Tough Toowoomba mare Ruby Guru will get her chance in the Listed Ipswich Cup (2150m) after trainer Michael Nolan decided she had too much weight in a restricted class race.
The consistent Ruby Guru would have been favourite in the Provincial Stayers Final (2500m) also at Ipswich on Saturday.
When Ruby Guru got 59kg in the Stayers’ Final and 54kg in the Cup, Nolan said he took a punt and accepted in the Listed race.
“As it turned out a couple of the higher weighted horses in the Cup didn’t accept and we have probably pulled the right rein,” Nolan said.
“It would have been a big ask to lump 59 kilos around a tight track like Ipswich. Not that I don’t think she will run out a strong 2500 metres.
“I think she is a genuine stayer and she will get her chance at those trips later.”
Ruby Guru, a New Zealand bred daughter of Gallant Guru, was a last-start winner over 2400m at the Sunshine Coast but Nolan has no worries about her coming back in distance.
“I say that provided the track is dry. I know she has some placings on wet tracks but really she doesn’t get through it,” Nolan said.
“Her only bad run was on a really heavy track at the Gold Coast but the rest of her form is good.
“Anyway there is no sign of rain so that is a bonus.”
Nolan has booked Dale Smith for Ruby Guru after apprentices have ridden the mare at her past two starts.
“We’ve had a lot of luck with Dale since he moved up here from Victoria and he is a jockey with a heap of big-race experience,” Nolan said.
The Ipswich Cup is a race Nolan would dearly love to win after his former top galloper Jumbo Prince was minor placed in it twice in recent years.
“Jumbo didn’t have much luck either time and hopefully it will be third time lucky,” Nolan said.
His father Paul Nolan Sr won the Ipswich Cup with Paul’s Folly in 1998 and the gelding went on to win that year’s Caloundra Cup.
Ruby Guru could follow a similar path into the Sunshine Coast race on June 29.
“She has a good record at the Sunshine Coast,” Nolan said. -AAP