By Glenn Davis
Caloundra Cup winner Megablast is set to have his final start for Kiwi trainer Nigel Tiley in the Group 3 Queen’s Cup at the Sunshine Coast on Saturday.
And Tiley is confident the six-year-old can go out a winner in the 3200-metre feature.
Megablast will do his future racing on Australian soil after he transfers to a leading Victorian trainer following the Queen’s Cup.
Tiley said it would be sad to see Megablast leave his stable but he believed he would be weighted out of races in his homeland and is better suited under Australia’s handicapping system.
Megablast won six races for Tiley and will carry topweight of 60kgs in the Queen’s Cup.
He will set a modern-day weight carrying record if successful in the Queen's Cup which is doubling as the Queenlsand Cup, surpassing the previous record of 58kgs set by Mister Impatience in 2015.
“He’s got soft conditions again which suits but the downside is he’s got a bit of weight to carry,” Tiley said.
“It’ll be sad to see him go but unfortunately that’s the reality of racing in New Zealand.
“Before Megablast, I hadn’t sent a horse to Australia for some time.
“Any decent horse we get over here is normally sold to the Australian or Hong Kong markets as a two or three-year-old.”
Tiley is confident 3200 metres won’t trouble Megablast whose only attempt at the distance was his fourth in the Group 1 Auckland Cup in March last year.
“He had every chance in the Auckland Cup when he ran fourth and at one stage I thought he’d finish second but he got swamped near the line,” Tiley said.
Jockey Damian Browne will maintain his association with Megablast after riding him at his last two starts in last month’s Group 2 O’Shea Stakes and the Caloundra Cup at the Sunshine Coast.
Meanwhile holidaying trainer Kelly Schweida hopes it’s a case of de ja vu when stablemates Shogun Sun and Bluebrook chase back-to-back Sunshine Coast wins.
Shogun Sun reaped the benefits of a change of training routine when the gelding ended a run of outs with a decisive win in a Benchmark race at the Sunshine Coast on June 30.
It followed Bluebrook’s Benchmark win in the previous race the same day.
Shogun Sun will tackle the QTIS Three-Year-Old Handicap (1400m) while Bluebrook will run in the Class 6 Plate (1600m).
The pair were also nominated for the Savills Sunshine Coast Handicap (1400m) on Saturday but Schweida preferred to keep them apart.
Shogun Sun’s Sunshine Coast victory was his first since scoring in three-year-old company at Randwick in Sydney last August.
Schweida has altered Shogun Sun’s training routine in an attempt to rejuvenate the son of Written Tycoon by swimming and jumping him.
Racing Queensland webnews July 12