The path to the Magic Millions for Miss Hipstar is a blend of the unorthodox and conventional as trainer Kelly Schweida hopes to cement her spot in the glamour Gold Coast juvenile event.
Schweida took the unusual step of taking Miss Hipstar to an 800m two-year-old race at Ipswich on December 24 where she started at $1.50 and won easily.
“She had to go to Ipswich to try and get a bit more prize money and she did that pretty well,” Schweida said.
By necessity, Schweida will start Miss Hipstar in Saturday’s Pearl Quality (1100m) in a bid to ensure her position in the Millions the following week.
Presently Miss Hipstar sits 14th in the qualifying order but Schweida wants to make certain she is in action on Saturday week.
“She slipped down a bit in the order of entry and I couldn’t take the risk of her missing out if I didn’t run her,” he said.
Recent history shows a growing trend of horses winning the Magic Millions on a seven day back-up.
Five of the past eight Magic Millions winners have recorded back-to-back victories at the Coast within seven days while another, Real Surreal, was successful at Eagle Farm a week earlier.
“Going to the Gold Coast the week before is a good pattern and it gives them a look at the track beforehand as well as the travelling experience,” Schweida said.
Jockey Larry Cassidy’s faith in Miss Hipstar also gives Schweida added confidence.
“Larry’s ridden a lot better horses than I’ve trained and he’s given her a good rap,” Schweida said.
Miss Hipstar has continued to pleasantly surprise Schweida with her progress this campaign.
“When Larry rode her in her first jump out he told me she’ll make a nice three-year-old,” he said.
“Then we gave her another jump out and she went pretty fast so she has surprised us all the way along.
“We thought she’d take time but we’re just playing the cards we’ve got and she seems to be jumping and running.”
Schweida believes Miss Hipstar’s relaxed nature has helped her cope with the rigours of a Millions campaign.
“She’s a big, tough filly but she’s pretty laid back which is what has got her to this stage,” he said.
Miss Hipstar is at $3.90 with TAB fixed odds for the Pearl, challenging Rhapsody Rose ($3.80) for favouritism.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au