Sunday, 3 June 2012
Tiger Tees won't have his regular jockey in Saturday's $1 million Stradbroke but that aside, trainer Joe Pride believes everything is falling into place.
The tough sprinter will travel back to Brisbane from Sydney later this week to contest Queensland's feature sprint at Eagle Farm on the back of two gutsy stakes victories this campaign.
Corey Brown has been called on to replace Christian Reith whose Stradbroke hopes have been shattered by a careless riding suspension.
Reith has ridden Tiger Tees in his past nine starts.
"We don't lose much with Corey but in saying that you don't like breaking up combinations like that," Pride said.
"He (Reith) has got a real association with the horse but unfortunately that's over, for now anyway."
Tiger Tees stormed into Stradbroke reckoning when he held his rivals at bay to win the Group Three BRC Sprint (1350m) at Doomben last month.
Pride had toyed with the idea of giving Tiger Tees a barrier trial in the lead-up to the Stradbroke but felt it wasn't needed.
"I just wanted to see how he was when he got back to Sydney and if he was going to be too fresh or needed the trial I would have done it. But he didn't need it," he said.
"I couldn't be happier with him. He goes up on Thursday and I think the horse has done really well. I think the race is shaping up really well for him."
Pride took fellow four-year-old Rain Affair through his grades before putting the gelding into the deep end in Group One action earlier this year.
The trainer has done a similar thing with Tiger Tees.
The son of Dubawi, who has won eight of his 11 starts and run second on the other three occasions, has shown the same type of toughness and tenacity as Rain Affair.
"He's a similar sort of horse," Pride said.
"He's got the speed and he's got the fight. He's done really well and I just can't wait to get him up there."
Rain Affair will return soon from a spell and has had his spring preparation mapped out by Pride with the Group One Manikato Stakes the target.
"He's going to run in The Shorts, The Premiere and then the Manikato," Pride said.
"That's a plan. All needs to go well for him to hit the Manikato third-up."
The Manikato Stakes is at Moonee Valley on October 26 on the eve of the Cox Plate.
Check out our FREE full form
, ratings for meetings in nine countries each and every day.