Krug fades to fifth - Miracle Mile delayed a week

by Adam Hamilton 

Young Kiwi star Krug’s NSW campaign ended on a downer when he led and disappointed in a free-for-all at Menangle last night.

Things looked good early when driver Anthony Butt was able to work around to take the lead then dawdle through a 32.5sec first quarter of the last mile over 2400m.

But when Cran Dalgety’s four-year-old should have been making them chase, it was clear he was under pressure and he tired late for fifth.

“He felt great coming to the last bend, but when I said go he just didn’t quicken. He just started to whack away,” Butt said.

Dalgety now has the challenge of rejuvenating him for a shot at the inaugural $900,000 The Race at Cambridge on April 14.

The was won in barnstorming style by former Kiwi veteran Alta Orlando, who resumed from an injury setback and spell for Team McCarthy.

Alta Orlando led early and was then shuffled back to three pegs.

“I was in a sticky spot, but thankfully some gaps started coming at the 300m and the old boy sprinted home really strongly,” driver Jack Callaghan said.

It was his first run since finishing third in the NSW Inter Dominion final back on December 11.

“What a fantastic win it was first-up,” Callaghan said. “We were a bit disappointed he wasn’t ready for some of the bigger races and the conditions meant he wasn’t eligible for the (Group 1) Ainsworth (FFA), but it’s still great to pick up another win.”

Alta Orlando has raced 106 times for 22 wins, 42 placings and this win took him past $950,000 in earnings.

Another former Kiwi who has also battled his injury problems, Line Up, ran a terrific race for second for trainer-driver Darren Binskin.

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The Miracle Mile was called off because of horrific weather in Sydney last night. Six of the night's nine races were run when the call was made.

The $1m feature will now be held next weekend.

King Of Swing is vying to be the first horse to win it three times. 

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Before the meeting was called off, Kiwis dominated the Group 1 Trotters’ Mile at Menangle, but just not the ones punters hoped.

In a massive upset, former veteran Kiwi Credit Master sat parked throughout for trainer Matty Craven and driver Sofia Arvidsson to win strongly as a $71 shot.

The eight-year-old gelding beat other recent imports from NZ in Doff Your Cap and Andoverlov in a slick 1min53sec mile.

Top class Kiwi raider Temporale was sensationally backed from $2.70 to $1.70 on the back of his fantastic recent Victorian form, but was unable to get across Tough Monarch in an early burn and 26.5sec opening quarter.

The effort took its toll on Tough Monarch who dropped right out, while Temporale dropped in to trail the leader and just battled away late for a well-beaten fourth.

Credit Master’s last run was a fifth at Cambridge on December 24 and his only two Menangle runs for Craven and Arvidsson has only been moderate fourths.

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Former top young Kiwi pacer Zeuss Bromac scored his most significant Aussie win in last night’s $100,000 Group 1 Ainsworth FFA (2400m).

Last season’s Chariots Of Fire runner-up staved-off star Kiwi mare Stylish Memphis in a horrendous conditions to win by two metres.

The race was run in torrential rain and howling winds.

Driver Gavin Fitzpatrick gave Zeuss Bromac valuable cover midfield in the running line, hit the front early the home straight and kept fighting hard to win in a 1min54.2sec mile rate.

“I’m not sure I’ve driven in worse conditions to that,” Gavin Fitzpatrick said. “He deserved that one. He’s been so consistent, season after season. And he’s come back really well this campaign.”

Caretaker trainer-driver Jack Trainor was thrilled with Stylish Memphis’ run.

“She went so big. She had a lot of ground to make up and had to do it into that driving rain, as heavy as it gets. She just kept trying,” he said.

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Top Queensland trainer-driver Grant Dixon broke a 28-year NSW Derby drought with Leap To Fame’s stunning win last night

“Gee, 1994 was a long time ago,” Dixon said, referring to his first and only NSW Derby win with Jeremy Lee.

“I’ve tried a few times since with some nice horses and haven’t quite been able to get there, so this one is great.”

It was painless and stunning, too. Leap To Fame grabbed the one-one trail and put his rivals away quickly at the top of the straight to win running away by almost 11m in a slick 1min54.1sec mile rate for 2400m.

“He’s right up with the best young horses we’ve had, but now it’s a matter of if he can go on with it.”

Leap To Fame will have a short break before coming back to chase his home town Queensland Derby during the Constellations Carnival at Albion Park in June/July.

Former Kiwi colt Major Art won a heat of the Derby at his first NSW runs for Paul Fitzpatrick and followed with a terrific, albeit well-beaten second in the final.

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