This year’s renewal of the Queensland Oaks doesn’t look to be a vintage edition if last year’s winner is anything to go by. Chris Waller trained Winx won it at a canter last year and obviously went to a whole new level during the Autumn. Doubt whether we will see any of these fillies get anywhere near the peaks Winx has risen to, but there’s a winner to be found nonetheless.
The Waller yard’s biggest hope this year lies with Sebring Sun ($16.00), who goes into the Oaks off the back of a strong 2nd in the Doomben Roses a fortnight ago. She’s getting around at double the odds of many of the gallopers she beat home and shapes as a decent each-way chance.
The Peter and Paul Snowden trained Falkenberg ($6.00) looks to be hitting her straps at just the right time and will likely jump as the favourite. She had no luck in the Roses, which is the traditional lead up race for the Oaks, where she only found space late and hit the line hard. Blake Shinn takes over the reins here and the forecast rain will only be in her favour being out of a family of swimmers.
The winner of the Doomben Roses, Kebede ($10), is looking to complete the Roses/Oaks double which is something that has surprisingly only been done twice. Despite this, the Roses continues to be the best pointer for Oaks winners with nine of the past 11 winners having had their final lead up runs there.
The best roughie in the race looks to be Dulverton ($19) who had a nice hit out here a fortnight ago in the Roses where she found the line under her own steam. She’s been looking for this trip all prep and senior jockey Mark Zahra takes over for leading Victorian trainer Robert Smerdon.
The other major chance is Kiwi filly Provocative ($8.50), provided she starts. As first emergency she needs another to pull out, but if she gets a start she’ll be right in the mix. Her Australian debut was impressive and the trip will suit her fine.
*all odds correct at time of posting