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Weekend News | 22nd March 2019
NEW 7.05pm: Achernar Star Wins Listed Grandstand CupWeekend, 22nd March 2019
In Saturday’s second feature at Ascot in Perth, Yarradale Stud stallion Gingerbread Man (Shamardal-Quafle, by Hurricane Sky) celebrated a stakes success when 4YO gelding Achernar Star (Gingerbread Man-Morine, by Danetime) scored by a half-length for trainer Simon Miller in the $100,000 Listed Grandstand Cup (1500m) for 3YO+, defeating 5YO gelding Variation & fellow 4YO gelding Tellem We're Comin. Racing handy to the speed on the fence, Achernar Star briefly looked snookered in the straight but managed to extricate himself to make it two black-type wins in a row. A $75,000 yearling purchase by Astute Bloodstock at the 2016 Magic Millions Perth Sale, Achernar Star improved his record to 6 wins (including the Listed Bunbury Stakes) and 8 placings (including the Gr1 Kingston Town Classic, Gr2 Lee Steere Stakes, Gr2 Western Australian Guineas plus several Listed events) from 19 starts for $851,096 in earnings.
NEW 6.10pm: Tyzone Wins Listed GoldmarketWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -1. Tyzone (10)J: R PlumbT: A J EdmondsW: 59 kgsS: Written TycoonD: Rezonet 0.2L9. Malvern Estate (2)J: B N StewartT: Desleigh ForsterW: 54 kgsS: Redoute's ChoiceD: Stepping 0.4L11. Freddie Fox Trot (1)J: Daniel GriffinT: L D KellyW: 54 kgsS: FoxwedgeD: Tamieka 0.7L7. Manaya (3)J: Anthony AllenT: Michael CostaW: 54 kgsS: HinchinbrookD: Hot 'n' Breezy
At the Gold Coast, Woodside Park's high profile Gr2-winning stallion Written Tycoon (Iglesias-Party Miss, by Kenmare) added a stakes success when 5YO gelding Tyzone (Written Tycoon-Rezonet, by Hussonet) scored a last gasp 0.2-length victory for trainer Toby Edmonds in the $125,000 Listed Goldmarket (1200m), defeating 5YO gelding Malvern Estate & 4YO gelding Freddie Fox Trot. The rescheduled Goldmarket saw Mr Marbellouz sent off favourite, and he set a cracking tempo in an attempt to run the field off its feet. It worked, but weary legs kicked in with 100m to go where there were suddenly chances galore, including Tyzone who sprouted wings down the stand side to just claim victory in the shadows of the post. A $60,000 2YO consigned by Kenmore Lodge at the 2015 Magic Millions Gold Coast 2YOs In Training Sale, Tyzone improved his record to 15 wins and 5 placings (including Grafton’s Listed Ramornie Handicap & the Listed Eye Liner Stakes at Ipswich) from 28 starts for $554,675 in earnings.
NEW 6.25pm: Rio Del Mar Wins Gr3 Gimcrack StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
At Ascot in Perth, Sun Stud's Gr1 Galaxy-winning stallion Magnus (Flying Spur-Scandinavia, by Snippets) added a Group success when 2YO filly Rio Del Mar (Magnus-Costanera, by Encosta De Lago) scored narrowly in a driving victory for trainer Simon Miller in the $150,000 Gr3 Gimcrack Stakes (1100m) for 2YO, defeating fellow fillies Prim And Proper & Miss West Coast. Reversing the placings after being denied by Prim and Proper on debut when she was heavily supported, Chris Parnham punched Rio Del Mar to the line after five fillies had fanned across the straight with 100m to go. One of three sent out by the stable in a memorable renewal of the Gimcrack, Rio Del Mar improved her record to a win and a placing from 2 starts for $108,500 in earnings. She was a $20,000 weanling purchase at the 2017 Inglis Great Southern Sale in Melbourne.
NEW 5.49pm: Beethoven Wins Listed Perth StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
At Ascot in Perth, Darley's Australian three-time Gr1-winning shuttler Helmet (Exceed and Excel-Accessories, by Singspiel) celebrated a stakes victory when 2YO gelding Beethoven (Helmet-Molto Allegro, by Fast 'n' Famous) refused to roll over in a tight tussle down the stretch with race favourite and fellow 2YO gelding Jericho Missile to just prevail by the narrowest of 0.1-length margins in the $150,000 Listed Perth Stakes (1100m) for 2YO colts & geldings. Third home was the colt Divide The Sea. From a half-sister to Gr3 Vain Stakes winner Jukebox and the family of Gr1 Kingston Town Classic winner Itsahymn, Beethoven took his record to 4 starts for 2 wins and 2 placings for $152,800 in earnings.
NEW 5.45pm: Semari Wins Gr3 Epona StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -8. Semari (6)J: Tommy BerryT: T Busuttin & N YoungW: 54 kgsS: SebringD: Kumari 0.5L1. I'm A Princess (1)J: J BowmanT: Tony McEvoyW: 56 kgsS: High ChaparralD: Pentamerous 1.8L3. All Too Soon (2)J: A AdkinsT: David PayneW: 54 kgsS: All Too HardD: Gallant Tess 2.0L6. Harmattan (4)J: Tim ClarkT: James CummingsW: 54 kgsS: Street CryD: Anemometer
In the lucky last at one of the greatest ever race meetings staged at Rosehill Gardens in front of a massive crowd, ill-fated Widden Stud stallion Sebring (More Than Ready-Purespeed, by Flying Spur) added a posthumous Group race triumph when consistent 4YO mare Semari (Sebring-Kumari, by Zabeel) scored half-length victory for trainer Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young in the $160,000 Gr3 Epona Stakes (1900m) for 3YO+, defeating 5YO mare I'm A Princess & fellow 4YO mare All Too Soon. Semari powered her way to the line, much to the delight of the many people who’d stayed until the end which culminated in the top three in the market sharing the spoils at around $5.00. A $150,000 yearling consigned by New Zealand’s Little Avondale Stud at the 2016 Inglis Easter Sale, Semari’s maiden black-type success improved her record to 6 wins and a placing from 11 starts for $182,715 in earnings.
NEW 5.10pm: Nature Strip Wins Gr1 The GalaxyWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -4. Nature Strip (9)J: J B Mc DonaldT: C J WallerW: 55 kgsS: NicconiD: Strikeline 0.1L3. Pierata (7)J: Tommy BerryT: G D HickmanW: 56 kgsS: PierroD: November Flight 1.4L11. Easy Eddie (11)J: R DolanT: Joseph PrideW: 51 kgsS: Super EasyD: Twin Town 2.7L10. Encryption (10)J: Craig WilliamsT: James CummingsW: 51 kgsS: LonhroD: Guelph
In the last of Rosehill Gardens’ five Gr1 races on Saturday, Widden Stud's dual Gr1-winning sire Nicconi (Bianconi-Nicola Lass, by Scenic) celebrated a Gr1 triumph when enigmatic 4YO gelding Nature Strip (Nicconi-Strikeline, by Desert Sun) scored by a hair for trainer Chris Waller in the $700,000 Gr1 Galaxy (1100m) for 3YO+, defeating 4YO horse Pierata & fellow 4YO gelding Easy Eddie. Runner-up Pierata’s connections had their emotions crushed when the judge’s camera determined Nature Strip the winner. To the naked eye there was almost nothing in it, but that’s racing. Both acquited themselves brilliantly, the former hanging on by a thread as he hit the wall after dashing like a hare, whilst Pierata unleashed his dynamic finish to just be denied. Passed in for $90,000 at the 2016 Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale when offered by his breeder Golden Grove Stud, Nature Strip improved his record to 10 wins (including the Gr2 Rubiton Stakes, Gr2 Ian McEwen Stakes, Listed Lightning Stakes & Listed A.R. Creswick Series Final) and 2 placings from 15 starts for $1,225,085 in earnings. Nature Strip’s triumph provided Waller with a third Gr1 for the day.
Nature Strip won his maiden Gr1 (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 4.50pm: Streets Of Avalon Wins Listed Hareeba StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -9. Streets Of Avalon (9)J: Zac SpainT: S P NicholsW: 54.5 kgsS: MagnusD: Kamuniak 1.0L3. Bons Away (13)J: Ms L J MeechT: C Maher & D EustaceW: 57.5 kgsS: Bon HoffaD: Villa Albani 2.5L11. Snitzkraft (1)J: J BowditchT: P StokesW: 54 kgsS: SnitzelD: Power O'Raylee 2.8L8. Glenall (2)J: Jack MartinT: M, W & J HawkesW: 54.5 kgsS: Redoute's ChoiceD: Our Quivira
At Mornington in Victoria, Sun Stud's Gr1 Galaxy-winning stallion Magnus (Flying Spur-Scandinavia, by Snippets) added a stakes-race success when 4YO gelding Streets Of Avalon (Magnus-Kamuniak, by Black Minnaloushe) sat second, eased off the fence and powered clear a long way from home to capture a well deserved debut black-type win in the $200,000 Listed Hareeba Stakes (1200m) by 1-length over the fast finishing 5YO gelding Bons Away with 4YO entire Snitzkraft in third. Withdrawn from the 2016 Inglis Ready To Race Sale due to poor X-ray results, Streets Of Avalon once again proved that racing aptitude and courage can overcome physical perfection as he took his record to 5 wins and 15 placings (including the Gr3 Shaftesbury Avenue Handicap & Listed March Stakes) for $534,360 in earnings. He is a descendant of the simply amazing Royal News family whose many branches include Gr1 winners the ilk of Reward For Effort, Overreach, Ivory's Irish, Alynda and Turffontein.
NEW 4.30pm: Kiamichi Wins Gr1 Golden SlipperWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -12. Kiamichi (14)J: Damian LaneT: James CummingsW: 54.5 kgsS: SidestepD: Ouachita 1.0L2. Microphone (1)J: J BowmanT: James CummingsW: 56.5 kgsS: Exceed And ExcelD: Sung 1.5L7. Lyre (11)J: L CurrieT: Anthony FreedmanW: 54.5 kgsS: LonhroD: Erato 1.8L16. Loving Gaby (12)J: O MurphyT: C Maher & D EustaceW: 54.5 kgsS: I Am InvincibleD: Maastricht
At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, there were extraordinary scenes when the mighty Godolphin blue army put the $3.5 million Gr1 Golden Slipper field to the sword, filling the first three placings. Godolphin’s former Champion 2YO and Gr1 Golden Slipper runner-up Sidestep (Exceed and Excel-Dextrous, by Quest For Fame) who now stands at Queensland’s Telemon Thoroughbreds, had the main honour when the least fancied of the Cummings runners, filly Kiamichi (Sidestep-Ouachita, by Canny Lad) made the Slipper all her own, defeating stablemate colt Microphone and the Anthony Freedman-trained Godolphin-owned Blue Diamond winner and fellow filly Lyre. Having displayed very good form at Rosehill in the lead-ups including a top-notch Magic Night Stakes win, Kiamichi skipped clear in the straight and refused to lie down in the taxing conditions. Cummings pointed out that Kiamichi was the stable’s first 2YO winner of the season, and that while she mightn’t have been the pick of the public, what matters on the day is which 2YO is prepared to tough it out. The win improved Kiamichi’s record to 3 wins and a placing from 5 starts for $2,205,850 in earnings.
NEW 4.10pm: Self Sense Wins Listed Mornington CupWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -3. Self Sense (7)J: L NolenT: D R BrideoakeW: 55.5 kgsS: Street SenseD: Be My Person 0.1L6. Tarquin (4)J: Fred W KersleyT: Simon RyanW: 54 kgsS: Hard SpunD: Daanet Al Dunya 0.9L1. Trap For Fools (5)J: John AllenT: J A McLeanW: 61 kgsS: Poet's VoiceD: Old Money 1.8L5. Stars Of Carrum (8)J: C NewittT: R E LaingW: 54 kgsS: FiorenteD: Signoret
At Mornington, south-east of Melbourne, Darley's 2006 Champion 2YO Colt & 2007 Gr1 Kentucky Derby-winning shuttler Street Sense (Street Cry-Bedazzle, by Dixieland Band) added a black-type success when 8YO gelding Self Sense (Street Sense-Be My Person, by Personal Flag) scored a 0.1-length victory for trainer David Brideoake in the $350,000 Listed Mornington Cup (2400m), defeating 6YO gelding Tarquin & favoured 5YO gelding Trap For Fools. The latter did as was expected and jumped straight to the front to try to maintain a sedate pace to offset his 61kg impost, and for the most part he succeeded. Heading towards the final turn ahead of the short straight, the closers made their move, among them Self Sense who was three out and well away from the rail. Trap For Fools looked about gone 200m from the post yet managed to hold on for a place behind Self Sense and Tarquin who’d run on nicely. Winner last start of the Yarra Valley Cup, Self Sense improved his record to 15 wins (including the Listed Ipswich Cup & Listed Kilmore Cup) and 15 placings (including the Listed Wagga Wagga Gold Cup, Listed Albury Gold Cup and Listed Randwick City Stakes) from 59 starts for $1,474,220 in earnings.
NEW 3.45pm: Avilius Wins Gr1 Ranvet StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -2. Avilius (10)J: K Mc EvoyT: James CummingsW: 59 kgsS: PivotalD: Alessandria 2.3L5. He's Eminent (11)J: J B Mc DonaldT: Sir Mark ToddW: 59 kgsS: FrankelD: You'll Be Mine 2.7L10. Danzdanzdance (1)J: O P BossonT: C Gibbs & M BradleyW: 57 kgsS: MastercraftsmanD: Night Danza 6.0L12. Unforgotten (13)J: J BowmanT: C J WallerW: 57 kgsS: Fastnet RockD: Memories Of You
On a glorious day of racing at Rosehill Gardens, 5YO UK-bred gelding Avilius (Pivotal-Alessandria, by Sunday Silence) scored a superb 2.3-length victory for trainer James Cummings in the $700,000 Weight For Age Gr1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) for 3YO+, defeating 5YO horse He's Eminent & 4YO mare Danzdanzdance. On the basis it always pays to forgive a good horse one poor run, Avilius, back on home ground, showed his Gr1 Australian Cup run was an aberration. With He’s Eminent, who’d defeated Avilius in the UK, and Ace High setting a strong gallop in the heavy conditions, coming from off the pace was no easy ask, and yet Avilius made up a ton of ground to wrest control from his old adversary before the 100m mark. Danzdanzdance struck traffic on the rail down the back and was also courageous when squeezing through as the field swung in for the run home. The latest effort by Avilius, without question his finest since arriving in Australia, topped-up his his record to 9 wins (including 7 in Australia – among them the Gr3 T.S.Carlyon Cup, Gr3 Bart Cummings Handicap, Gr3 Kingston Town Stakes & Gr3 Premier’s Cup) and 3 placings from 17 starts for $1,497,460 in earnings.
Avilius claims his first Gr1 (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 3.05pm: Winx Wins Gr1 George Ryder StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -4. Winx (7)J: J BowmanT: C J WallerW: 57 kgsS: Street CryD: Vegas Showgirl 3.5L9. Brutal (3)J: Tommy BerryT: M, W & J HawkesW: 56 kgsS: O'ReillyD: Alberton Princess 6.3L2. Dreamforce (6)J: Damian LaneT: John ThompsonW: 59 kgsS: Fastnet RockD: Eskimo Queen 7.6L5. Prompt Response (2)J: B ShinnT: C J WallerW: 57 kgsS: BeneteauD: Prompt
In Sydney at Rosehill, Darley's deceased shuttler & Gr1 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry (Machiavellian-Helen Street, by Troy) celebrated another Gr1 victory when 7YO mare Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) scored an - almost stress-free - 3.5-length victory for trainer Chris Waller in the $1,000,000 Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m), defeating 3YO colt Brutal & 6YO gelding Dreamforce. In what was her penultimate race, jockey Hugh Bowman kept her out of trouble, sitting three wide the whole trip. He moved up from their midfield position at the 700m, finding clean ground on the heavy track and allowed the mare to stretch out to the roar of the crowd down the straight, breaking the hearts of the competition. This victory, a record fourth in the same race, was less unsettling than her previous win in the Gr1 Chipping Norton (1600m) three weeks ago; today she was in a beautiful rhythm throughout and Bowman was able to move through her gears with ease. This was the indubitably the run Waller had intended for her ahead of her grand finale in three weeks, the Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m). The trainer remained composed post-race: the invincible mare remains invincible. More records were broken today, Winx now sits on a world-record 24 Gr1 wins, and a total of 36 wins (including the Gr1 Cox Plate – four times, Gr1 George Ryder - four times, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes - twice, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes - twice, Gr1 Winx Stakes, Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes - thrice, Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes – four times, Gr1 Epsom Handicap, Gr1 Queensland Oaks, Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr2 Warwick Stakes – twice, Gr2 Apollo Stakes – three times, Gr2 Theo Marks Stakes, Gr2 Phar Lap Stakes & Gr2 Furious Stakes) and 3 placings (including the Gr1 Australian Oaks & Gr1 Flight Stakes) from 42 starts for record Australian earnings of $24,009,675. The winner of 32 consecutive races, Winx was a $230,000 Magic Bloodstock purchase at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Coolmore Stud.
Winx in cruise control (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 2.33pm: Residential Wins Gr3 South Island TB StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -3. Residential (2)J: R J HannamT: J & K ParsonsW: 55 kgsS: PinsD: Metropolitan 0.5L7. Zabay (3)J: C A CampbellT: B & S AndertonW: 55 kgsS: StravinskyD: Obey 0.6L1. Contessa Vanessa (7)J: C W JohnsonT: Team RogersonW: 56 kgsS: BullbarsD: Di Lusso 2.4L5. Zentessa (12)J: D L TurnerT: S Kennedy & A FurlongW: 55 kgsS: ZedD: Dantessa
At Riccarton Park in New Zealand, Waikato Stud's Gr1 Australian Guineas-winning stallion Pins (Snippets-No Finer, by Kaoru Star) celebrated a black-type success when 5YO mare Residential (Pins-Metropolitan, by Elusive City) scored a half-length victory for trainers John and Karen Parsons in the $80,000 Gr3 Breeders Stakes (1600m) for mares, defeating fellow 5YO mare Zabay & favoured 4YO mare Contessa Vanessa who started in the red. Racing in Waikato Stud’s familiar white, green and blue silks, $60,000 2015 NZB National Yearling Sales Series purchase Residential improved her record to 9 wins (including the Listed races NZB Insurance Breeders’ Stakes, Southland Guineas and Dunedin Guineas) and 7 placings from 36 starts for $253,000 in earnings.
NEW 2.25pm: The Autumn Sun Wins Gr1 Rosehill GuineasWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -1. The Autumn Sun (3)J: K Mc EvoyT: C J WallerW: 56.5 kgsS: Redoute's ChoiceD: Azmiyna 0.2L7. Arrogant (5)J: Craig WilliamsT: M D MoroneyW: 56.5 kgsS: Ocean ParkD: Charmeuse 2.5L8. Chapada (1)J: D OliverT: M D MoroneyW: 56.5 kgsS: Bullet TrainD: Diamantina Dior 5.5L4. Surely Sacred (10)J: Damian LaneT: A W PikeW: 56.5 kgsS: Rock 'n' PopD: Not Sure
In Sydney at Rosehill, Arrowfield Stud's multiple Champion Australian Sire Redoute's Choice (Danehill-Shantha's Choice, by Canny Lad) celebrated a major Gr1 success when star 3YO colt The Autumn Sun (Redoute's Choice-Azmiyna, by Galileo) stuck his neck out at the right minute for a narrow 0.1-length victory for trainer Chris Waller in the $600,000 Gr1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m), defeating fellow 3YO colts Arrogant & Chapada. This was the first time the outstanding colt had been tested over further than a mile, yet there was no doubt in the markets prior to the race - he lined up at a price reminiscent of stablemate Winx - and he set a few pulses racing when he rounded the field on the bend and appeared to lose momentum two furlongs out. A gallant effort by both horse and jockey Kerrin McEvoy saw a fabulous battle with Arrogant (Ocean Park-Charmeuse, by O’Reilly) the entire length of the straight, and The Autumn Sun showed, as McEvoy said, an “enormous amount of grit,” digging deep where it counted. The jockey also proclaimed the reason for the less-than-devastating victory was the testing heavy 8 surface, eschewed by the son of Redoute’s Choice. A $700,000 purchase by his trainer & Hermitage Thoroughbreds at the 2017 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale from the draft of Arrowfield Stud, and now owned 50 percent by Arrowfield Stud who manage his career, The Autumn Sun advanced his sensational record to 8 wins (including the Gr1 Randwick Guineas, Gr1 Caulfield Guineas, Gr1 Golden Rose, Gr1 JJ Atkins Plate and Gr2 Hobartville Stakes) and 1 placing (the Gr2 Stan Fox Stakes) from 8 starts for $3,482,121 in earnings. Where he will go next remains undecided - however his anticipated multi-million dollar career at stud has been truly cemented.
The Autumn Sun had a massive battle (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 2.15pm: Volpe Veloce Wins Gr2 Japan NZ International TrophyWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -3. Volpe Veloce (9)J: M J Mc NabT: G Richardson & G ParkerW: 56 kgsS: FoxwedgeD: Bardego 0.5L5. Watch This Space (5)J: V A ColganT: W P HillisW: 55.5 kgsS: Elusive CityD: Multi Tasker 1.0L8. True Enough (6)J: C J GryllsT: M Baker & A ForsmanW: 55 kgsS: Nom Du JeuD: Valda's Dream 1.1L1. Endless Drama (4)J: D A MansourT: A W PikeW: 57 kgsS: Lope De VegaD: Desert Drama
At Tauranga in New Zealand, former Newgate Farm and now Woodside Park Stud Gr1-winning shuttle stallion Foxwedge (Fastnet Rock-Forest Native, by Forest Wildcat) added a Group success when 5YO mare Volpe Veloce (Foxwedge-Bardego, by Barathea) scored a half-length victory for trainers Graham Richardson & Gavin Parker in the $100,000 Gr2 Japan NZ Trophy (1600m), defeating 7YO gelding Watch This Space & 5YO gelding True Enough. After disappointing in the Gr1 Haunui Farm WFA Classic, her trainers advised she was getting back to her best, and the fast-finishing mare duly obliged in a fast-run race with a powerful finish to win going away. Her record improved to 12 wins (also including the Gr2 Westbury Classic, Gr2 Eight Carat Classic, Gr3 Eulogy Stakes, (R) Listed Karaka 3YO Mile & Listed Castletown Stakes) & 2 runners-up (including the Gr2 Auckland TBA Stakes) from 24 starts for $639,000 earnings. Initially a $120,000 yearling when sold by Newgate Farm at the 2014 Magic Millions National Weanling Sale, Volpe Veloce was subsequently turned over for $240,000 by pin-hookers Lyndhurst Farm at the 2015 NZB National Yearling Sale.
NEW 1.45pm: Midterm Wins Gr3 N E Manion CupWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -9. Midterm (9)J: Jamie KahT: Liam HowleyW: 55 kgsS: GalileoD: Midday 2.0L1. Big Duke (7)J: B AvdullaT: K A LeesW: 58 kgsS: Raven's PassD: Hazarayna 3.0L10. Shraaoh (1)J: K Mc EvoyT: C J WallerW: 53.5 kgsS: Sea The StarsD: Jumooh 3.2L3. One Foot In Heaven (11)J: Tommy BerryT: C J WallerW: 57 kgsS: Fastnet RockD: Pride
In Sydney’s west at Rosehill Gardens, Coolmore Stud’s superbly successful world champion stallion Galileo (Sadler’s Wells-Urban Sea, by Miswaki) added a new Group winner when beautifully-bred 6YO gelding Midterm (Galileo-Midday, by Oasis Dream) scored a convincing 2-length victory for trainer Liam Howley in the $160,000 Gr3 Manion Cup (2400m) for 3YO+, defeating 7YO gelding Big Duke & 6YO gelding Shraaoh. Sniffing around for the lead from a wide draw, Midterm was soon sitting just behind lamp-lighter Big Blue and stayed there until just before the turn when applying pressure to slip past. From that point on it become a game of catch-up, which the others were simply unable to manage. Out of celebrated 6-time Gr1 heroine Midday, Midterm elevated his record to 4 wins (including the UK’s Gr3 Sandown Classic Trial) and 4 placings (including France’s Gr2 Prix Niel, England’s Gr3 Aston Park Stakes & Australia’s Listed Mornington Cup Prelude) from 18 starts for $334,640 in earnings.
Midterm was totally dominant (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 1.10pm: Krone Wins Listed Darby Munro StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -9. Krone (7)J: D OliverT: M G PriceW: 56 kgsS: EurozoneD: Soft Landing 0.3L6. Wild Planet (1)J: Tommy BerryT: M, W & J HawkesW: 58 kgsS: Animal KingdomD: Salutations 0.5L14. Classique Legend (8)J: K Mc EvoyT: L J BridgeW: 56 kgsS: Not A Single DoubtD: Pinocchio 5.4L11. Poised To Strike (4)J: Craig WilliamsT: D & B Hayes & T DabernigW: 56 kgsS: Akeed MofeedD: Pandoro De Lago
At Rosehill in Sydney, Newgate Farm’s Gr2-winning, Gr1-placed sire Eurozone (Northern Meteor-Miss Vandal, by Don't Say Halo) added a black-type win when 3YO filly Krone (Eurozone-Soft Landing, by Al Maher) scored a 0.3-length victory for trainer Mick Price in the $140,000 Listed Darby Munro (1200m) for 3YOs, defeating the geldings Wild Planet & Classique Legend. With short-priced favourite Classique Legend desperately trying to get across and control the tempo, but kept out by three runners underneath him, by the 700m alarm bells were ringing. Despite being very brave, the effort started to tell 150m out as Classique Legend was eye-balled by Wild Planet who, in turn, was finally edged out by Krone who’d been third last swinging for home. The win gave Damien Oliver three stakes winners in just over 18 hours after riding a double at Moonee Valley on Friday evening. Krone was sold three times before she raced: she was a $120,000 purchase by Roll The Dice Syndicate from the draft of Rosemont Stud at the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast 2YOs in Training Sale after previously selling as a weanling from the draft of Bell View Park Stud at the 2016 Magic Millions National Weanling Sale for $30,000 and then as a yearling from the draft of Widden Stud at the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale for $60,000. Krone improved her record to 2 wins (including the Listed Cinderella Stakes In Adelaide) and 6 placings (including the Gr2 Edward Manifold Stakes, Gr3 Breeders Stakes & Listed Atlantic Jewel Stakes) from 12 starts for $256,375 in earnings.
Krone finished too strongly (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW SAT 12.30pm: Avantage Wins Gr3 Birthday Card StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -3. Avantage (7)J: O P BossonT: J W RichardsW: 57 kgsS: Fastnet RockD: Asavant 0.8L2. Resin (11)J: J B Mc DonaldT: James CummingsW: 57.5 kgsS: Exceed And ExcelD: Beaded 2.6L8. Star Reflection (6)J: B AvdullaT: K A LeesW: 54.5 kgsS: Time ThiefD: Dawn To Dusk 2.8L5. Sweet Scandal (8)J: K Mc EvoyT: C J WallerW: 54.5 kgsS: SepoyD: Bacchanal Woman
In the opening event at a sun-splashed Rosehill Gardens on Saturday, Coolmore's former Gr1-winning Champion Australian Sire Fastnet Rock (Danehill-Piccadilly Circus, by Royal Academy) celebrated a Group success when kiwi 3YO filly Avantage (Fastnet Rock-Asavant, by Zabeel) scored a gutsy 0.8-length victory for trainer Jamie Richards in the $160,000 Gr3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) for 3YO+, defeating 4YO mare Resin & 6YO mare Star Reflection. Always handy in the run where she swung for home with joint pace-maker Sweet Scandal, Avantage had to dig deep when Resin headed her in the straight and looked likely to take the spoils 150m out. A star in her homeland where she was an uncontested Champion 2YO last season, Avantage had just one race start last September after a 6-month break, and nothing again until Saturday, a fact not lost on Bosson, who agreed she’ll take a lot of improvement out of the run. A $210,000 purchase by Te Akau Racing principal David Ellis at the 2017 NZB Premier Yearling Sale from the draft of The Oaks Stud, Avantage’s successful first foray in Australia improved her record to 7 wins (including the Gr1 Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes, Gr3 Gold Trail Stakes & (RL) Karaka Million) and a placing (runner-up in the Gr1 Diamond Stakes) from 8 starts for $818,019 in earnings
Avantage fights back on the inside (pic: Steve Hart)
NEW 10.00pm Consensus Wins Gr2 Sunline StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -3. Consensus (6)J: M J WalkerT: S J McKeeW: 57 kgsS: PostponedD: Kate Cross 0.2L4. Spanish Reef (5)J: M ZahraT: K M KeysW: 57 kgsS: Lope De VegaD: Lemon Reef 1.0L2. Kenedna (10)J: John AllenT: C Maher & D EustaceW: 57 kgsS: Not A Single DoubtD: Miss Dodwell 1.1L6. Naantali (7)J: L CurrieT: C Maher & D EustaceW: 57 kgsS: Rip Van WinkleD: Zaloot
In the final race At Moonee Valley on Friday, deceased Westbury Stud stallion Postponed (Summer Squall-Bridal Tea, by Gulch) added a Gr2 triumph when New Zealand-bred 7YO mare Consensus (Postponed-Kate Cross, by Cape Cross) scored a shock 0.2-length victory for trainer Stephen McKee in the $200,000 Gr2 Sunline Stakes (1600m) for 3YO+ fillies and mares, defeating 5YO mares Spanish Reef & Kenedna. Under the guidance of Michael Walker, outsider Consensus was up running second early, but was overly keen and had to be restrained. Camped just off the speed behind free-wheeling Spanish Reef who tried to make every post a winner, Consensus was three deep starting a run and just kept finding in a tight go to the line. Kenedna produced her usual withering finish after coming from last, and might well have won in another 50 metres. The win was particularly poignant and memorable for McKee whose father Trevor trained the mighty mare Sunline in whose honour the race is named. Consensus’ successful trans-Tasman raid improved her stats to 11 wins (including the Gr1 Zabeel Classic, Gr3 Taranaki Cup, Gr3 Trentham Stakes, Gr3 Softel Luxury Hotel Stakes & Listed NZB Airfreight Stakes) and 13 placings (including the Gr1 Captain Cook Stakes, Gr1 Maori RC WHA Stakes, Gr1 New Zealand Stakes, Gr2 Rich Hill Stakes, Gr3 Alison Stakes, Listed Canterbury Stakes & Listed Canterbury Belle Stakes) from 54 starts for $725,662 in earnings.
Consensus wins the Sunline Stakes (pic: Mark Gatt)
NEW 9.30pm: Sunlight Wins Gr1 William Reid StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -10. Sunlight (9)J: L CurrieT: Tony McEvoyW: 54 kgsS: ZoustarD: Solar Charged 0.8L7. Spright (5)J: J R CollettT: G L FrazerW: 56.5 kgsS: HinchinbrookD: Dashoff 1.8L8. Ellicazoom (1)J: Craig WilliamsT: D & B Hayes & T DabernigW: 56.5 kgsS: Testa RossaD: Ellicorsam 1.9L3. Dothraki (4)J: Damian LaneT: P & P SnowdenW: 58.5 kgsS: MossmanD: Volantis
In Moonee Valley’s feature race on Friday night Widden Stud stallion and former 3YO champion Australian sprinter Zoustar (Northern Meteor-Zouzou, by Redoute's Choice) celebrated further Gr1 success when seemingly indomitable 3YO filly Sunlight (Zoustar-Solar Charged, by Charge Forward) scored a three quarter-length victory for trainer Tony McEvoy in the $500,000 Gr1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) for 3YO+, defeating 5YO mares Spright & Ellicazoom. Electing to take matters into his own hands after she left the gates in a hurry, jockey Luke Currie quickly put paid to Written By and, after setting a hot tempo, Sunlight backed off to get a mid-race breather before going for home off the bend. Although she started to tire as Spright came out of the chasing pack, the race was already hers. Popular gelding Voodoo Lad sadly broke down in the straight, sending jockey Ben Melham sprawling and badly winded. It remains to be seen whether he’ll make the trip to Sydney for his only ride – aboard Night’s Watch in the Gr1 Ranvet Stakes. Doubtless the best 3YO sprinter in the country, $300,000 Magic Millions Gold Coast graduate Sunlight’s record now reads: 10 wins (including the Gr1 Newmarket Handicap, Gr1 Coolmore Stud Stakes, Gr2 Silver Slipper Stakes, Gr3 Thoroughbred Club Stakes, Gr3 Quezette Stakes, Gr3 Magic Night Stakes & Magic Millions 2YO Classic on the Gold Coast) and 4 placings (including the Gr1 Lightning Stakes, Gr1 Golden Slipper & Listed Maribyrnong Trial Stakes) from 15 starts for $4,129,950 in earnings. McEvoy is clearly in awe of Sunlight, saying there is much more to come, and that she could end up being one of the best of the best.
Sunlight claims another Gr1 (pic: Mark Gatt)
NEW 9.00pm: Princess Jenni Wins Gr3 Alexandra StakesWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -13. Princess Jenni (14)J: D OliverT: D R BrideoakeW: 55 kgsS: High ChaparralD: Glitzabeel 0.2L3. Angelic Ruler (11)J: Damian LaneT: D & B PearceW: 56 kgsS: Universal RulerD: Tip The Angel 0.3L11. Arctic Shock (6)J: B MelhamT: Chris MeagherW: 55.5 kgsS: ShockingD: Art Beat 0.8L6. Mirette (13)J: Jordan ChildsT: Archie AlexanderW: 55 kgsS: UnencumberedD: Lady Zabeel
On William Reid Stakes night at Melbourne’s Moonee Valley circuit, Coolmore's deceased dual Derby-winning shuttler & 6-time Gr1 victor High Chaparral (Sadler's Wells-Kasora, by Dashaan) added a new Group winner when 3YO filly Princess Jenni (High Chaparral-Glitzabeel, by Zabeel) scored a 0.2-length victory for trainer David Brideoake in the $160,000 Gr3 Alexandra Stakes (1600m) for 3YO fillies, defeating fellow fillies Angelic Ruler & Arctic Shock at just her fourth start. With the complexion of the race changing heading into the home turn as leaders came back to the field, Angelic Ruler (after two consecutive Group placings in Melbourne since shipping East from Perth) looked like she’d make it third time lucky. Dropping from the clouds, Damien Oliver brought Princess Jenni with a sweeping run to claim his second stakes success of the evening. A $120,000 yearling at the 2017 NZB National Yearling Sales Series when consigned by Phoenix Park, Princess Jenni improved her record to 2 wins and a placing from 4 starts for $118,890 in earnings. The High Chaparral-Zabeel cross is suggestive of a filly who will thrive as her distances increase.
Princess Jenni swooped late (pic: Mark Gatt)
NEW 7.00pm: Cheer Leader Wins Listed Valley PearlWeekend, 22nd March 2019
Mrgn. Runners -8. Cheer Leader (1)J: Damian LaneT: P & P SnowdenW: 55 kgsS: SnitzelD: Gold Chant 5.0L1. Mayan (8)J: L CurrieT: Tony McEvoyW: 57 kgsS: NicconiD: Crown Agnes 6.0L9. Free Thrills (3)J: Patrick MoloneyT: L & T CorstensW: 55 kgsS: UnencumberedD: Heart Of Thrills 6.2L6. Andrassy Avenue (4)J: B MelhamT: D & B Hayes & T DabernigW: 55.5 kgsS: RubickD: Budapest
At Moonee Valley in Melbourne, Arrowfield Stud's incumbent Champion and current leading Australian Sire Snitzel (Redoute's Choice-Snippets' Lass, by Snippets) sired a new stakes-winner when 2YO filly Cheer Leader (Snitzel-Gold Chant, by El Moxie) scored a 5-lengths victory for trainers Peter and Paul Snowden in the $140,000 Listed Valley Pearl (1200m) for 2YOs, defeating 2YO colt Mayan & fellow filly Free Thrills. After placing in her only two prior starts, including one at Listed level, beaten just 0.2-length down the Flemington straight, Cheer Leader was one of a trio vying for favouritism in an open market. She never had an opportunity to give her rivals wind-burn, simply jumping to the lead on the rail and then forging further and further ahead to guarantee she’s a future black-booker. A $300,000 yearling at the 2018 Inglis Easter Sale consigned by Milburn Creek, Cheer Leader improved her record to 1 win and 2 placings (including the Listed Very Special Kids Plate) from 3 starts for $107,910 in earnings. She’s entitled to have a bit of talent, being a half-sister to Gr1 Thousand Guineas heroine Amicus, while her dam is a half-sister to globe-trotting multiple Gr1 winner and sire Starspangledbanner from the family of Elvstroem and Haradasun.
NEW FRI 4.20pm: ABANDONED Listed Albury Gold CupWeekend, 22nd March 2019
NEW B&R Black Type Weekend Wager WatchWeekend, 22nd March 2019Unquestionably, one of the greatest weekends of racing, wagering less so… Both Winx and The Autumn Sun should win, but at $1.06 and $1.35 any value has been picked bare. Across Australia and New Zealand almost every feature race looks like a trap for fools, which is ironic as he’s this week’s best bet. The Weekend Wager Watch is not an inducement to wager, just where we think value might be found.
- Best BET: Mornington Race 7; Listed Mornington Cup (1) Trap For Fools ($2.50/$1.30 Fixed). Former WA galloper who won last year’s Gr1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) and comes into this off two slashing Group placings. Could be a touch further than he wants, but was beaten less than a half-length in the 2500m Moonee Valley Cup. Carries enough weight but has earned it, and drawn to be beautifully positioned by John Allen who knows the horse well.
- Best EACH WAY: Rosehill Race 1; Listed Birthday Card Stakes (6) Serene Miss ($11.00/$3.30 Fixed). Lightly raced 5YO mare with a languid galloping style that is highly deceptive. Announced herself to a wider audience when coming from off the pace to swamp her rivals in the final of the Provincial Championships last year and has won 6 of her 9 starts. Off the scene for 10 months and, while running on, was a little flat first run back. Kris Lees puts the polish on, and she should get the speeed up front from Sweet Scandal to ensure she gets dragged into play 200m out.
- Best LONGSHOT: Rosehill Race 7; Gr1 Golden Slipper (15) Exhilarates ($21.00/$6.00 Fixed). The forgotten horse of the Godolphin six, Exhilarates comes into the Slipper following a fantastic first-up run behind Tenley that came 8 weeks after winning the Magic Millions 2YO Classic. At the Gold Coast she got well back and closed strongly out wide, something she’s likely to do again off her wide draw. She’s super tenacious, will be fitter for her last start, has a sensational big race jockey, and looks overs.
NEW Quality On Offer In Perth Autumn Thoroughbred SaleWeekend, 22nd March 2019A quality line up of thoroughbreds will go under the hammer on Sunday, March 31 at the Magic Millions Perth Autumn Thoroughbred Sale from 1pm. The auction will be held at the new Swan Valley Sales Complex on Dale Road for which the catalogue is now online. The 61 lots include proven stakes-producing and winning broodmares, plus weanlings, a yearling and an outstanding line up of racehorses. Among the broodmare entries are stakes-performers Mae Jinx, Pavlova, Xaar Boom and Busimess, as well as the dams of stakes-winners that include Missy Longstocking, Saul's Special and Summer Swallow. The racehorse section features an outstanding draft from Peters Investments including group winner State Solicitor, classy performer Bold Success and regally bred fillies Special Reflection and Treasureland. Also in the entries is last start Perth winner Yeah Bravo. A lifetime breeding right to Miss West Coast's young group winning sire Safeguard will also go under the hammer.
Shoals Scratching Pushes Sunlight Deep Into RedWeekend, 22nd March 2019An announcement was made late Thursday afternoon by the Anthony Freedman stable that Shoals had been withdrawn from Friday night’s Gr1 William Reid Stakes due to a bruised foot. As a result, Sunlight is now into $1.60 which has created an unprecedented situation. With The Autumn Sun’s odds almost halved from his opening $1.65 quote to $1.35 after sustained support, and Winx at $1.06, half of the weekend’s Gr1 feature races are now worth a very miserly $2.29 all-up should all three win. That’s a tad risky as Sunlight is yet to win at Moonee Valley and has drawn out wide. Despite Shoals’ scratching, Freedman advised she is still on track for the Gr1 TJ Smith during The Championships.
Shoals is out of the Gr1 William Reid Stakes (pic: Steve Hart)
Rosehill Big Wet Forecast A Storm In A TeacupWeekend, 22nd March 2019Despite dire predictions of heavy showers all week ahead of the Gr1 Golden Slipper meeting at Rosehill, Sydney’s northwest has actually basked in some fairly warm and clear conditions for much of Thursday, with just a few light sporadic periods of drizzle. Little rainfall is now forecast until mid to late Friday afternoon which could see a storm, but after 6pm that should fizzle out to fairly clear conditions. Thereafter it’s predicted to be almost exclusively dry until around jump time for the Gr1 Galaxy at 5pm when stormy conditions might return. Expect around 30 degrees and pleasant humidity of 52 percent, with racing on a surface now likely to be more on the soft than heavy side. See long-standing Rosehill Track Manager Shaun Patterson’s report below, ahead of the huge meeting that boasts five Gr1 races.
Winx At Her Shortest Price EverWeekend, 22nd March 2019There used to be two certainties in life, however since 16 May 2015, when she won the Gr2 Sunshine Coast Guineas, we've been able to add Winx to death and taxes. That's led to impressive six figure wagers that just keep getting rolled into one another like impossibly lucrative compond interest. And, now, nearly four years and 31 consecutive wins later, the mighty mare is at her shortest quote ever of $1.06, 2c shorter than in her past two starts. Of course, she looks like a gimme, but with Egg Tart scratched every single competitor is facing her for the first time which brings unknowns, notwithstanding how far ahead she rates on paper. Intentionally trying to find reasons why they might cause an upset, the seven in order are:
- Land Of Plenty ($17); Gr1 Toorak Handicap winner as conistent as they come, and draws to do no work on the rail.
- Dreamforce ($26); last start stakes-winner who is a jump and run type likely to look for the lead. Proven to 1600m and can carry weight.
- So Si Bon ($51); beaten a length or so in the Gr1 Australian Cup after missing by a nose in the Blamey and rattles home like an express train.
- Prompt Response ($51); Gr1 Tatts Tiara heroine who nearly caused an upset at $41 when just over 2-lengths behind Trapeze Artist a fortnight ago.
- Teleplay ($101); Never beaten more than 2-lengths in 8 starts, and is genuine Group quality. Nice experience for the connections, and might not finish last.
- Ringerdingding ($26); Winx stablemate who finished close-up behind Mystic Journey in the Australian Guineas; exciting 3YO colt on the up.
- Brutal ($26); another 3YO who has proved in a short space of time he's a quality horse, even if 1500m at this level may be a bridge too far.
Middle Order Shake-Up Possible For Sires TableWeekend, 22nd March 2019Heading into the weekend's bonanza of feature racing, headlined by a half-dozen Gr1 events, by Saturday night there could be some signficant movements on the Australian Sires Table. At the top, Snitzel is well clear of I Am Invincible who, in turn, is some way in front of Street Cry. The deceased Darley stallion should get close to $10 million in progeny earnings if $1.06 George Ryder favourite Winx wins as expected. Between fourth place (Fastnet Rock – $7,284,425) and twelth place (Written Tycoon – $6,113,072) however, there is a major logjam that includes Redoute's Choice, Sebring, Teofilo, High Chaparral, Lonhro, Pierro and Not a Single Doubt. Albeit $3.5 million is from the Golden Slipper itself, Rosehill, Moonee Valley and Mornington alone carry over $9 million aggegate prize money which should ensure for an interesting shake-up.
Weight Might Not Anchor Ambitious At AlburyWeekend, 22nd March 2019The old racing adage that weight stops trains is true – to a point. One of Australia's leading form analysts recently observed that extra weight for horses who are in good form doesn't necessarily, as per conventional wisdom, stop them from winning. If that's the case, and assuming a good barrier keeps him in touch, it might pay to overlook the 62kg the Anthony Freedman-trained Japan-bred Ambitious will carry in Friday's Listed Albury Cup (2000m). Although the formline X68X9 hardly instils confidence, winless in Australia Ambitious is seldom more than 5-lengths off some of Australia's better 1600m to 2000m horses, including Avilius (at his last start in the Gr2 Peter Young Classic), Harlem, Almandin and Comin' Through, and was beaten less than 4-lengths by superstar Maurice in Japan's Gr1 Tenno Sho Autumn International. On paper, favourite Emperor's Way, who gets a 6.5kg pull off Ambitious, is rated 94, while the latter is 107. James Winks takes the ride on the top-weight with the field set to jump at 4.20pm.
Nationwide Ripple Effect Of Gr1 VictoryWeekend, 22nd March 2019Although celebrations are not unique when a breeder or stud farm has a Gr1 winner, in the case of Sentimental Miss' New Zealand Oaks triumph, the ripple effects were nationwide. According to NZ Racing Desk, the merrymaking started on course at Trentham where Go Racing Yesteryear Syndicate along with her breeders The Oaks Stud were in attendance; meanwhile, in Auckland, the team at Westbury Stud were celebrating Reliable Man's first Gr1 victory as a sire. And down in the South Island Jonny Orr celebrating the fact his mare Nostalgic was now the dam of a Gr1 winner. The dam of six winners from seven foals to race, she is a full-sister to Gr1-winner Dracula and a half-sister to stakes winners The Oscars and Sash, as well as Insouciance, the dam of Mapperley Stud-based sire and Gr1 winner Complacent. The Oaks Stud General Manager Rick Williams was pleased with the win and although the Cambridge Farm has sold Nostalgic, he is excited for the future with Sentimental Miss' Darci Brahma half-sister Recollect, a 3-time winner. Nostalgic's most recent mating is to Puccini, Mapperly Stud's winner of the Gr1 Thorndon Mile and Gr1 New Zealand Derby.
Reliable Man sired his first Gr1 winner (pic: NZ Racing Desk)
Cleary Back For Another Go With Plunge FillyWeekend, 22nd March 2019There are plunges, and there are plunges. In last weekend's Aquis Jewel at the Gold Coast, there was a massive 'go' for the Joe Cleary-trained filly Girls Are Ready. Given her wet-track dug legs there was sound logic behind the plunge due to the heavy downpour that occurred in the lead up to the race. Unfortunately, the bog trag and the filly getting anchored amongst traffic, and with little no vision for her jockey, all combined to put paid to what could have been. AAP reports Cleary has lost little sleep over the occurrence, and has accepted for Saturday's QTIS 2YO Handicap. Because Girls Are Ready is qualified for the QTIS incentive scheme, and is a filly, should she collect the $42,500 winner's cheque, connections will also pocket another $36,250, effectively a remarkable 85 percent bonus.
The Autumn Sun Nominated For Hong Kong Gr1sWeekend, 22nd March 2019A recently announced change to Australian and Hong Kong quarentine regulations (reported here) has had the desired effect, with a significant number of Australian gallopers possible runners at Sha Tin’s Champions Day on 28 April. Champion 3YO Colt-elect The Autumn Sun is among a cohort of serious horses nominated by local trainers. The son of Redoute’s Choice, who is odds-on for Saturday’s Gr1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m), has been nominated for the Gr1 QE II Cup (2000m) and Gr1 Champions Mile (1600m). Also put forward for the QE II Cup are So Si Bon, Harlem and Extra Brut, while punters.com reports, “Fundamentalist, Le Romain, Shoals and So Si Bon have been nominated for the Champions Mile”. Australia’s ultra competitive sprint sector has seen key nominations made for the Gr1 Chairman’s Sprint (1200m), among them Brave Smash, In Her Time, Pierata, Santa Ana Lane, Shoals and Viddora.
Brave Smash is among nominees for HK's Gr1 Chairman's Sprint (pic: Mark Gatt)
First Fully-Operational Conghua Fixture On SaturdayWeekend, 22nd March 2019A new era will dawn in China’s long and fascinating relationship with horseracing when the Hong Kong Jockey Club stages its first fully-operational race fixture at Conghua Racecourse (see below) on Saturday, 23 March, reports hkjc.com. The event is being held in collaboration with Conghua District Government. The training and racing facility about 200km north of the Club’s longstanding training centre at Sha Tin, will stage five contests on what will be the first race meeting in the Mainland under the Jockey Club’s jurisdiction. Sixteen of Hong Kong’s 21 trainers have entered horses. Saturday’s Conghua fixture starts at 2.30pm with the HK$2 million Hong Kong Jockey Club Trophy (1800m), a race restricted to graduates of the Hong Kong International Sale.
Conghua Racecourse is a state of the art facility (pic: hkjc.com)
Weekend Black-Type ScheduleWeekend, 22nd March 2019A simply dazzling weekend of racing where even the weather looks likely to turn it on at Rosehill in Sydney (see earlier item). It's also the second last time to view Winx in a race as her legendary career winds down to its inevitable end. All-up there are 23 black-type events from Friday through Sunday. Whilst every effort is made to ensure information and the below race times (in Australian Eastern Summer Time order) are accurate, please consult official race cards if certainty is required.
- FRI 4.20pm: Listed Albury Gold Cup (2000m) Albury
- 7.00pm: Listed Valley Pearl (1200m) Moonee Valley
- 9.00pm: Gr3 Alexandra Stakes (1600m) Moonee Valley
- 9.30pm: Gr1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) Moonee Valley
- 10.00pm: Gr2 Sunline Stakes (1600m) Moonee Valley
- SAT 12.30pm: Gr3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) Rosehill
- 1.10pm: Listed Darby Munro Stakes (1200m) Rosehill
- 1.45pm: Gr3 N E Manion Cup (2400m) Rosehill
- 2.15pm: Gr2 Japan NZ International Trophy (1600m) Tauranga
- 2.25pm: Gr1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) Rosehill
- 2.33pm: South Island TB Stakes (1600m) Riccarton Park
- 3.05pm: Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) Rosehill
- 3.45pm: Gr1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) Rosehill
- 4.10pm: Listed Mornington Cup (2400m) Mornington
- 4.30pm: Gr1 Golden Slipper (1200m) Rosehill
- 4.50pm: Listed Hareeba Stakes (1200m) Mornington
- 5.10pm: Gr1 Galaxy (1100m) Rosehill
- 5.45pm: Gr3 Epona Stakes (1900m) Rosehill
- 5.49pm: Listed Perth Stakes (1100m) Ascot
- 6.10pm: Listed Goldmarket (1200m) Gold Coast
- 6.25pm: Gr3 Gimcrack Stakes (1100m) Ascot
- 7.05pm: Listed Grandstand Cup (1500m) Ascot
- SUN 7.20pm: Listed Tavern Cup (2219m) Bunbury
SUN 7.20pm: Listed Tavern Cup (2219m) BunburyWeekend, 22nd March 2019