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Daily News | 27th March 2019
TJ Smith Unlikely For In Her TimeWednesday, 27th March 2019Kris Lees' Gr1-winning Time Thief mare In Her Time will miss the $2.5 million Gr1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on the first day of The Championships after a foot abscess was discovered in the mare's near fore hoof. "It's nothing serious but the timing could have been better," stated Lees. "I could try to get her there but we'd be playing catch-up and from experience it doesn't work when you're taking on the quality of horse in a TJ." With plenty of options still available for the mare including the Brisbane Winter Carnival, the six-time stakes winner is also entered for lucrative Gr1 Chairman's Sprint Prize (1200m) in Hong Kong. Lees has also confirmed that The Everest in October is firmly on the cards for the mare, a race she disappointed in last year on the Heavy surface to finish 7th behind Redzel. Although a rising 7YO, the talented mare is still only lightly raced with 25 starts under her belt for nine wins and over $3.1m in earnings for owner Peter Brown. The lone Gr1 winner for her Redoute's Choice stallion Time Thief, who now stands in South Africa, In Her Time is out of the winning Zeditave mare Hell It's Hot, a winning half-sister to Gr3 winner Hot As Hell, and also to the dam of Chris Waller's Gr2 Todman Stakes winner Yes Yes Yes.
Royal Ascot On The Cards For Nature StripWednesday, 27th March 2019Bullet-like sprinter Nature Strip, whose Gr1 The Galaxy win last Saturday was by a literal, not figurative, hair's-breadth, is a 99 percent chance not to run in the 1200m Gr1 TJ Smith Stakes. That's according to his part-owner Rod Lyons who told punters.com the 4YO gelding is a strong chance of heading to the UK for the 5 furlong Gr1 King's Stand Stakes in June. Lyon revealed that Nature Strip's new trainer Chris Waller is keen on taking on England's best short course sprinters. "We're just waiting to see what the story is there, whether there is any subsidies or anything like that because it's a pretty expensive exercise to get there and get back." In the event the potential overseas sojourn doesn't eventuate, Nature Strip has the fallback option of heading to Brisbane where his main goal would be the Gr1 Doomben Ten Thousand, albeit the additional 200m is a touch further than the son of Nicconi wants at this stage. "I think we all think that he will eventually run 1200m, but he is still not the finished product," Lyons acknowledged.
Baker Bullish About Snitzel Colt At The FarmWednesday, 27th March 2019Two weeks ago, debutant Green Aeon caused somewhat of an upset when blitzing hot favourite Full Recognition at Warwick Farm with a very quick last 200m sectional. The powerfully built 3YO gelded son of Champion Sire Snitzel romped away for trainer Bjorn Baker, and gets a chance to follow-up at the same track today when taking on fellow winners for the first time over an extra 200m. Supporting the formline for the $300,000 Magic Millions Gold Coast graduate is that Full Recognition came out next start and won with a leg in the air. According to smh.com.au, Baker will push on to the Listed South Pacific Classic (1400m) at Royal Randwick if Green Aeon is able to win with authority in the Star Turn @ Vinery (1400m). “Regardles of what happens,” said Baker, “he’s going to be a nice horse next season.”
Half-Sister To Multiple Gr1 Winner Set For DebutWednesday, 27th March 2019Well-bred I Am Invincible filly Iskander, a half-sister to Alboran Sea (Rock Of Gibraltar), a multiple Gr1 winner for the Mike de Kock yard in South Africa, will make her debut on Wednesday in The Championship On Sale Plate (1100m) at Warwick Farm. Purchased for $500,000 from the draft of Rosemont Stud by Japan's Northern Farm, the daughter of Yarraman Park Stud's I Am Invincible comes into the race without a trial this time, having only contested a December trial over 900m where she finished third, just under four lengths from the winner. Out of the imported American bred mare Lady's Light (Toolighttoquit), Iskander is the eighth named foal of the mare, seven having already raced for six winners with Alboran Seas joining fellow performers Light Express (Fastnet Rock) and Trafalgar Legacy (Rock Of Gibraltar) as black type runners for their dam. Racing in the silks of Mr Yoshida, Iskander will be partnered by Hugh Bowman, with the filly allocated barrier 15, but she is likely to come in a few gates with the withdrawal of the emergencies come race time.
Valuable Spendthrift Purchase Trials StronglyWednesday, 27th March 2019Tuesday's set of 11 barrier trials at Rosehill Gardens saw three for the juveniles, with the Hawkes Racing-trained Spend really catching the eye with his two-length victory over 895m. A winner of his only previous barrier trial two weeks earlier, the son of Arrowfield Stud's Snitzel was sold through the draft of Milburn Creek at the 2018 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale where he was knocked down to Spendthrift Australia for $1.55 million. Bouncing away well from the gates, jockey Brenton Avdulla sat the colt in second, with leader Ziedrich going out a few lengths clear. Asked for an effort at the 200m mark, Spend kicked clear to win the trial very well over the Chris Waller-trained Reloaded (Snitzel) who charged late for second. Out of the Listed-winning Hussonet mare Walk With Attitude, Spend is the highest priced yearling purchased by Spendthrift in Australia, with the colt being closely related to Coolmore's dual Gr1-winning first crop sire Pride Of Dubai, from the family of Champion Sire Invincible Spirit.
Snitzel-Walk With Attitude as a yearling (pic: inglis.com.au)
Waller Advises Owners To Spell The Autumn SunWednesday, 27th March 2019Trainer Chris Waller wrote an open letter to the industry yesterday, revealing that he has advised The Autumn Sun's owners to spell the 3YO colt. Given the importance of the communique, it has been decided to publish it unabridged or edited:
Dear Racing Media and the followers of The Autumn Sun,
Today it has been my advice to the ownership group of The Autumn Sun (Hermitage and Arrowfield) that he now be spelled.
This decision was formed on the basis that he is still a young horse who is continuing to grow and develop and whilst it may not be seen in that light by racing enthusiasts and his growing fan base, it is my job as his trainer to look after these horses to ensure they can be followed and continue their careers with distinction. It is not my job to make a decision on when he retires, however, it is my job to manage the horse to the best of my ability and I take great pride in what has been achieved thus far.
I would like to remind people who may wish to question my decision to spell of some facts in relation to this horse's brilliant career thus far:
- This time last year he had not commenced his racing career and since his first start on April 25, 2018 he has now had nine starts including five Group 1 wins;
- As a 2YO he had his first race start less than 12 months ago on April 25 over 1200m, which saw him run 1:08.6 at Randwick and on that occasion he came from well back on the turn to pull away late for a brilliant victory;
- Also at two he tackled a Group 1 race at only his third start, which he managed to win, as well as defeating two very good horses in Zousain and Fundamentalist;
- Following his first Group 1 win, he was given a let-up before resuming over 1500m as a spring 3YO on a very heavy track and as a victim of circumstances suffered his only ever defeat;
- In his second start as a 3YO, he dropped back to 1400m for the G1 Golden Rose and from the outside barrier came from last to first to come away with his second G1 win in what is regarded as one of Australia's premier stallion-making races;
- At his third start in the Spring he raced in Melbourne in the G1 Caulfield Guineas, his first attempt racing left-handed and came away with a 4.5-length win;
- Following a spell, he returned for his Autumn preparation, which has seen his winning sequence continue where he has now extended his record to eight wins in 10 months of racing; and
- This horse has exceptional ability and that has allowed him to win 5 x G1 races at this very early age and in an immature state.
Providing The Autumn Sun returns for another preparation, and one which I am fully endorsing, I am extremely excited by what may be able to be achieved as a 4YO. I have first-hand experience of the benefit time can provide a horse when looked after during their juvenile years and I feel I am best qualified to make the judgement on the future improvement he will make as a developed and mature horse. The ownership group are yet to meet regarding his future, however, we look forward to doing so to both reflect on what he has achieved and discuss what his future may hold.
Further to this release, it comes as a very sad day with the news of The Autumn Sun's sire in Redoute's Choice passing away. I wish to use this opportunity to pass on my condolences to Arrowfield Stud, the Messara family and all of the staff and loyal supporters associated with this wonderful horse. The loss of Redoute's Choice will be felt by our racing and breeding industry and I feel it is important to acknowledge the influence he has had on raising our industry standards from both a racing and breeding perspective over the past 20 years.
Pateman Siezes Assetro Opportunity With Both HandsWednesday, 27th March 2019The Adam Durrant-trained filly Assetro (Blackfriars-Ortessa, by Oratorio) will have a change of jockey in Saturdays Gr3 Western Australian Oaks (2400m) at Ascot as regular hoop Clint Johnston-Porter has been unfortunately stood down for a week following a concussion-inducing fall at Bunbury on Sunday. Mitchell Pateman gladly picks up the ride on the promising stayer, who finished an estimable third behind stablemate Jedaffair (Trade Fair-King's Lynn, by King's Best) in the Listed Natasha Stakes (2200m) on March 16. Pateman told The West Australian: "The fall was bad luck for Clint. I've never ridden Assetro, but I saw her good effort in the Natasha. She should get a soft run from [barrier] one and I never doubt the stamina of horses that Adam trains for staying races."
Tiley In High Spirits Ahead Of Gr1Wednesday, 27th March 2019The predicted rain for New Zealand's North Island towards the end of this week has brought a smile to the face of Pukekohe trainer Nigel Tiley. The South Auckland horseman will make the 6-hour journey south to Palmerston North with juvenile Qiji Spirit to line-up in Saturday's Gr1 Manawatu Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) at Awapuni, and he believes his charge will appreciate the wet track conditions. "He worked really well this morning," Tiley said. "There are only 12 left in the race, so I would be silly not to go down." Tiley is buoyed by the return to Awapuni on Saturday, with Qiji Spirit (Charm Spirit) finishing runner-up to The Fugitive on the Palmerston North track on debut in December. "When you have got a nice horse like him that you know has raced well at the track before, and there's only so many Group One races for two-year-olds, I only think it's fair that we have a crack at it with him. If he comes through it in one piece I'd probably have a look at a race like the Champagne Stakes with him at Ellerslie," Tiley said.
Qiji Spirit (pic: Trish Dunell)
Victorian Breeders Invited To Join Placenta CollectionWednesday, 27th March 2019Following a NSW placenta collection and purchasing service that was provided by Japan's Nomura last year, the company, which is accredited with strict Australian export laws, is looking to extend the collection service to Victoria. According to Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria (TBV), an initial successful test run was completed at Cressfield Stud last year, after which Nomura was able to develop an efficient collection, processing and export procedure which freezes the placentas. Payment for each placenta will be $10 plus GST to the stud farm or small breeder, with $1 going to the State's breeding association. Having collected over 2000 placentas last season alone in NSW, a donation of $2,000 was made to the Hunter Valley Breeders Association. The current target for the 2019 breeding season is around 3,000 Australia-wide, with TBV expressing hope the Victorian studs will be able to make up the shortfall. For further information contact TBV via email: email@example.com.
Redoute's Choice Humanely Euthanased At ArrowfieldWednesday, 27th March 2019Arrowfield Stud announced the premature passing of their multiple champion sire Redoute's Choice (Danehill-Shantha's Choice, by Canny Lad) on Tuesday. Advising the thoroughbred world via twitter, Arrowfield's chairman John Messara said, "It’s with great sorrow we announce that our glorious Champion Sire Redoute’s Choice died this morning. He has given us so much, and he’s allowed all of us & many, many other people to fulfil their dreams & ambitions.” To read Arrowfield's moving tribute to the rock upon which their Scone-based stud farm has been built, CLICK HERE.
Redoute's Choice (pic: Bronwen Healy)
BHA Appoints High Profile Chair To New Welfare BoardWednesday, 27th March 2019A new Horse Welfare Board that has been set up in the UK by the British Horseracing Authority has appointed Barry Johnson, the former president of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, and former chairman of World Horse Welfare, as its independent chair, reports The Racing Post. Fortuitously coming in the wake of the Equine Influenza outbreak and the ensuing tension between trainers and racing's governing body, the board will aim to create a new welfare strategy that covers the entire industry, and is likely to make initial recommendations by the end of 2019. Nick Rust, BHA chief executive, said: "The public has seen recently during the influenza outbreak how racing acts with great care and professionalism to manage the risk to racehorses. I expect the strategy to set out our ambition for bringing the same level of focus at all stages of the racehorse's life and explaining this collectively and confidently to outside audiences." Barry Johnson expressed his intention as chair to listen to the needs and thoughts of the wider racing community, and said of his appointment: "I'm very pleased to have been asked by racing to take on this role and by the sport's commitment to continuous improvement in the welfare of racehorses."
Stronach Group Holds Whip HandWednesday, 27th March 2019Santa Anita Racecourse in California is again the subject of international racing headlines; this time for the radical proposal made by racecourse owners The Stronach Group to ban the use of the whip by jockeys for anything but "corrective safety measures" at this and their Golden Gates Fields venue, as reported by The Guardian. Presumptively, this is a crisis response to the major welfare furore surrounding the recent equine fatalities at the track (22 in the 9 week 2019 season, from both training and racing), yet it is predicted that this proposal will apply with immediate effect when racing resumes at Santa Anita on Friday following a 4 week break to investigate and renovate the track. If so, it will become the first track in a major racing nation to ban the whip for encouragement at any stage of a race. The racing world will no doubt be looking on keenly on Friday, as if this move appears successful it will set a precedent which will be hard for authorities to ignore.