The $16 Oaks chance ready to find her best
TRAINER Mark Newnham took heart from the Extra Brut Derby form turnaround when assessing the chances of his filly Greysful Glamour in the Group 1 $1 million Kennedy Victoria Oaks (2500m) at Flemington.
Greysful Glamour goes into Thursday's classic after an impressive win in the Oaks Trial before finishing seventh in the Ethereal Stakes at Caulfield.
Newnham, who trained his first Group 1 winner with Maid Of Heaven in last month's Spring Champion Stakes, is convinced Greysful Glamour will appreciate the return to the bigger Flemington track for the Victoria Oaks.
"She needs to get back on a big track,'' Newnham said. "Her best runs have been at Flemington, Newcastle and Randwick.''
Greysful Glamour's form is similar to Extra Brut, powerful winner of the Victoria Derby last Saturday.
Extra Brut, trained by Darren Weir, had his Derby lead-ups on the same day as Greysful Glamour's last two starts, winning the UCI Stakes at Flemington and then failing in the Caulfield Classic when sixth behind Thinkin' Big.
"I think the key is Flemington,'' Newnham said. "Extra Brut obviously appreciated the bigger track when he won the Derby and I'm hoping it will be the same for Greysful Glamour.
"I've got no worries about my filly at 2500m. She is very stoutly bred on her dam's side, she is super relaxed, she won't pull, and will save her energy.
"I wouldn't mind if she led, either. Because she relaxes so well, it is not like she will get there and over-race.''
Greysful Glamour is the forgotten filly of the Oaks, with Ladbrokes' fixed odds listing her at $16 about her. The only other Sydney-trained filly in the race is John Sargent's Miss Moana at $26.
Sargent is chasing his second Victoria Oaks after winning the classic with Kirramosa in 2013.
Weir, Melbourne's premier trainer, has a powerful hand with Amphitrite the $3 favourite, stablemate Verry Elleegant at $5 and Zapurler at $12.
Aristia, trained by Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahra, is at $4.60. She has the chance to become the 36th filly to complete the Wakeful Stakes-Victoria Oaks double.
Jockey Michelle Payne, who won the 2015 Melbourne Cup on Prince Of Penzance, is chasing another major on Oaks hopeful Miner's Miss, who is trained by her father, Paddy Payne.