Darley stallions continued their terrific run on the Geelong Synthetic circuit with another double at Friday’s meeting.
Hawkes Racing produced the promising three-year-old Eastward to win the Roderick Insurance Brokers Maiden (1000m) on debut in emphatic fashion. The filly posted a 4-1/2 length win over older opposition.
“She has always been a filly that has been immature and we have just given her the time,” co-trainer Wayne Hawkes said.
“If you have got a horse that has got some ability and you sit and wait, you always get a return.
“She is a better filly than a maiden here (Geelong) but it is nice to start off with her one-for-one.”
The Peter Snowden-trained Cambria (Elusive Quality – Rainbow Arch, by Rainbow Quest) was equally impressive with his win in the TAC Wipe Off 5 Maiden (1300m).
The Geelong Synthetic track has hosted 68 races to date in the 2011/12 season with Darley sires winning 13, or 19.1 percent, of those races. To put Darley’s run at Geelong into context, Darley stallions have won 102 (8.4 percent) of the 1208 races contested in Australia and New Zealand in the first 26 days of the season.
The worldwide breeding giant’s sires have record 12 percent of their season’s wins to date at one venue.
Coolmore has moved to buy into recent seven-length Hungerford Stakes (Gr 1) winner Excelebration. The three-year-old son of Exceed And Excel is also the winner of this season’s German 2000 Guineas and was a creditable third behind Frankel in the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.
It is expected that Excelebration will continue to run for the rest of the season in the colours of owner Giuliano Manfredini, with a decision taken at the end of the year whether to race him at four. The deal, which was concluded on Coolmore’s behalf by Blandford Bloodstock, is consistent with the Irish stud’s purchase midway through last season of Canford Cliffs, who raced at four until injury struck at Goodwood.
The timing of the deal could hardly be better for Coolmore with Excelebration’s sire Exceed And Excel enjoying a brilliant run at York. He is the sire of Friday’s Group 1 Nunthorpe winner Margot Did as well as Thursday’s Group 2 Lowther Stakes scorer Best Terms, also winner of the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The Darley operation made its mark on Sunday’s Geelong Synthetic meeting after its stallions sired the winners of three of the first four races on the program.
Street Cry (Machiavellian – Helen Street, by Troy) four-year-old Cry In Awe (Street Cry – Irish Blessing, by Suave Dancer) started the day perfectly for Darley when the Robbie Griffiths-trained stallion won the Centrebet Best Price Maiden Plate (2000m).
Veteran sire Strategic (Zeditave – Sudden Impulse, by Luskin Star) was a winning sire at Geelong after Platelet (Strategic – Bloodline, by Dracula) the Centrebet Name Her To Win Maiden (1000m).
Riverbank (Elusive Quality – Violet Lane, by Danzero) finished Darley’s Geelong treble when the gelding took out the Centrebet Superbest Maiden Plate (1300m).
Yasir (Exceed And Excel – Bayyaan, by Dixieland Band) became the fourth winner of the day for Darley sires when the three-year-old claimed the Xmas Lights Maiden Plate (1200m) at Launceston.
Meanwhile, retired Coolmore champion Royal Academy (Nijinsky II – Crimson Saint, by Crimson Satan) continued to contribute to the success of the stud with a Sunday double.
Royal Society (Royal Academy – Kianben, by Jan Murray) started Royal Academy’s successful day with a win in the Rabobank Handicap (1000m) at Warren before Royal Capishe (Royal Capishe – Supersoft, by Snippets) claimed the Good Paddock Maiden (1000m) at Carnarvon.
The dual success took Royal Academy’s trans-Tasman win tally for the season to six.
Peter Moody looks to have unearthed another high-class sprinting female in the shape of Kulgrinda, who sped home in the Printhouse Graphics Stakes (Listed) at Moonee Valley. Having raced just off the pace to the home turn, Kulgrinda raced away into the straight to win easing down by two and a half lengths over Happy Angel (Happy Giggle).
“It was just from a little bit of impatience when I pushed on too long with her first prep that she hasn’t remained undefeated,‚Äù ¬†trainer Peter Moody said. “She has still got some room for improvement and is on the road to a very good spring I feel. She’ll come back here for the McEwen (Stakes) in a couple of weeks then go to the Manikato. She’s a Group I horse so we have got to go to Group I races.‚Äù
Kulgrinda (4 m Exceed And Excel ‚Äì River Crossing, by Bellotto) has won four of her six starts and earned $199,333. She is the third stakes winner in the past week for Exceed And Excel who stands at Darley Kelvinside in NSW for $66,000 incl GST.
Margot Did (3 f Exceed And Excel – Special Dancer) did it again when landing Friday’s Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes (Gr 1) over 1000m at York. Having raced near the front rank all the way, Margot Did stuck on gamely through the final stages to defeat Hamish Mcgonagall (Namid) by three-quarters of a length with the Royal Ascot winner Prohibit (Oasis Dream) a half length away in third.
The win is the second at Group 1 level for jockey Hayley Turner and the fifth win overall for Margot Did, who won a Listed race at Sandown Park in June and the third Group 1 winner for her sire.
Winning trainer Michael Bell said, “This season just keeps getting better. This has been the plan since she won at Sandown and she is a really tough filly.
“Last year she was probably quite unlucky in theLowther and then this year we found the key to riding her at Sandown when we found that she is happy bowling along and today from a long way out she was one of the few on the bridle. I thought it was going to be tough for a three-year-old filly only getting 2lb but she delivered.”
Bell said after the race that the Prix de l’Abbaye at Longchamp in October is now on the agenda for Margot Did, whose sire Exceed And Excel stands at Darley Kelvinside at a fee of $66,000 (inc. GST) in 2011.
Cornerstone Stud stallion Wilander (Exceed And Excel – Scandinavia, by Snippets) will take to the track at Moonee Valley on Saturday, just 24 hours after the birth of his first foal.
Wilander won at Group 2 level before his first retirement. The former Lee Freedman-trained speedster stood a largely unsuccessful season at Cornerstone Stud in 2010, impregnating only 20 of the 55 mares he covered.
Wilander was gelded after the scrapping of his stud career before David Hayes took over the training of the handy sprinter to prepare for his comeback to the racetrack. The son of Exceed And Excel (Danehill – Patrona, by Lomond) finished fourth to the smart Warm Love (Octagonal – Charanga, by Flying Spur) at Flemington on July 23.
Cornerstone Stud announced Wilander’s first foal was a chestnut filly out of Vermilion (General Nediym – Market Price, by Scenic).
Vermilion is an Adelaide 1050-metre winner who is a half-sister to the stakes-placed trio Not At Allordinary (Danzero – Market Price, by Scenic), Pierre Joseph (Redoute’s Choice – Market Price, by Scenic) and Discoverers (Starcraft – Market Price, by Scenic). Vermilion foaled a filly by current Cornerstone Stud stallion Barely A Moment (Gilded Time – Lady Danna, by Danehill) in 2010.
Exceed and Excel’s Royal Ascot winner Best Terms added another major race winner to her record overnight when she sped away with the Group 3 Jaguar Cars Lowther Stakes over 1200 metres at York
Fast away from the stalls, the bay looked to over-race early as jockey Richard Hughes tried to restrain the Queen May winner on her first try at 1200m. As Best Terms reached the final 400ms, she still appeared full of running. Fire Lily came closest to catching Best Terms but she could not close down the Robert Bartlett-owned filly who extended her advantage in the final furlong to land a comfortable two-length victory.
Assistant trainer Richard Hannon jnr said, “She was in the Prix Robert Papin but she suffered an over-reach and was sore. That’s why she’s not run since Royal Ascot and she’s done it well, despite a 3lb penalty. We’ll probably go for the Cheveley Park next.”
David Moodie’s homebred Kulgrinda¬†made short work of her fellow three-year-olds¬†to register an easy win in¬†the $80,400 Reliance Petroleum Lightning Stakes (Listed) over 1050m ¬†at Morphettville.
Racing first-up, Kulgrinda ¬†was still under a grip by Linda Meech turning into the home straight and once she asked for an effort, Kulgrinda bounded away to defeat Amy’s Glen (Shamardal) by two and three-quarter lengths.
Trainer Peter Moody watched the race from Caulfield and liked what he saw. ‚ÄúShe is a high-class filly. She probably should be nearly undefeated, she has always shown us exceptional ability. I didn‚Äôt really want to travel her first-up but it was just too good a race not to run her in. It was terrific to get a stakes win with her on only her fifth run.‚Äù
Kulgrinda (3 f Exceed And Excel ‚Äì River Crossing, by Bellotto) is the eighth stakes winner for Exceed And Excel in 2010/11, the Group 1 winning son of Danehill standing at Darley Kelvinside in 2011 at a fee of $66,000 (inc. GST).
Darley was the winner of Saturday’s Ingleburn RSL Club Maiden Handicap (1200m) irrespective of¬† the result of the race’s close photo finish.
The John O’Shea-trained Valid (Exceed And Excel – Valadon, by Woodman) and Hawkes Racing’s Jamaican Warrior (Lonhro – Nanny Maroon, by Alquoz) went to the line locked together in the $14,000 race.
The judge at Kembla Grange could not split the pair, giving Darley a double success in the race. Valid’s dead-heat win gave Exceed And Excel (Danehill – Patrona, by Lomond) a treble after the star sire produced a double at Morphettville.
As reported earlier, Kulgrinda (Exceed And Excel – River Crossing, by Bellotto) gave Exceed And Excel his 40th stakes winner when the filly demolished a smart field in the Listed Reliance Petroleum Lightning Stakes (1050m). Kissable (Exceed And Excel – Regal Kiss, by Royal Academy) took out the Reliance Minalton Handicap (1050m) to complete the stallion’s treble.
Commands (Danehill – Cotehele House, by My Swanee) continued on his merry way when his son The Barracks won the Montrose Access Charity Handicap (1200m) at Doomben.
The win was the Pat Duff-trained gelding’s third from eight starts.
Darley sire Commands (Danehill – Cotehele House, by My Swanee) continued to churn out the winners with a double for the second time in three days on Friday.
Commands produced a double at Wednesday’s Randwick Kensington meeting. The prolific stallion’s winning Friday began when Kukri (Commands – Zacheline, by Zabeel) claimed the Power Of Destiny Maiden Handicap (1300m) at Goulburn.
The Brian Guy-trained Oak Street (Commands – Restless Dream, by Rory’s Jester) completed Commands’s double with his win in the Northern City Finance Handicap (1200m).
Elusive Quality (Gone West – Touch Of Greatness, by Hero’s Honor) provided able support to Commands when the Peter Snowden-trained Caline (Elusive Quality – Daanet Al Dunya, by Rahy) cruised to victory in the Centrebet Geelong Cup Packages Maiden (1300m) on the Geelong Synthetic track.
Caline presented Elusive Quality with his ninth two-year-old win of the season with a comfortable 1-1/4 length win. The winning margin could have been far greater if jockey James Winks asked Caline for a full effort.
Darley sires struck again at the Geelong Synthetic meeting when The Anchorman (Street Cry – Centrestream, by Centaine) scored a narrow win in the Geelong Advertiser Maiden Plate (1300m).
The Anchorman’s win gave Darley sires four winners in a day for the third day in a row. Darley stallions have produced more than 600 individual winners of more than 1000 races, securing more than $35 million prizemoney in an outstanding 2010/11 season.