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Daily News | 17th November 2017
Hickmott to Leave Macedon LodgeFriday, 17th November 2017Racing.com reports that Robert Hickmott is resigning from his role as private trainer for Lloyd Williams' Macedon Lodge to pursue his own training career. Hickmott, who has enjoyed a successful eight-year tenure with Williams, leaves Macedon having trained numerous big race winners, including two Melbourne Cups with Almandin (2016) and Green Moon (2012). Hickmott is expected to step aside after Saturday's Gr2 Zipping Classic and will be replaced by Liam Howley. Williams confirmed the news via text message. "Rob H stays for the Zipping - as that is where it all started," he wrote. "Wish him well as he goes out on his own. Will do well." He added: "Liam Howley been with me about six years. International experience. Very good."
Green Moon – one of two Melbourne Cup winners trained by Hickmott (pic: Steve Hart)
Classic Glory Awaits QueenFriday, 17th November 2017Ruakaka trainer Kenny Rae is brimming with confidence about the chances of boom filly Prom Queen in tomorrow's Gr1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton, reports NZ Racing Desk. Prom Queen is favourite for the 3YO fillies Classic off the back of two brilliant wins in the Gr3 Northland Breeders Stakes (1200m) and Gr3 John Grigg Stakes (1400m) at her past two outings. The daughter of former Singapore Horse of the Year Super Easy has established herself as the best filly in New Zealand having won 8 of her 9 starts with her only loss being a narrow defeat back in March. Rae said Prom Queen's last-start win in the John Grigg Stakes showed she should have little problem with the step up to a mile. "What she did was mind-boggling. It was good to see her do it like that at 1400m…It's scary. What she's doing has been almost too good to be true," he said. "She seems fine. She's pretty relaxed in her work. She's hard to get a line on because she's pretty lazy in track work. She's like a kid's pony." He added: "I wouldn't say her track work is any better than it has been going into her other races, but it doesn't have to be either." Prom Queen is the dominant $1.60 favourite for the 1000 Guineas ahead of Dijon Bleu ($4.20) and Swing Note ($8).
Crack Filly Ticking Along NicelyFriday, 17th November 2017Champion Kiwi 2YO Melody Belle took a step toward her race day return with a trial victory at Avondale yesterday, reports NZ Racing Desk. The Te Akau Racing-owned 3YO travelled comfortably in second under rider Michael McNab before coasting to the front 300m from home to win her 1000m open heat untested. "She did everything perfectly, won nicely and pulled up fine," said Stephen Autridge, who trains in partnership with Jamie Richards. "We're very happy with where we've got her. She's bigger and stronger and ready to kick off in the open 1200m on December 9 at Ellerslie, which will get her ready for the major sprint races." The daughter of Commands won last season's Gr1 Manawatu Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) and the Karaka Million (1200m) before landing the Gr2 Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm during the Queensland winter carnival. Melody Belle (Commands-Meleka Belle, by Iffraaj) is being aimed at the Gr1 Sistema Railway at Ellerslie on New Year's day before tackling the Karaka 3YO Classic at the end of January.
Filly Of The Year Series Heat Up With GuineasFriday, 17th November 2017The 2017-18 New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year Series will hit fever pitch tomorrow with the running of its second leg – the $300,000 Gr1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton. The first of two Group 1 events in the 10-race series, the 1000 Guineas carries 12 points for the winner, 7 for second and 3.5 for third. Seven of the last ten Filly of the Year Series winners have won the 1000 Guineas, namely Insouciant in 2007, Daffodil (2008), Katie Lee (2009), King's Rose (2010), Planet Rock (2011), Costa Viva (2013) and Platinum Witness (2014). The current series leader is the Lisa Latta-trained Dijon Bleu who collected 6 points for her victory in the first leg, the Gr3 Gold Trail Stakes (1200m) at Hastings. The Guineas favourite is exciting Northland filly Prom Queen, who is making her first Filly of the Year Series start. Click here for comments on each NZ 1000 Guineas runner.
Fanatic Ready to Peak in CupFriday, 17th November 2017Fanatic's record over the distance points to a bold showing in tomorrow's Listed Sandown Cup (3200m) in Melbourne, reports NZ Racing Desk. A winner of the New Zealand Oaks in 2016, Fanatic (Shocking-Komplete Klass, by Groom Dancer) boasts a third in the Gr3 Wellington Cup and a sixth in the Gr1 New Zealand Cup over Saturday's two mile journey. Now trained by the Lindsay Park team of David & Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig, Fanatic showed she was back in form when scoring strong win in the VRC Ronald McDonald House Handicap (2800m) at Flemington at her most recent outing. "She's rock-hard fit," said co-trainer Tom Dabernig. "Her action is great and she's quite a tough sort of mare so I would have to think she would be a good chance."
Smart Glenall ReturnsFriday, 17th November 2017Exciting sprinter Glenall is set to resume in the Boxing Day at Royal Randwick Sprint (1100m) at Rosehill tomorrow. Formerly trained by Les Bridge but now in the care of Team Hawkes, Glenall has only had five career starts but has displayed plenty of raw ability finishing second in the Listed Fireball Stakes (1100m) and fourth behind top sprinters Russian Revolution and Redzel in the Gr1 Galaxy in March. "Obviously he has the form there but he's only had the one win,'' co-trainer Michael Hawkes told racingnsw.com.au. "We've just taken him back to basics, it's a nice starting point. It's not where you start it's where you finish - with a bit of luck.'' The 4YO entire has had two barrier trials to prepare him for his return, the most recent a second over 1000m at Hawkesbury on Monday. "He's drawn well, he's a nice horse and he trialled okay and we're happy with how he is going,'' Hawkes said. By multiple champion sire Redoute's Choice, Glenall is out of the Gr3 SAJC Dermody Stakes winner Our Quivira making him a half-brother to smart multiple stakes winning sprinter Panipique.
Lipizzan Ready for ReturnFriday, 17th November 2017Trainer Gary Portelli expects talented filly Lipizzan to run well fresh when she resumes in the $100,000 ATC Owners Benefit Card Handicap (1200m) at Rosehill tomorrow. The 3YO boasts good form around the likes of Group performers Frolic and Champagne Cuddles, and was herself placed in the Listed Woodlands Stakes at Scone in May. Although diminutive in stature, Portelli says Lipizzan (Sebring-Absolutely Flying, by Commands) has a big heart and he expects her to be hard to beat especially if the forecast rain in Sydney arrives. "She can gallop and being such a little horse she has got such a quick turn of foot through those wet tracks. We'll be even more confident if the rain arrives," Portelli told racingnsw.com.au. "She is all heart. She is a little fighter and this sort of grade is where she should be which is why she missed the spring carnival. We were aiming at the Inglis race which is usually on in December but they changed it so she'll have a few starts then freshen up and head to the Inglis race in February."
Under The Louvre Impresses at StudFriday, 17th November 2017Ipswich-based Grandview Stud reports that Group 1 winner Under The Louvre has taken to his new career as a stallion with the same professionalism he displayed on the racetrack. His barn-mate Whittington has also continued to do a terrific job, with both stallions successfully covering over 80% of mares in foal on the first cover. Meanwhile, Jet Spur sits just behind the younger stallions at 70%. A winner of the Gr1 Stradbroke Handicap, Under The Louvre (Excellent Art-Barcelona Girl, by Noverre) retired to stud with nine wins and 14 placings and over $1.8 million in prize money. He is a grandson of Pivotal (UK) who boasts a lofty 18% stakes winners to runners when mated with Danehill line mares. This makes Under The Louvre, who is free of Danehill blood, an attractive outcross for breeders given the proliferation of Danehill line mare in Australia. He stands at Grandview Stud at a fee of just $7,700 (inc. GST).
Burns New FBAA PresidentFriday, 17th November 2017Grant Burns has been announced as the new President of Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) replacing the outgoing Adrian Hancock. The Perth-based Burns operates Premium Bloodstock and is an auctioneer with Magic Millions. He is also on the TBWA committee and is bloodstock adviser for Yarradale Stud. "Travelling the country with Magic Millions gives me the opportunity to keep my finger on the pulse of the racing and breeding industries," Burns said. "I'm excited and know I've got big shoes to fill." Burns added: "Adrian has been an industry leader for many years and has built the profile of FBAA. Two of the biggest challenges facing the industry are Animal Welfare & Integrity and FBAA is at the forefront of both issues."
Weekend Black Type Feature ScheduleFriday, 17th November 2017Headlined by the Gr2 Zipping Classic & Gr2 Sandown Guineas in Melbourne, and the Gr1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas for 3YO fillies at Riccarton, there are 18 stakes races across Australia and New Zealand this weekend. First run in 1888, the Sandown Classic was renamed the Zipping Classic in 2011 in honour of former high class galloper Zipping who won the race an unprecedented four times from 2007-2010. Previous top-class winners of the race include Light Fingers (1966), Gunsynd (1971), Stylish Century (1991), Count Chivas (1995), and Sky Heights (2001). Fittingly, this year, the $2.60 TAB favourite is Almandin who is raced by Zipping's owner Lloyd Williams. Next best at $3.30 is the Darren Weir-trained Big Duke, who is coming off a fourth placing in the Melbourne Cup, followed by Irish import The Taj Mahal at $3.70. Brought to you by International Animal Health Products, below in AEDT order are Saturday's scheduled stakes races incorporating integrated fields, form, indicative odds and runner news:
- 12:00pm: Listed Welcome Stakes (1000m) Riccarton
- 12:25pm: Listed Merson Cooper Stakes (1000m) Sandown
- 1:00pm: Listed Twilight Glow Stakes (1400m) Sandown
- 1:10pm: Gr1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) Riccarton
- 1:29pm: Gr2 Tauranga Stakes (1600m) Tauranga
- 1:35pm: Listed Sandown Cup (3200m) Sandown
- 2:10pm: Gr3 Kevin Heffernan Stakes (1300m) Sandown
- 2:20pm: Gr3 New Zealand Cup (3200m) Riccarton
- 2:45pm: Gr3 Chandler McLeod Recruitment Stakes (1500m) Sandown
- 3:25pm: Listed Doveton Stakes (1000m) Sandown
- 4:00pm: Gr2 Zipping Classic (2400m) Sandown
- 4:40pm: Gr2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) Sandown
- 5:12pm: Listed Keith Noud Quality (1200m) Doomben
- 5:20pm: Gr3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) Sandown
- 5:55pm: Gr3 Summoned Stakes (1500m) Sandown
- 7:00pm: Gr3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m) Ascot
- 7:37pm: Gr3 Colonel Reeves Stakes (1100m) Ascot
- 8:12pm: Gr3 WA Champion Fillies Stakes (1600m) Ascot
- 6:30pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Cup (2000m) Sha Tin
- 7:05pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Sprint (1200m) Sha Tin
- 7:40pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Mile (1600m) Sha Tin
Saturday 12:00pm: Listed Welcome Stakes (1000m) RiccartonFriday, 17th November 2017
12:25pm: Listed Merson Cooper Stakes (1000m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
1:00pm: Listed Twilight Glow Stakes (1400m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
1:10pm: Gr1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) RiccartonFriday, 17th November 2017
1:29pm: Gr2 Tauranga Stakes (1600m) TaurangaFriday, 17th November 2017
1:35pm: Listed Sandown Cup (3200m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
2:10pm: Gr3 Kevin Heffernan Stakes (1300m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
2:20pm: Gr3 New Zealand Cup (3200m) RiccartonFriday, 17th November 2017
2:45pm: Gr3 Chandler McLeod Recruitment Stakes (1500m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
3:25pm: Listed Doveton Stakes (1000m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
4:00pm: Gr2 Zipping Classic (2400m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
4:40pm: Gr2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
Sunday 6:30pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Cup (2000m) Sha TinFriday, 17th November 2017
5:12pm: Listed Keith Noud Quality (1200m) DoombenFriday, 17th November 2017
7:05pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Sprint (1200m) Sha TinFriday, 17th November 2017
5:20pm: Gr3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
7:40pm: Gr2 Jockey Club Mile (1600m) Sha TinFriday, 17th November 2017
5:55pm: Gr3 Summoned Stakes (1500m) SandownFriday, 17th November 2017
7:00pm: Gr3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m) AscotFriday, 17th November 2017
7:37pm: Gr3 Colonel Reeves Stakes (1100m) AscotFriday, 17th November 2017
8:12pm: Gr3 WA Champion Fillies Stakes (1600m) AscotFriday, 17th November 2017
Craven Sale Topper Perfect On DebutFriday, 17th November 2017At this year's Tattersalls Craven Sale, held during April at Newmarket in the UK, record figures were returned for the annual breeze up market. At the head of affairs for the 98 Lots which changed hands for an aggregate 14,120,000 guineas was a Scat Daddy colt knocked down for 650,000 guineas to agent David Redvers on behalf of Qatar Racing. Named Kings Shield, the lucrative US-bred pinhook is trained by John Gosden, and scored as the only debutant in the field over 7 furlongs at Newcastle in England on Wednesday. Kings Shield shares something in common with his Gr3-winning half-sister Great White Eagle. The daughter of Miesque's Son mare Gender Dance also topped the Craven Sale, selling for 760,000 guineas in 2013.