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BTC Cup preview

There's more Group I racing action in Australia this weekend but now we've moved on to Adelaide and Brisbane. It's time to welcome back Lara Pocock, @lara_pocock, with her look at the premier weight-for-age sprint race in Queensland. You can read more of her handiwork on her blog.

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BTC Cup

This Group One weight for age race over 1200m is being run at Eagle Farm for the first time after the Brisbane Racing Club made the decision to moved it in case champion mare Black Caviar made an appearance and to accommodate the large crowds. Without the Champion, the race is made up of many who could benefit from her retirement, having been placed to her on a number of occasions.

The Eagle Farm track is currently rated a Dead 4, with 11 horses going to post for the $256,000 first prize.

1. Buffering ($2.60) - A true Group One bridesmaid who is due his day. Buffering has been place at Group One level seven times but has been unable to gain a victory at the highest level. He is coming off a three and a quarter length victory in the Group Two Victory Stakes two weeks ago and he should go close again today.

2. Rain Affair ($5) - Ran a great race to finish second to All Too Hard in the Group One All Aged Stakes on his last start two weeks ago and is another to have enjoyed multiple Group One placings without getting his head in front, finishing second three times. He will be ridden by Hugh Bowman, whose only ride on the five-year-old to date was when fourth in the Group Three Concorde Stakes. He should be in the shake up today.

3. Temple Of Boom ($51) - Last year's Group One The Galaxy winner has been unable to recapture his form this season, putting in some lacklustre performance at Group One and Two level. Unlikely to feature here unless he can pull something out of the bag.

4. Spirit Of Boom ($26) - A younger half-brother to Temple Of Boom, this Tony Gollan-trained five-year-old has won two Listed races and ran third in the Group One Oakleigh Plate earlier this preparation. He comes off a second to Buffering in the Group Two Victory Stakes but I think he will find a few others better today.

5. Rarefied ($15) - Coming off a stakes win over 1200m, this five-year-old was second in the Group One Winterbottom Stakes last spring and has a string of Group placings to his name. Trained by Peter Snowden, the six-year-old is from an in form yard and could be worth an each way punt.

6. Jetset Lad ($41) - This will be the first Australian start for the five-year-old this season after he has been campaigned in New Zealand with Jason Wheeler. He enjoyed a third at Group Three level on his second to last start and a second in the Group One Railway Stakes earlier in the season but looks to be up against it here.

7. Better Than Ready ($6.50) - Making his second Group One start, the son of More Than Ready has won two Listed races this season but looks like a short price to take on the older horses here. He was fifth in the Group One Newmarket Handicap and looks set to fill a similar position this time out.

8. Your Song ($11) - This Anthony Cummings-trained colt will have to put in a career best performance to score first up here. He won a barrier trial at Randwick last Friday but could only manage eighth in a field of ten in the Group One Golden Rose, his only start in Group One company to date. He has been placed in two Group races but is not likely to do so again tomorrow.

9. Reflectance ($81) - Outsider who is out of his depth. Has won three times from seven starts but finished seventh in his only Pattern race to date (a Listed race over course and distance in December).

10. Sea Siren ($5) - Triple Group One winning mare who could head off on another international campaign shortly after being purchased by Coolmore this week. A trip to Hong Kong for the Group One HK Sprint seems to have taken the stuffing out of her, she has underperformed in two Group One races since but she won a barrier trial at Warwick Farm on 26 April and many will be hoping she returns to her best today.

11. Emmalene ($23) - Stakes winning mare who was second in a Listed race over course and distance on her last start. She needs to progress to make the frame here.

My first pick is Sea Siren. I really hope she bounces back to win this and as I said with All Too Hard two weeks ago, she will need to do so if her connections are to justify sending her to Royal Ascot. She was fifth in the Group One T J Smith last time out to Black Caviar and if her upward curve is to continue she should win here. Being a four-year-old mare she also gets a nice weight allowance, and importantly, has a 3-1 head-to-head record over the public elect Buffering.

Second is Buffering, who I think will again find one better than him again today. His form is rock solid and there is no reason he cannot go close again, however Sea Siren is a classy mare on her day and has beaten him before, including in last year's Group One Doomben 10,000.

My final pick is Rarefied. A six-year-old who is in form having won at stakes level last time out. He has enjoyed a Group One placing before and at a nice price should make the frame.

1. Sea Siren
2. Buffering
3. Rarefied

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