Bold performances by Epic and Discreet at Doomben on Saturday could see the Kelly Schweida trained pair head to Sydney to tackle some better class races at the beginning of the Spring Carnival.
Epic is stepping up to his favourite distance and a huge drop in weight has boosted Schweida’s confidence that the injury plagued six year old can return to the winner’s stall in the $45,000 The Bottle-O Open Handicap (1630m).
And Discreet is also facing a massive weight drop as she steps up to open company in the $50,000 Madame Wu Open Handicap (1200m).
“The good thing about Epic and Discreet is they handle wet and dry tracks,” Schweida told AAP.
“There are some races which would suit them but we will have to see how they race on Saturday before getting too excited.”
Epic was back in the winner’s stall at his second run back after a twelve months lay off when he won over 1200m at Eagle Farm with apprentice Anthony Allen aboard.
But the six year old struggled at his next race start under the 58kg when seventh over 1350m in Class 6 company at Doomben on July 12.
Schweida has opted to take on the open class horses this week and said that Epic would appreciate the drop in weight stepping up to the 1630m.
“He had 59 kilograms in the Class 6 and 54 kilograms in the Open. We will claim with Anthony Allen riding and Epic will get in with the lightest he has had for a long time,” Schweida said.
“The weight in the Class 6 races is really starting to tell. With the lighter weight in the open I would be disappointed if he can’t run a good race.
“Just look at his record at 1600 metres. He has won twice at the track and distance and been placed twice.”
The Eagle Farm trainer has nursed Epic back from leg injuries on several occasions and is happy just to see him get back to the racetrack, let alone still bringing in winner’s cheques.
“He really has done a good job to be racing at all. Not many horses come back from so many injuries to race at all let alone win,” Schweida said.
Discreet has also been a good money spinner for the stable and did a good job to win with 58kg over 1350m at Doomben a fortnight ago.
The Show A Heart mare will also appreciate the drop in weight and will only have to carry 52.5kg, 1.5kg under the minimum, with Anthony Allen’s claim.
“She is another who has been creeping up in the weights in restricted class,” Schweida said.
“She is a mare who can hold her form once she strikes it. I would be disappointed if she didn’t run a good race on Saturday.”
Trainer Robert Heathcote has also called on the services of an apprentice and Bridget Grylls will reduce topweight Excellantes’ weight to 57kg, 2 kg less than he carried when he won the Listed $80,000 PMP Limited Ascot Handicap (1200m) at Eagle Farm on July 5.
Epic is currently sharing favouritism at Ladbrokes.com.au for The Bottle-O Open Handicap at $5 with the Bruce Hill trained Elmantosh and Ferment from the John Thompson stable while Discreet at $3 is just shading Excellantes at $3.60 for the top spot in the Madame Wu Open Handicap.