Trainer Desleigh Forster's winter carnival stocks continue to rise.
Forster will have a shot at Group One glory in next month's BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben with stable star Adebisi and now has a worthy second stringer in Easy Running following the three-year-old's narrow win in the Listed Mick Dittman Plate (1000m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
Despite being in trouble when a run closed on Easy Running in the straight, jockey Damian Browne remained cool under pressure hooking the gelding out wide to score by a short half head over Didntcostalot.
Saraji was a further long neck away, third.
Forster conceded she was surprised to see Easy Running's number go up in the winner's frame.
"I didn't think he got the photo but had he lost he would have been a good thing beaten," she said.
"I'm very lucky to have two nice horses for the winter carnival but I don't like comparing them.
"This horse has plenty of improvement to come as I've been taking things easy with him around the stable."
Easy Running, who was having his first start since a close second in the Magic Millions Guineas at the Gold Coast in January, will now head to the G3 Gold Coast Guineas (1200m) on May 5 and G3 Fred Best Classic (1350m) at Doomben on May 19.
The G2 Queensland Guineas (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 2 is likely to be his main mission but Forster isn't ruling out a shot at the $1 million Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).
Forster believes Easy Running's record of four wins from 12 starts should be better after he was unluckily beaten when placed on a few occasions earlier in his career.
Meanwhile Sydney trainer John Thompson has the G1 Stradbroke Handicap on the drawing board for Metallurgical following his win in the Listed Hinkler Handicap (1200m).
In a thrilling four-way finish, Metallurgical edged out Carry Me Bluey by a long head with Gundy Son only a nose away third.
Patinack Farm's Gold Coast foreman Brett Killion believes the five-year-old has more scope for improvement after returning from a Melbourne campaign.
"This was his first run since the Newmarket in Melbourne last month and he probably felt the pinch in the last 50 metres," Killion said.
"He's got plenty of class and he loved it when he raced here last winter."
Metallurgical failed at his only two starts during the Melbourne autumn behind Black Caviar in the Group One Lightning Handicap and Hay List in the Group One Newmarket Handicap at Flemington.
He also was an unlucky fourth to Sister Madly in the G2 Salinger Stakes at Flemington last spring.
Racing Queensland webnews April 21
Photo: Graham Potter