Group 1 winning mare Tinto is set to return to racing at Doomben on Saturday after she was included in the nominations for the 2014 Travel Associates Classic.
Tinto has not been seen at the races since she finished eighth behind The Inventor in the Group 3 Tatt’s Cup (2200m) at Eagle Farm on June 21, but indicated that she was ready for a return to racing when she finished a credible third behind Tornadoes in a barrier trial over 925 metres at Toowoomba on November 11.
The Red Dazzler mare made her racing debut with a win in the Sky Racing Plate (1200m) at the Gold Coast on March 16 last year and she had two more race starts before she made her black type racing debut with a sixth place finish in the Listed Gold Edition Plate (1200m) at Doomben on December 14 before she stamped herself as a horse to watch when she finished fourth behind Sweet Idea in the Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast on January 11.
Tinto started her 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival campaign with a second place finish in the RMA Engineers Handicap (1100m) at Toowoomba on March 22 and failed to fire in her next two race starts before she scored a maiden win at stakes level in the Listed Gold Coast Bracelet (1800m) on May 3.
The talented mare finished second behind the highly-rated Arabian Gold in the Group 2 The Roses (2000m) at Doomben on May 17, but she was able to turn-the-tables on her rival a fortnight later and take out the Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) in a strong staying performance.
Trainer Rex Lipp indicated after the Queensland Oaks that the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) was on the agenda for Tinto, but he elected to take the conservative route with the Group 1 winner and give her one more start in the Tatt’s Cup before a lengthy stint in the spelling paddock.
Tinto has been allocated 59 and a half kilograms under the set weights plus penalties conditions of the Travel Associates Classic and the four-year-old will need to perform at her best against what is set to be a strong field in Travel Associates Classic after the likes of last start winner Diamond Glow, Kelly Schweida-trained Discreet, popular mare Little Brown Horse, the in-form Queen Of The Lochs and Chris Waller-trained Just A Girl were all included in the nominations for the Listed event.