Aussie news - August 28
By Adam Hamilton
Classy former Kiwi pacer Spirit Of St Louis showed he was right on target for next week’s $150,000 Group 1 Len Smith Mile with an all-the-way Menangle win on Saturday night.
The Sweet Lou six-year-old made the most of a gun draw (gate two) where driver Jack Callaghan took him to the front and turned the 2300m race into a dash home.
Spirit Of St Louis ran a 1min54.3sec mile rate, but most impressed with closing splits of 54.6 and 26.9sec.
It was the gelding’s 27th win with another 18 placings from just 63 starts and he’s banked over $1.23 million.
His major rivals in the Len Smith will be Victorian raiders like: Rock N Roll Doo, Mach Dan, Better Eclipse and Hurricane Harley, along with former Kiwi star South Coast Arden.
X X X
Outstanding Kiwi filly High Energy opened her Aussie raid with an emphatic win in last Friday night’s Shepparton Trotters’ Oaks.
The All Stars’ three-year-old made light of an outside back row draw to beat some handy locals in last Friday night’s feature.
It was High Energy’s first run since a third at Alexandra Park on May 4 and took her record to seven wins from just eight starts.
X X X
It was a Chris Lang trifecta in the Shepparton Trotters’ Cup, but just not in the order punters hoped.
Lang’s stable star, Ollivici, got back to last in a very slowly run race and rocketed home for a close third.
Stablemates Bullion Harry (who led) and Courage Stride (behind leader) filled the quinella in that order in a race where he they strolled a 64.1sec middle half and dashed home in 56.7 and 28.3sec.
The other big gun, former Kiwi mare One Over All, settled well back in traffic and galloped in the home straight to finish eighth.
X X X
Mighty mare Tough Tilly snared yet another feature win at Melton on Saturday night.
The five-year-old led throughout, dictated and scorched home in 54.6 and 25.8sec to win the Graham Goffin Memorial (1720m) for mares.
It took Tough Tilly past the $600,000 barrier with her 36 starts netting 17 wins, 10 seconds and a third, along with $611,583.
It was an Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin quinella with Treachery smashing the clock late to finish a fantastic second.
X X X
Training on a stay of proceedings, Jason Grimson was twice back in the winner's circle at Menangle on Saturday night.
The highlight was the stunning win by former Victorian pacer Hi Manameisjeff at his first run for the stable.
Cam Hart took the Art Major six-year-old to the front and just kept rolling.
Hi Manameisjeff just kept going further in front to win by 18.1m and absolutely smash the clock.
The gelding paced a 1min48.9sec mile.
Earlier, Grimson’s Kiwi import Bubba Scrub won again in a 1min51.3sec mile.
Grimson was disqualified for 12 months after pleading guilty to assault under provocation at Albion Park in the hours after Swayzee’s Blacks A Fake win on July 22.
He appealed and has been granted a stay.
X X X
Former champion Kiwi driver Anthony Butt added another feature win to his stellar CV at Melton on Saturday night.
Butt produced a lovely front-running drive on Wishing Stone filly Shesawish to upstage favourite The Locomotive and win the $30,000 Group 3 Caduceus Holmfield (1720m) at Melton.
Shesawish, who boasts five wins from nine starts, is out of Sundon’s mare Shesasundon.
X X X
Young WA trainer Aiden De Campo had a night to treasure at Gloucester Park last Friday.
In a huge upset, De Campo’s pair Menemsha ($19) and Grevis ($31) ran the quinella in that order in the $100,000 2YO Pearl Classic (2130m).
De Campo drove Menemsha, a son of Sunshine Beach, while Trent Wheeler was aboard Grevis.
The race changed early when Team Bond’s Ten To The Dozen blasted out to cross $1.26 favourite Waverider and lead. He fought on well for third.
Waverider was forced to sit parked, but still ran miles below his best. He tired from the 400m to finish 20m away in ninth spot.
X X X
Trainer-driver Shane Young was left pondering what might have been after his brilliant mare Wonderful To Fly thrashed her rivals at Gloucester Park.
Young was very keen to take the four-year-old to Sydney to chase a start in the TAB Eureka, but flight issues made it too difficult in the end.
So, he’s kept her at home for a string of mares’ races instead and the Golden Nugget against the boys.
Wonderful To Fly rebounded from a rare defeat to worked forward, find the front and zoom clear to win by 10.2m in a 27.3sec last quarter.
The daughter of Fly Like An Eagle has won 28 of her 45 starts.
On the same card, multiple Group 1 winner Mighty Ronaldo showed he was right on target for the WA Pacing Cup later this year with a return to winning form in the $50,000 Group 3 August Cup.
Driver Gary Hall Jr made the most of an early scrimmage with stablemates Tenzing Bromac and Himself to find the lead and dictated terms before zipping home in 55.8 and 27.7sec to beat Prince Of Pleasure by 2.4m with Tenzing Bromac recovering for a fantastic third.
In other WA news, star pacer Shockwave has had another setback and won’t race again this year.
While Magnificent Storm returned from Queensland last week and connections will make a call on chasing the WA Pacing Cup in coming days.