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Winning Rupert to chase bonus

Smart three year old Winning Rupert took the first step to earning a $500,000 bonus with a course record breaking return to racing on Saturday.

Winning Rupert ($1.50) jumped straight to the lead and gave nothing else a chance beating Crack Me Up($11) by 5 3/4 lengths in the $100,000 QTIS Three Year old (1200m).

He clocked 1.9.42 which bettered the previous course record of 1.9.61.

Winning Rupert, who has now won all three of his starts, can earn a $500,000 bonus for any horse which could win Saturday’s race and any two of the Gold Edition Plate, Vo Rogue Plate and Magic Millions Guineas.

Trainer Bjorn Baker had originally planned to run Winning Rupert in the Melbourne Spring but when the gelding got behind in his preparation he was switched to Queensland.

Baker’s foreman Claire Cunningham said Winning Rupert had three trials leading into Saturday’s race and was ready to dominate the summer three year old races.

“We will have a nice team here for the summer and the Magic Millions. We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves but the bonus is obviously an objective.”

It capped a good two days for Baker who had a double at Mudgee on Friday including winning the Mudgee Cup with Burning Energy.

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