In a thrilling finish to Queensland’s premier racing event, Bjorn Baker‘s Stefi Magnetica emerged victorious in the 2024 Stradbroke Handicap at Eagle Farm.

Zac Lloyd

Zac Lloyd (pictured in Sydney) won the 2024 Stradbroke Handicap as an apprentice aboard the filly Stefi Magnetica. Photo: Steve Hart.

Ridden by young jockey Zac Lloyd, the three-year-old filly edged out multiple Group 1 winning mare Bella Nipotina to claim her first Group 1 win.

Lloyd, son of racing legend Jeff Lloyd, delivered a masterful ride, navigating Stefi Magnetica through the field before making a decisive move up the inside in the straight.

This tactic proved successful, propelling the filly to victory in the $3 million race.

The win marked a significant moment for both horse and jockey.

Stefi Magnetica, an All Too Hard progeny, had steadily risen through the ranks, culminating in this remarkable achievement.

“Very, very proud,” said Jeff Lloyd, expressing his delight over his son’s win. “He’s been crying out to win a Group 1. To win it in Queensland, my home town, I couldn’t be prouder.”

Stefi Magnetica’s win capped off a remarkable journey.

After a win in a Benchmark 58 race at Orange last December, the filly displayed her potential with a close fifth to Bella Nipotina fresh in the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 followed by a third-place finish in the Group 3 Fred Best Classic.

“She’s an amazing filly,” said stable representative Jim Clarke, standing in for Bjorn Baker who was attending jockey Rachel King’s wedding.

Clarke highlighted the strategic decision to give Stefi Magnetica a break before setting her sights on the winter races.

Despite drawing an unfavourable wide barrier (19), Lloyd managed to secure a good position early on before making a decisive move up the inside.

“It’s amazing,” Lloyd expressed his post-race elation. “I was very confidence pre-race. We honestly thought we were on the right horse. I had to make a decision…and I was travelling so well so I was happy to go up the inside with her. She was great.”

Ciaron Maher‘s Bella Nipotina, winner of the Doomben 10,000, mounted a serious challenge but ultimately fell short due to the weight disadvantage (56kg compared to Stefi Magnetica’s 50kg).

James Cummings‘ beaten favourite Vilana, winner of the Moreton Cup at the track the weekend prior, completed the Stradbroke Handicap trifecta.

Stefi Magnetica’s victory rewrote history, becoming the first three-year-old filly to win the Stradbroke since La Montagna in 2006.

With this win, the filly sets her sights on a bright future in the upcoming spring carnival, with various interstate elite-level races on the horizon.

2024 Stradbroke Handicap Results

Finish No. Horse Trainer Jockey Margin Bar. Weight Penalty Starting Price
1 17 STEFI MAGNETICA Bjorn Baker Zac Lloyd (a) 15 50kg $15
2 1 BELLA NIPOTINA Ciaron Maher Craig Williams 0.25L 17 56kg $11
3 6 VILANA James Cummings Tim Clark 2.35L 11 53kg $4.80F
4 9 THE INEVITABLE John Keys Craig Newitt 3.53L 6 53kg $26
5 10 AMENABLE Mick Price & Michael Kent (Jnr) Chad Schofield 4.31L 13 53kg $9
6 12 OSIPENKO (NZ) Chris Waller Mark Du Plessis 5.21L 9 52.5kg $41
7 8 NUGGET (GB) Ciaron Maher Jason Collett 5.39L 8 53kg $14
8 4 BENEDETTA Jason Warren Daniel Stackhouse 5.41L 4 54kg $13
9 15 DREAM HOUR Kris Lees Robbie Dolan 5.51L 2 51.5kg $101
10 14 SEMANA Ciaron Maher Dylan Gibbons (a) 5.81L 18 52kg $21
11 18 ROLL ON HIGH Peter G Moody & Katherine Coleman Will Price 5.9L 10 50kg $26
12 3 ANTINO (NZ) Tony Gollan Vlad Duric 6.03L 16 54.5kg $7
13 16 STEPARTY Paul Preusker Dean Yendall 8.67L 3 50.5kg $16
14 2 MAGIC TIME Grahame Begg Michael Dee 9.35L 7 55.5kg $13
15 5 CEPHEUS (GB) Matthew Dunn Tommy Berry 10.16L 12 54kg (cd 54.5kg) $61
16 13 MIGHTY ULYSSES (GB) Annabel Neasham Damien Thornton 12.48L 14 52.5kg $26
17 11 PRINCE OF BOOM Robert Heathcote Tyler Schiller 14.17L 5 52.5kg $26
18 7 HERE TO SHOCK (NZ) Ben, Will & JD Hayes Regan Bayliss 14.69L 1 53kg $31
22e AUREUS ANGEL Chris Munce 0
23e CIFRADO Rex Lipp 0
21e STRAIT ACER Edward Cummings 0
19e FREEDOM RALLY Tony Gollan Tyler Schiller 0
20e YELLOW BRICK Tony & Maddysen Sears Kyle Wilson-Taylor 0

Table Credit: Racing Australia.

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About The Author

Lucy Henderson

Lucy is an experienced horse racing journalist that has been a crucial member of the team for the better part of a decade. She has taken great delight in covering champion mares Black Caviar and Winx throughout their careers and always has a soft spot for a winning filly.