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Epaulette to carry 56kg in Stradbroke Hcp
Warwick Barr
06:18 AEST Tue May 28 2013

The man responsible for framing the weights for next month's Stradbroke Handicap said it was almost impossible to give Epaulette less than 56kg in the Group One sprint.

"It could be argued that he should have been given a fraction more and I really don't think we could have given him anything less," Racing Queensland senior handicapper Nathan Bourke said.

Epaulette stormed into favouritism for the $1.36 million race at Eagle Farm on June 8 after beating older horses in the weight-for-age Doomben 10,000 on Saturday.

For Bourke, the victory only confirmed Epaulette's brilliant form which also includes a Group One win against his own age in the Golden Rose and placings behind the elite of Australian racing.

"He is a dual Group One winner now and his form is exceptional including a third in the Caulfield Guineas to the two glamour colts (All Too Hard and Pierro)," Bourke said.

"He also ran second to Black Caviar (in the TJ Smith Stakes) so his form is outstanding."

Bourke said Epaulette's weight represented 1.5kg under the weight-for-scale for three-year-olds.

With 56kg, Epaulette has 2kg less than the topweight Buffering, one of Australia's best horses but a sprinter who is yet to collect a Group One win.

"The weights are all relative each year so sometimes it's a bit hard to compare with previous races as the topweight dictates what (weight) scale will be used," Bourke said.

Trainer Peter Snowden will discuss Epaulette's weight with Darley powerbrokers before committing the colt to a start.

Victorian spring carnival Group One winner Solzhenitsyn has also been given 56kg while top Sydney mare Streama has 54.5kg.

BTC Cup winner Your Song will carry 54kg while another three-year-old, Better Than Ready has 52.5kg.

In revised Stradbroke markets after the Doomben 10,000, Epaulette heads betting at $4.60 ahead of Better Than Ready at $5.50.

Your Song has drifted to $7.50 while the Chris Waller-trained Arinosa shares the fourth line of betting with Buffering at $10.


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