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Daily News | 20th September 2018

  • Trip No Problem for Brave Import

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Godolphin trainer James Cummings sees no reason why Home Of The Brave won't handle the step up to seven furlongs in Saturday's Gr1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes at Caulfield. The Irish-bred import goes into the race off the back of an impressive front-running win over high class opponents D'Argento and Trapeze Artist in the Gr2 Theo Marks Stakes (1300m) at Randwick two weeks ago. "He was a bold front-running winner last time and he was out in front at his previous start at Flemington," Cummings told Godolphin.com. "But he doesn't need to race like that. I don't see any issue with the seven furlongs here. He's won over the trip on tough courses in England." Cummings added: "He took a few big scalps in the Theo Marks, so he deserves the chance to perform at Group 1 level."

    Home Of The Brave (image: Steve Hart)
  • Jungle Cat Ready for Australian Debut

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Meanwhile, Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby expects Irish-bred sprinter Jungle Cat to give a good account of himself when he makes his Australian debut in Saturday's Gr1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes at Caulfield. Coming off a maiden Gr1 win in the Al Quoz Sprint (1200m) at Meydan on Dubai World Cup night (31 March), Appleby told Godolphin.com that Jungle Cat had travelled and acclimatised well. "He brings a good level of form to the race. Stepping up to seven furlongs should be perfect for him," Appleby said. "We've had this race in mind for him for some time, and he's well-prepared for it." TAB have installed Home Of The Brave as the $5 favourite for the Sir Rupert Clarke, ahead of stable-mate Osborne Bulls and the Darren Weir-trained Land Of Plenty at $5.50. Jungle Cat is next best at $10.
  • Graff To Turn Tables in Rose

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Jockey Jason Collett is confident rising star Graff (Star Witness-Dinkum Diamond, by Keep the Faith) can bounce back to his best in Saturday's $1 million Gr1 Golden Rose (1400m) at Rosehill Gardens. The Kris Lees-trained colt lost his unbeaten record when an unlucky runner-up to Lean Mean Machine in the Gr2 The Run To The Rose (1200m) twelve days ago. Graff fought on strongly to be beaten less than a length after racing wide throughout, and Collett says the run had plenty of merit. "I think it was the performance of the race," Collett told racingnsw.com.au. "At that stage of the day the inside was gold, no horses were making ground out wide." Collett added: "He was wide with no cover, was flushed wider on the bend and loomed up to get over the top of Jonker and was run down by a horse who had a far softer run." Collett says Graff's class will carry him a long way. "He oozes class. Good horses like him can do things others can't," he said. "It's a good opportunity for him. He has a better gate and a better track surface. The 1400 metres will be okay so it's a nice race for him."

    Graff (image: Steve Hart)
  • Star Colt Primed for Return

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Gr1 winning juvenile Written By will make his eagerly awaited return to racing in the Skyline Education Foundation Plate (1000m) at Caulfield on Saturday. The son of Woodside Park Stud's champion Victorian stallion Written Tycoon established himself as one of the best of his generation in the autumn, winning four of his five starts highlighted by a brilliant win in the Gr1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield. The striking chestnut colt's juvenile campaign ended with a close-up fourth in the Golden Slipper where the rain affected track blunted his turn of foot. Well aware that his young stable star had endured a busy campaign, trainer Grahame Begg gave him a long spell with a view to targeting the stallion-making Gr1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington in November. "He had a good break and we've had a pretty faultless preparation so far," Begg told Sky Sports Radio. "We were very conscious that he had had a busy 2YO season and young horses need time to rejuvenate. We thought he did a pretty damn good job so we gave him a really long break." Begg added: "We had a good think about where we were going to head to in the spring and it was a bit of a no brainer to target the Coolmore." Begg says Written By has lost none of his ability and expects him to run a bold race fresh. "The form lines around him are excellent," he said. "He will run very well. He is a very competitive horse, but there is plenty of improvement left in him." He added: "I thought 1000 metres would be the perfect way to start, then its a few weeks to the Blue Sapphire and another two weeks to the Coolmore."

    Written By (image: Mark Gatt)
  • NZB Filly Of The Year Series Kicks Off Saturday

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    The 47th New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year Series begins at Hastings on Saturday with the $70,000 Gr3 Hawke's Bay Breeders' Gold Trail Stakes (1200m). The prestigious Series is made up of 10 Group races, over distances ranging from 1200 to 2400 metres, between September and March. The New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year winner immediately becomes a highly valuable breeding proposition and earns her connections $50,000 in bonus cheques including $10,000 for her breeder, $10,000 for her trainer and $30,000 for her owner. The Gold Trail Stakes is the shortest race of the Series, but has often provided an early glimpse of outstanding talent with past winners including Snap, Taatletail, Anabandana, and Bounding. This year's field is headed by the champion 2YO Avantage (Fastnet Rock). Bought for $210,000 at the 2017 Premier Sale, Avantage has won five of her six starts including the Karaka Million (1200m) and the Gr1 Manawatu Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m). Click here to view commentary on each runner.
  • Southern Filly Of The Year Series Launches Saturday

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Meanwhile, Saturday's $50,000 Listed New Zealand Bloodstock Canterbury Belle Stakes (1200m) at Riccarton Park marks the beginning of the 19th New Zealand Bloodstock Southern Filly of the Year Series. The Series has been held since the 2000-01 season and covers four Listed races over 1200, 1400, 1600 and 2000 metres. The Canterbury Belle, which has been won by top-class fillies such as the Gr1 winners Tartan Tights, Dorabella and La Diosa, has drawn another quality field this year, including the highly regarded Emily Margaret. The New Zealand Bloodstock Canterbury Belle Stakes will be run as Race 9 on Saturday with a start time of 4.09pm. Click here to view commentary on each runner.
  • Options Aplenty for Melt

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Pukekohe trainer Nigel Tiley is pleased with the way classy filly Melt has come through her win in the Gr3 Northland Breeders' Stakes (1200m) last Saturday, reports NZ Racing Desk. She is likely to make her next appearance in the Gr2 Sacred Falls Hawke's Bay Guineas (1400m) at Hastings on 6 October. "I am quite keen to take the boys on in the Hawke's Bay Guineas because if she happened to step up and be superior to them, I wouldn't be adverse to running in the 2000 Guineas," Tiley said. Melt is currently rated a $4.50 chance in the Gr1 New Zealand 1,000 Guineas (1600m) and a $12 chance in the Gr1 New Zealand 2,000 Guineas (1600m). "The 2,000 Guineas is worth half a million, whereas the 1,000 Guineas is worth $300,000, so it's an option that we've got," he added.
  • In Her Time Ticking Along Nicely

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Trainer Kris Lees expects top sprinting mare In Her Time to be highly competitive when she kicks off her Everest campaign in the Gr2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday week. In Her Time, who was transferred to Lees' Newcastle stable last week following the suspension of fellow Novocastrian horseman Ben Smith, showed she is building up nicely to her first-up assignment when finishing second to El Dorado Dreaming in a 1000m trial at Newcastle on Wednesday. The stable-mates put a four-length gap on the rest of the field and ran quick time in the process. "She [In Her Time] was a little bit keen in the early stages but Corey [Brown] indicated he had plenty of horse under him," Lees told Sky Sports Radio. "After her trial here [at Newcastle] on Friday I thought she was pretty forward, so she didn't need to be extended in her trial today. She trialled strongly and appears to have come through it quite well." Lees added: "She has a very good fresh record so I expect her to be competitive in the Premiere and she will improve off the run going into the Everest." The Premiere will be In Her Time's only lead-up run to the $13 million The Everest (1200m) at Royal Randwick on 13 October.
  • Brown Praises In Her Time

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Jockey Corey Brown has no doubt In Her Time is building strongly towards her primary spring target, the $13 million The Everest (1200m) at Royal Randwick on 13 October. Brown was aboard In Her Time when she finished second to El Dorado Dreaming in a 1000m trial at Newcastle on Wednesday, and said she feels like a more mature racehorse compared to previous preparations. "Even though El Dorado Dreaming was coming at me late I was trying to shut her down because she had done enough," Brown told Sky Racing. "They ran home in good time. She is right on track. Having ridden her in previous preparations, she feels a lot better, she is a lot more balanced this time in." He added: "She feels really good. She is strong and is right up to the mark. She's going very well ahead of the Everest." In Her Time will resume in the Gr2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday week. Listen below to what Brown told Lees Racing about the trial.
  • El Dorado Dreaming Wins Trial

    Thursday, 20th September 2018
    Gr1 winning filly El Dorado Dreaming has impressed her new trainer Kris Lees by winning a barrier trial at Newcastle on Wednesday morning. El Dorado Dreaming, who was a surprise 100-1 winner of the Group 1 ATC Sires' Produce Stakes in the autumn, was transferred to Lees' stable following the suspension of fellow Newcastle horseman Ben Smith last week. El Dorado Dreaming was up against Everest contender In Her Time in the opening 1000m trial of the morning and finished strongly to claim her high profile stable-mate right on the line in a time of 58.30 with a slick final 600 in 33.01. "She was very sharp that last furlong," Lees told Sky Sports Radio. "I will sit down with the owner over the next few days and decide on a program going forward, but she was impressive. I thought she was pretty sharp. I'd expect her to show up in whatever race we run her in." Lees is yet to decide where El Dorado will launch her spring campaign, but said the Gr2 Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) at Caulfield on Sunday week (30 September) was the most logical starting point. "I'd say she is a strong chance of going to the Thousand Guineas Prelude on Sunday week," he said. "The Roman Consul Stakes over 1200 metres in Sydney the week after is another option, but we'll make a final decision by the end of the week."
  • Gr1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes Field & Barriers

    Thursday, 20th September 2018

    The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $500,000 Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) to be run at Caulfield on Saturday. The race has attracted a capacity field of 15 plus four emergencies. The top weight for the race is the Godolphin-owned Jungle Cat who will be making his Australian debut. The Irish-bred speedster was last seen claiming his maiden Gr1 title in the Al Quoz Sprint (1200m) in Dubai on World Cup night (31 March). Jungle Cat is likely to vie for favouritism with fellow Godolphin runners Home Of The Brave and Osborne Bulls, with the former a chance of securing the final Everest slot if he can replicate his impressive last-start win in the Gr2 Theo Mark Stakes in Sydney. Other leading chances include Holy Snow & Oregon's Day from the Mick Price yard, Land Of Plenty for Darren Weir, and Showtime and Peaceful State, who will both be carrying the colours of world renowned Japanese breeder & owner Katsumi Yoshida.

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