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Kiwi trainer Tony Pike can add another Queensland Winter Racing Carnival piece of silverware to his going home luggage if Terra Sancta can win Saturday’s Listed $175,000 Channel Seven Ipswich Cup (2150m) at Ipswich.

Jim Byrne, above, will ride Terra Sancta in the 2019 Ipswich Cup at Ipswich. Photo by Daniel Costello.

Jim Byrne, above, will ride Terra Sancta in the 2019 Ipswich Cup at Ipswich. Photo by Daniel Costello.

Pike’s stable star The Bostonian collected two of the three Winter Carnival Group 1 sprint trophies with wins in the $800,000 Doomben 10,000 (1200m) at Doomben on May 11 and in the $700,000 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1300m) at Eagle Farm a fortnight later and Terra Sancta is well in contention in the betting for the Ipswich Cup.

Ladbrokes.com.au have Terra Sancta on the fourth line of betting at $7.50 behind the $3.40 favourite Fighting Teo, High Opinion at $4.20 and Bergerac at $4.80.

Pike has secured the services of premiership winning jockey Jim Byrne who is on the comeback trail following shoulder surgery and the Cambridge trainer believes that Terra Sancta will enjoy returning to Ipswich after winning there for Byrne twelve months ago.

“Jim has won at Ipswich on Terra Sancta last year. He has won three Ipswich Cups so it is obviously a bonus to get him,” Pike told AAP.

Byrne had four rides on Terra Sancta during the filly’s 2018 Queensland campaign for a win at Ipswich and two wins at the Sunshine Coast plus a sixth behind Youngstar in the Group 1 $500,000 Queensland Oaks at Doomben.

Byrne will be replacing Leith Innes who was aboard Terra Sancta when sixth last start in a 1710m Class 6 Handicap at Ipswich on May 29 in her final lead up run for the Ipswich Cup.

“She is out to a more suitable distance,” Pike said.

Pike has tweaked Terra Sancta’s race day gear with the tongue tie coming off and the blinkers going back on and Byrne should be able to give the mare a cosy run from barrier four in the eleven horse Ipswich Cup field.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.