15 February 2012 - Courageous Annie, a Bendigo trial winner last Sunday will step back up to top company as she treks over the border on Friday with Queensland conditioner Darrel Graham itching to get to Sydney.
Graham will head to TABCORP Park, Menangle this Friday night with a strong team from his Fernvale base headed up by his star mare Courageous Annie who will contest the Gr.3 $40,000 Garrards Robin Dundee Stakes. Courageous Annie is headed to Sydney via Melbourne.
The Gr.1 winning Courage Under Fire mare was prepared at Anthony Crossland's Huntly property for her Victorian campaign which didn't go well but Graham is confident a return to her favourite track will see a marked improvement. “The Victorian campaign wasn’t the best for me but that can happen, Annie basically had no luck every time she stepped out.” Graham said. Courageous Annie finished fifth in the Graham Goffin Memorial in her first Victorian start and then ran a battling third at Bendigo before running seventh in fast time at her most recent start at TABCORP Park, Melton behind subsequent Terang Pacing Cup winner Onedin Hustler. “Her record in Sydney speaks for itself; she’s unbeaten at this track and has a ‘PB’ of 1;52.6 and that was after sitting parked for the mile as a 3yo so it proves how much she loves the big open spaces so I’m quite confident she can bounce quickly despite her little hiccups in Melbourne. “It’s the best track in Australia with great bends and a good surface, Annie has always felt very comfortable on that surface and it’s great for her hooves.” Graham left Courageous Annie in Victoria with Bendigo based Crossland who trialled the mare last Sunday in impressive style. “Anthony took her to Bendigo last weekend and the report was very pleasing, Annie worked to the front by the mile and finished off in 56.2 and 28.9 seconds and did it easily. “It’s a very good field this Friday but you would expect that when we’re all chasing a start in the Ladyship Mile, the draw isn’t the best on paper but in a way it takes the pressure off.
“We might end up being the hunter rather than being the hunted like we were in Melbourne.” Courageous Annie will arrive in Sydney tomorrow (Thursday).