The Race contenders back on track
By Adam Hamilton
Everything looks on target for Stylish Memphis and Alta Orlando heading towards Thursday week’s $900,000 The Race at Cambridge.
Both pleased connections in defeat behind the very much in-form and classy Majestic Cruiser in a free-for-all at Menangle on Saturday night.
Stylish Memphis absolutely smashed the clock making plenty of ground from near last to finish fifth.
While Alta Orlando led and improved a lot on the previous week by fighting on strongly to finish second, beaten just a half-neck by Majestic Cruiser in a slick 1min53.8sec mile rate for 2300m. They ripped home in 54.6 and 26.9sec.
“He was great. Majestic Cruiser is flying and got to him quickly, but Alta wouldn’t lay down and kept digging in. I was thrilled with the run,” driver Jack Callaghan said.
Trainer-driver Jack Trainor really liked the way Stylish Memphis hit the line.
“It was impossible from where we were, with the two main dangers controlling the speed up front,” he said. “She had a heap of ground to make up and I loved how she just kept coming.
“She’ll definitely improve from the run as well … now we just need to draw the pole for the big one.”
Majestic Cruiser’s win was huge and he’s a horse trainer Jason Grimson has always felt would be serious Grand Circuit material.
Cam Hart drove him superbly in what was the first leg of a winning treble for the young gun. He also won on Jarrod Alchin’s pair Aqua Sancta and trotter Doff Your Cap.
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Former Kiwi mare Bettor Get It On snared her biggest win since moving to WA when she led throughout to win last Friday night’s $50,000 Group 2 Empress Stakes (2536m) at Gloucester Park.
It continued the fantastic success trainer Justin Prentice and driver Gary Hall Jr have shared together.
The draw proved the key with Bettor Get It On holding the front and finding plenty when strongly challenged by another classy former Kiwi mare Savvy Bromac rounding the home bend.
Bettor Get It One scored by 3.2m over Savvy Bromac with My Prayer back in third in a brisk 1min57.6sec mile rate for the long trip.
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Could brilliant four-year-old Beyond Delight be Tasmania-bound?
Co-trainer Emma Stewart said chasing Tasmania’s biggest race, the $100,000 Easter Cup on April 16, was one of two options for the exciting son of Bettors Delight.
“We’ll be splitting our open-class horses between Tasmania and the Mildura Cup, they’re basically on at the same time,” Stewart said.
Those open-class horses include the likes of Like A Wildfire, Demon Delight, Phoenix Prince Longfellow and Beyond Delight.
Beyond Delight was freshened after a terrific fourth in the Chariots Of Fire on February 19 and returned with a sparkling 1min53.1sec mile rate over 1710m to win easily at Ballarat last Friday night.
He’s won eight of his 17 starts and packs the speed of a serious horse.
Interestingly, Beyond Delight trialled from a standing-start with Like A Wildfire, Longfellow and Phoenix Prince at Melton last month.
That’s important because the Easter Cup in Launceston is a standing-start. It starts with heats on April 10 into the final six days later.
The Mildura Cup, which is a 2600m mobile, carries a $60,000 purse and consists of heats on April 19 and the final four days later.
It’s a hectic time for Stewart and co-trainer Clayton Tonkin with some of their stable stars like Ladies In Red, Tough Tilly and Act Now all about to resume and target the rich Australian Gold 4YO finals at Menangle on May 7.
In other stable news, their buzz two-year-old Petracca bounced-back to brilliantly win last night’s Shakamaker Classic at Melton.
It came just eight days after the son of Captaintreacherous stormed home from a mile back for third in the Bathurst Gold Crown final.
This time driver Nathan Jack took him to the front and roared away to win by a staggering 40.4m in a 1min54.1sec mile rate for 1720m.
“We think he’s really good. He’s just a natural two-year-old, small, fast and a lovely pacer,” Stewart said.
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Just over a year ago, Boots Electric looked like a star on the rise.
He’d just won the Group 1 4YO Bonanza at Melton and oozed potential.
A stable change and some indifferent form have since transpired, but the son of Somebeachsomewhere returned to his very best, smashing the clock to win at Melton last night.
A confident and aggressive Nathan Jack drive saw him find the lead after 400m and Jack just kept running.
Boots Electric opened-up a huge lead coming to the final bend and kept going to wjn by 4.9m in a slick 1min51.5sec mile rate for 1720m.
It was his 12th win (with seven placings) from just 33 starts and he looks destined to bigger things for owner Emilio Rosati and trainer Russell Jack.
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Veteran former Kiwi trotter Credit Master has proven an inspired addition to Matty Craven’s stable.
The eight-year-old produced a massive effort to overcome an early mistake and beat a strong field in the Group 3 Uncle Petrika free-for-all at Melton last night.
Credit Master has raced just five times for Craven and already won at Group 1 level with his upset win in the Aquagait Equine Mile at Menangle on March 5.
High-class Kiwi Temporale, who has stayed with Brent Lilley, ran a good fourth from well back.
And recent Kiwi import, Chinese Whisper, raced roughly and galloped, losing all chance.
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It was fantastic to see racing back at Albion Park last Friday.
It was the culmination of a massive amount of work by the club, workers and volunteers after the track was in the heart of Brisbane’s extreme flooding more than a month ago.
Remarkably, the track was in blistering condition for the “comeback” meeting.
Veteran former Kiwi pacer Northview Hustler blazed his way to a superb 12m win in the fast-class race for trainer Jack Butler and driver Hayden Barnes with a 1min51.5sec mile rate over 1660m.
It was a near career-best win for the eight-year-old, who sat parked and did all the work outside favourite Blacksadance (second) and also left classy pacers like Star Galleria (fifth) and Speech Is Silver (sixth) in his wake.
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In other Queensland news, Grant Dixon’s NSW Derby winner Leap To Fame will bypass the Australian Gold series later this month.
“We had to get a break somewhere. The middle and back-end of the year are really busy, so now was the time,” Dixon said.
“He’ll be back for the Queensland Winter (Constellations) and then we’ve got races like the Victoria Derby and Breeders Crown.
“We’ll still have a go at the Gold. We’ve got Tims A Trooper to target that with.”