Zippy Lou a show to beat Essington
GOLD Coast trainer John Petersen believes Zippy Lou will need to be at the top of her game to topple in-form sprinter Essington in the D a v k i n g H a n d i c a p a t Doomben.
Petersen is confident Zippy Lou can be competitive when the four-year-old steps up in distance to 1350m for the first time this preparation today.
‘‘ She’ll need to be competitive in this race if she’s to race against the better fillies and mares during the Brisbane winter carnival,’’ Petersen said.
‘‘ At this stage the Winter Stakes is in the mix for her but I’d like to see her step up in distance further to 1600m.
‘‘ She’s lost all her pace nowadays and she’s been getting back in her races and running home.’’
Zippy Lou conceded 5.5kg to Hull City when an unlucky third in a 1200m fillies and mares Class six at Eagle Farm two weeks ago.
‘‘ She carried a lot of weight that day and had a very wide barrier and then ran off the track in the straight,’’ Petersen said.
‘‘ Luke ( Rolls) hit her with the whip in the right hand and she ducked out sharply.’’
Gold Coast r i d e r Matt Palmer will replace Rolls and can use the whip in either hand if required. ‘‘ I was hoping to book Jason Taylor because he’s ridden her before but he’s out suspended,’’ Petersen said.
‘‘ Matt does a fair bit of riding for me at the track each morning so we’ve decided to put him on.’’
Petersen has a great deal of respect for Essington who will be attempting to maintain an unblemished record this campaign following two recent wins at Eagle Farm.
‘‘ Essington is the one to beat. He’s got a great record and has won his last four starts,’’ Petersen said. ‘‘ My mare will need to be at the top of her game and will need some luck to beat him but she’s racing well enough ( and) . . . she’s better if the sting is out of the ground.’’
Essington, a $ 50,000 buy at a Lloyd Williams dispersal sale, is on trial for a trip to Sydney for the autumn.
Trainer Darryl Hansen is keen to test the four-year-old i n t he Group Two Ajax Stakes at Rosehill in two weeks before next month’s Group Three Doncaster Prelude ( 1600m) at Randwick.