryan trained Ironstein the $5 favourite.
The Pat Carey trained Angola is the next in the betting at $8.50 just ahead of High Aims at $10 and the Robert Heathcote trained Volkhere at $12.