Townsville Bulletin

Media Award stakes her claim

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MEDIA Award was one of the last horses asked to run in the inaugural $2m The Invitation, but that won’t matter if she’s first over the line at Randwick on Saturday.

Along with Forbidden Love, Media Award is one of two Group 1 winners in the race, but is only rated a $23 chance after drawing the widest gate.

She hasn’t been seen since taking out the Group 1 Australasi­an Oaks (2000m) at Morphettvi­lle in May and was denied a place in the Group 1 Queensland Oaks when scratched on vet advice after showing lameness in one leg.

Geelong trainer Chris Calthorpe left his Shamus Award mare in the Sunshine State before bringing her home to prepare for the spring.

He didn’t know he’d be sending her to a $2m race firstup, but was more than happy to be sending her to Randwick.

“I’m really excited and I was relieved to get an invitation, because I thought she should’ve got one earlier than Sunday,” he said.

“She spelled up in Queensland for the best part of eight weeks and she’s been in work since late July.

“We’re pretty happy with where she’s at.”

Media Award won all three races in the autumn, including a 1479m win fresh at Kyneton.

Calthorpe is sure he’s got her in perfect shape for the richest race of her life, with 59kg on her back.

“The 1400m doesn’t worry me. The weight worries me a bit though,” he said.

“She’s never really carried more than 57kg, so that’s a bit of a concern and it’s the first time she’s going to have to win with that weight.

“She’s in good order and had a nice trial 10 days ago and a couple of really good gallops on the course proper since.”

Calthorpe was scrambling to find a rider after the barrier draw on Wednesday morning and secured Andrew Adkins to ride her out of gate 12.

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