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Small step up in distance is a giant leap for Badajoz

Mike Hedge

A bid to extract a 1200m victory from the smart sprinter Badajoz will be made with renewed confidence in Saturday’s Listed Falvelon Quality at Eagle Farm.

In a race that has attracted an even field, Badajoz (Larry Cassidy) will be joined by stablemates Intuition (Ryan Maloney) and Isaurian (Josh Parr), with all three having legitimate claims.

A winner of seven races up to 1100m, Badajoz, an older half-brother to the high-class Godolphin runner Osborne Bulls, has been placed three times at the longer trip and has performed well over 1200m at Stakes level.

At his last start Badajoz indicated he would be capable of seeing out the extra distance when a fast-finishing second to Spurcraft in Listed company over 1050m at Doomben and three runs back was third to Soothing and the multiple Group winner Ball Of Muscle in the same class at Flemington.

Paul Reid, assistant to Godolphin’s head Australian trainer James Cummings, said Badajoz had pleased the stable since his last run and would go into the race in excellent shape.

“There’s been a little question mark over him at 1200m,” Reid said.

“He’s run some good races over the trip, he was fifth in a Ramornie and he was placed over 1200m at Flemington as a young horse."

“But we think the time is right to be having another try.”

“His run from a wide gate last start behind Spurcraft in this class was very good and he’s worked nicely since then. We’re happy to give him his chance.”

Intuition comes to Saturday’s race at the third run of his preparation and off the back of a beneficial barrier trial.

“He might have just looked a little bit big at his two starts this time in,” Reid said.

“But we’re very happy with him ahead of this race."

“He’s had a nice trial since his last run at Flemington during the carnival and we were very happy with him after he worked on Tuesday.”

Isaurian’s claims are backed by a 100 per cent record when first-up and a winning record in Brisbane.

“He’s unbeaten first-up and he won the Chief de Beers in Brisbane at the start of his last prep,” Reid said.

“His record is too good to overlook, and he was placed over 1200m at Stakes level as a three-year-old.”