Former champion three-year-old Gingerbread Man (Shamardal – Quaffle, by Hurricane Sky) scored his first success as a four-year-old on Sunday at Kranji in Singapore, bringing up his score to 10 wins from 16 starts.
Having captured the imagination with his cleansweep of all three Legs of the Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge earlier in the year before losing narrowly at the hands of Always Certain in the Group 2 Chairman‚Äôs Trophy (1800m), trainer Bruce Marsh then gave Gingerbread Man a well-deserved break only to bring him back two weeks ago when he ran a creditable fourth to Super Easy in a 1400m race despite not being 100% ready.
With that run under the belt, Gingerbread Man was expected to strip even fitter second-up, even if he was dropped back in distance in Sunday‚Äôs $125,000 Open Class race over 1200m.
Marsh said there is still some work to be put into the gelding ahead of a possible tilt at the Dubai riches next March. ‚ÄúThe Singapore Four-Year-Old Challenge is further down the road but before that, we are considering sending him to Dubai. This is why we are racing him now and we will look at some races in January for him. Ideally we will be looking at the 1800m race in Dubai (Dubai Duty Free) but nothing is for certain yet.‚Äù
With Sunday‚Äôs 10th win, Gingerbread Man has now racked up prizemoney close to $1.1 million for the Gingerbread Stable.
Darley-stallion Shamardal (Giant’s Causeway – Helsinki, by Machiavellian) sired his fifth Gr 1 winner at the weekend when Zazou won the Gr 1 Premio Roma (2000m) in Rome on Sunday.
Settled close to the moderate early pace by Derby winning jockey Mickael Barzalona, ran to the the front with 300m to go and then held off Godolphin’s Rio Del Plata (Rahy), who won this race in 2010, to score by a short-head.
Third in the Gr 1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud as a juvenile, Zazou returned in 2010 to win the Gr 3 Dr Busch Memorial at Krefeld in April and the Gr 2 Oppenheim-Union-Rennen at Cologne two months later. Runner-up in the Gr 1 Deutsches Derby at Hamburg in July, the bay ran third in the Gr 1 Rheinland-Pokal back in Cologne the following month.
Shamardal’s other Gr 1 winners are Faint Perfume and Captain Sonador in Australia with Zazou, Lope de Vega and Casamento in Europe. Both Captain Sonador and Lope de Vega are covering their first books of mares in Australia this season.
A win to Cosmic Causeway (Shamardal – Cosmic Beam, by Geiger Counter) in the last race anywhere in Australia on Friday completed a double for Darley resident Shamardal (Giant’s Causeway – Helsinki, by Machiavellian).
Earlier in the day, the Nigel Blackiston-trained Auriegirl recorded her second straight win when the four-year-old mare won the Hoaks Racing Handicap (1424m) at Sale. Cosmic Causeway raced close to the pace before the gelding proved too strong in the Fields Of Omagh Marquee Handicap (1600m) at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
Cosmic Causeway is one of two winners from as many foals to race out of Cosmic Beam (Geiger Counter – Royal Filou, by Norfolk Air). Cosmic Beam is a half-sister to the stakes winner Egyptian Ibis (Straight Strike – Royal Filou, by Norfolk Air), who is the dam of the former Hong Kong Horse of the Year and Australian Group 1 winner Desert Eagle (Hurricane Sky – Egyptian Ibis, by Straight Strike).
Egyptian Ibis also produced the 2008 Champion Older Horse of Malaysia, the eight-time winner Mighty Chic (Langfuhr – Royal Filou, by Norfolk Air).
Auriegirl fetched $27,500 at the 2009 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale while Cosmic Causeway’s breeder, the Contract Racing Syndicate, retained the gelding to race.
Darlet shuttle stallion Shamardal sired a new Gr 1 winner overnight when his daughter Lyric Of Light (2 f Shamardal – Suez) won the Shadwell Fillies Mile at Newmarket.
Held up in last in the early part of the race by Frankie Dettori, Lyric Of Light came with a real charge to go past the entire field bar front-runner Samitar (Rock Of Gibraltar) but she kept coming to get up and score a thrilling head victory. Firdaws (Mr Greeley) was four lengths further back in third place.
Trainer Mahmood Al Zarooni said Lyric Of Light won the race despite not appreciating the good to firm ground at Newmarket.¬†”I don’t think she liked the ground – Frankie felt she wasn’t happy on it and it was only because she is a good filly that she won,” he said.
A trip to the Breeders’ Cup could be on the cards for Lyric Of Light, although Al Zarooni said the decision rests with Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed.¬†”I cannot say whether she’ll run again [this season]. She could go for races like the Breeders’ Cup but we will see what the Highness thinks.”
Shamardal is standing at Darley Kelvinside for $88,000 (inc GST) in 2011.
Godolphin’s Casamento registered a comfortable win in last Saturday‚Äôs Group 3 Prix du Prince d‚ÄôOrange over 2000 metres at Longchamp. Godolphin racing manager Simon Crisford said later that Casamento has big plans later in the year. “We have no plans for the moment and want to see how the horse comes out of the race. We wanted first to see this confidence boosting race. He is entered up in all top races.”
Group 1 winner of the Racing Post Trophy at two, Casamento (3 c Shamardal ‚Äì Wedding Gift, by Always Fair)¬†has now won four races and earned ‚Ç¨310,843.
Elusive Quality (Gone West – Touch Of Greatness, by Hero’s Honor) picked up his 15th win of the season as part of a treble for Darley stallions on Sunday.
Premier Sydney trainer Chris Waller prepared Nocturnelle (Elusive Quality – Dama De Noche, by Snippets) to claim the Ashcroft Handicap (1300m) at Warwick Farm. Nocturnelle’s dam Dama De Noche (Snippets – Daisy Bates, By Danehill) was a stakes winner in the Group 3 Breeders’ Stakes (1200m) in 2002.
The John McNair-trained Shamus (Shamardal – Denia, by Thunder Gulch) completed a double for Darley sires at Warwick Farm when the five-year-old took out the Camden Handicap (1000m). The Dean Lawson stable produced Darley’s third winner of the day when California Valley (Reset – Edna Valley, by Rubiton) won the James & Son Horse Feed Handicap (2200m) at Ballarat.
California Valley’s dam Edna Valley (Rubiton – Sleepy Seymour, by Lord Seymour) won three of 13 starts in her racing days but the breeding phase of the mare’s career has yielded two stakes winners, Chitabe (Perugino – Edna Valley, by Rubiton) and Cornelia Marie (Reset – Edna Valley, by Rubiton).
Dubai Prince (3 c Shamardal – Desert Frolic), made a winning return to action at Newbury in England on Friday and could head for the Qipco Champion Stakes at Ascot on October 15.
A leading ¬†fancy for this year’s colts’ Classics until suffering an injury in April, Dubai Prince was trained by Dermot Weld last season but was transferred to Mahmood Al Zarooni over the winter, but suffered a hairline fracture in the pelvic region.
However, he bounced back in fine style under Kieren Fallon on his belated first start of the season, travelling smoothly before scooting clear of Jet Away (Cape Cross) for a two-and-a-half length victory.
“He’s pretty exciting,” Fallon said. “Everything about him is so smooth and electric – he’s proper horse. The way he travels and moves excites you. He picked up and quickened away.”
Later in the day at Newbury Cavaleiro (2 c Sir Percy – Khibraat) proved too good for Harvard N Yale (Smart Strike) in the valuable Hayes, Hanson & Clark Stakes over one mile. Sir Percy, who shuttles to Rich Hill Stud in New Zealand, currently has nine winners from his first crop racing in Europe.
Amaron (2 c Amandalini) became Shamardal’s first juvenile European Group winner of 2011 when winning Tuesday’s Zukunfts-Rennen (Gr 3) over 1200m in Germany.
Having got the Derby Italiano (G2) victor Crackerjack King, the Leopardstown 2,000 Guineas Trial (G3) winner Dunboyne Express as well as the further German Group 3 winners Elle Shadow and Zazou earlier this season, Amaron is the first juvenile Group winner of the year for Shamardal who¬†has four Group 1 winners – Racing Post Trophy winner Casamento, the dual Classic winner in France Lope De Vega who is standing at Patinack Farm in NSW and Faint Perfume and Captain Sonador in Australia. Captain Sonador is standing his first season at Raheen Stud in Queensland in 2011.
Apprentice Tim Bell and assistant trainer Brett Killion struck immediate success together when Shamardashing was successful at Doomben. The Patinack Farm-owned ¬†Shamardashing (4 gShamardal – Beaux Art, by Nomrood), aided by a rails hugging ride from Bell, held off the fast finishing Marked to score by three-quarters of a length in the Lyndhurst Stud Handicap (1640m) at Doomben on Wednesday.
Bell was appointed Patinack Farm‚Äôs Queensland rider two weeks ago and his only previous success for Sydney trainer John Thompson was aboard the Les Tinkler-owned Transporter at Caloundra last Sunday.
‚ÄúThis is the first time I‚Äôve actually won a race in Patinack Farm‚Äôs colours,‚Äù Bell said. ‚ÄúI was a¬† bit worried coming to the turn when he was on the rails.¬†He hadn‚Äôt spent a penny and I got a little nervou.¬†Now that I‚Äôve got my first win up hopefully we‚Äôll get some more.‚Äù
Killion started duties as Thompson‚Äôs assistant at Wadham Park on the Gold Coast hinterland on Monday. He previously worked for almost 16 years as foreman for the Gai Waterhouse stable at Tulloch Lodge in Sydney.
‚ÄúI had a great time working for Gai for all those years in Sydney but it‚Äôs exciting to win with my first runner in town,‚Äù Killion said.
The progeny of Darley’s prolific stallion Commands (Danehill – Cotehele House, by My Swanee) showed no signs of slowing down at the end of the season after another winning double at Randwick Kensington.
Commands broke the magical 150-winner barrier last Sunday. The stallion produced two more new winners at the Randwick Kensington meeting to move to 152 individual winners for the season.
The well-bred Eleuther (Commands – Mnemosyne, by Encosta De Lago) broke through for his maiden success in the Kingsford Handicap (1550m) at Randwick Kensington. Eleuther is the first foal to race out of the dual Group 1 winner Mnemosyne (Encosta De Lago – My Juliet, by Canny Lad).
The Guy Walter-trained Bidden (Commands – Maestro Miss, by Palace Music) earned her first win of the season when successful in the Bronte Handicap (1300m).
Darley sires also completed a double at Doomben on Wednesday. Exceed And Excel (Danehill – Patrona, by Lomond) produced his 22nd individual two-year-old winner of the season when Availability (Exceed And Excel – Cosmic Strike, by Made Of Gold) took out the Hardy Brothers Jewellers Maiden Plate (1110m).
Availability is a three-quarter sister to the stakes-placed Luce Del Mare (Fastnet Rock – Cosmic Strike, by Made Of Gold). Shamardashing (Shamardal – Beaux Art, by Nomrood) completed Darley’s double at Doomben with a win in the Lyndhurst Stud Handicap (1640m).