Wata­gan can win again

Townsville Bulletin - - Racing -

TRAINER Gary Bein be­lieves a wide bar­rier is the only thing that can stop Miss Wata­gan main­tain­ing her un­beaten record in Satur­day’s Listed Tommy Smith Slip­per at Doomben.

Not even the prospect of a wet track has damp­ened his con­fi­dence in the young­ster who added to her de­but vic­tory at Ea­gle Farm with an all-the-way win in the McDougall Stakes at the same venue last start.

‘‘They will be rac­ing in the mud and she’s not tried in the mud but I think she will han­dle it. She’s a very sure-footed filly,’’ Bein said.

‘‘If she draws a gate I don’t think they will beat her.’’

Miss Wata­gan is one of 18 nom­i­na­tions for Satur­day’s 1200m sprint with the bar­rier draw to take place fol­low­ing ac­cep­tances to­day.

She will carry just 52.5kg un­der the set weights con­di­tions, good news for her sup­port­ers but not so good for reg­u­lar jockey Brad Ste­wart.

‘‘He’s al­ways had weight prob­lems and he’s got to get down to 52.5 ki­los on Satur­day so it will be no easy task,’’ Bein said.

‘‘But his man­ager rang and said he’s work­ing on it.

‘‘If Brad called me to­day and said ‘I can’t make the weight’ then I’d try to find some­one else but other than that, he stays. He’s rid­den her well both times.’’

Bein races Miss Wata­gan un­der lease from breeder Curly Stew­ard and is keen to cam­paign the filly in Syd­ney this au­tumn.

Pro­vided she runs up to ex­pec­ta­tions on Satur­day, the young­ster will be given a let-up in readi- ness for a tilt at the Reis­ling Slip­per Trial (1200m) at Rose­hill on March 17.

Should she win that, Bein said he would more than likely pay the late en­try fee to se­cure Miss Wata­gan a Golden Slip­per start.

‘‘She’s not nom­i­nated for the Slip­per, at the time we didn’t know how good a filly we had,’’ Bein said.

‘‘If she wins the Reis­ling that would get us into the Slip­per, we would just have to pay the $150,000 late en­try fee, which would hurt, but I’ve spo­ken to Curly and he’s happy to go that way if we get there.’’

SLIP­PERY MISS . . . Miss Wata­gan scorches the turf in her McDougall Stakes win ear­lier this month

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