Barrier draw not ideal for Princess Tenko at Doomben.

Published 20 July 2023

Barrier draw not ideal for Princess Tenko at Doomben.

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Rockhampton trainer Clinton Taylor’s confidence in Princess Tenko winning at Doomben on Saturday nosedived before resurfacing somewhat after the she drew barrier 19 for her assignment.

“I was going down there fairly confident about her chances but the barrier draw certainly put a dampener on the outcome. However, I’ll probably still take her down”, Taylor explained.

“From the 1350 metres starting point at Doomben there is a good run along the back straight. If she gets any luck, she (Princess Tenko) may still get across. As well from what I can see there is not a heap of speed (horses) engaged in the race”, he said.

Clinton was “mind reading” the likely scenario of how the race, the $75K BM 78 (1350M) would be run in the early and middle stages.

Princess Tenko (Race 9 -TAB 8) with the benefit of scratchings todate and more than likely a full field starting, will most likely start from 14 gate in the 16 strong field.

Taylor has engaged star jockey Jimmy Orman who is battling out for top billing in the current Australian Jockeys Premiership.

Orman is no stranger to Princess Tenko as has ridden her six times previously including wins at Ipswich and Eagle Farm.

 For those wins and her second over 1350M at Ipswich on February 24 last year, Princess Tenko was trained by Kelly Schweida at Eagle Farm

She resumed from a 15 months spell when having her first start for Clinton Taylor and breaking the 1200 metres Callaghan Park track record in a scintillating Tatts Sprint win on June 23.

At her only subsequent start she ran $2.80 favourite in the Rocky Newmarket (1300m) on July 7 only to trapped wide throughout from a wide gate and fight on for a close second to Roman Aureus.

The census of opinion had it that the disadvantage of covering so much extra ground from the draw cost her the Newmarket win.

Provided Princess Tenko performs well at Doomben, Taylor confirmed all things being well she would press on to the $100,000 Cleveland Bay Handicap (1300m) at Townsville on August 12.

“Since the Newmarket run, she has done super. It is just that wide draw on Saturday has spoiled things”, Taylor concluded.

No such worries for Rockhampton’s other Doomben starter on Saturday in John Wigginton trained Sidearm (R 7 -TAB 13) which drew the rails barrier in the $85K NMW Handicap (1110m).

Twice a Rockhampton winner over 1200 and 1300 metres from his last three starts, Wigginton is more hopeful than confident about Sidearm (Luke Tarrant). 

“We have always thought about giving him a try in Brisbane and when the opportunity came up with Saturday’s race and he drew so well we thought why not”, Wigginton explained.

Ricky Vale trained Namazu will be ridden by Ryan Wiggins in Saturday’s $150K Mackay Cup (2000m), a race he ran third in last year behind Sayl (GB) which also runs again on Saturday.

Amid confusion from some stakeholders, Ian Mill of the RJC has endorsed that trainer’s premiership figures published on this site are correct and pertain to the Rockhampton Jockey Club results only.

“We understand that our premiership (RJC) is based on meetings that the Rockhampton Jockey Club hold excluding meetings that are run by Central Queensland Amateurs Association such as “The Archer Day”, Mill’s RJC administration officer Heidi Butler said.

 On that criteria, Ricky Vale on 26 wins leads from Clinton Taylor 25 and Nick Walsh 24 but the latter would be accredited with 26 wins had The Archer Day results been included.

Also if results from that meeting were included in the premiership standings, it would appear Clinton Taylor would also have 26 wins as his representative Rover’s Pepper won that day as well. 

As Butler said no guidelines could be found on this (premiership inclusions/exclusions), it had been placed on the agenda for the RJC committee to determine at their meeting next Monday.


Tony McMahon.

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