By Glenn Davis
Warwick Farm trainer Matthew Smith hopes Tricky Gal can boost her broodmare value with her first attempt at black-type in the Group 3 Sapphire Stakes at Doomben on Saturday.
Tricky Gal is a late comer for the Brisbane winter after the original carnival was scrapped as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Smith had planned to stay at home following the winter disruptions but changed his mind when the revamped winter was later expanded.
Tricky Gal will be ridden by apprentice Baylee Nothdurft who leads the Brisbane premiership race with 76.5 wins.
Nothdurft notched up his 100th winner on all tracks for the season when he won aboard the Tony Gollan-trained Knight Mariner at Ipswich on Wednesday.
Smith has trained three Group 1 winners during his career and is hopeful Tricky Gal can earn a trip to Melbourne in the spring if she acquits herself well in the 1630-metre feature.
Smith won his first Group 1 with Hurtle Myrtle in the Myer Classic at Flemington in 2011 before Japanese import Fierce Impact won the Group 1 Toorak Handicap at Caulfield and Group 1 Cantala Stakes at Flemington in 2019.
“This is a nice race for her and she’ll go very well,” Smith said.
“It’ll be her fourth run this time in and she can go for a short break after this before she heads to Melbourne for the spring.
“The (Group 1) Myer Classic at Flemington will be her target.
“She’s looking for this trip and she’s in good shape and has trained on well.”
Tricky Gal is a rising five-year-old and has missed a place only once in her 10-start career which has produced four wins and five placings with prizemoney of almost $150,000.
Smith is keen for the daughter of Magic Albert to race on for another season before heading to the breeding barn.
Tricky Gal ran third to Red Chase and subsequent winner Thy Kingdom Come over 1400 metres at Eagle Farm last month before Smith took her back home.
At her last appearance, Tricky Gal started on a heavy track and ran home strongly to finish second to Monegal over 1300 metres at Rosehill on June 13.
Smith has been wanting to stretch Tricky Gal out in distance for some time and expects her to be competitive over the extended mile at Doomben.
Tricky Gal has a great record over 1600 metres with two wins and as many seconds from her only four attempts.
Racing Queensland webnews - June 26