Trainer Darren Weir has confirmed that top-class galloper Humidor will not run in this year's Melbourne Cup. The last-start Gr1 Memsie Stakes winner was allocated top weight of 58kg for the Melbourne Cup when weights were released on Tuesday. Weir said that Humidor, who will be chasing his second successive Gr1 win in Saturday's Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington, is being set for the WS Cox Plate at Moonee Valley on 27 October. "He is making the right progress for the Cox Plate, that's his target," Weir told racenet. "He won't be running in the Melbourne Cup after he was allotted 58kg top weight this week."
The order of entries for both the Melbourne Cup and Caulfield Cup were released on Wednesday. Multiple Gr1 winner and recent Memsie Stakes winner Humidor heads the order of entry for the Melbourne Cup along with Godolphin stayer Best Solution. Melbourne Cup favourite Kings Will Dream is 53rd in the order of entry. For the Caulfield Cup, Kings Will Dream and Best Solution head the order of entry with both horses having ballot exempt status - Kings Will Dream having automatically qualified when winning the Mornington Cup earlier this year. The next Caulfield Cup ballot exemption race is the Gr3 Naturalism Stakes on 22 September, while the first of four ballot exemptions into the Melbourne Cup will be the Gr3 The Bart Cummings (2500m) at Flemington on 6 October.
James Cummings is confident Kementari is ready to claim another top-flight success in Saturday's Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes after watching him gallop at Flemington on Tuesday. Last season's Randwick Guineas winner is coming off an unlucky second behind Humidor in the Gr1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield two weeks ago where he was three-wide without cover throughout but was still making ground on the line. "He's the fittest he's been this campaign and his work on Tuesday morning reflected that," Cummings told Godolphin.com. "His gallop on the course proper at Flemington was what I wanted to see, he's tightened up nicely." Cummings added: "Since the Caulfield race he's been really bright and he looks confident stepping up to the mile." TAB has listed Kementari as the $3.60 favourite for the Makybe Diva ahead of his last-start conqueror Humidor ($4), Kings Will Dream ($4.40) and Happy Clapper ($6.50).
A total of 88 nominations have been weighed for the 153rd running of the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) which will be run at Royal Randwick on 29 September. This year's edition will be run with a 50kg minimum weight (48kg minimum weight for three-year-olds) with total prize money of $1 million. The top weight for the race is defending champion and triple Gr1 winner Happy Clapper who has been allocated 59kg. Next is recent Gr1 Memsie Stakes winner Humidor with 59kg, followed by Le Romain at 58kg and Hartnell with 57kg. Another notable nomination is Randwick Guineas winner and Memsie Stakes runner-up Kementari with 55.5kg. The highest-weighted mare is the 2017 Gr1 Cantala Stakes winner Shillelagh with 53kg, while the 3YOs nominated for the race - Fighting Harada, Master Ash, Tavisan and Seabrook, have all been allocated 48kg. Click here to view Epsom Handicap weights.
At Caulfield in Melbourne, unbeaten European Champion juvenile & dual Gr1-winning Darley shuttler Teofilo (Galileo-Speirbhean, by Danehill) celebrated an elite race success when 6YO New Zealand-bred gelding Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) finished powerfully to land the $1 million weight-for-age Gr1 NZB Memsie Stakes (1400m) for 3YO+, defeating Kementari & Kings Will Dream. The was the third top-flight triumph for Humidor who improved his record to 8 wins (including the Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes, Gr1 Australian Cup & Gr3 Manawatu Classic) & 9 placings (including the Gr1 Cox Plate, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr1 Livermol Classic, Gr2 TS Carlyon Cup & Gr2 Peter Young Stakes) from 28 starts for $3,419,844 in earnings. Trainer Darren Weir said Humidor had a number of end-of-season options, including the Gr1 Mackinnon Stakes, Gr1 Cox Plate, and even the Hong Kong international races at Sha Tin in December. "He's a great horse," Weir told racing.com. "I said to Damien [Lane] when I bunked him on to be strong late and he was strong late." Weir added: "He's nothing to look at. When you look at those horses walking around there, he's a little pony of a thing walking around but geez he's a good racehorse." Humidor's 3rd dam is Champion Irish 2YO and Champion European 3YO Habibti, a half-sister to legendary blue hen Eight Carat.
Highly talented Kiwi galloper Scott Base (Dalghar-Extra Celestial, by Danehill Dancer) returns to racing in Saturday's Gr1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings, reports NZ Racing Desk. Scott Base had his final hit-out for Saturday's opening leg of the Hawke's Bay triple crown when defeating stable-mate Wyndspelle in a 1200m gallop before the Foxton trials on Tuesday morning. "He was very good. It was strong work and I'm very happy with him," co-trainer Johno Benner said. "It is a Group One race and they are never easy to win, but we are very happy with our horse and where he [Scott Base] sits, and he is a little bit special as we have seen in some of his performances." Scott Base proved he could mix it with the best of his generation when defeating Gr1 winners Embellish and Savvy Coup in the Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie in January. He then rounded out his 3YO season with a strong win in the Gr2 Wellington Guineas (1400m). Benner and Wynyard rank Scott Base alongside the best horses they have ever trained, including multiple Gr1 winner Humidor. "He is right up there with the best we've had. I suppose he has got to do a bit more yet, but he is right there," Benner said. Scott Base is likely to run in the Gr1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) on 22 September and the Gr1 Livamol Classic (2040m) on 6 October, before a trip across the Tasman for Australasia's weight-for-age championship. "Ultimately, going through the three legs of the Hawke's Bay triple crown would be ideal and then into the Cox Plate, but there is a lot of water to go under the bridge," Benner said.
Given Winx’s average starting price over the past year has seen the champion mare around the $1.15 mark or less, Cox Plate markets following official nomination closures have her at positively luxurious odds of $1.55, and not too dissimilar to the $1.50 offered months before her Gr1 Queen Elizabeth triumph. Understandable, as he was beaten less than a half-length in 2017’s Cox Plate, Humidor is a $15 quote ahead of overseas raiders Benbatl ($21), Cliffs Of Moher & Neorealism ($26), with D’Argento, Happy Clapper, Kementari and Unforgotten all at $31. Curiously, given their strong reputations, possible European challengers Poet’s Word and Saxon Warrior are both listed at $41, possibly casting doubt on the likelihood of both or either of them actually contesting the race.
All finalists have been confirmed for the New Zealand Thoroughbred Horse of the Year Awards, reports NZ Racing Desk. The category winners, together with Horse of the Year and the NZTR award for Outstanding Contribution to Racing, will be announced at a black-tie dinner in Auckland, at Ellerslie Racecourse, on Sunday 26 August. The major categories are:
Click here to view full list of categories and confirmed winners.
Three-time Group 1 winning mare Jameka (Myboycharlie-Mine Game, by General Nediym) will be offered for sale at the 2018 Magic Millions Gold Coast National Broodmare Sale. Jameka, who will be consigned by Ciaron Maher Racing, will join a star-studded line-up of fillies and mares after connections decided to nominate her to the supplementary catalogue. Last seen scoring a brilliant 6.5 length win in the Gr1 The BMW in Sydney in March last year, Jameka also posted top-flight victories in the Caulfield Cup and VRC Oaks. She won 6 of her 24 starts for over $4.8 million in prize money. "We are honoured to have been entrusted to offer Jameka at the National Broodmare Sale - she is an absolute queen," Magic Millions' Managing Director Barry Bowditch said. "As a racehorse Jameka proved her class from winning a VRC Sires' Produce Stakes at two to her barnstorming win in the Caulfield Cup. And who can forget her last run - a six and a half length demolition of Humidor and co in The BMW." Bowditch added: "Ciaron Maher did a remarkable job with Jameka developing her from a Group Two winning juvenile to one of the stars of Australian racing. We thank him and his team for giving Magic Millions the opportunity to offer their prized mare to a global audience." The 2018 Magic Millions Gold Coast National Broodmare Sale will be held from 29 May to 1 June and will boast a catalogue of over 1,000 lots. Entries for the supplementary close on 10 May.
Hugh Bowman says Winx will face her toughest challenge in years when she lines up in tomorrow's $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick. "It's probably the hardest task she has had for quite some time and when I say that I mean a couple of years, probably [since] her first Cox Plate. It's going to be one hell of a race and all we want it a smooth passage," Bowman told Racing NSW. "Usually there is one main horse to be focused on but this week there is three or four or maybe even five that are primed for their target." He added: "If Gailo Chop is allowed to control things to his liking he will take some running down. If the pressure is right on he might be feeling the pinch from the 200-300m mark but if that's the case a horse like Humidor or Ambitious, who I thought was very impressive in the Tancred Stakes, will be capitalising on the genuine pace...the bottom line is that there are horses there, no matter how the race is run, that are going to perform very, very well." However, despite the healthy respect he has for the opposition, Bowman has absolute faith in Winx. "She's in great order and I'm really happy with how she has come through the George Ryder win. Her work here on Tuesday morning was absolutely outstanding," he said. Winx will attempt to equal Black Caviar's record of 25 consecutive victories and claim her 18th Group 1 title in the Queen Elizabeth. The Chris Waller-trained superstar already holds the world record for most number of Group 1 victories which stands at 17 after her win in the George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill on 24 March.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the showpiece event of The Championships, the weight-for-age $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) to be run at Royal Randwick this Saturday. First run in 1851 as the Queen's Plate, the Queen Elizabeth Stakes has been won by champion Australian racehorses including Carbine (1889-91), Wakeful (1901), Phar Lap (1930), Peter Pan (1933), Flight (1946), Tulloch (1960 & 61), Ming Dynasty (1978), Rough Habit (1992), Veandercross (1993), Might And Power (1998), Lonhro (2003), Grand Armee (2004 & 05), and of course Winx (2017). Headlining this year's 10-horse field is the world's best horse Winx who will attempt to equal Black Caviar's record of 25 consecutive victories and claim her 18th Group 1 title. The Chris Waller-trained superstar set a new world record of 17 Group 1 victories (surpassing US champion John Henry) when landing the George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill on 24 March. Winx has drawn the outside gate (10) for the Queen Elizabeth but bookmakers are unperturbed, with the mighty mare a $1.15 chance with TAB to continue on her inexorable path to greatness. Unsurprisingly, all other runners are at double figure odds with Humidor next preferred in the market at $11, followed by Happy Clapper and Gailo Chop at $13.
The $3 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile is the showpiece event on the opening day of The Championships at Royal Randwick tomorrow. First run way back in 1866 (Dundee was the inaugural winner), the Doncaster has since established itself as Australia's premier mile handicap having been won by turf luminaries such as Wakeful (1901), Chatham (1934), Tobin Bronze (1967, Gunsynd (1972), Emancipation (1983), Super Impose (1990 & 91), Sunline (1999), Grand Armee (2000), More Joyous (2012), and Winx (2016). Australian racing's First Lady, Gai Waterhouse, will be striving to become the most successful trainer in Doncaster history when she chases her eighth winner with Arbeitsam. Waterhouse currently shares the Doncaster record of 7 winners with her legendary father TJ Smith. Chris Waller is another trainer looking to build upon his successful Doncaster record. Exciting 3YO colt D'Argento is Waller's best chance of training a record equalling seventh Doncaster winner following the victories of Triple Honour (2008), Rangirangdoo (2010), Sacred Falls (2013 & 14), Kermadec (2015), and Winx (2016). This year's race is shaping as a cracking renewal with Godolphin's star 3YO colt Kementari the current pre-post favourite at $3.80 with TAB. Next in the market is the ultra-consistent Happy Clapper at $5, followed by D'Argento at $7.50 and dual Gr1 winner Humidor at $9. The Doncaster Mile will be run as race 9 at 4:30pm.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $3 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) to be run at Royal Randwick this Saturday. First run way back in 1966 (Dundee was the inaugural winner), the Doncaster has since established itself as Australia's premier mile handicap having been won by turf luminaries such as Wakeful (1901), Chatham (1934), Tobin Bronze (1967, Gunsynd (1972), Emancipation (1983), Super Impose (1990 & 91), Sunline (1999), Grand Armee (2000), More Joyous (2012), and Winx (2016). This year's race is shaping as a cracking renewal with Godolphin's star 3YO colt Kementari the current pre-post favourite at $3.50 with TAB. Next in the market is the ultra-consistent Happy Clapper at $5, followed by the untapped 3YO D'Argento at $7 and dual Gr1 winner Humidor at $8. The Doncaster Mile will be run as race 9 on day one of The Championships at Royal Randwick at 4:30pm.
At Mornington south of Melbourne, Darley's former Gr1 Racing Post Trophy winning stallion Casamento (Shamardal-Wedding Gift, by Always Fair) added a black-type success when 4YO Irish-bred gelding Kings Will Dream (Casamento-Road Harbour, by Rodrigo De Triano) showed why he is considered one of the most exciting stayers in training when bounding clear for a most impressive 5 length win in the $300,000 Listed Mornington Cup (2400m) for 3YO+, defeating Harrison & Fastnet Dragon. Trainer Darren Weir said the highly progressive import will now be spelled and aimed at the Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) in the spring. "I think we will spell him and focus on the spring," Weir told racing.com. "I'm not sure where he fits in if you take a line through a Gailo Chop or a Humidor, they're very good horses and he's got to come up a little bit to get to them but he's certainly the right style of horse." He added: "He's beautiful and sound and he's done everything we've asked of him so far." Kings Will Dream advanced his record to 6 wins and 2 placings from 8 starts for $330,331 in earnings.
Racing NSW has announced the following re-handicaps for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile:
The following horses are exempt from ballot in the Doncaster Mile:
At Flemington in Melbourne, unbeaten European Champion juvenile & dual Gr1-winning Darley shuttler Teofilo (Galileo-Speirbhean, by Danehill) celebrated a group success when 5YO gelding Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) scored by 0.5-length for trainer Darren Weir in the $200,000 Gr2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) for 3YOs+, defeating fellow 5YO gelding Cool Chap & 7YO gelding Hellova Street. With a field of just five to face the starter, the general consensus of opinion was that the event woud be fought out by Humidor, considered a track and distance specialist, and his imported Japanese-bred stablemate Tosen Stardom. The latter started to shorten stride a long way out and slipped from prominence before Humidor surged from the rear to score a solid win, albeit given a fright by unwanted Cool Chap and plucky Tasmanian galloper Hellova Street. Boasting a beautiful damline, NZ-bred Humidor took his record to 7 wins (including the Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes, Gr1 Australian Cup & Gr3 Manawatu Classic) & 9 placings (including the Gr1 Cox Plate, Gr1 Livermol Classic, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr2 TS Carlyon Cup & Gr2 Peter Young Stakes) from 24 starts for $2,604,415 earnings. According to news.com.au, Humidor will now proceed to Royal Randwick's Gr1 Doncaster Mile in twelve days time before a potential clash with Winx in the Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) during The Championships.
A total of 181 nominations have been weighted for the 153rd running of the $3 million Gr1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) to be run on day one of The Championships at Royal Randwick on Saturday, 7 April. Heading the weights for the time-honoured feature is dual Gr1 winner Humidor who has been allocated top weight of 58kg on a 50kg minimum (49kg for 3YOs). Next is three-time Gr1 winner Le Romain & dual Gr1-winning Japanese import Tosen Stardom with 57.5kg, followed by Gr1 Epsom Handicap winner Happy Clapper on 57kg. The highest weighted mare is Japanese mare Admire Lead with 54kg, while Victoria Derby hero Ace High heads the 3YOs with 53kg. Click here to view the full weights for the Doncaster Mile.
Humidor's high-flying stable-mate Tosen Stardom could go through the autumn undefeated, according to trainer Darren Weir's foreman Jarrod McLean. The Japanese-bred Tosen Stardom (Deep Impact-Admire Kirameki, by End Sweep) was one of the stars of the spring after he posted brilliant victories in the Gr1 Emirates Stakes (2000m) and Gr1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) in Melbourne. The Australian Bloodstock-owned entire is scheduled to launch his autumn campaign in the Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday. "We're really excited with him heading towards Saturday. He's wound up and he's forward and he's ready to go," McLean told racing.com. "I made the statement a couple of weeks ago when he galloped at Ballarat that he might go undefeated this preparation and I'm not back-pedalling from that." He added: "If he wins on Saturday, he'll certainly be a deserved favourite going towards an Australian Cup." The $1.5 million Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) will be run at Flemington on 10 March.
Top-class galloper Humidor is unlikely to be ready in time to defend his title in the $1.5 million Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on 10 March. The 2017 Australian Cup winner and Cox Plate runner-up, who was last seen finishing a disappointing 19th in the Melbourne Cup, is likely to have his campaign rerouted to the Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes in Sydney or possibly even the Gr1 Doomben Cup in the winter. "He's a little bit behind," trainer Darren Weir's foreman Jarrod McLean told racing.com. "If he gets to the Australian Cup he gets there but at this stage races like the Queen Elizabeth and Doomben Cup in May are real good targets for him. There's no real hurry or urgency to get him to an Australian Cup." Humidor is nominated for Saturday's Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield, but McLean said a start is unlikely. "He's nominated for Saturday but at this stage I am told we'll give him one more trial and then head to the Futurity [Gr1] first-up," he said.
Victoria-based jockey Damian Lane is set to head home to ride during the Perth summer racing carnival. The 23 year-old Lane, who hails from the city of Bunbury south of Perth, has had a memorable Melbourne spring carnival claiming three Group 1 wins aboard Tosen Stardom in the Emirates Stakes and Toorak Handicap, and Humidor in the Makybe Diva Stakes. "It's been great," Lane told the West Australian. "I've been riding some really quality cattle and getting some great opportunities." Lane rode Stratum Star to victory in last year's Kingston Town Classic (1800m), and he says he is keen add further success in his home state. "Nothing's confirmed yet, but it does look like I will be riding there," Lane said. "I enjoy getting back to Perth and I enjoy the racing. I had a bit of success last year winning the Kingston Town and I'd love to have a bit more success this year."
Assuming diametrically opposing views on the outcome of the race that stops the nation, below are a selection of first three tips, and why, for this afternoon.
PETER MULLEN (DAILY NEWS CHIEF COLUMNIST)
GARY KNOWLES (BREEDING&RACING EDITOR)
Darren Weir says he is more concerned about Humidor's weight than he is about the New Zealand-bred running out a strong two miles in today's $6.2 million Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington, reports NZ Racing Desk. "The negative is the 56kg. It's enough, but all the indications say he will stay," Weir said. Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) boasts top-class form going into the Melbourne Cup having run a close second (beaten just 0.4 length) to champion mare Winx in the Gr1 Cox Plate over 2040 metres. Indeed, Racing Victoria chief handicapper Greg Carpenter rated Humidor's Cox Plate performance superior to Winx who won the prestigious weight-for-age event in track record time. "I didn't really think he would get that close, but he's such a good horse when he's ridden the right way and he got a beautiful run in the Cox Plate," Weir said. "From a Cup point of view it was a terrific run." Weir added: "I'm very happy with the horse and the preparation. The only thing I would change if we had it over again would have been for him to be ridden quieter in the Caulfield Cup [when ridden forward and placed fifth]."
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for Australia's most famous race - the $6.2 million Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) to be run at Flemington racecourse tomorrow. The Irish-trained stayer Thomas Hobson has secured the final spot in the 24-horse field following the withdrawal of Jon Snow on veterinary advice. Interestingly, the 24-horse field is split evenly between locally trained runners and international raiders. First run in 1861 when won by Archer, the Melbourne Cup boasts an honour roll that features some of the greatest names of the Australian turf including Carbine (1885), Phar Lap (1930), Peter Pan (1932/34), Comic Court (1950), Rising Fast (1954), Light Fingers (1965), Galilee (1966), Rain Lover (1968/69), Think Big (1974/75), Let's Elope (1991), Saintly (1996), Might And Power (1997), Ethereal (2001), and Makybe Diva (2003-05). This year, defending champion Almandin is currently the $8.50 TAB fixed odds favourite, ahead of Gr2 Prix Kergolay winner Marmelo at $9 and Cox Plate runner-up Humidor at $9.50. Should he be successful, the German-bred Almandin will become just the fifth horse in history to win back-to-back Melbourne Cups, joining inaugural Cup winner Archer (1861 & 62), Rain Lover (1968 & 69), Think Big (1974 & 75) and Makybe Diva (2003-05). The Aidan O'Brien-trained Johannes Vermeer, who put in an eye-catching Melbourne Cup trial when a fast-finishing third in the Caulfield Cup, heads those runners at double figure odds at $10. Click below to view the Melbourne Cup and all other stakes fields for Tuesday.
Trainer James Cummings has confirmed that Hartnell will run in Tuesday's $6.2 million Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) after receiving the endorsement of Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed. Hartnell, who finished third in last year's Melbourne Cup, will carry top weight of 57.5kg on Tuesday and his trainer is convinced he is again a worthy contender. "To have a Melbourne Cup runner for Sheikh Mohammed is a great honour and is also a credit to our team here in Australia who have got Hartnell to a level where he is a genuine contender," Cummings told Godolphin.com. The dual Gr1 winner convinced Cummings to run him in Australia's most famous race after an impressive track gallop at Flemington on Tuesday. "I was delighted with him…he's nice and bright and alert," Cummings said. "We are going to the Cup with a horse who puts himself into his races, whose form is sound and who can run 3200 metres." Cummings says his confidence is buoyed by the strong form lines around Hartnell this spring. "He's been racing a bit like a handicapper at his last couple of starts and the form around him is very strong," he said. "The form from the Makybe Diva Stakes and the Underwood Stakes and Caulfield Stakes in which he's run well has been the best of the spring." He added: "Humidor showed that with his run behind Winx in the Cox Plate that it's as good a form reference as you'll find." Hartnell (Authorized-Debonnaire, by Anabaa) is currently a $26 chance with TAB for the Melbourne Cup.
At Moonee Valley in Melbourne, Darley's deceased shuttler & Gr1 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry (Machiavellian-Helen Street, by Troy) celebrated an elite race success when his exceptional 6YO daughter Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) created history with a narrow but decisive win in Australia's Race of Champions, the $3 million weight-for-age Gr1 Cox Plate (2040m), defeating Humidor & Folkswood. Winx joined the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates with her 22nd consecutive win and her 15th at Group One level to advance her remarkable record to 26 wins (including the Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Gr1 Cox Plate - twice, Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes - twice, Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr1 George Ryder Stakes - twice, Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes - twice, Gr1 Epsom Handicap, Gr1 Queensland Oaks, Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr2 Warwick Stakes – twice, Gr2 Apollo Stakes - twice, Gr2 Theo Marks Stakes, Gr2 Phar Lap Stakes & Gr2 Furious Stakes) and 3 placings (including the Gr1 Australian Oaks & Gr1 Flight Stakes) from 32 starts for $15,627,925 in earnings. The Chris Waller-trained mare also surpassed three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva to become the greatest prize money earner in Australian racing history. An emotional Waller said of Winx's famous victory: "You never know what is going to happen on a racetrack. Humidor gave us a hell of a fight but she's Winx and she finds a way to win like all champions do," he told Network Seven. "It's what dreams are made of. I'm blessed to be in this position, as simple as that." Jockey Hugh Bowman perhaps summed Winx's accomplishment best when he said: "I'm lost for words. I was born the year that Kingston Town won his first Cox Plate and to think that she has emulated the great horse…we are in the presence of greatness." Bowman added: "She will now be remembered as one of the greatest horses to have graced the Australian turf. To be a part of her career, I can't explain what that means. It's very humbling." Winx was a $230,000 Magic Bloodstock purchase at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Coolmore Stud.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $3 million Gr1 Cox Plate (2040m) to be run at Moonee Valley on Saturday. Champion mare Winx, who will be attempting to create history by joining the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates, will face just eight rivals in the weight-for-age feature. Winx, who will jump from barrier six, could start the shortest-priced Cox Plate favourite since Phar Lap in 1931 when Australia's greatest racehorse won at odds of $1.07. Winx is currently a $1.15 chance with TAB. Such is Winx's towering reputation, her nearest market rivals are Humidor and Gailo Chop at $18. Click below to view the Cox Plate field.
Jockey Damian Lane believes Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) can provide him with the biggest win of his career in tomorrow's Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m), reports Sky Racing. Lane knows the Darren Weir-trained Humidor well having partnered him to Gr1 glory in the Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) two starts ago. He says the 5YOs performance when 3rd [beaten 7 lengths] behind Winx in the Gr1 Turnbull Stakes was better than it looked and that he is now ready to step out over more ground. "When Winx let go he was left out of his comfort zone and from where he was I thought he probably ran the best as he could," Lane said. "I thought he closed the race off well and ran like a horse probably looking for the 2400 metres." Lane continued: "He's come through his Turnbull run really well and he's drawn a good gate  which always helps. I'm very excited. The Caulfield Cup is the Caulfield Cup. There's a lot of great chances…but if he gets the right run I'm sure he can run really well." Humidor is currently the $8 second favourite for the Caulfield Cup behind the Aidan O'Brien-trained Johannes Vermeer at $4.20.
Trainer Tony McEvoy has confirmed that smart 3YO Hey Doc (Duporth-Heyington Honey, by General Nediym) is set to resume racing in the Gr1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on 27 October. The Australian Guineas winner has not been sighted since finishing 10th (of 12) behind Humidor in the Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on 16 September.
At Flemington in Melbourne, Darley's deceased shuttler & Gr1 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry (Machiavellian-Helen Street, by Troy) celebrated an elite race success when his 6YO champion daughter Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) strolled to one of the easiest and most visually brilliant wins of her glittering career when claiming Saturday's $500,000 Gr1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) for 3YO+, defeating Ventura Storm & Humidor. Winx, who seems assured of being named the world's best racehorse when the next round of international rankings are released, posted her 21st consecutive victory and advanced her remarkable record to 25 wins (including the Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Gr1 Cox Plate - twice, Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes - twice, Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr1 George Ryder Stakes - twice, Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes - twice, Gr1 Epsom Handicap, Gr1 Queensland Oaks, Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr2 Warwick Stakes – twice, Gr2 Apollo Stakes - twice, Gr2 Theo Marks Stakes, Gr2 Phar Lap Stakes & Gr2 Furious Stakes) and 3 placings (including the Gr1 Australian Oaks & Gr1 Flight Stakes) from 31 starts for $13,777,925 in earnings. Winx will now bid to create history by joining the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates at Moonee Valley on 28 October. "What a great horse," trainer Chris Waller told racing.com. "When she winds up and lets go, it's pretty scintillating." Waller said the Cox Plate (2040m) in three weeks' time would be a special event. "There's no training manual for a horse like Winx. The amazing part about her is she keeps putting on weight but never loses it…she's going as well as ever," he said. "She's going to be very hard to beat in three weeks." Winx was a $230,000 Magic Bloodstock purchase at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Coolmore Stud.
At Caulfield in Melbourne, Westbury Stud's three-time Gr1-winning shuttle stallion Makfi (Dubawi-Dhelaal, by Green Desert) celebrated an elite race success when 4YO New Zealand-bred mare Bonneval (Makfi-Imposingly, by Zabeel) confirmed herself as the second best mare in Australasia [behind Winx] when defeating a high quality field in the $750,000 Gr1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+, over Hartnell & Gailo Chop. The reigning New Zealand Horse of the Year is now unbeaten in her two starts this campaign and improved her record to 7 wins (including the Gr1 Australian Oaks, Gr1 New Zealand Oaks, Gr2 Dato' Tan Chin Nam Stakes, Gr2 Sir Tristram Fillies Classic & Gr3 Hawkes Bay Lowland Stakes) and 1 placing (the Gr3 WRC Desert Gold Stakes) from 10 starts for $1,582,469 in earnings. Co-trainer Murray Baker confirmed Bonneval's primary spring target is the $3.15 million Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on 21 October. "She's still got a bit of her winter coat to lose yet but we thought she had improved a bit from last start," Baker told racing.com. "She's obviously a very good filly. That's her sixth Group win in a row." Baker continued: "We will give her one more run, possibly the Caulfield Stakes, and then the Caulfield Cup." Jockey Hugh Bowman commented: "She's a genuine Cups contender this mare - I just wish I was light enough to ride her. She has a lovely future ahead of her." Bonneval is now the outright TAB favourite for the Caulfield Cup at $5.50 ahead of Humidor at $6. The well-bred Bonneval is a full sister to Gr3 winner Imposing Lass and a half-sister to Gr3 winners Full Of Spirit (Flying Spur) and Lady Cumquat (Duke Of Marmalade) from the Zabeel mare Imposingly, a three-quarter sister to New Zealand Derby winner St Reims and Gr1 Mackinnon Stakes winner and Melbourne Cup runner-up Champagne (both by Zabeel).
Champion mare Winx heads the 48 horses still in contention at the second acceptance stage for the $3 million Gr1 WS Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on 28 October. Among the other notable acceptances were Melbourne Cup winner Almandin, Bonneval, Catchy, Egg Tart, Gingernuts, Hartnell, Humidor, Royal Symphony, Foxplay and Scales Of Justice. Winx is aiming to create history this spring by joining the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates. Click here to view full list of Cox Plate second acceptances.
At Flemington racecourse in Melbourne, unbeaten European Champion juvenile & dual Gr1-winning Darley shuttler Teofilo (Galileo-Speirbhean, by Danehill) celebrated an elite race success when 5YO bay gelding Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) finished powerfully to dominant a high class field in the $750,000 Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) for 3YO+, defeating Hartnell & Black Heart Bart. In claiming his second Group One triumph, the New Zealand-bred Humidor improved his record to 6 wins (including the Gr1 Australian Cup & Gr3 Manawatu Classic) & 7 placings (including the the Gr1 Livermol Classic, Gr2 TS Carlyon Cup & Gr2 Peter Young Stakes) from 18 starts for $1,874,344 in earnings. Humidor's 3rd dam is Champion Irish 2YO and Champion European 3YO Habibti, a half-sister to legendary blue hen Eight Carat. Trainer Darren Weir confirmed Humidor's primary target is the $3.15 million Gr1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield racecourse on 21 October. "He's always shown great promise and that was unbelievable really. It's just always been a matter of getting his manners right and I think we're winning the battle," trainer Darren Weir told racing.com. "The Caulfield Cup has been the plan with him all along and that's where we'll head."
The 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock Caulfield Spring Weight-For-Age Championship heats up on Saturday with the running of the second leg, the $1 million Gr1 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield. The prize money for the Memsie Stakes has doubled this year from $500,000 to $1 million, a move that has been rewarded with a sensational field for the first Group One race of the 2017-18 Australian racing season. Hartnell (Authorized) won the first leg of the Series, the $200,000 PB Lawrence Stakes on 19 August, but is bypassing Saturday's race. A stellar cast of proven elite performers will be out to move up the points table in his absence. Nine of the 12 runners are Group 1 winners, including last year's winner Black Heart Bart (Blackfriars) and the high-class Karaka graduates Jon Snow (Iffraaj) and I Am A Star (I Am Invincible). The Series will have a new leader if either Charmed Harmony (8 points, 2nd in Leg 1) or Black Heart Bart (6 points, 3rd in Leg 1) finish in the first three on Saturday, while a Memsie Stakes win by Tosen Stardom (3 points, 5th in Leg 1) or Humidor (1 point, 6th in Leg 1) would send them to the top of the table. The NZB Memsie Stakes will be run as Race 7 with a start time of 4:10pm (6:10pm NZT). Click below to view the NZB Memsie Stakes field.
Brad Rawiller expects Black Heart Bart (Blackfriars-Sister Theresa, by At Talaq) to benefit significantly from the run when he opens his spring campaign in tomorrow's Gr2 Charge Of The Light Horse P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) Caulfield. The 5-time Group One winner, who hasn't raced since finishing 5th in the Gr1 Kingsford-Smith Cup in Brisbane in late May, will then bid to defend his title in the Gr1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on 2 September. "Going into this Saturday, there is no question that he is going to be better for the run," Rawiller told racing.com. "If I had drawn an outside barrier I think it might have been tough for him because he might not have been ready to make things happen like he normally would so we might have had to ride him a bit quiet." Rawiller continued: "But from barrier five, he's going to land in the nice position and we'll be able to give him a rest and it's going to bring him right into the race although he's going to be better for the run." Black Heart Bart is currently the $2.60 TAB favourite for the $200,000 weight-for-age feature, ahead of Godolphin's Hartnell at $3.20 and stable-mates Humidor and Tosen Stardom at $9. All other runners in the 12-horse field are at double-figure odds.
A star-studded field will clash in Saturday's $200,000 Gr2 Charge Of The Light Horse P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m), the first of four races in the 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock Caulfield Spring WFA Championship. The 14-horse line-up features no fewer than eight individual Group 1 winners - namely Lankan Rupee (Redoute's Choice), Hartnell (Authorized), Black Heart Bart (Blackfriars), Gailo Chop (Deportivo), Humidor (NZ) (Teofilo), He's Our Rokkii (NZ) (Roc de Cambes), Abbey Marie (Redoute's Choice) and Montoya's Secret (High Chaparral). Tosen Stardom (Deep Impact) and Star Exhibit (Statue Of Liberty) have been Group 1-placed. The race will be run as Race 7 at 4:00pm (6:00pm NZT). The winner of Saturday's race will pick up 10 Championship Points, with 8 for second, 6 for third, 4 for fourth, 3 for fifth and 1 each for horses placed sixth, seventh and eighth. The remaining races in the NZB Caulfield Spring Championship Series are the $1m Gr1 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) on 2 September, the $750,000 Gr1 Hyland Race Colours Underwood Stakes (1800m) on 1 October, and the $1m Gr1 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes (2000m) on 14 October.
Top-class galloper Black Heart Bart (Blackfriars-Sister Theresa, by At Talaq) could make his seasonal reappearance in the Gr2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on 19 August, reports racing.com. The 5-time Group One winner, who hasn’t raced since finishing 5th in the Gr1 Kingsford-Smith Cup in Brisbane in late May, will then look to defend his title in the Gr1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on 2 September. “He’s come back really well but he hasn’t had a trial yet so we’ll just wait until he’s had a trial and then I’ll decide whether I run him in the P.B. Lawrence,” trainer Darren Weir said. “He’s just a really good horse and I wish I had a few more like him.” Weir said Black Heart Bart was likely to be joined by high class stable-mates Tosen Stardom and Humidor in the Memsie. “Tosen Stardom has come back really well and nearly beat Black Heart Bart in a Group 1 over 1400m at Caulfield (Futurity Stakes) so he deserves his place in this race,” he said. “He’s been a frustrating horse because we know how much ability he’s got but we just haven’t been able to get him to show it yet, but so far so good with him.” Weir added: “We’ll also run Humidor, he’s on a Caulfield Cup path.”
New Zealand Bloodstock’s National Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock Sale, which will be held at Karaka on Monday and Tuesday next week, has had numerous significant pedigree updates since the catalogues went to print in late March. Among the most significant is Lot 153, Novara Park’s weanling filly by Jakkalberry out of La Pinnicle. She hails from the same family as Gr1 Australian Derby winner Jon Snow as well as Showemup, who won the Listed NZB Airfreight Stakes and placed in the Listed NZB Warstep Stakes to claim the title of NZB Southern Filly of the Year. Lots 87, 113 and 369 are all related to Gr1 Australian Cup winner Humidor, while Lot 245, a Proisir filly out of Safari Sunset, is closely related to Dixie Blossoms who finished third in the Gr1 Queen of the Turf Stakes in Sydney. Lot 278 is closely related to the Hong Kong Horse of the Year Werther, whose race record includes wins in the Hong Kong Derby, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth II Cup, Gr1 Hong Kong Gold Cup, along with a third in last Sunday’s Gr1 Queen Elizabeth II Cup. To view all a detailed summary of recent pedigree updates click here. NZB’s National Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock Sale will be held at Karaka on Monday and Tuesday, commencing at 10am each day. Lots will be available for inspection from Saturday morning. Click here to view the catalogue.
New Zealand Bloodstock's National Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock Sale will feature drafts offered by 51 proven and highly respected New Zealand thoroughbred nurseries. Last year's leading vendor Curraghmore is again likely to play a big part, presenting 18 weanlings, two yearlings and three broodmares who are in foal to Power, Proisir and El Roca. The Curraghmore weanlings include progeny of proven sires Savabeel, Makfi and Uncle Mo and newcomers such as El Roca and Wandjina. Curraghmore owner Gordon Cunningham said he believes the Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock is going from strength to strength every year. "From a buying perspective, I have no doubt that there is more opportunity for pinhooking value at Karaka in May than at any other sale throughout Australasia," he said. Nick and Anne-Marie King's Brighthill Farm finished a close second among vendors in last year's Sale with 15 horses selling for a total of $678,200. Brighthill Farm will offer 23 horses at this year's Sale – 13 weanlings, a two-year-old and nine broodmares. Five of Brighthill's weanlings are by Dalghar, with progeny of leading sires Savabeel and Iffraaj also featured. Lot 113, by Savabeel out of Hameeda, is closely related to the recent Gr1 Australian Cup winner Humidor, while Lot 278 is out of Sunset Stripper, a half-sister to the dam of Hong Kong Horse of the Year Werther. For William Fell of Goodwood Stud, the return to Karaka for next month's Sale will bring special memories having sold Gr1 New Zealand Derby and Gr1 Rosehill Guineas winner Gingernuts as a weanling. Goodwood will offer six horses at this year's Sale, all weanlings. The catalogue also features stock from quality New Zealand breeding operations Haunui Farm, Little Avondale Stud, Mapperley Stud, Waikato Stud, Wentwood Grange, Westbury Stud and Windsor Park Stud to name a few. NZB's National Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock Sale will be held at Karaka on 8 and 9 May, with the broodmares selling on the second day from Lot 324. Click here to view the catalogue.
At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, Vinery's Gr1-winning stallion Myboycharlie (Danetime-Dulceata, by Rousillon) celebrated an elite success when outstanding 4YO mare Jameka (Myboycharlie-Mine Game, by General Nediym) strolled to a brilliant 6.5 length win in the $1.5 million weight-for-age Gr1 The BMW (2400m) for 3YO+, over 4YO New Zealand-bred gelding Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) & 5YO UK-bred entire Exospheric (Beat Hollow-Bright and Clear, by Danehill). A $130,000 yearling consigned by Gilgai Farm at the 2014 Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale, Jameka improved her record to 5 wins (including the Gr1 Caulfield Cup, Gr1 VRC Oaks, Gr2 Dilmah Vase, Gr2 VRC Sires Produce Stakes & Gr3 Naturalism Stakes) and 9 placings (including the Gr1 Australian Cup, Gr1 VRC Turnbull Stakes, Gr1 Australian Derby, Gr1 Rosehill Guineas, Gr1 Thousand Guineas, Gr2 Thousand Guineas Prelude & Listed Atlantic Jewel Stakes) from 24 starts for $4,872,915 earnings. "It was a super effort today and what a ride by Hughie," trainer Ciaron Maher told Sky Racing. "It was one of her target races and I'm just rapt to get it done." Jameka could now represent Australia on the world stage with Maher confirming she is likely to embark on a European campaign later in the year. Races such as the Gr1 King George And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Royal Ascot, and even Europe's most prestigious race, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, are believed to have been discussed by connections. "We need to have some conversations with the connections. We'll see how she comes through this, but she's such a quality mare," Maher said.
The Darren Weir stable have expressed some doubt about Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) running out a strong 2400 metres in Saturday’s Gr1 The BMW at Rosehill, reports ANZ Bloodstock News. The last start Australian Cup winner (2000m) has only ever raced over the distance once in his career when 11th in the New Zealand Derby as a 3YO. “He’s in great order…The only little concern is the 2400 metres,” said Weir’s racing manager Jeremy Rogers. “He had one start at 2400 metres going right handed in New Zealand and he wasn’t at his best so it’s a little concern.” He added: “But he is going a lot better now than he was before he ran in the New Zealand Derby and he certainly couldn’t be any better going into Saturday’s race.” Humidor is currently the equal second favourite with Tab for the $1.5 million The BMW along with stable-mate Jameka at $4.20. Our Ivanhowe is favourite at $3.80.
Fourteen horses have been nominated for the $1.5 million Gr1 The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill on Saturday. The Lee & Anthony Freedman-trained Our Ivanhowe is the highest rated horse in the race and is set to back up after an impressive first-up win in the Gr1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) last Saturday. Some of the other notable entries are Caulfield Cup winner Jameka, Australian Cup winner Humidor, Australian Cup third and stable-mate of Our Ivanhowe Exospheric, Who Shot Thebarman, and last start Gr3 Sky High Stakes winner and Australian Derby Tavago. VRC Oaks winner Lasqueti Spirit and Victoria Derby winner Prized Icon are the only 3YOs entered for the race. Click here to view all the nominations for Rosehill on Saturday.
At Flemington in Victoria, unbeaten European Champion juvenile & dual Gr1-winning Darley shuttler Teofilo (Galileo-Speirbhean, by Danehill) added a Gr1 success when the Darren Weir trained 4YO gelding Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) scored by 0.4 length in the $1,505,000 Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) over brave 4YO filly Jameka (Myboycharlie-Mine Game, by General Nediym) & 3YO colt Exospheric (Beat Hollow-Bright and Clear, by Danehill). The NZ bred import took his record to 5 wins (including the Gr3 Manawatu Classic) & 6 placings (including the the Gr1 Livermol Classic, Gr2 TS Carlyon Cup & Gr2 Peter Young Stakes) for $1,113,334 in earnings. Humidor’s 3rd dam is Champion Irish 2YO and Champion European 3YO Habibti, a descendant of the blue hen Eight Carat.
A foot issue has prevented the Darren Weir-trained Lord Van Percy (Sir Percy) from crossing the Tasman for Saturday's $500,000 Gr1 Auckland Cup (3200m) at Ellerslie, reports NZ Racing Desk. "He had a foot abscess. It was nothing serious but it was a long way to go with him not quite being 100 per cent," Weir's racing manager Jeremy Rogers said of the 7YO UK-bred import. Meanwhile, the stable is bullish about the prospects of the former New Zealand-trained Humidor in Saturday's Gr1 Australian Cup. "He's really well and he's a seriously good horse," Rogers said. Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) has finished in the money in all three of his starts since joining Weir's stable, including a last-start second behind stable-mate Stratum Star in the Gr2 Peter Young Stakes at Caulfield.
The final field has been declared and the barrier draw conducted for the $1.5 million weight-for-age Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) to be run at Flemington racecourse this Saturday. Joint $4.20 Tab favourites for the race are stable-mates from the Darren Weir yard Humidor and Jameka who are coming off second and fourth placings respectively in the Gr2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield. Next best is Peter Young Stakes victor Stratum Star at $6, followed by The United States at $7.50 and Exospheric at $8.50. The final field is:
At Caulfield racecourse in Melbourne, Widden Stud's Gr1 Golden Slipper-winning stallion Stratum (Redoutes Choice-Bourgeois, by Luskin Star) added a Group success when 5YO entire Stratum Star (Stratum-Purely Spectacular, by Pins) scored by 0.2 length for trainer Darren Weir in the $200,000 Gr2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+, over 4YO gelding and stable-mate Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) & 7YO Irish-bred entire The United States (Galileo-Beauty is Truth, by Pivotal). Stratum Star, who was a $165,000 purchase by Rick Hore-Lacy at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Widden Stud, advanced his record to 8 wins (including the Gr1 Kingston Town Classic, Gr1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, Gr3 David Jones Cup & Listed Gothic Stakes) & 15 placings (including the Gr1 Futurity Stakes, Gr1 Toorak Handicap, Gr1 Memsie Stakes, Gr2 Alister Clarke Stakes, Gr1 Australian Guineas, Gr3 CS Hayes Stakes, Gr2 Sandown Guineas & Gr2 Carbine Club Stakes) from 35 starts for $2,375,960 earnings. Darren Weir speculated Stratum Star may be on the verge of having his final race start in the Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on 11 March, as he expects stud farms to start making offers for the dual Gr1 winner. "He's going to be make a beautiful stallion as he's got the lovely attitude and just have a look at him, he's a great type," Weir told Racing.com. "He's an amazing horse. He's as tough as they come but he's got such a great attitude and he's been terrific for our stable."
At Caulfield racecourse in Melbourne, Gr3-winning & triple Gr1-placed stallion Primus (Flying Spur-Copa de Oro, by Hector Protector) added a Group success when 6YO chestnut gelding Burning Front (Primus-She's a Knockout, by Kingston Rule) led throughout for a 0.3 length win for trainer Darren Weir in the $150,000 Gr3 TS Carlyon Cup (1600m) for 4YO+, over 4YO New Zealand-bred gelding and stable-mate Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) & 4YO Godolphin gelding Tally (Street Cry-Itemise, by Kris S). This was back-to-back Carlyon Cup victories for the ultra-consistent Burning Front who improved his record to 14 wins (including the Gr3 TS Carlyon Cup) and 18 placings (including the Gr3 VRC TAB Rewards Stakes & Gr3 MRC Sandown Stakes) from 43 starts for $816,960 earnings. "He's got a great racing style making his own luck up on the speed," Weir told racing.com. Meanwhile, Damian Lane, rider of runner-up and stable-mate of the winner, Humidor, who flashed home from last on the turn, lamented the latter's waywardness in the straight. "If he goes straight he wins," Lane said. Humidor will have his next start in the Gr2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on Blue Diamond day (25 February).
Talented New Zealand stayer Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) will make his first appearance for champion Victorian trainer Darren Weir in Thursday's Listed John Dillon Stakes at Caulfield, reports NZ Racing Desk. Formerly prepared by Johno Benner and Hollie Wynyard, the 4YO is a winner of 4 of his 10 starts, including the Gr3 Manawatu Classic as a 3YO. Humidor's abundant potential was then on show when he finished a narrow second in the Gr1 Livamol Classic (2000m) in the spring, before crossing the Tasman for a luckless ninth in the Gr1 Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington. His New Zealand owners John and Mark Carter and their sister Rachael, who race under their Jomara Bloodstock banner, then sold 50 per cent to clients of Weir's stable. "He's a new horse to us. He's just a good galloper," Darren Weir said. "He and Real Love are on an Australian Cup path, and Tosen Stardom will join in a fortnight later in the Carlyon Cup at Caulfield." The $1.5 million Gr1 Australian Cup (2000m) will be run at Flemington on 11 March.
Humidor will continue his career under Darren Weir after clients of the master Victorian trainer purchased a share in the talented stayer, reports NZ Racing Desk. "We've sold 50 per cent of him and he's spelling on one of Darren Weir's agistment farms. At this stage, we'd assume he'd come back for an autumn campaign," said John Carter, who shares in the ownership with his brother Mark and their sister Rachael under their Jomara Bloodstock banner. A son of Teofilo, Humidor was bred by the Carter siblings and is out of Zabeel's daughter Zalika, the winner of three races. "We've still got the mare and she's got a Makfi colt," Carter said. Humidor was previously trained by Johno Benner and Hollie Wynyard and he won four of his 10 starts under their guidance. A winner of the Gr3 Manawatu Classic as a 3YO, Humidor's abundant potential was on show when he finished a narrow second in the Gr1 Livamol Classic (2000m). He then crossed the Tasman for a ninth place finish in the Gr1 Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington when blocked for a run in the straight. Carter said he hopes the 4YO can develop into a Cups horse next year. "He's a very, very special horse and we've got no doubt that once the penny really drops then he will be competing successfully in Caulfield and Melbourne Cups," he said.
Melbourne's spring carnival is respected the world over for its prestigious and highly competitive racing, and this year's carnival has provided some notable pedigree updates for New Zealand Bloodstock's upcoming Ready to Run Sale. One of the most exciting races of the carnival was the Gr1 Darley Classic, where Malaguerra just held out Karaka graduate Spieth. Lots 97 and 189 in the Ready to Run Sale catalogue come from the same family as Malaguerra, who is now a dual Gr1 winner after claiming the BTC Cup in the winter. Other notable pedigree updates include:
There are also family members of recent Gr1 placegetters Hasselhoof (Lot 47), Whispering Brook (Lot 61), Rasa Lila (Lot 65), Humidor (Lot 171), Sezanne (Lot 295), Tivaci (Lot 319), Heatherly (Lot 477) and Full Of Luck (Lot 479). The Ready to Run Sale catalogue has attracted 552 two-year-olds. The Sale will be held on 16 & 17 November 2016 at Karaka with selling to commence at 10am each day. Click here to view online catalogue.
Humidor (Teofilo-Zalika, by Zabeel) is heading home to the spelling paddock after receiving a pass mark from his trainers following his ninth place finish in last Saturday's Gr1 Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington, reports NZ Racing Desk. Johno Benner, who trains the 4YO in partnership with Hollie Wynyard, said that while the son of Teofilo had no luck in running he was happy enough with the outcome. "He is a big raw type and the trip over there will make him," Benner said. "He had nowhere to go and still hit the line well so we know he will measure up over there." He added: "He will have two or three weeks in the paddock and then will come back for the Herbie Dyke at Te Rapa in February." Provided all goes well upon his return, Humidor could be back at Flemington for the Gr1 Australian Cup in March.