For the second week in a row jockey Damian Browne’s renowned ability on highly weighted horses will get a test when he rides Emphasis at Doomben.
Emphasis has been given 59kg, a rise of 1.5 kg on his last start, in the Evian Handicap but trainer Richie Stephenson is more worried about the weight than the step up from 1600 to 2200 metres on Saturday.
“Emphasis isn’t very big but he can carry weight. He isn’t a horse for apprentices so I have used Robbie Fradd, Jeff Lloyd and Ron Goltz on him,” Stephenson said.
“Robbie is suspended, Jeff was needed for a Chris Waller horse and Ron has been out injured.”
“So I was lucky enough to get Damian. Time and again he has shown he can get topweights to the wire first. As is often pointed out he is so well balanced.”
Emphasis has proved adept at Doomben and has been placed at his past two starts at the track with the latest a second in an open handicap over 1600m.
“I gave him his chance in the Doomben Cup last winter and he was far from disgraced,” Stephenson said.
“I don’t have many horses these days but I always have a chance when Emphasis is racing.”
Emphasis’ best form has been up to 2000m but Stephenson has no doubt about him running a strong 2200m.
“He has had one go at it and ran third in a good class Quality race at Eagle Farm,” he said.
“I thought he should have won so the distance is no worry.”
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