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Daily News Wrap

7 min read

Wonder mare at Flemington

Champion mare Winx (Street Cry {IRE}) continues to please trainer Chris Waller as she prepares for her next start in Melbourne in the G1 Turnbull S., at Flemington.

“I am very pleased with the way she came through her last start and this was evident in a strong piece of work last Saturday at Rosehill,” he said.

“She was ridden by Hugh Bowman and he was extremely happy with the way she felt and I could not have been happier with her condition and body language subsequent to this gallop.”

Winx was accompanied to Waller’s Flemington stable by her dual Group 1 winning stablemates The Autumn Sun (Redoute’s Choice) and Youngstar (High Chaparral {IRE}) along with Another Dollar (Ocean Park {NZ}) and Invincibella (I Am Invincible).

Following her Turnbull S., outing, Winx will attempt to win the G1 Cox Plate for an unprecedented fourth time.

Baster booked for Everest

Stephen Baster has been locked in to ride the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained Invincible Star (I Am Invincible) in The Everest at Randwick.

The Melbourne jockey will be reunited with the mare in Saturday’s G2 Premier S., after winning the G3 Thoroughbred Club S., and finishing a close second in the G1 Coolmore Stud S.

“Obviously he had an association with her last preparation and he gets on well with her and knows her well,” Bott told RSN927.

“He's coming up to ride her in the Premiere and he'll be ready to take the reins in The Everest.

"I think he was a very suitable candidate and we didn't have to think too hard about who to partner her.”

Invincible Star was narrowly beaten last time out in the G2 The Shorts and Bott said it was an excellent run under the circumstances after the mare was slow to begin.

He said that run had improved Invincible Star and so too would Saturday's outing to peak her for The Everest.

Filly chasing Oaks berth

Trainer Mark Newnham is hoping his filly Greysful Glamour (Stratum) can earn a golden ticket into the G1 VRC Oaks.

The winner of Wednesday’s Oaks Trial at Flemington will earn a ballot exemption from the November 8 classic. Greysful Glamour has won once from eight appearances and last time out she finished third in the G3 Spring S., at Newcastle.

The filly is a daughter of Rippled (GB) (Dalakhani {IRE}), with the dam a three-quarter sister to the North American Group 2 winner Always First (GB) (Barathea {IRE}).

The family has made its presence felt in Australia through the G2 Chairman’s H., winner and G1 Sydney Cup runner-up Libran (IRE) (Lawman {FR}).

Volpe Veloce trials impressively

Quality mare Volpe Veloce (Foxwedge) gave a glimpse of her class on Tuesday with a smooth performance to win her 1100 metre heat at the Te Teko trials.

The Graham Richardson and Gavin Parker-trained mare is close to resuming and has benefited from a winter spent in Queensland.

“She probably did a little bit more than what I wanted today, but Michael Coleman rode her and he is really pleased with her,” Richardson said. “She had a nice blow and she is where we want her.”

The winner of 10 of her 17 starts, Volpe Veloce had a two-start winter campaign in Queensland where she finished sixth in the Gr.1 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1350m) and tenth in the Gr.1 Tattersalls Tiara (1350m), where she was beaten less than three lengths.

“She had a bit of a tough trip back from Brisbane to Sydney then over here, but she spelled very well at Caloundra,” Richardson said.

“She has done well because of it. She is good in the coat and she has got a good middle to her now.

“As a 3-year-old she always raced a little bit light, but now she really looks like she has come of age. She is really big and strong now. This is her year I think.”

The G1 Railway S., winner is likely to resume in the Sweynesse S., on October 20 and then Richardson and Parker will make a long-term plan.

“She will run at Rotorua and then we will make a plan as to what direction we take,” Richardson said.

“I like the thought of the Railway again, you’ve obviously got the Telegraph, but instead of the Telegraph maybe we will look at the BCD Group Sprint at Te Rapa,” he said.

“She’s got a big action and I think she will be even better up to a mile this preparation, but we will see.”

3YO on trial for Guineas

Smart 3-year-old Gem Song (Your Song) will on Saturday be chasing a G1 Caulfield Guineas berth.

He won for the third time in his four-start career when successful at Rosehill last Saturday and he will back up at Randwick in his quest to make his target.

Trainer Kris Lees confirmed on Tuesday morning that Gem Song is as a certain starter in the Listed Dulcify Quality (1600m), in which he will; step out at a mile for the first time.

Jason Collett rode Gem Song in his Benchmark 72 H., win against his own age group at Rosehill where he weaved between runners in the straight to snatch victory under his 59.5kg topweight.

“He has come through that race really well, and I’ve got no qualms about backing him up,” Lees said.

“Gem Song is heading in the right direction and I’m keen to give him his chance in the Caulfield Guineas if he races up to expectations on Saturday.”

Time called on Group winner

Multiple Group winner Underthemoonlight (NZ) (El Hermano {NZ}) has run her last race.

The call to retire the 7-year-old was made following consecutive unplaced runs in the G1 Tarzino Trophy at Hastings and the G3 Boehringer Ingelheim Mile at Awapuni.

Trained by Karyn McQuade, who co-bred and raced the mare with her husband Hamish and Clive Solomon, Underthemoonlight won six races, including the G2 Foxbridge Plate and the G3 Taranaki Breeders’ S., and the Listed Tauranga Classic.

She was honest throughout her 31-start career and weighed in a further 20 times to bank more than NZ$315,000.

Underthemoonlight has been booked to be served by Windsor Park Stud stallion Charm Spirit (IRE).

Racing will resume at Ellerslie on Saturday, October 27 following a successful trial on the course proper.

Ellerslie gets the go-ahead

The course hasn’t held any race meetings since Auckland Cup Week in March, to allow for a drainage upgrade to its track.

Senior jockeys Samantha Spratt, Samantha Collett, Matt Cameron, Opie Bosson, Vinnie Colgan and Shafiq Rusof, galloped in pairs on the course proper on Monday in the track’s second and final test since work was completed.

“The team at Ellerslie have done a great job,” Matt Cameron said. “The track is in fantastic order and I look forward to racing at Ellerslie next month.”

Also on hand to witness the gallops was experienced stipendiary steward Alan Coles who was pleased with the track surface.

“I had the opportunity to oversee a number of horses, ridden by senior northern jockeys, gallop on the entire width of the racing surface,” Coles said.

“I spoke to each jockey about the track. All were positive. It had a very good sole of grass and the entire track was consistent. They also noted the surface was suitable for a return to racing for the ARC’s next meeting.

“I also feel the track surface is excellent and am confident for the scheduled return to racing at Ellerslie.”

Auckland Racing Club Chief Executive Officer Paul Wilcox was thrilled with the feedback from jockeys and officials and is looking forward to racing returning to Ellerslie next month.

“Naturally, we are delighted with the result of this testing and are grateful to have had the support of the senior jockeys, trainers and owners who all helped make this crucial part of the process happen,” he said.