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Intrigue chasing vital Oaks prizemoney at the Sunshine Coast

By Glenn Davis

Kiwi filly Intrigue will be chasing crucial prizemoney in a bid to secure a start in next month’s Group 1 Queensland Oaks when she runs at the Sunshine Coast on Wednesday.

Trainer Tony Pike has chosen to bypass the Group 2 The Roses at Doomben on Saturday with Intrigue in favour of a midweek run in the QTIS Three-Year-Old Handicap (2200m).

It’s the same formula he used with Provocative who won the Queensland Oaks in 2016 after winning a midweek three-year-old race at Ipswich.

Intrigue has only $33,000 in prizemoney but Pike is hoping a win will boost her bank balance to around $60,000 which should see her scrape into the Queensland Oaks.

Intrigue made her Australian debut finishing seventh to talented local filly Winning Ways in the Listed Gold Coast Bracelet on May 4.

“Her run was better than it looks on paper,” Pike said from New Zealand.

“She was caught in an awkward position in a slowly run race and she had just got off the plane so there’s plenty of improvement to come.

“I had her nominated for The Roses but she’s only got $33,000 in prizemoney and needs to lift it significantly to get into the Oaks.

“This race on Wednesday is a lot easier than The Roses and if she can get to around $60,000, she should get into the Oaks.”

Provocative was part-owned by Mark Wyborn who also shares in the ownership of Intrigue.

Intrigue arrived in Queensland for the winter carnival after only five starts across the Tasman.

She stepped to Grade 2 company where she finished second to Queensland Derby aspirant Lord Arthur over 2100 metres before coming to Brisbane.

Pike started the Brisbane winter carnival with a bang when The Bostonian maintained his unbeaten record in Queensland by winning the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 last Saturday.

Pike has also nominated Intrigue for the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm next month.

“Mark (Wyborn) has always been keen to win a Derby somewhere so I’ll talk with all the owners after the Oaks if she gets there to see if she goes on to the Derby,” Pike said.

Racing Queensland webnews   May 14