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Exo Lady provides Forster celebration

Sat 30 April 2022

Desleigh Forster secured an early birthday present with Exo Lady saluting in the Listed Dalrello Stakes to kickstart the 2022 TAB Queensland Racing Carnival.

With more than 50 black-type races on offer over the next two months, the popular Eagle Farm trainer, who is poised to blow out the candles tomorrow, struck the opening blow of the Queensland Carnival for the locals as her star two-year-old improved her record to four wins from just five starts and almost $300,000 in stakes.

Jumping quickly, Jim Byrne had no other choice but to take Exo Boom straight to the front before holding on to score by a short neck to Steady Ready, with Plymstock almost a length-and-a-half behind the winner in third.

With Apache Chase already guaranteed a start in the $1.5 million TAB Stradbroke Handicap after winning The Gateway, Forster is primed for a strong Queensland Carnival as she chases further black-type success.

“The really good thing about it is was when that horse came up to her today, she kicked and found more,” Forster said.

“She is just a little bombproof filly. She switches off and just does what she needs to do.”

Inside the final two furlongs, Exo Lady looked a winner but Steady Ready took the fight to her before being narrowly edged out.

The win was important for Byrne, who is in a tight fight with Jimmy Orman and Ryan Maloney for the metropolitan jockeys’ premiership, and left him within striking distance of taking the lead.

“I've always liked her and I said that I thought she was a pretty nice horse,” Byrne said.

“This was a nice field and there's bigger things for her to come. I'm just glad for the owners and glad for Des.”