Khutulun Races for 2014 Queensland Oaks Call-Up

May 14th, 2014

This Saturday in Victoria Luke Oliver’s locally-trained filly Khutulun will be racing for a Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival assignment, the youngster being considered for a Queensland Oaks 2014 run at the end of the month.

There are currently 70 three-year-old fillies nominated for this year’s $400,000 Group 1 Treasury Casino & Hotel Queensland Oaks (2400m) that is set to run at Eagle Farm Racecourse on Saturday May 31.

A number of those early entries race around the country over the next couple of weeks looking to earn a spot in the Queensland Oaks field.

Oliver’s daughter of Soldier’s Tale Khutulun meanwhile is not currently nominated for the Oaks, but could earn a late entry by the May 21st cutoff this Saturday with a top effort at home.

“She would definitely have to run top three but certainly if she ran well we’ll consider it,” Oliver told AAP.

“So we get to run on Saturday and get to see how she pulls and we can then decide whether we go there.”

Khutulun has had four starts to date for two wins and a third, the promising staying type already having won over the mile.

She stepped up to the distance at Sandown on April 26 and enjoyed a narrow win over Tear Gas before going up to 2000m last time out.

That run at Caulfield on May 3 was also a credible effort as she finished under half a length away third behind Bring Back (1st) and Lady Tatia (2nd) in the handicap clash.

Khutulun returns to Caulfield this Saturday then for the $80,000 Super Vobis Three-Years-Old Handicap (2000m), her performance in which will determine whether she travels north to chase the Oaks dream.

Current pre-field Queensland Oaks betting markets at are led by Donna Logan’s Mossman filly from New Zealand Telepathic ($4.40) who debuted down under with a good second in the Group 3 Rough Habit Handicap (2000m) at Doomben last weekend.

Hot on her heels in the futures Oaks odds paying $4.80 and $5 respectively are then the Kris Lees-trained Hera who was previously trained in New Zealand where she won the Group 2 Tristam Classic (2000m) back in February and David Vandyke’s Dubawi grey Arabian Gold.

Arabian Gold has won her past two on the trot taking out a Group 3 Randwick double over 2000m with her victories in the Adrian Knox Stakes and Frank Packer Plate this autumn.

Both Hera and Arabian Gold are set to stake their Queensland Oaks claims at Doomben this Saturday facing off in the $175,000 Group 2 The Roses (2020m).

Khutulun meanwhile will be added to the markets if she runs well on the weekend and connections pay the $11,550 late entry fee to get her into the Group 1 field.

She’ll be ridden by the experienced Ben Melham, who returned from a hip injury to scone an upset win in The Goodwood with Smokin’ Joey in Adelaide last Saturday, replacing apprentice Jye McNeil.

Melham rode her in a hitout on Tuesday morning the reverse way of going at Caulfield and was reportedly pleased with her performance.

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