Daily News Wrap

7 min read

Veteran breaks drought

Fell Swoop (Not A Single Doubt) ended a lengthy losing streak when he won the Listed Razor Sharp H. at Randwick.

It was the gelding’s first success in nearly three years and an emotional one for trainer Matt Dale.

“It's hard to put into words” he said. “This horse has been the best horse I've ever had and he's been a long time between drinks.

“He's had a lot of little issues without anything being major but he just hasn't been right.

“But I said to the crew that this preparation he is right. I was rapt with his run first-up. I thought he should have won.

“'I said to Hughie (Bowman) not to hand up the lead, to just free-flow and he rode him perfectly.

“He allowed him to get there easily early and after five weeks off and missing some work he was still strong at the line.

“It is a very proud moment for me and all my staff, my family, they know what it means.”

Fell Swoop has been a true trooper for Dale and has Group 1 placings in the TJ Smith S. (twice), The G1 Darley Classic, the G1 Manikato S. and the G1 Oakleigh Plate to his credit.

Zoustyle one out of the box

Leading trainer Tony Gollan believes Zoustyle (Zoustar) might be the best he’s ever had through his hands.

He produced the 3-year-old to win the Listed Gold Edition Plate in impressive fashion at Doomben to remain unbeaten.

“I really enjoyed that. As proud as I was of Outback Barbie running home into second that was a special win,” Gollan said.

“I have had a lot of good horses over the past 20 years but I don't know if any are as good as him.

“The strange thing is that Zoustyle is only racing in Australia after failing an X-ray on his legs to go to Hong Kong.

“There is one of those stories every year. It is an example of how it isn't the end of the world if they fail an X-ray."

Gollan was beaming after Zoustyle carved out the 1200 metres in a spectacular 1.8.23, which was just outside the course record.

Zoustyle is now in line for a $500,000 3-year-old bonus if he can win the Vo Rogue Plate at Doomben in a fortnight.

“He is not a Magic Millions horse so the Guineas is out of the question. I will have a good talk with the owners and then we can work out about the Vo Rogue.,” he said.

Winning rider Brad Stewart said Zoustyle was something special and a future star.

“He is electric when you let him go in the straight.”

Colt an exciting prospect

Smart colt Declares War (Declaration Of War {USA}) could be set on a Group 1 programme by trainer Darren Weir following his latest success.

The 3-year-old completed a hat-trick of wins with victory in the WRC Schools Program Trophy at Flemington to earn a higher calling and the Australian Guineas in March is now a possible target.

Declares War was having his fifth start on Saturday and as he did at Moonee Valley at his previous start, he was able to get himself out of trouble for an impressive win.

“He does things the right way,” Weir said. “He again got into an awkward position but he was able to get himself out of it. It's exciting going forward.”

Weir said he has some planning ahead with the colt and believes he will, in time, appreciate 2000 metres.

“Do you go back to a mile, or push on to 2000 metres, I'm not sure,” Weir said.

“My gut feeling is he'll like a little further but there is the Guineas. Back to a mile is a query, however a fast tempo will suit.

“Races like that, they're big steps but he's making the right steps and it's all about his last furlong.”

Cup tilt firmed up

Kim Waugh has eyes for the G1 Sydney Cup with Our Century (IRE) (Montjeu {IRE}).

She revealed those plans following the 8-year-old’s comfortable victory in the Listed Christmas Cup at Randwick.

“I may give him one more run then he can have a short break and get ready for the Sydney Cup,” Waugh said.

“Last time they ran such fast sectionals, two seconds faster than normal, that he just didn't have a chance.

“I took him home and gave him four days in the paddock on the farm and he loved that.

“He has been working well and coming off the track like a 2-year-old.”

Our Century has turned the tables on Exoteric (GB) (Champs Elysees {GB}) after he had played second fiddle in the ATC Cup two weeks ago.

It’s a done deal for KM

Te Akau’s Karaka Million challenge was further strengthened at Te Rapa where Yourdeel (NZ) (Dundeel {NZ}) made a sparkling debut.

The Jamie Richards-trained youngster was given a sweet trip in fourth by stable rider Opie Bosson and they cut loose in the closing 200 metres to win by a wide margin.

“In the early spring he was a bit of a handful, but since we gelded him he’s been a lot better,” Richards’ father Paul said. "He’ll derive benefit from this.”

“He’s Karaka Million-nominated and we’ll get him home and see how he does.”

Yourdeel was purchased by part-owner Chris Rutten out of Little Avondale Stud’s draft at Karaka for NZ$100,000.

The gelding’s dam Miss Zapper (Red Ransom {USA}) was successful on three occasions and is from the family of the G1 Oakleigh Plate winner Drum (Marauding) and the G1 Australian Oaks winner Anamato (Redoute’s Choice).

Saturday’s winning cheque of NZ$18,750 will see Yourdeel safely in the Karaka Millions field with stablemates Probabeel (NZ) (Savabeel) and Aotea Lad (NZ) (Savabeel) also in the line-up.

Highfield Grange Thoroughbreds will offer a half-brother, Lot 1134, to Yourdeel during Book 3 at Karaka in February.

Mare shows blistering speed

New Zealand’s Group 1 summer sprints will come into serious consideration for the flying Gift Of Power (NZ) (Power {GB}) after she blitzed her open class rivals at Awapuni.

The speed merchant set a cracking pace under rider Lisa Allpress and bolted up by 10 and a half lengths, covering the 1200 metres in a sizzling 1.07.46.

Trained by Team Rogerson, Gift Of Power has the tidy career record of 10 wins from her 19 starts for a syndicate that includes breeders Sir Patrick and Lady Justine Hogan.

The 4-year-old is a daughter of the Group 1 performer Capital Diamond (NZ) (Lucky Unicorn) and is from the famed Eight Carat (GB) (Pieces Of Eight {IRE}) family.

A half-brother, Lot 622, by Tavistock (NZ) (Montjeu {IRE}) will be sold by Cambridge Stud during Book 1 at Karaka next month.

Ghibellines opens account

The well-related White Robe Lodge stallion Ghibellines (Shamardal {USA}) is off the mark.

He notched his first winner on Friday when his son El Gladiator was successful on debut at Wingatui.

The 2-year-old is raced by breeder Karen Parsons, who trains the gelding with her husband John at Balcairn, in North Canterbury.

Ghibellines won the G2 Todman S. and finished third in the G2 Danehill S. during a light career before he was retired to White Robe Lodge.

He is out of the G1 AJC Sires’ Produce S. winner Camarilla (Elusive Quality {USA}), also the dam of the former champion filly and four-time Group 1 winner Guelph (Exceed And Excel) and the G3 Black Opal S. winner Encryption (Lonhro).

Camarilla is a daughter of the G1 Queensland Derby winner Camarena (Danehill {USA}) and the family of the G1 Golden Slipper S. winner and successful sire Sepoy (Elusive Quality {USA}).