Weather puts dampener on Dunn’s Queensland Oaks plans

Trainer Matt Dunn’s joy at Kebede’s good barrier for the Queensland Oaks has been soured by the weather forecast.

Like most of Australia, Brisbane has had a dry and mild autumn but this week temperatures have dropped and there is rain forecast for Friday and Saturday.

Usually that would be no problem as Eagle Farm has long been one of the best wet-weather tracks in Australia.

However, Eagle Farm will be used for its first day of racing after a 22 month lay-off.

Dunn expressed everyone’s concern about a new track with a lot of rain falling on it.

“I doubt my filly would want a really wet track as she is a big strider,” Dunn said.

“Often you can’t predict the weather but it would be nice to know exactly what we are facing.”

Kebede raced herself in Oaks contention with an impressive win in The Roses at Doomben two weeks ago.

“She is drawn to get a similar run this time just behind the pace from barrier five,” Dunn said.

“But we will have to see how the track is playing. If the fence is a no-go zone we will have to come up with another plan.”

Kebede will be aiming to become the third filly after Ethereal (2001) and Scarlett Lady (2011) to complete The Roses-Oaks double.

Dunn won’t commit Kebede to a spring campaign until he sees how she handles Saturday.

“She won her maiden this campaign. I don’t want to be pushing her because I think eventually she will be a horse who can get a Cups-type distance,” he said.

“They don’t come along too often and there is always next year if we decide to give her a longer spell than usual.”

Dunn also has Perfect Dare in the Daybreak Lover Stakes and Madotti in the Juanmo Stakes.

“If the track is dry they won’t beat Perfect Dare as he has worked very well. But on a wet track I am not so sure,” Dunn said.

“Madotti came in and then was sent back out for a longer spell so we are a little behind with her. But she won’t run if the track is wet.”


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