Dream re­turn beck­ons

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - TRENT SLATTER trent. slatter@ news. com. au

FOR­MER Townsville trainer Steven O’Dea is hop­ing for a per­fect home­com­ing to­day when he sad­dles up Dream Kisses in the Townsville RSL Two- Year- Old Clas­sic ( 1200m) at Clu­den Park.

North Queens­land’s rich­est two- year- old race marks the start of the Townsville Win­ter Car­ni­val and the now Bris­bane- based O’Dea has brought his star filly to chase a sen­ti­men­tal vic­tory.

Dream Kisses is the foal of Kiss Me Katy, who was O’Dea’s first ma­jor win­ner as a trainer be­fore he made the move to Ea­gle Farm.

Kiss Me Katy won the Pal­larenda Stakes in Townsville at her first start in 2008 and went on to win three more races in Bris­bane that sea­son, in­clud­ing the Listed Sir Dou­glas Wadley 2YO Fil­lies Plate.

O’Dea said it would be a proud mo­ment if Kiss Me Katy’s daugh­ter could de­liver his first win in a Townsville Win­ter Car­ni­val fea­ture race.

“It would def­i­nitely be very sat­is­fy­ing,” O’Dea said.

“This filly’s mother is Kiss Me Katy who was my first win- ner in Bris­bane. She won the Pal­larenda Stakes up here at her first start then we took her to Bris­bane.

“She won a listed race over the Car­ni­val in the first year I was in Bris­bane. It would be very sat­is­fy­ing to come back here with one of her foals and win a fea­ture race.”

Dream Kisses has a tough draw at Clu­den Park to­day in bar­rier 14, but she has some strong Bris­bane form be­hind her, plac­ing in five of her eight ca­reers starts for two wins.

The filly has also per­formed well over the dis­tance af­ter win­ning her last start at Doomben on June 24 in the Aquis Farm Crys­tal Slip­per 2YO Fil­lies Plate.

Dream Kisses will be rid­den by lead­ing Townsville jockey Gra­ham Kliese in the TwoYear- Old Clas­sic and O’Dea was con­fi­dent the wide bar­rier won’t spoil their chances.

“It’s ob­vi­ously not ideal draw­ing out that far, but there looks to be good speed in the race,” he said. “A cou­ple of horses that should push for­ward have drawn out wide as well so hope­fully she can get a bit of trail over with them and slot in be­hind.

“She’s trav­elled well up here and Kliese knows the track and he’s rid­ing in good form.”

All­round Glory for Mackay trainer Lyle Wright will be one of the big dan­gers to the favourite given his strong record at Clu­den Park, with two wins and a third from three starts, how­ever the top weight will also have to come from the widest gate in bar­rier 16.

Golden Guardian for Black River trainer Michelle Petrof­ski looks to be the best of the lo­cal hopes, ideally drawn in bar­rier one and chas­ing a third- straight win over the dis­tance in Townsville.

To­day’s seven- race card also in­cludes the Townsville RSL Gar­risons Restau­rant Open Hand­i­cap ( 1200m) where Ty­zone will be chas­ing a fourth- straight vic­tory for Ather­ton trainer Roy Chillemi.

HIGH HOPES: For­mer Townsville trainer Steven O'Dea will be back at Clu­den Park to­day.

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