Daily News Wrap

7 min read

Qafila breaks drought

Qafila (Not A Single Doubt) returned to winning form with an encouraging start to her campaign by landing the G2 Angus Armanasco Stakes at Caulfield.

The filly won the Listed Debutant S. on debut at Caulfield in October, 2017 and Saturday's success was the 3-year-old's first in 12 starts since, despite being competitive in a number of feature races.

Qafila finished second in the G2 Wakeful S at Flemington last spring before her fifth in the G1 VRC Oaks and co-trainer David Hayes has pencilled in the G1 Vinery Stud S. in Sydney as one autumn target for the filly.

"She's a genuine 2000-metre horse who was unlucky in the Wakeful Stakes on Derby Day at Flemington last year and probably should have won," Hayes said.

Perfect record intact

Terbium (Terango) will take his unbeaten record to the paddock after winning his first black type race at Caulfield.

After sitting three-wide without cover against four opponents in Saturday's G3 Zeditave S, he showed he's an above average three-year-old with an impressive victory.

Trainer Phillip Stokes said the gelding would now head to his farm at Garfield for a break.

"He's gone from a maiden at Strathalbyn to this upper level in the space of four runs," Stokes said.

"The small field suited. Johnny kept him out of trouble and his sectionals all the way through have said he's a good horse. He's done an amazing job."

Craig Williams who partnered commanding favourite Zousain (Zoustar) said the colt didn't begin well and was involved in an early scrimmage.

“My horse did wobble around running left-handed around a bend, but I was still close enough to the winner on straightening and he ran away from me.”

Coolmore next target

Trainer Jason Coyle wasn’t shocked by the 50-1 win of White Moss (Mossman) in the G2 Millie Fox S. at Rosehill.

"I think the barrier blanket helped and she jumped well," Coyle said.

"Before her last start, her barrier trials were good so she wasn't going badly."

Coyle and her owners, the Esplin family, are now eyeing off the G1 Coolmore Classic with Coyle confident she can stretch to 1500 metres.

"That is the logical next step and she should get in with a light weight," he said.

Mare goes all the way

A classic front-running ride by Damien Oliver got Jamaican Rain (Manhattan Rain) home for the seventh win of her career in the G3 Premier Signs Mannerism S. at Caulfield.

The Richard Laming-trained 6-year-old was first-up in a performance that augurs well for her autumn campaign. It also vindicated the decision to stay at home and not head to Rosehill for the G2 Millie Fox S.

"I was getting pressure from the owners to go to Sydney,” Laming said.

“There were plenty of reasons not to go and I wanted to stay and play in my own backyard, but Sydney is likely where she'll go next and we'll pray for a bit of rain."

Options there include the G3 Aspiration Stakes at Randwick on March 9 and the G1 Coolmore Classic at Rosehill a week later.

Inglis release Melbourne Gold catalogue

Inglis have released another strong strong catalogue for the 2019 Melbourne Gold Yearling Sale.

The Melbourne Gold Sale has produced some outstanding results in recent years, none better than the likes of Group 1 winner Malaguerra (cost $32k, has won $1.9m), Group 1-placed I’ll Have A Bit (cost $48k, won $676k), Lyuba (cost $2k, has won $445k), Sirbible (cost $3.5k, won $326k) and Desert Lashes (cost $3k, has won $370k).

This year’s catalogue includes 241 yearlings by the likes of Written Tycoon, Exceed and Excel, Zoustar, Brazen Beau, So You Think and Dundeel.

Of the catalogue, 115 yearlings are Super VOBIS nominated and 97 are BOBS eligible.

Group 1 hopes for Dundeel’s son

Global Exchange (Dundeel {NZ}) pressed his claims for higher honours with strong effort to win the G2 Heritage Finance Caulfield Autumn Classic.

Rider Ben Melham, sporting the China Horse Club colours, sat back and came with a swooping run to charge away from Cossetot (Epaulette).

Co-trainer Ciaron Maher said he would now map out a program for Global Exchange, with races like the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas and G1 Australian Derby on the radar.

"We always thought he was a Derby type horse," he said. "He raced here last preparation over a mile and it just showed he wasn't quite mature enough so we put him away and he put the writing on the wall last start.

"He's a real progressive horse and I think he's got a really bright future heading into the Sydney autumn carnival."

Oaklands in sparkling order

A new-look Oaklands Junction is ready to host its first Premier Yearling Sale, for which inspections begin on Monday.

The $8 million renovation of the selling auditorium and reception, restaurant and café is complete following months of alterations.

Four drafts -Ampulla Lodge, Maluka Thoroughbreds, Edinburgh Park Stud and Goldin Farms - will be parading at Oaklands on Monday ahead of the sale, which runs from March 3-6. The remaining drafts will begin inspections throughout the week.

The ongoing success of the Premier Yearling Sale was again to the fore in 2018, with four individual Australian Group 1 winners coming out of the sale – Santa Ana Lane (Lope Dee}), Written By (Written Tycoon), Seabrook (Hinchinbrook) and Youngstar (High Chaparral {Ire}).

Only the Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale produced more individual Group 1 winners in Australia last year. A total of 786 horses, 514 in Book 1 and 272 in Book 2, have been catalogued for the Premier Sale.

Charming win for Aretha

Windsor Park Stud shuttle stallion Charm Spirit (Ire) produced his first New Zealand winner when his talented daughter Aretha (NZ) won the G2 J Swap Contractors Matamata Breeders’ S.

Trained by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman for breeder Greg McCarthy, the filly had finished third in the G2 Wakefield Challenge S. in early December.

“We gave her a freshen up after that and this was always the target race for her,” Forsman said.

Aretha is also the first winner for his dam Tsikory (NZ) (Stravinsky {USA}), a half-sister to the dual Group 1 winner Fiumicino (NZ) (Zabeel {NZ}). Their dam is a half-sister to the G1 Melbourne Cup winner Brew (NZ) (Sir Tristram {Ire}).

Yourdeel delights at Matamata

Yourdeel (NZ) (Dundeel {NZ}) boosted his Group 1 prospects with a runaway success in the G3 Waikato Stud Slipper at Matamata.

The Karaka Million placgetter was given a dream run by rider Matt Cameron and when asked for an effort in the straight he responded quickly to have six lengths on his stablemate Aotea Lad (NZ) (Savabeel) at the post.

“He’s a pretty exciting horse,” trainer Jamie Richards said. “It’s onwards and upwards to the G1 Sistema S. now.”

Bred by Dan Myers, Yourdeel was offered at Karaka by Little Avondale Stud and signed for at NZ$100,000 by part-owner Chris Rutten. He is from the family of the Group 1 winners Grand Armee (Hennessy {USA}), Dealer Principal (Flying Spur), Anamato (Redoute’s Choice) and Drum (Marauding).

Impressive NZ debut

Sasso Corbaro (All Too Hard) made quite the impression with a sizzling win in her first New Zealand appearance.

The Jamie Richards-trained mare, a strapping 4-year-old, came from last in the hands of Opie Bosson to effortlessly claim the Otaki Mail H.

“She was very impressive and gave me a pretty good feel,” he said.

Raced by the China Horse Club, Sasso Corbaro won four races from Kris Lees’ stable and last raced when unplaced in the $1 million Magic Millions Moet & Chandon at the Gold Coast last month.