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Brilliant Mind on Cairns Cup trial in Banana Cup

Race-8-The-Harrovian-DSC-5380-jpg.JPGBy Glenn Davis

Leading North Queensland trainer Stephen Massingham will be guided by Brilliant Mind’s performance in the Banana Cup at Innisfail on Saturday before deciding whether the gelding tackles the Cairns Cup later this month.

Innisfail will conduct its first TAB meeting since November of last year following track redevelopments when it stages a six-race meeting, spearheaded by the Banana Cup over 1800 metres.

Brilliant Mind has won three of his past seven starts, and finished second on another two occasions, including his latest effort when nosed out by the Sharlee D’Avila-trained Maquereau over 1500 metres in Cairns last month.

“He got beaten in a photo last start after he was attacked in front for the lead,” Massingham said.

“The winner got up on the inside and never went around a horse.

“If he runs well in the Banana Cup and pulls up well, I might run him in the Cairns Cup in a fortnight.”

The $150,000 Cairns Cup will be run over 2100 metres on August 28.

Massingham has been a major player in Country Cups in North Queensland in recent years, winning two Cairns Cups: with Magnum Forty Four in 2011 and The Harrovian in 2019.

Race-7-The-Harrovian-DSC-4801-jpg.JPGHe was also a runner-up in 2018 with Multifacets, who went on to win the Cairns Amateurs Cup that year.

Brilliant Mind was formerly trained in Sydney by Gary Moore before he was bought by prominent North Queensland owner, Tom Hedley.

The son of So You Think has the right pedigree to be a Country Cups contender being a half-sister to Chris Waller’s former top liners Funstar and Youngstar.

Funstar won five of his 18 starts and more than $1.1 million in prize money, including his best wins in the Group 1 Flight Stakes and Group 2 Tea Rose at Randwick in 2019.

Youngstar also earned more than $1 million in prize money with four wins from 26 starts, including the Group 1 Queensland Oaks and Group 2 The Roses at Doomben in 2018.

She also ran second in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes at Flemington in 2018 before failing in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups that year.

Massingham has been involved in the racing industry for most of his life after starting off as a trotting trainer in the early 1990’s.

He has emerged as one of the State’s up and coming young trainers, winning the past two trainers’ premierships in Cairns.

“I’ve won the past two premierships in Cairns after finishing second to Roy Chillemi three years ago,” Massingham said.