The New Zealand contingent have held themselves in pretty good order throughout this year’s Brisbane Winter Carnival with Scarlett Lady stealing the show and being well supported by Firebolt.
Perhaps the only real flop came from The Hombre but there’s one more horse which has done well without as much attention.
Four-year-old mare St Germaine came into the carnival with not a lot of expectations but from her first start signalled she was here for business.
She debuted against the boys in the Lord Mayor’s Cup over 1600m at Doomben and despite being the least fancied runner the only horse which finished ahead of her was Firebolt.
Next start she headed over to Eagle Farm and was back with the girls in the Dane Ripper Stakes but found the 1400m too short.
She ran home fifth and was really starting to wind up down the straight coming from back in 15th at the turn.
Last start they were back out to 1600m again and she recorded another second place, this time to Willy Jimmy in the Strawberry Road Handicap.
Jockey Tim Clark couldn’t get her into the clear until well after the turn and that really put a dent into her run.
This weekend St Germaine gets one more crack at them in the Tattersall’s Tiara ($500,000) at Eagle Farm with trainer John Sargent lured in by the Group 1.
She was also nominated for the Tattersall’s Mile ($100,000) which in reality would have been a better suited race, however Sargent will drop back to the 1400m for the obvious reasons..
“The Tiara is a Group 1 race and worth five times the money,” he said.
“I appreciate we need everything to go our way to have a realistic chance of winning but it’s worth a punt.
“This is the race we have targeted and I don’t see much point in not having a shot now.
“The mare is in terrific order, her form is good and she’s earned a chance at a Group 1 race against her own sex.”
She’s faced pretty much all of the big chances before, that is with the exception though of favourite Beaded and QTC Cup winner Varenna Miss.
Tim Clark won’t be riding her again this weekend instead staying down in Sydney, that’s opened the door for kiwi jockey Jonathan Riddell to once again get back aboard.
Riddell has ridden her already this carnival, in her debut run at Doomben.
“Jonathan is a very accomplished jockey. He came back to jumps riding on Saturday and won the Manawatu Steeplechase,” Sargent said.
St Germaine will face plenty of competition on Saturday and Yosei showed yesterday that she’s well in the mix as well.
People were forced to take notice after she ran the final 600m of a 1200m gallop in 35.7 seconds.
Track watcher at Eagle Farm Les Green said she’ll certainly be a better horse than what we saw last start.
“She hit the line really well … I’d be surprised if her form doesn’t lift this week on the back of that gallop,” he said.