Three Group Ones for Jack Trainor
Kiwi trainer-driver Jack Trainor made it three Group 1 wins in a month when he teamed with brilliant filly Anntonia for a breathtaking Gold Bracelet final at Bathurst last night.
Anntonia must be rivalling Stylish Memphis as the most “special” horse in Trainor’s career after adding the Bathurst victory to her sparkling NSW Oaks late last month.
In contrast to the Oaks where she stormed home to win, this time Trainor blasted her out to lead easily from the pole and never looked in danger.
“She felt amazing tonight. I thought she’d have the speed to lead if I wanted and tonight was the night to try it from the pole,” Trainor said.
“She did it so well in front and still felt really strong on the line.”
It was a stunning win with Anntonia clearing out to score by 15.6m and breaking the all-aged track record with her 1min52.1sec mile rate for 1730m.
It was back on February 27 at Menangle when Trainor broke through for his first Group 1 win on Stylish Memphis in the Ladyship Mile and made it a huge night by winning the Oaks on Anntonia.
In the three-year-old colts and geldings feature, the Group 1 Gold Chalice final, Victorian raider Idyllic broke through for a richly deserved maiden Group 1 win. He’d finished second in the Vicbred 2YO final and third in last year’s Bathurst Gold final previously.
Luke McCarthy took the drive for Clayton Tonkin and Emma Stewart and whizzed him to the front from gate six before copping plenty of midrace pressure from NSW’s best 3YO Tasty Delight, who raced roughly at times while working hard.
The son of Somebeachsomewhere kept finding plenty and fended off a late dash along the inside from Kashed Up to score by a head in a brisk 1min52.9sec mile rate for 1730m.
Idyllic is raced by some Victorian heavyhitters like Country Racing Victoria CEO Scott Whiteman, leviathan punter Tom Hogan, major owner Fred Crews and ex-AFL star and renowned form guru Mark Hunter.
He’s raced just 18 times for eight wins, seven placings and $159,890 in stakemoney.
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Temora’s rich harness heritage added another chapter last night.
Best known as the former home of the great Paleface Adios, aka the Temora Terror, it is also home to Bathurst Gold Crown winner Mister Rea.
The son Of Pet Rock, now unbeaten in four runs, is trained by the hugely respected Temora horseman Ray Walker and driven by Daryll Perrot.
Simply, winning the Bathurst Gold Crown was their version of winning a Melbourne Cup.
Perrot used the pole to hold the lead on Mister Rea and was happy to keep “clicking him up” and rolling along in front before finding plenty in a 1min54.3sec mile rate to beat a gallant Masquerading by 2.3m with another 22.4m away to third-placed Better Than Lexy.
Respected NSW horseman Rickie Alchin summed-up the thoughts of many straight after the win.
“Ray and Jane (Walker) have mentored a lot of people in the Riverina, including myself, and nobody deserves this more. (Mister Rea is) named after a very close friend of Ray’s who passed (away) too early. (It is) a great story … Temora will be buzzing tonight,” he said.
Mister Rea first stamped his potential when he blazed a much quicker first half than King Of Swing on Miracle Mile night and still kept going to win the Group 2 Sapling Stakes in a 1min52.1sec mile.
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Respected Victorian horseman Russell Jack won his second Group 1 Bathurst Gold Tiara final a remarkable 26 years after his first.
It was way back in 1995 when Yeronga Songbird, still arguably the best pacer has been involved with, won a strong Tiara final.
Nine years later in 2004 he won the colts and geldings version, the Group 1 Gold Crown, with Albert Terrill.
Jack had the numbers with three Tiara finalists and made the most of it by not just winning, but also snaring the quinella.
The regally-bred Just Hope led throughout to win easily for driver Zac Phillips in a 1min54.1sec mile rate for 1730m. She’s by Bettors Delight out of former Australian Gold 2YO winning filly Queen Of Pop.
Captains Queen, driven by Amanda Turnbull, came out of the one-one trail to grab second spot.