Victory in the Australian Oaks at Randwick can turn a good Sydney autumn carnival into a great one for Victorian trainer David Brideoake.
The Mornington-based horseman will saddle the $6 third favourite with bookie Sportsbet Nurse Kitchen in the 2400m-Group One race for three-year-old fillies on Saturday.
Brideoake has recorded two Group One placings in recent weeks and is looking forward to Nurse Kitchen giving a good account of herself on Saturday despite the outside draw in the 14-horse field.
Brideoake said the barrier was not ideal but getting her into a good position would be Blake Shinn’s job.
“What can you do. That’s his problem now,” Brideoake said.
“But I’m really looking forward to the weekend.
“I’ve had a pretty good autumn in Sydney with these horses but it would be nice to get a Group One on the board.
“We’ve been close with a second and a third.
“You don’t get that many shots at the board in these types of races and there’s been a couple of close ones, but the horses are racing well which is important.”
Nurse Kitchen is coming off a last-start second to Montoya’s Secret in the tradional Oaks lead-up, the Vinery Stud Stakes at Rosehill on March 25, while last week Brideoake was left to rue a wet track when Hardham finished third in the Australian Derby behind Jon Snow.
Brideoake described Hardham’s effort as fantastic and thought Nurse Kitchen was brave at Rosehill.
Following the Vinery, Nurse Kitchen was floated back to Brideoake’s property on the Mornington Peninsula and the filly finalised her Oaks campaign with a pleasing gallop on Tuesday.
“She’s been back home for the last two weeks,” Brideoake said.
“She’s had a bit of quiet time at the farm and recovered well from the trip and we wound her up again this morning.
“She’s as good as gold.”
Unlike Hardham, Brideoake said Nurse Kitchen was adaptable to any track condition and he is of the opinion the filly will relish the step up in journey.
Joining Nurse Kitchen on the trip north on Saturday will be Thames Court to run in the Sapphire Stakes and Apiata in the South Pacific Classic.