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Emilee's gate speed to overcome sticky barrier

By Glenn Davis

Trainer Lyle Wright is hoping Emilee’s Empire’s gate speed can help her overcome a wide barrier draw in the QTIS Three-Year-Old Handicap at Mackay on Tuesday.

Emilee’s Empire - a Cecily Eaton mount - broke through for her first win at her 17th start against her own age over 1200 metres at Rockhampton on March 5.

The daughter of Carrara subsequently tried valiantly to lead all the way when run down to finish second to Isis Brumby in Three-Year-Old grade over 1200 metres at the same track on March 25.

Wright only has a small team in work but Emilee’s Empire has proven to be a bargain buy.

Emilee’s Empire went through the Capricornia Yearling sales in 2019, but was passed in and later bought privately by Wright.

“I bought her after the sale for $3,000 when she was passed in and she’s been a good buy,” Wright said.

“She’s won nearly $100,000 in prizemoney and she’s only won the one race.

“Her form is better than what it reads.

“Before she won her maiden, she kept running second and kept running into better horses on the day.”

Wright was disappointed when Emilee’s Empire draw barrier 12, although she will come a few places with scratchings.

“I’m a bit disappointed with the draw but she’s got good gate speed to overcome it,” he said.

“She’s got enough gate speed to get over and lead but if she doesn’t, she’ll still be in a forward spot.”

Wright has named the Tom Button-trained Miss lot Won as the hardest to beat after the filly drew gate three.

Miss Lot Won finished a game fourth behind the Tommy Smith-trained Natural Emperor in the Capricornia Yearling Sales Championship over 1200 metres at Rockhampton on April 10.

Button finished second in the same race with Flying Crackerjak, just missing out on the big feature double after claiming the Capricornia Yearling Sales Classic for two-year-olds with Valley Rattler.