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Interstate options for The Quokka winner

Inaugural Quokka winner Overpass is set to be given a Group 1 opportunity with trainer Bjorn Baker weighing up options in Brisbane and Adelaide.

While the gelding will only be given a light campaign following his first-up win in the $4 million slot race, the stakes will be high.

“There are two races that stand out for Overpass, the Doomben 10,000 and the Goodwood,” Baker said.

“Depending on how he travels, you’ve also got a race like the Kingsford Smith (Cup), so there are a few options there.

“We won’t give him too much, we’ll only look for another run or two. But we were thrilled with how he went. If it wasn’t a career-best it was close to it.”

Stablemate Shades Of Rose finished unplaced in The Quokka (1200m) but Baker wasn’t disheartened by her performance.

She and Overpass were due to arrive back in Sydney over the weekend and while Baker was yet to discuss plans for the mare with her owners, he said a start in the Robert Sangster Stakes in Adelaide, for which she held a nomination, was unlikely.

“It’s a long way away and it’s a fair way to go,” he said.

“I still think she ran a good race (in the Quokka), no doubt it was a very competitive race.

“I guess running her on the really wet track in the T J Smith, we scratched Overpass and it’s easy in hindsight but maybe we would have been better off bypassing the T J with her too.”

Baker is assembling a handy team for the upcoming winter carnival races and he also has the early Queensland Oaks favourite Renaissance Woman.

The filly finished just over three lengths from winner Olentia when she resumed in the James H B Carr Stakes (1400m) at Randwick and will have her next start in either the Queensland Guineas (1600m) at Eagle Farm on April 29 or The Bracelet (1800m) at the Sunshine Coast a week later.

“But the Oaks is the goal for sure,” Baker said.


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