By Glenn Davis
Sydney bound Eric The Eel may be the headline act for Stu Kendrick at Eagle Farm on Saturday but the Caloundra trainer has 300-thousand reasons to stay home with talented sprinter Jagged Edge.
Eric The Eel is set to make his long-awaited comeback in the Class Three Plate (1200m) after being injured in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas last October.
Stablemate Jagged Edge also was in contention for a trip away but Kendrick is more than happy to stay home to target the $300,000 QTIS Jewel at the Gold Coast on March 14.
Jagged Edge has won three of his seven starts and is coming off a last start Benchmark 70 win on his home track at Caloundra on February 2.
“We thought about sending him south and we’ve thrown in a nomination for the three-year-old sprints in Sydney but there’s too much prizemoney here at home,” Kendrick said.
“He’ll stay here and aim for the QTIS Jewel which is worth $300,000 and Saturday’s race is worth more than $67,000 to the winner.”
Kendrick is hopeful Jagged Edge can overcome a wide barrier 11 in his battle with favourite Better Reflection who also is targeting the QTIS Jewel for three-year-olds.
“I wish he had drawn a better gate but he’ll like the softish track not that Eagle Farm will be too soft despite all the rain we’ve had,” he said.
“He won well first up but it’s a step up in grade for him tomorrow but I’m happy with the way he’s going.”
Kendrick expects Eric The Eel will find his opposition too slick over 1200 metres in the Class Three Plate.
The son of Olympic Glory hasn’t raced since being injured in his Group 1 Caulfield Guineas in October.
“He pulled up sore and jarred up in the Caufield Guineas so we had him scanned,” Kendrick said.
“We found he had pulled a hamstring so we gave him six weeks off to recover.
“I considered trialling him next week but with all this wet weather around it was too risky to wait so we’ve decided to run him tomorrow.
“I think the 1200 meters will be way too short but his mission is the Randwick Guineas and AJC Derby in Sydney then he’ll be freshened up for the Queensland Derby.
“He’s obviously got to step up if he’s to make those sorts of races but I’m very pleased with him.”
Racing Queensland webnews February 14