Statistics say Biggles can’t run a mile. His trainer Noel Doyle thinks otherwise.
At first glance, there’s a strong argument against Biggles in the 1600m Brisbane Handicap at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
The only time he’s started over the distance he finished second last, beaten 15 lengths, in the Daybreak Lover Quality at Eagle Farm during the winter carnival.
But Doyle believes that’s not a true reflection of his ability.
“I firmly believe he’s a dead-set miler even though all his wins to date have been in shorter races,” Doyle said.
“He won at 1500 metres when he was only having his fifth start and even though he failed in the Daybreak Lover there were a few things against him.”
Doyle said Biggles hadn’t developed physically the way he had expected leading into his winter campaign.
“He looks so much better and stronger now than he did during the winter and he showed when he won last start that he’s back to his best again,” he said.
The four-year-old was a $21 outsider when he won at Eagle Farm on November 3 but it came as no surprise to Doyle.
“A lot of people dropped off him after he was beaten first-up at Doomben but they ran sizzling time that day and there was no way he was going to be able to pick up the leaders,” Doyle said.
“He took a lot of improvement from that run and at Eagle Farm he was able to bounce out of the gates, do his own thing in the lead, and just kept going.”
A careless riding suspension has cost Grant Cooksley the ride but Doyle has found a suitable replacement in Tim Bell who returns to Brisbane after riding in Victoria for the past month.
Bell won two races on Biggles last summer including the Gold Edition Plate before an unlucky fifth in the Magic Millions Guineas.
Doyle last won the Brisbane Handicap 25 years ago with Beau Zephyr. He thinks he’s due again.