Beaudine Boaz back in winning form

You could hear the relief in Gary Hall Sr’s voice
In the space of six days the champion trainer had gone from being totally under the pump to again having the clear top seed for the Group 1 WA Derby in two weeks from now.
Former Kiwi colt Beaudiene Boaz suffered his first loss in six WA runs when a wilting eighth as a hot favourite to recent high-priced NZ import Kiwi Legend in a prelude of the WA Derby on March 27.
“It was the wake-up call we needed,” Hall Sr said. “We’d been cruising along, easily beating inferior horses and not learning anything.
“As much we were all a bit shocked and disappointed last week, I’m glad it happened in a race that didn’t count for too much.”
Beaudiene Boaz and Kiwi Legend met again six days later – last Thursday night – and the result reversed … identically.
This time it was Beaudiene Boaz winning easily and Kiwi Legend dropping out disturbingly for eighth in the $50,000 Group 2 Western Gateway (2536m).
It was the final lead-up for the glamour pair ahead of the WA Derby over the same trip on April 17.
“That’s one of those wins which is more of a relief than anything else,” Hall Sr said. “I reckon I haven’t had more than three hours sleep a night since the last race, thinking about everything.
“We had the better draw this time and were keen to use it. When he found the front, I knew he’d be hard to beat.”
Gary Hall Jr kept working forward from gate six until he surged to the lead from Denny Crane in a brisk 68.3sec lead time.
He then “pinched” a 30sec first quarter of the last mile before putting the foot down again when driver Mark Reed made his move from near the rear to sit parked and apply the pressure on Kiwi Legend.
Beaudiene Boaz ran a 28.2sec split and still ran home in 27.5 and 29.2sec to win by 13.3m in a flying 1min56.3sec mile rate for the long trip.
Kiwi Legend, who led throughout and looked like a superstar in the prelude, was spent at the 400m and was beaten almost 45m.
Connections will be pleased there is a 15-day break to the Derby final.
“They can turn him around … look what we did with Beaudiene Boaz in a week,” Hall Sr said.
“Still, I think if they both draw poorly, we’ve got an edge. I think Beaudiene Boaz might be a bit more versatile, at least at this stage.”
Hall Sr revealed another of his buzz Kiwi imports, American Boy, could be the late wildcard of the Derby.
The former Tony Herlihy-trained pacer will have his first run for Hall Sr in the last Derby prelude at Gloucester Park this Friday night.
American Boy turned plenty of heads winning his only start in stunning style at Alexandra Park on February 20 and Hall bought him immediately.
“I like him. I really like him. On his work at home, he’s going to be a big player in this Derby,” he said.
“To give you a line, if American Boy led, I think Beaudiene Boaz would struggle to run him down.”
Another former Kiwi, Lovers Delight, impressively won the other feature, the $40,000 Easter Cup (2907m) from a 10m handicap last Thursday night.
Trained by Stephen Reed and driven by Chris Lewis, Lovers Delight overcame a scratchy start to sustain a long three-wide run and simply outclass his rivals in a 2min0.3sec mile rate.