Talented three-year-old Morning Captain underscored his strong winter carnival claims with a gutsy victory at Doomben on Saturday.
Morning Captain ($3.40 fav) overcame early interference to score a neck win over the fast-finishing Trump ($14) in the Listed National Jockey Celebration Queensland Day (1350m).
Meghalaya ($31) was a further three-quarters of a length away third.
Trainer Kelly Doughty has earmarked the Group Three Gold Coast Guineas (1200m) on his home track as the gelding’s next mission on May 5.
It was Doughty’s second win in the feature following her victory with Tierqualo in 2010.
“He shows a lot of potential and I’ll freshen him up now for the Gold Coast Guineas,” Doughty said.
“It was a pretty good win and he keeps stepping up to the mark.
“If he keeps going we’ll also look at running him in the Queensland Guineas.”
A win in the Group Two Queensland Guineas (1400m) at Eagle Farm in June would give Doughty her biggest race success.
Her best win to date was with Sanderson in the Group Three Gunsynd Classic at Eagle Farm two years ago.
Jockey Chris Munce had nothing but praise for Morning Captain’s effort after winning on the son of Danbird at his three previous outings.
“He struck trouble around the back but he picked himself up well,” Munce said.
“Any lesser horse would have chickened out.
“He’s very gutsy and is all heart.”
Munce also was successful on exciting prospect Adebisi ($2.90 fav) who led all the way for a dominant 2-1/4-length win over Spirit Of Boom ($6.50) in the Listed Bribie Handicap (1110m).
Trainer Desleigh Forster believes Adebisi is a genuine winter carnival contender and has her sights on the Group One BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben on May 12.
“We may be aiming a bit high but his main goal is the BTC Cup,” Forster said.
“It was a big win and he did a super job after being caught three wide early on.
“He can run along and reel off the sectionals but that’s how to ride him.”
Adebisi will have his next start at weight-for-age in the Group Two Victory Stakes (1200m) at Doomben in two weeks.
Trainer Tony Gollan also will target the Victory Stakes with Spirit Of Boom who beat Latin News ($5) by a short half-head for second.
Meanwhile, Coffs Harbour apprentice Nick Perrett landed his first metropolitan aboard Moneysaver in the Trade Coast Legal handicap (1350m).
The 20-year-old, who started with Pat Farrell at Muswellbrook, began his apprenticeship while still at school before leaving after completing Year 10.
He later moved to Coffs Harbour to join Gordon Yorke and has now ridden 49 winners during his career.
“This is my first metro win. I love it and I can’t wait for more,” Perrett said.