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Punter's Guide to Thoroughbred Tracks
By Isaac Murphy
It’s fair to say Houtzen is happy to be home, scorching her rivals at her first start back on Queensland soil after a spring campaign.
The Toby Edmonds trained mare appears to be on track for $1 million Magic Millions Sprint on January 12 after dictating terms in-front to win the Bribie Handicap in track-record time (58.83sec).
A rapt Edmonds said the record didn’t surprise him once he saw Houtzen jump and now had his sights firmly set on the Millions.
“It honestly doesn’t surprise me she broke the track and class record (58.83s), I knew if Jeff could bounce out of the gates with her she’d run time,” Edmonds said.
“She’ll go straight to the Magic Millions Sprint now. She tends to take a little bit of time to recover in between runs so we’ll send her to the farm for a week and then get her back in work.”
Edmonds said he trusted Lloyd to ride the mare how he saw fit, though there was an emphasis to be in the first-half.
“I didn’t give Jeff any firm instructions other than to come out with them, because she can be a bit tardy at the start on occasion,” he said.
“It was unexpected to see her lead though, I thought Tarzan would probably get to the front and we could box seat behind him, but she left that well I was more than happy to see her take it up.”
A smiling Jeff Lloyd was thrilled to be back on the exciting mare.
“I should give my pay slip to charity, she’s special,” Lloyd chuckled.
“At the 400m I thought she was going too fast, but she just kept picking up pace.
“She’s a better horse than her last preparation, she’s much stronger and will be one to be reckoned with down the track.”