Brisbane was the place to be for the top class racing last weekend
for the feature weekend of racing in Queensland. With the Stradbroke Handicap, Queensland
Derby, Brisbane Cup and The TJ Smith, Eagle Farm was the scene for Group One racing at its
Saturday was a day most Queenslanders wont forget for
a long, long time. Their two pin-up horses Show a Heart and Falvelon were clashing against
some of the countrys best in the million dollar Stradbroke. Their respective
trainers, Barry Miller and Danny Bougoure, were more hopeful than confident. The two had
things against them. Show a Heart, as is customary, drew closer to the car park than the
rail, and Falvelon was not suited as the track wasnt as dry as connections had
earlier hoped. But remember class is always a great way to re-enhance your chances.
Before the two local heroes could go head to head it was
time to find a potential spring top liner with the running of The Queensland Derby for the
three-year-olds. What was expected to be a clash between the smart kiwi Distinctly Secret
and the filly Galroof wasnt to be as a Sydneysider stole the show.
Although kept safe in the market, and as expected shorter
priced in his home state, the Max Lees trained County Tyrone scored what was described as
A winner at his past two starts back in the harbour city,
Country Tyrone wasnt being referred to in the same breath as Distinctly Secret. But
on race day and with a better run he was declared the winner, proving a touch too good for
Galroof, who was given a lovely run by Damien Oliver.
County Tyrone, a son of the former outstanding galloper
Danewin, extended a great season for the Sydney based hoop Corey Brown. Brown is one of
three riders, along with Darren Beadman and Chris Munce, who are having a great battle for
this seasons riding honours in Sydney.
The scene was now set for the race most of the crowd had
come to see the 2002 edition of the $1 million Stradbroke Handicap, sponsored by
perennial big race supporters AAMI. The field was chock full of class, from top to bottom
it held a top class field.
When the gates opened at a tick after four the capacity
field of 20 runners began their 1400 metre journey for one of Australian racings
The field rounded the famous home turn at Eagle Farm and at
that point there were more in the field with a chance of winning than not. And with such a
high quality field engaged the hopes of a blanket finish would be shortly realised.
Locals were split. Falvelon had become a local champion
after back to back wins in the Hong Kong International Sprint at Sha Tin in 2000 and 2001,
and a race he is being set for again this December. Show a Heart, a Group One winner
during every season of his career was having his final start before retiring to stud.
Oh my goodness the promoters dream had come true. In
a blanket finish the two local heroes had come together and for the final 50 metres they
went stride for stride, both jockeys desperate to get their charge to the post first.
But as if the race was scripted for a fairytale the
chestnut entire, the younger of the pair, Show a Heart scored a memorable victory over the
international star Falvelon.
Barrier twenty two (19 after the scratchings) couldnt
stop him and neither could 19 high class rivals. At his very last start Show a Heart had
scored his greatest triumph.
The chiefs of Glenlogan Park, one of Queenslands
leading thoroughbred studs, must have been rubbing their hands together when the horses
flashed past the post. Show a Heart will be standing at Glenlogan Park this season, while
in twelve months time he will be joined by Falvelon! Then the two will be set for another
battle the battle to be the king of Glenlogan Park.
While the main attention at Eagle Farm was focussed on the
Straddy and the Derby, there were some other performances on the support card worth a
In form Gold Coast based trainer Alan Bailey saddled up
Flying Sparks to win the listed Japan Trophy (2218m), finding the class drop from the
Group One Doomben Cup a great advantage on Saturday. The performance of the runner-up
Lottery Prize was excellent. The gelding is being set for the country cups circuit and
hell prove mighty hard to beat out there. Consistent performer Sailors Lark
was a handy third.
The Bob Milligan and Brad Pengelly love affair continued in
the final race when A Deena survived to a protest to win the eighth. But Pengelly
wasnt quite as pleased after leaving the stewards room. He was outed for careless
riding one of eleven over the weekend.
Fairytale result: Show a Heart
Horses to follow: Proudly Agro, Jeunes Jester, Lottery Prize, General Minolta.
Ride of the day: Damien Oliver (Galroof in defeat)
Spring carnival pointers: Lester Thunderwing, La Serenade.
Flemington was the venue for Melbournes metropolitan
meeting on Saturday where the feature event was snatched by a South Australian visitor.
Already rocked with both SA AFL teams in the top three on
the premiership table, Melbournians were nearly feeling ill after two of the three SA
runners in the field placed in the AR Creswick Stakes, a listed event.
The Mark Minervini trained Savage Attack, thanks to a
remarkable ride from Nash Rawiller, proved he was the best horse in the race and a spring
carnival proposition by proving too strong on the line for the local Lewinsky. Another SA
galloper Raja Lane ran a handy third. Oh So Discreet, the third Adelaide galloper, again
had little luck and should be followed a win is close.
Training honours for the day were shared between Michael
Moroney and Peter Moody, both preparing doubles, although neither was on course.
Moodys pair of winners were the smart youngster
Aint Here and the handy entire Eric, while Moroneys colours were carried to
victory by both Enthous and The Big Ask in the last two races.
Ride of the day: Nash Rawiller (Savage Attack)
Spring carnival pointers: Savage Attack,
Never again: Paradiddle, Summer Rule.
Horses to follow: Oh So Discreet, The Big Ask, Regal Royal, Old Man.
Unlucky: Oh So Discreet, Sylvan Heights.
Randwick hosted a handy race day, with no exceptional stand
outs. The country cash races for the rural visitors provided an interesting mix to the
card, with form from right around the state.
Stormcat Academy couldnt have been any more
impressive in its top class win in one of the country cash races. After striking trouble
and unable to get a run from a period in the home straight Lenny Beasley used his head and
angled the gelding across the heels to the outside of the field where he got room and then
responded in great style. The gelding is putting it all together and if he keeps improving
then a minor race around carnival time isnt without a chance.
The Moruya filly Ancient Song, already a Group Two winner
of the Light Fingers Stakes, returned to the track in great style with a win in the listed
June Stakes, the feature event of the program. Calming only needed a little bit further
and she would have followed up her listed win in Adelaide with another stakes success.
The award for the scratching of the day must go to Don
Robb, a Wyong based trainer who scratched his filly Powder Burn to send her to the city
meeting at Randwick. Despite starting at massive odds the daughter of Bite the Bullet
proved too good, breaking her maiden status in great style with James Innes in the saddle.
Despite carrying a big weight Allez France was disappointing in the same event.
Brent Stanley was at his best rating the Gai Waterhouse
trained gelding Telescopic perfectly in front, running clear of his rivals and breaking
their hearts in the process. Stanley has been somewhat in the wilderness since winning the
Caulfield Cup (Arctic Scent) as an apprentice, and it was great to see him get back into
the winners stall in style. Lets hope Gai watched the race and gives him a
chance in the spring. Although you could imagine Cassidy, Munce and York might have
something to say about that.
Speaking about Cassidy, the "Pumper" is getting
close to a return to the track. The unflappable hoop has been back riding work and his
body is holding up well. Ring a ding ding!
Darren Beadman has extended his lead in the race for the
jockeys premiership. With Corey Brown in Brisbane and Chris Munce still out
suspended Beadman had the chance to set up a bit of a break on his rivals and he did inch
clear ever so slightly. All three are very backable at present as they are all desperate
to win the title. Beadman is now the favourite but I wouldnt give up on Corey Brown,
hes riding in the best form of his career.
Ride of the day: Lenny Beasley (Stormcat Academy).
Spring carnival pointers: Stormcat Academy, Ancient Song, Fleet Harriet.
Never again: Notoire, Mr. Royston.
Horses to follow: Stormcat Academy, Sir Dan, Cognac Trader.
In Adelaide a tidy program was held at Cheltenham in that
citys west and Brian Mueller provided a unique double thanks to the wins of Risky
Lass and Ottobello. Both horses are owned, bred and trained in the same interests and are
both out of the Oenjay Star mare Olivias Delight.
Promising young Strathalbyn based apprentice Matthew
Neilson kicked off his city riding career when he rode a winner at just his second meeting
with the metro licence. The way came thanks to the Daniel Clarken trained roughie Demondo,
who before Saturday was a maiden galloper.
Showgazer followed up his strong Mount Gambier Cup placing
with a strong win in the distance race on the day. His trainer Dick Coote was cheering
loudly from the remote SA country town of Maree where picnic races were taking
Gawler based trainer Ron Campbell wont be zipping
Saturdays hurdle winner Voodoo Sunset over the border for the feature jumping
events. Thinking his gelding is a year off his best Campbell instead will continue through
the Over the Rainbow jumping series in South Australia.
Ride of the day: Steven Pateman (Voodoo Sunset).
Horses to follow: Risky Lass, Mighty Raja, Iota of Luck.
Spring carnival pointers: Romilada, Impulsive Reality.
Never again: Saturday Fever.
The feature event in Perth was the Lindsay Rosenthal
Stakes, a listed for two-year-olds and the good money was for The Right Money, a colt by
Magic of Money. The Andrews trained colt proven too strong to down Turn to Dream and