Trainer Rob Heathcote believes weight students should maintain their faith in talented filly Fillydelphia when she takes another step on the Group One Queensland Oaks path at Doomben.
Fillydelphia will line up for only her second start this campaign in Saturday’s Listed Queensland Day Plate (1350m) and Heathcote is confident she can beat the boys.
Fillydelphia resumed following a 30-week break with an unlucky fourth to stablemate Excellantes over 1200 metres at Eagle Farm on April 2.
“She’s going sensational,” Heathcote said.
“I was delighted with her first-up run when she carried 58 kilos and got impeded in the run.”
Fillydelphia drops to 54kg for her Queensland Day Plate assignment.
“She’s well in at the weights this time,” Heathcote said.
“She drops four kilograms from her last run while the males go up to 56kg under the set weight conditions.
“This is a nice race for her and I picked it out some time ago hoping it would be the first race she wins this campaign.”
Fillydelphia was bred by owners Frank Wolber and Pauline Stephens and was passed in for $14,000 at the Magic Millions sales.
The decision not to sell her has paid off handsomely for connections with Fillydelphia collecting $86,000 in prizemoney with four wins from 11 starts.
Heathcote is hopeful Fillydelphia can greatly boost her stud value if she makes it to the Group One Queensland Oaks (2400m) at Eagle Farm on June 4.
“She’s on an Oaks path but I’m still not certain whether she can stay,” Heathcote said.
“But she’s very effective up to 1600 metres and time will tell.
“I’m very confident she’ll run well on Saturday and she’ll be hard to beat again.”
Fillydelphia will have her next start in another set weights race, the Group Three Gunsynd Classic (1600m) at Eagle Farm on April 30, which Heathcote hopes will serve as a guide to her Queensland Oaks claims.
“If she shows she’s looking for further after that race she’ll run in the Gold Coast Bracelet and then the Roses before the Oaks,” he said.
The Listed Gold Coast Bracelet (1800m) and the Group Three The Roses (2020m) at Doomben in May are regarded as the traditional route for fillies to the Queensland Oaks.