Superb San aiming for Inter Dom
SAN Carlo’s first-up Kilmore Cup win had it all.
Most importantly for Kiwis, it also meant he’s a lock for tackle both the NZ Cup and Auckland Inter Dominion series.
Co-trainers Steve O’Donoghue and Bec Bartley will be hoping it’s third time lucky at the Inter Dominion after contesting the 2017 Perth series and Melbourne last year.
He might be a veteran at nine, but San Carlo looked sharper and better than ever when he returned from a long spell to outstay and outclass a strong field in last night’s $80,000 Group 2 feature.
Bartley, who drove a confident and aggressive races, became just the third female to win Australia’s most famous country cup, following Kerryn Manning and Kima Frenning.
And she did it after a daring early move around the field to force her way to the “breeze”, outside leader and heavily-backed favourite Born To Rocknroll and giving the second elect, Buster Brady, the one-one trail.
As big an opinion as Bartley has of San Carlo, she admitted a level of surprise he could do that much work and beat such a strong field.
“To be honest I knew he’d go good, but I didn’t know if he could win it or not, that was a really big win, really big surprise,” she said.
“He’s been working really good at home, but we thought he might just have needed this run before the Victoria Cup (October 12).”
San Carlo “crunched” Born To Rocknroll with a blazing 27.2sec split from the 800-400m and still good enough to hold of some stars in a 29.1sec last quarter. The mile rate was 1min58sec for the long 2690m trip.
O’Donoghue confirmed the Victoria Cup was next stop before plotting a path towards the NZ Cup on November 12 then up to Auckland for the Inter Dominion.
It’s a much-needed boost to the Aussie Inter Dominion hopes with Bling It On also declared very likely this week.
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THIS time last year Cruz Bromac was preparing for the NZ Cup in the All Stars’ barn.
Now he’s getting set for the Victoria Cup and looks right on target for trainer Amanda Grieve.
Cruz Bromac returned from a lengthy spell with a powerhouse win, albeit in moderate company, at Kilmore last night.
It was his first runs since leaving the All Stars barn after a Miracle Mile lead-up race in February.
Driver Greg Sugars pressed hard for the lead with an early move around the field, but had to sit parked and still won with a deal of class of arrogance in a 1min56.6sec mile rate for 2180m.
He’ll now go straight into what’s suddenly shaping as a fascinating Victoria Cup on October 12.
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CONNECTIONS of buzz comeback pacer The Storm Inside are also clinging to the hope of making the Victoria Cup field after his easy first-up win at Kilmore.
It was the six-year-old first run in 12 months and took his record to 13 starts for 12 wins and a second.
A couple of major injury setbacks have restricted the former megastar juvenile to just seven starts in the past three-and-a-half years.
“We’re not afraid of any horse. On ability he can go with anything,” co-trainer Emma Stewart said. “We’d love to get into the Victoria Cup, but if not we think he’ll be a great horse to set for a Miracle Mile.”