Glam-orous Group 1 victory

DANNY O'Brien has no doubt a winter campaign in Queensland has been the making of Absolut Glam after she careered away with the final Group 1 of the season, the Winter Stakes yesterday at Eagle Farm.

Absolut Glam ($4.40 fav) ran up to her best form in winning the $500,000 Group 1 event and gave a first Group 1 victory for emerging Melbourne rider James Winks, whose elation bubbled over with an extravagant whip wave before the finish line. He was later fined $200 for his whip celebration.

Absolut Glam was the sixth of the past 11 winners of the Winter Stakes to come through the AAMI Stradbroke in her final lead-up run.

Her fourth in the Stradbroke was the stand-out run and she lived up to that performance yesterday.

"Maybe if she'd drawn a good barrier this filly could have won the Stradbroke as well," O'Brien said.

O'Brien, 38, has done a marvellous job to keep Absolut Glam in mint condition through a campaign that started in Melbourne in January.

"She'll go for a spell now and come back into the Flemington section of the spring for the Myer Classic and the Emirates Stakes on the final day of Cup week," O'Brien said.

It was the second Winter Stakes success for O'Brien, who scored in 2001 with Porto Roca in the early days of his training career.

Porta Roca had finished sixth in the Stradbroke Handicap, so the form line was similar with Absolut Glam.

O'Brien has enjoyed a good season. He won the Caulfield Cup with Master O'Reilly and also the Robert Sangster at Group 1 level with Juste Momente, who finished a struggling 13th in the Winter Stakes.

Absolut Glam was a $130,000 buy for O'Brien at the Magic Millions Yearling Sales two years ago.

"She is from the first crop of her sire, Snowland, and was such a lovely filly I bought her on spec," he said.

"It took me a long while to sell shares in her and I kept part of the ownership myself because I was confident she would have ability.

"She has always shown a lot of talent, but I feel this trip to Queensland has really made her. She is a genuine Group 1 horse and should have a very good season next year before she goes to stud."

By Bart Sinclair.

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