Eagle Farm trainer Danny Bougoure hasn’t lost faith in his smart filly Oakleigh Girl in the countdown to the start of the 2014 Jeep $2m Magic Millions 2yo Classic(1200m) at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
One time Magic Millions favourite, Oakleigh Girl lost some admirers with a fading fourth to new favourite Unencumbered in the Group 3 $150,000 B.J. McLachlan Stakes (1200m) at Doomben on December 28.
But Bougoure said that the Snitzel filly has come through a week of light work in fine order and will be at her best on Saturday.
“She has done very well. She didn’t do a lot last week, just swam and cantered. Did a little piece of work this morning, nothing too strenuous, but breezed home in 23.4, so she is not far away,” Bougoure said after the barrier draw at the Gold Coast yesterday.
Bougoure also had a smile on his face when Oakleigh Girl came up with barrier six but knows she will have to be at the top of her game to turn the tables on Unencumbered who drew perfectly at three.
Top Melbourne jockey Craig Newitt has put the pressure back on himself to produce a top shelf ride after taking the blame for the filly’s defeat at Doomben when he was reluctant to hand up the lead.
“I do feel responsible for it and I’m the one sitting on her,” Newitt said.
“But at the end the day it’s all very good in hindsight.
“Now I know her limitations we just have to draw a nice marble and if she leads she will lead but if they go hard she can take a sit off them.”
“I wouldn’t swap her for anything and she is the best horse in the race.”
“Hopefully we can get the job done on Saturday and it can be the start of a good association.”
Newitt was aboard Oakleigh Girl when she won on debut down the Flemington straight on Melbourne Cup Day leading all of the way in the Group 3 $120,000 7News Plate (1000m) but missed the ride because of Melbourne commitments when Michael Cahill steered her to a one length win in the Listed $100,000 Channel Seven Calaway Gal Stakes (1010m) at Doomben on December 14.
The latest Magic Millions 2yo Classic market order sees Unencumbered at the top at $3.80 ahead of the Team Hawkes trained Invisible at $6 while Oakleigh Girl is on the third line of betting at $8.50.
Local colt Celestial Dragon, Gold Coast trained Stroak, the Gai Waterhouse trained Cyclone and Liam Birchley’s Sagatona all share the next line of betting at $12 with Mick Price’s pair of Geromayo ($13) and Nordic Empire ($15) also at double figure odds.