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Claim gives Tilly's Star an edge at Ipswich

Image credit: Matthew Dunn Racing

By Glenn Davis

Trainer Matt Dunn believes the claim for apprentice Emily Atkinson tips the scales in favour of topweight Tilly’s Star in her clash with stablemate Cane Cutter at Ipswich on Wednesday.

Dunn will head north from his Murwillumbah base with only two runners – Tilly’s Star and Cane Cutter – who will clash in the Benchmark 62 Handicap over 1700 metres.

Tilly’s Star is chasing a hat-trick of wins after winning a 1400-metre Benchmark race at the Sunshine Coast on January 3 before stepping up to 1680 metres to win another Benchmark race at Ipswich on January 23.

Cane Cutter – a Luke Dittman mount – is having only his third run from a spell and is coming off a last start second to Fallow in a 1550-metre Benchmark race on a heavy track at Murwillumbah on January 31.

Atkinson’s three-kilogram claim gets Tilly’s Star in well at the weights with 56.5kgs as the four-year-old daughter of So You Think chases a fourth win from her past five starts.

She is making great inroads in her apprenticeship since she suffering severe concussion after a horse rolled on her which sidelined her for six weeks last year.

Last season, Atkinson was restricted to 29 wins and already this season she’s ridden 27 winners with her latest aboard the Dunn-trained Stuck With You at Grafton last Tuesday.

Tilly's Star
Cane Cutter RETIRED 2021

“Emily is riding really well and Tilly’s Star is going really well too,” Dunn said.

“She’s a big heavy horse and it’s taken her time to get fit but I’m sneaking her up in distance and she’ll be even better over 2000 metres.

“Emily has made the progression to the provincials ranks in Queensland really well and once she gets to the city she’ll be on her way.”

Tilly’s Star was a $36,000 buy at the Adelaide yearling sales in 2018 and is after her fifth win in a 14-start career.

The four-year-old daughter of So You Think is out of the useful Melbourne sprinter Follow The Till who was a Listed winner at Flemington in 2005 as well as taking out the Inglis Two-Year-Old Classic at Caulfield.

Follow The Till was also Group 3-placed when second to the David Hayes-trained Nadeem in the Maribynong Plate at Flemington that year.

Five-year-old Cane Cutter has only won two of his 15 starts and was ridden by Dittman at his latest appearance on his home track in the Northern Rivers.

Dunn expects both horses will be competitive in his bid for another south-east Queensland victory following Devine Grey’s victory at Eagle Farm last Saturday.