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Hopfgarten after first-up victory

Leading winter carnival hope Hopfgarten is likely to resume in the Group Two Victory Stakes at Eagle Farm as his first step to the Stradbroke Handicap.

Hopfgarten is one of 13 entries for Saturday’s Victory Stakes which include last year’s winner Fell Swoop and three Group One winners, Music Magnate, Miss Cover Girl, and Takedown.

Hopfgarten, who has won five stakes races, was brilliant winning a trial at Deagon last week.

The gelding clocked 60.94 seconds to win the 1050m trial which was second only to smart mare Elegant Composure of the 14 trials.

However, Hopfgarten’s final 600 metres in 33.94s was by far the quickest of the morning.

Trainer Robert Heathcote has won the Victory Stakes twice with champion sprinter Buffering and favours a start for Hopfgarten.

“I am not going to make up my mind until Wednesday morning whether to accept. I want to see how he comes up after trackwork on Tuesday morning,” Heathcote said.

“At this stage I hope we are in line for a run in the (Group One) Stradbroke in June.”

The Peter and Paul Snowden training combination has no runners this weekend but the father and son will take a team of as many as 15 for the upcoming features.

“Our horses seem to do well in Brisbane. I’ve had a lot of horses that made names for themselves at this carnival,” Peter Snowden said.

“Hopefully I’m bringing some with the goods this year.”

The Snowden team will be headed by sprinters Russian Revolution and Redzel, who could tackle the Group One treble of the Doomben 10,000, Kingsford Smith Cup and Stradbroke.

Snowden had considerable success in Brisbane when head trainer for Darley and since going into partnership with his son Paul the team’s biggest win has been the 2015 Doomben 10,000 with Hot Snitzel.

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