Trainer Alan Bailey hopes to get a better indication of Our Design’s winter carnival prospects at Eagle Farm.
Our Design scored a runaway win in maiden company at Doomben on October 5 and will step up to Saturday opposition in the T & J Whitehouse Investments Handicap (1400m).
Bailey paid $250,000 for the daughter of Stratum at New Zealand’s Premier sales when he won a sale ring duel against Cambridge Stud proprietor Sir Patrick Hogan.
Bailey, who has significantly culled his stable numbers in recent years, hopes Our Design can measure up to next year’s Brisbane winter carnival.
Although Bailey rates Our Design one of the nicest fillies he’s had for a long time, he’s ruled out aiming her for the autumn in Sydney next year.
“She’s a big filly and I don’t want to rush her,” Bailey said.
“I’d have to bring her back into work in the heat of summer to get her ready for the autumn and I’d rather keep her for the winter here.”
Bailey is hopeful Our Design can live up to her near five-length win last start.
“She’ll run well but she’s coming out of a midweek maiden race to Saturday class,” Bailey said.
“That’s never easy for any horse.
“She looks like she’ll get over a bit of ground and I’ll probably put her away for the winter after this.”
Bailey has only 22 horses in work these days, a massive reduction from the 100-plus he once had in training at the height of his career.
“I don’t want any more and a lot of those 22 are babies,” Bailey said.
Despite his fewer numbers, Bailey is still regarded as one of Queensland’s top trainers and is never afraid to send his team interstate.
He sent Our Design to Sydney for her first start when she finished sixth in a maiden at Canterbury in September.
“We thought she could win her first start in Sydney but the track was too wet and she was all at sea,” Bailey said.
Bailey’s strike rate remains one of the best in the country.
From his last 14 runners in the past three weeks, Bailey has had four winners.