It’s taken four years but Bjorn Baker believes he’s finally found the key to success with Egyptian Symbol.
In contrast to previous visits to the Gold Coast, Baker took a different approach this year with Egyptian Symbol by aiming the mare for a first-up tilt at the Magic Millions Snippets (1200m).
The gamble paid off when Egyptian Symbol ($26) scored a boilover win in the Snippets, scoring by 3/4 length from Fiery Heights ($26) with Dothraki ($17) a nose away third.
From six previous first-up attempts, Egyptian Symbol has won four times, prompting Baker to target the Snippets while the mare was fresh.
“You live and learn as a trainer and find there’s many ways to skin a cat,” Baker said.
“It’s taken me a long time but I finally realised that first-up and fresh is the best way to go with this mare.”
As a three-year-old Egyptian Symbol finished third in the Magic Millions Guineas won by Mahuta.
At last year’s carnival, the mare finished third in the Snippets to Viddora.
Baker believes the Magic Millions carnival is ideal for a mare like Egyptian Symbol.
“I know I give the Aussies a lot of stick but it’s the best country in the world and as a trainer you want to be at this carnival every year to run in million-dollar races,” he said.
“Every year I build a lot of debt but I can sell the dreams now.”
Winning jockey Jason Collett rode Egyptian Symbol patiently before switching her to the outside in the straight and producing a whirlwind finish.
“The race panned out perfectly for her and as it turned out the wide barrier didn’t make any difference to her at all,” Collett said.
Fiery Heights made a gallant bid for an all-the-way win but was overhauled by Egyptian Symbol in the final few bounds.
The race favourite Houtzen drifted from $1.80 to $2.30 but was under pressure soon after straightening and weakened to finish a disappointing 10th.