By Brad Gray
There was plenty happening out at Royal Randwick on Saturday and news about Performer, Champagne Cuddles, Chautauqua, Tulip and She Will Reign may have slipped under the radar.
Performer Should Get Used To The Fame Hugh Bowman is a man of few words so when he puts a rap on one, it’s best to pay attention. When Performer returned to the winners’ stall it prompted Bowman to mutter half under his breath, “you better get used to the cameras, you’ll be seeing a lot of them.”
Bowman then told media, “It was no surprised that he won, in fact I thought he would. I’m pleased he has delivered on my expectations.”
The margin was only narrow but it was a soft win in the end with Bowman kidding to the son of Exceed And Excel in the straight. Performer stopped the clock at 56.82s which is a new race record for the Breeder's Plate.
Bondi put up a brave showing in second while Godolphin colt Osorno made ground late and looks a good prospect as he gets out in trip. Santos was courageous to the line and looks a youngster with scope to improve too. I'm confident it’ll be a very strong Breeders’ Plate this year.
The Gimcrack Stakes was run in a considerably slower time with the fillies recording 58.03s but don’t be surprised if the third-placed Fiesta turns out to be a top liner. Her effort was outstanding and Joao Moreira agrees, telling connections that she’ll be the best horse to come out of the race.
You'll be seeing plenty more from Breeders' Plate winner Performer! It was an outstanding debut from the flashy colt.
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) September 30, 2017
Champagne Spring For Brave Filly It’s one of the great injustices of the spring that Champagne Cuddles will end her preparation winless. However, she’s enjoyed a remarkable campaign with five Group placings, including two Group Ones, to her name.
“She was good but you know the game, winner takes all,” said Bjorn Baker.
“Jason (Collett) rode her beautifully. She’s a very good filly. She’ll come back for Magic Millions and we’ll go there with a bit of confidence.”
It was the third week in a row the daughter of Not A Single Doubt backed up, after running second to Trapeze Artist in the Golden Rose, showing not only how tough she is but also how versatile. But what is her best trip? “Time will tell,” Baker answered.
Intel Says Chautauqua On Track Chautauqua ran fifth in the Premiere Stakes but there’s no faith lost from co-trainer Michael Hawkes who said the big grey will be ripe come October 14 for the TAB Everest.
“Without seeing them, he’d still have run the same sectionals as first up,” Hawkes said.
“He probably wants a bit of cut out too. He has been primed for The Everest. We’re not disappointed. He still went super. He’s right on track.”
Punters Intel reveals Hawkes is spot on with Chautauqua running his last five 200m sectionals in 10.70, 10.91, 10.87, 10.76 and 11.03.
At the 400m, Chautauqua gave away 20.7m to race leader Ball of Muscle. On the finish line he was 8.2m off In Her Time. He was humming at 62.7km/h at the finish compared to the next best of 58.7km/h clocked by English.
English did run a faster last 600m split than Chautauqua though, recording a dynamite 10.51s sectional from the 400m to the 200m.
Tulip Still In Everest Picture Coolmore are still yet to lock in a runner for The Everest and although Tulip’s co-trainer Tom Dabernig didn’t give too much away after watching Snitzem run third in the TAB Epsom Handicap, he admitted it “wouldn’t be out of the question” to see the filly line up.
“We’ll leave that decision to Tom and John Magnier and wait until then but she’s in great nick. She Will Reign was outstanding last night and we ran third to her in the Slipper,” Dabernig said.
Meanwhile, Vega Magic and Redkirk Warrior are both ticking over perfectly ahead of their October assignments according to the stable.
“We took (Vega Magic) to Benalla yesterday for a reverse gallop to give him some practice on his Sydney leg and he was fantastic. He ran very quick time and he was very natural going right-handed,” Dabernig reported.
“Redkirk Warrior has had practice on the Sydney leg already. Between the two, we’ve got a great hand in the race.”
Or is that 'between the three...'
It's Reigning Jockeys Gary Portelli will likely confirm a jockey for She Will Reign for the TAB Everest in the coming days with Kerrin McEvoy, who rode her in the Moir Stakes, booked for Redzel, while regular rider Ben Melham can’t make the weight. As you'd expect, there has been no shortage of interest though.
Glen Boss, who was at Randwick to guide Tom Melbourne to second place in the TAB Epsom Handicap, is the latest to throw his hat into the ring.
It was an emphatic “yes” when we quizzed Bossy if he’d approached Portelli about the ride before he rushed up the tunnel to catch a plane back to Singapore.
Corey Brown was another jockey who was touted for the ride but now that In Her Time is a big chance of gaining a slot after her win in the Premiere Stakes, Boss’s odds of getting the nod to ride the fairytale filly shortened.