Canberra trainer Nick Olive tickled the idea of sending Maid of Ore to Flemington Racecourse for Saturday's Matriarch Stakes, but has settled on the Country Classic for a better chance of claiming a career-first victory.
The five-year-old stayer has struck form this campaign with four consecutive victories and Olive says she's improved with every preparation.
She will look to end her campaign with a fifth consecutive win at Rosehill Gardens, a sequence which includes wins at Wagga Wagga, Kembla and both tracks at Royal Randwick.
Olive says it'll be "pretty, bloody good" if Maid of Ore continues her winning streak, in what would be a career first for his stable.
"We nominated her in the [Matriarch Stakes] in Melbourne as well but we thought it was a bit hard," Olive said. "She's got top weight in the Country Classic and she's going very well.
"It'll the last race of her campaign this time, so its a really nice race to finish off with."
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Apprentice Billy Owen returns to Maid of Ore's saddle, having ridden the fleet-footed mare in her first two victories in this campaign.
"Billy rides Maid of Ore for all her work, he knows her well," Olive said.
"He's been with me for ten years and is actually moving to Sydney after this weekend. It's bittersweet but it's great to have him ride her on Saturday."
Maid Of Ore has the top weight of 60 kilograms and will start from barrier 15, while Keith Dryden-trained Gunga Din has drawn barrier 16.
The New Zealand horse won a Federal benchmark 70 in Canberra last month and Dryden believes he's an each-way chance in the Country Classic.
"I think he'll race okay. I'll let [jockey] Blaike McDougall decide where he'll be in the race," Dryden said. "Maid of Ore is a certainty. It's a set weights race and she races very well with them."
Barbara Joseph has nominated two horses in the meeting, with Mookareena in the highway handicap (1500 metres) and Mercurial Lad in a benchmark 78.