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LIVE COVERAGE: Kingsford-Smith Cup Day

Group 1 racing is back at Eagle Farm! 

As we hit the mid-way point for the 2019 Brisbane Racing Carnival, a quality field of sprinters has been assembled for the Group 1 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1300m). 

Will The Bostonian make it back-to-back Brisbane sprint features? Or will a new contender emerge as we edge closer to the $1.5 million TAB Stradbroke Handicap? 

If you can't be trackside to find out, follow all of the day's action at our live blog below, or follow @raceqld on Twitter. 

PREVIEW: Irithea has slight edge over Redouble according to Baker

PREVIEW: Baldwin says The Candy Man will need a step ladder

FEATURE: How Rob Heathcote went from Contiki guide to top trainer

Race 1 - KIRIN BENCHMARK 90 Handicap (1200m)

1st - Noble Boy - Todd Blowes - James McDonald

2nd - John McArdle - Bjorn Baker - Corey Brown

3rd - Sony Legend - Brian Smith - Larry Cassidy 

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Winning trainer: Todd Blowes

“It was a bit touch an go there at the top of the straight, but having James McDonald on always gives you confidence and he hit the line strong.”

“In one of his recent trials I asked the jock to take him back and try to find his way through a field and he needed that today from seventh on the fence.”

“The Stradbroke is a big dream and I’m not sure I’ll go that way, we’ve got the Hinkler as an option for him too.”

“Coming up here this is the first time out of his grade so he’s passed that test and next step it to listed company and he’ll see that in the Hinkler in a fortnight.”

“If he gets the weight to go in we’ll have a crack, but he’s given us plenty of options so we’ll just see how he progresses.”

“The Stradbroke was never his grand final we were always setting him for The Kosciusko if we can pick up a listed of Stradbroke on the way that’d be a bonus.”

Winning jockey: James McDonald

“I was never panicked at pushing him up and taking the sit behind the leader, he settled into the run nicely and I knew he had a turn of foot so was happy to wait.”

“When the gap came he shot it pretty quickly and put them away like a good horse should do in this grade.”

Eagle Farm

KIRIN BENCHMARK 90 Handicap 1200m

RACE 2 - LED Superscreens Class 6 Handicap (1400m) 

1st - Cruze - Barry Lockwood - Corey Bayliss

2nd - Snitch - Tony Gollan - Brad Stewart 

3rd - Angel Dane - Steve Tregea - Larry Cassidy

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Trainer: Barry Lockwood

“He struggled early this spell and I took him down to the Gold Coast for an easy kill and since then he’s been super competitive.”

“I especially love him here at Eagle Farm with his racing pattern, the track is playing brilliantly I wish we could race here every week.”

“My instructions to Corey (Bayliss) were to be reasonably handy and try not too hit the front too early with the longer straight, he did a good job balanced him up on the turn and let down.”

“We’ll go one of two ways with him, either tip him out and give him a spell, but while he’s racing like this I’m probably more inclined to push on to The Glasshouse in a month.”

Jockey: Corey Bayliss

“Drawing the one gate gave us the perfect chance to get the run of the race and I just had to wait for the split and he did the rest.”

“He was trucking coming to the turn wanting to go at them, but I didn’t want to get to the front to early so just held him a little longer.”

Eagle Farm

LED SUPERSCREENS Class 6 Handicap 1400m

RACE 3 - Mullins Grand Prix Stakes (2200m)

1st - Fun Fact - Bjorn Baker - Michael Cahill

2nd - Angel Of Heaven - Kris Lees - Tommy Berry

3rd - Home Made - John Sargent - Jamie Kah

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Trainer: Bjorn Baker

“I thought he might have been going a bit keen opening up that big gap in the run, it was going to come back and bite us in the straight, but Michael (Cahill) obviously rated him nicely.”

“He’s been a bit dour his last couple of runs and we’ve got a big syndicate in this horse, it’s great to get some success for them in such a big race.”

“He’s bred to get over a trip and although untried he showed he could handle it today.”

“Our main goal was to qualify him for The Magic Millions staying race in January and he’s achieved that.”

“There’s no doubt we’ll press on to the Derby now, he’s had about ten runs this prep and he’s just ultra-fit he’ll give it a shake.”

Jockey: Michael Cahill

“That horse wanted to run! From the time he went on the track he wanted to run.”

“On the way to the barriers I said to Blake Shinn is he always like this and he just shrugged.”

“When the barriers opened he just flew out and didn’t over race to get to the lead, even when we were rolling along I felt he was well within himself, I’m looking forward to riding him in The Derby.”

Eagle Farm

MULLINS GRAND PRIX STAKES 2200m

RACE 4 - Grinders Coffee Roasters Stakes (1300m)

1st - Savatiano - James Cummings - Tommy Berry

2nd - Quilista - Peter and Paul Snowden - Kerrin McEvoy

3rd - Eckstein - Kurt Goldman - Blake Shinn

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Trainer James Cummings:

“We’ve tried a fair few jockeys on this horse she’s not the easiest mare to ride, a lot of credit has to go to Tommy Berry who handled her beautifully today.”

“I thought she was the best of the day this mare she’s been close without landing the prize and today was the perfect storm.”

“She was able to sit off the favourite in the lead rather than be that horse sitting out in front and when Tommy asked her to go she went after the track record putting up about three lengths.”

“She’s a really classy mare that’s her second stakes win today and I’d like to think she’s got more than one left in her.”

Jockey Tommy Berry:

“She just got a nice trail behind the leader there and when I gave her a little click on the corner to go up alongside Kerrin (McEvoy) she just went straight on by and was really genuine to the line late.”

“I know James (Cummings) is keen to keep her up here for the Winter Carnival and on today she could figure in some nice races.”

Eagle Farm

GRINDERS COFFEE ROASTERS STAKES 1300m

RACE 5 - Ascot Green Lord Mayor's Cup (1600m)

1st - Order Again - Brian Smith - Larry Cassidy

2nd - Tom Melbourne - Chris Waller - Blake Shinn

3rd - Le Juge - Chris Waller - Robbie Fradd 

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Trainer: Brian Smith

“He’s been a difficult horse to get right over the trip and he was up against it stepping up to weight for age, but when he’s on he’s on and he was travelling today.”

“You’ve got to have a little bit of luck in any race, it’s no good taking off seven wide Larry (Cassidy) took his time and the runs seems to open up at this track.”

“I made a stupid statement during the week if he won this I would run him in The Stradbroke, I don’t know where he is in the pecking order but he wouldn’t be out of place in a Group One.”

Jockey: Larry Cassidy 

“We got squeezed at the start the outside horse lay in on us and I didn’t want to barrel him forward but rather find a position.”

“We got to about midfield on the rail without spending a penny, he was really travelling on the corner and we managed to squeeze through.”

Eagle Farm

ASCOT GREEN LORD MAYOR'S CUP 1600m

RACE 6 - Kirin BRC Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) 

1st - Strasbourg - Peter and Paul Snowden - Tommy Berry

2nd - Accession - Chris Waller - James McDonald

3rd - Garibaldi - Tony Gollan - Jeff Lloyd 

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Trainer: Peter Snowden

“I had a bit of bad language where he was on the turn, but Tommy (Berry) had it under control and got the horse to the outside where he needed to be.”

“He took bad luck out of the equation he can really let down when given space this horse and he went from back in the field to leading in a short space of time.”

“It was never my intention to take him to The Stradbroke, but he’s started to really relax and switch off his last few runs and he’s finding the line nicely.”

“He’s been a bit of an immature horse but since he’s been in Brisbane he’s started to turn the corner and I think you’ll see the best of him as a three and four-year-old.”

“We’ll sit down in the next few days and see how he pulls up but the J.J. Atkins is certainly an option.”

Jockey: Tommy Berry

“They went quick early and I didn’t want to get him out of his comfort zone, so we just settled back and let him relax.”

“I Knew James’ horse (Accession) was in a bit of traffic so I wanted to get out and pinch a break on him because I knew he’d be letting down.”

Eagle Farm

KIRIN BRC SIRES' PRODUCE STAKES 1400m

RACE 7 - EVA Air Premier's Cup (2200m) 

1st - The Candy Man - Barry Baldwin - Michael Cahill

2nd - Haripour - Chris Waller - Blake Shinn

3rd - Igraine - Robert Priscott - Ron Stewart 

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Trainer: Barry Baldwin

“I might change his name to Jack and the beanstalk he just keeps climbing!”

“The question mark was the distance, but you’ve got to give them a chance and he showed without a doubt he was up to it having to track that leader down.”

“Last week we didn’t want to start him in town carrying sixty-two, so we took the easy option at the Gold Coast and that had him cherry ripe for today.”

“The Brisbane Cup is his next one and I’ll have to confer with the owners after that, but he’s probably earned himself a trip to the paddock.”

Jockey: Michael Cahill

“We dropped into a nice place in the run from the barrier, the only time I was a bit nervous was when we got behind Tangled who was going backwards on the turn, but as soon as that run opened he put them away.”

“I tried to ease him down a little late his grand final is in two weeks (Brisbane Cup) and he’ll need every little bit in the tank.”

Eagle Farm

EVA AIR PREMIER'S CUP 2200m

RACE 8 - Group 1 TAB Kingsford-Smith Cup (1300m) 

1st - The Bostonian - Tony Pike - Michael Cahill

2nd - Princess Posh - Kris Lees - Larry Cassidy

3rd - Trekking - James Cummings - Kerrin McEvoy

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Tony Pike's decision to back-up his TAB Doomben 10,000 winner The Bostonian in Saturday's Group 1 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1300m) at Eagle Farm paid massive dividends. 

Pike had originally signalled The Bostonian would be kept fresh for the Stradbroke Handicap (June 8) after he surprised many to win the 10,000 a fortnight ago. 

After impressing Pike at trackwork on Tuesday, the Queensland Derby and JJ Atkins-winning trainer decided to give The Bostonian another shot under weight-for-age conditions. 

The Bostonian secured a gun run in transit and the four-year-old gelding proved far too strong for latecomers Princess Posh and race favourite, Trekking. 

“This horse just loves it over here, his last prep is well documented but to come to the Winter Carnival and win the first two of the big three sprint races is another level," Pike said.

“He worked brilliantly around here on Tuesday and I was quietly confident he could carry his form and by the looks he’s improved on it.

“His coat and condition were much sharper today and I think he’s only going to improve moving towards the Stradbroke, I just hope the handicappers and nice and don’t lump us with too much weight.

“He’s going to be near the top of the handicap with a 109 rating, I think 57 is the least you can give a horse of that class, so we’ll take that.

“He’s third up in his preparation and should be right where he needs to be for the Stradbroke.

It capped off an incredible fortnight for veteran Queensland jockey Michael Cahill who brought up a treble for the day and made it two Group 1 winners in the space of a fortnight. 

“Michael is absolutely flying he managed to get him across into a cushy position from barrier eleven and he just knows when to press the button on this horse.”

Cahill said The Bostonian felt even better today than he did on 10,000 day. 

“He has the attitude of a winning horse at the moment and that’s what he’s doing," he said.

“The plan was similar to his last run get him in the first quartet and give him a chance.”

Eagle Farm

TAB KINGSFORD-SMITH CUP 1300m

RACE 9 - Nuturf Fred Best Classic (1400m) 

1st - Military Zone - Peter and Paul Snowden - James McDonald

2nd - Baccarat Baby - David Vandyke - Michael Hellyer

3rd - Krone - Mick Price and Michael Kent Jr - Michael Walker

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Trainer Peter Snowden: 

“I probably won’t take him to the Stradbroke, I really like this horse but I just think he will do his best work as a spring/autumn horse at this stage.”

“He was a bit aggressive as a race horse early, but he’s learnt to relax and when you’ve got a horse who can sprint like him it’s a great combination.”

“He’s an impressive horse with a good temperament and turn of foot who’s easy to ride, his present is good, but his future looks better.”

“The Stradbroke is certainly a temptation, but I’ve got to think about the horse’s future first and foremost, he’s had such a wonderful prep and I don’t want to push him that one run too far.”

Jockey James McDonald:

“Peter told me the horse has a tendency to be a bit keen, but he switched off nicely.”

“Very impressed when I asked him for an effort he went to them quickly, we were out there for a while but he sustained his sprint.”

Eagle Farm

NUTURF FRED BEST CLASSIC 1400m