Aussie News - 18th September

By Adam Hamilton

HE is nearing cult-figure status in Victoria, but can San Carlo make his stamp on the sport’s biggest stage.

The lightly-raced and injury-plagued gelding posted his 18th win from just 21 starts when he dropped back in grade at Bendigo last Saturday night.

Driver Bec Bartley worked forward to find the lead, steadied through a cosy 61.6 middle half, then ripped home in 55.4 and 26.9sec or a 1min56.2sec mile rate over 2150m.

Some say the seven-year-old’s record is flattering given how superbly placed he’s been by trainer Steve O’Donoghue, but just as many argue he’s got everything needed to take the next step.

San Carlo dipped his toe into serious open-class racing when he ran a strong third to flying mare Ameretto in the Group 2 Breeders Crown Graduate free-for-all at Melton.

The son of Mach Three will now head towards the rescheduled $200,000 Group 1 Victoria Cup (2240m) at Melton on October 14.

At the very least, San Carlo is a genuine X-factor going into the Victoria Cup and maybe even the Perth Inter Dominion series.

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 IT was two years ago when Tassie pacer Devendra emerged from virtual obscurity to win two heats of the Perth Inter Dominion series.

Sadly, he succumbed to injuries soon after and it was feared his career was over.

 But father-and-son training team Barrie and Todd Rattray have nursed the now eight-year-old back to form and fitness and have another trip to the Perth Inter Dominion in their sights.

This time Devendra could have company with stablemates Pachacuti and Roger Ramjet also likely to make the trip.

 The trio filled the trifecta in a hotly-contested free-for-all at Hobart last Friday night.

 Devendra survived an early speed burn to lead throughout and beat a gallant Pachacuti by 1.2m with Roger Ramjet another 8.3m away in third spot.

Barrie Rattray, who drove the winner, said runner-up Pachacuti may head to Melbourne ahead of Perth to tackle the $200,000 Group 1 Victoria Cup at Melton on October 14.

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 REGALLY-BRED veteran Condrieu continued the recent string of upset results in Gloucester Park’s free-for-alls when he snatched victory in the Spring Pace last Friday night.

 The eight-year-old gelding – by Bettors Delight out of former superstar Kiwi filly Oaxaca Lass – sat behind the leader and hot favourite Ideal Alice and got the run at the right time to win by a half-head as a $24.10 outsider.

 It followed back-to-back wins by Jambiani as a rank outsider in free-for-alls at Perth’s home of harness.

 Condrieu is one of the reduced team Skye Bond has continued training in her own right after the suspension to husband, Greg, who is appealing that penalty.

 The other run of note in the race came from former star Beaudiene Boaz, who was awful when ninth the previous week, but flashed home late off a cosy run for a close third to Condrieu.

 It’s fair to say that was just the B-level free-for-allers with the likes of Chicago Bull, Ohoka Punter and Run Oneover expected to race next Friday.

 Trainer Gary Hall Sr snared the trifecta in another of the key Gloucester Park races last Friday when the improving Harry Hoo beat Mach Time with highly-rated former Kiwi star Lets Chase The Dream a well-held third.

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 EVEN by Emma Stewart’s standards, her two-year-old crop of last season was extraordinary.

 Headed by the likes of Nostra Villa, Poster Boy, Nostra Beach, Molly Kelly and others, the barn was loaded with young talent.

 That depth was highlighted when two of the crop – Shez All Rock and Yankee Roller – dominated their respective Group 2 Home Grown Classic 3YO finals at Melton last Friday night.

 Shez All Rock brilliantly won her heat at Bendigo, but went to another level in the final with Mark Pitt aboard to lead throughout and win by 11.2m in a 1min55sec mile rate for 1720m.

 Yankee Roller’s win stretched his unbeaten record to four races and the way Stewart has nursed him through a string of injury issues over the past six months has been amazing.

 It was some Gavin Lang brilliance which made light of Yankee Roller’s potential tricky inside back row barrier and helped him to almost arrogant 4.5m win in a 1min55.6sec mile rate.

 On the same card, Amanda Turnbull’s emerging speedster Majordan snagged his biggest win by leading throughout to beat free-for-all rivals in the VHRSC Classic (2240m).

 Lisa Bartley took the reins and did well to try and rate the headstrong Majordan, who found plenty despite pulling hard and held-off veteran Maximan to win by 1.2m in a 1min57.8sec mile rate for 2240m.

 Turnbull had a double on the night with former Kiwi pacer Carter Bromac impressively winning the opening race.

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 CLASSY veteran trotter Kyvalley Blur broke a winning drought of almost a year thanks to some smart thinking by trainer Brent Lilley.

 The US-bred 10-year-old’s last win was at Alexandra Park during an NZ raid back on October 7, 2016.

 It was only his eighth start since, but Lilley realised it would be easier to regain some winning form and confidence by whisking Kyvalley Blur up to Menangle last Saturday night.

 Sent out a hot $1.70 favourite, Kyvalley Blur got the job done, but only by a whisker over Blake Fitzpatrick’s Kiwi import Blazing Under Fire in a 1min56.8sec mile.