Doomben Races 11/7/2015: Duff hoping Zip decision the right one

The decision to dodge the Ramornie Handicap with Steel Zip is one trainer Pat Duff hopes doesn’t come back to haunt him.

Duff had planned to take Steel Zip to Grafton on Wednesday for the Listed Ramornie (1200m) but decided to keep him home for Saturday’s open handicap over (1350m) at Doomben.

“I have been worrying I did the wrong thing. Basically under the NSW ratings system it looked like we would be lucky to get a run,” Duff said.

“The Ramornie looked like being very strong and we had to make up our mind about the trip early on Monday morning. In the end I decided to play it safe and stay home.”

“But the Ramornie dropped away a bit and if anything Saturday’s race is stronger.”

The Ramornie was won by another Brisbane horse, the Liam Birchley-trained Rock Royalty who ran a course record.

Duff, who is recovering from a broken hip, still believes Steel Zip will be very hard to beat on Saturday despite the strength of the field.

“Steel Zip ran an exceptional final 600 metres when second to Rocky King over 1000 metres first-up. Then he had a little setback and was a run short when second in the Rockhampton Newmarket,” Duff said.

“Both he and I are overdue for a change of luck so let’s hope I have gone the right way.”

Steel Zip is a $7 chance with stakeswinner Real Surreal the TAB’s early $3.80 favourite.

Fellow trainer Tom Bourke also decided to miss the Ramornie with Rocky King who runs in the 1050m open sprint at Doomben.

Rocky King ran second in the 2014 Ramornie but after he pulled a shoe when third at Doomben over 1050m two weeks ago, Bourke elected to stay with a shorter race.

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