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Plum draw for Brandenburg

Expat Kiwi trainer John Sargent is tickled pink with Group 1 performer Brandenburg’s draw in the Gr.1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick on Saturday.

The New Zealand-bred entire has drawn three in a star-studded field that includes the likes of star Kiwi mare Probabeel and last start Group One winner and reigning Epsom victor Kolding.

“The three marble is a big help, but a mile a Randwick everyone has got a chance,” Sargent told Sky Sports Radio.

Jockey Jason Collett gave Sargent the thumbs up following his final significant work-out on Tuesday.

“Jason galloped him on the course proper at Randwick and he galloped very well,” Sargent said. 

“He can position himself, from that draw, in the first half a dozen. Hopefully he will get a bit of room and hit the line strongly.

“I think the mile, as he showed in the Doncaster, is a trip that he will do nicely and will hit the line strongly with his breeding.

“He is peaking for this and hopefully he runs well and then onto the Golden Eagle.”

Brandenburg (NZ), picture Sportpix.com.au

The son of ill-fated Cambridge Stud stallion Burgundy ran third in the Gr.3 Bill Ritchie Handicap (1400m) last start and Sargent has made a slight gear adjustment heading into this weekend. 

“I couldn’t be happier with him. He is a very laid back colt and is a lovely animal,” he said.

“We have tinkered with his gear. We have put a nearside pricker on him. He tends to hang out sometimes when he is in close quarters, being a colt. Sometimes around other horses they can be a bit field shy.

“I didn’t want to put the blinkers on. He galloped very straight on Tuesday.”

The A$7.5 million Golden Eagle (1500m) remains firmly on the radar, while a trip south to Melbourne later this spring could be an option if Brandenburg performs well.

“If he runs well in the Golden Eagle we see a nice race a bit further down the track in Melbourne at the end of the carnival,” Sargent said. “He is owned down there and could have a run so those owners can see him.

“At the most he will have two runs before spelling for the Autumn.”

Brandenburg was bred by Christopher and Susanna Grace and is a half-brother to Sargent’s former multiple Group winner Luvaluva. He races for a similar ownership group sporting the silks of Darren Thomas’ Seymour Bloodstock. 

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