At Caulfield racecourse in Melbourne, Darley's unbeaten multiple Gr1-winning stallion Reset (Zabeel-Assertive Lass, by Zeditave) added a Group race success when 4YO chestnut gelding Kiwia (Reset-Single View, by Danehill Dancer) claimed his first stakes victory in the $150,000 Gr3 Coongy Cup (2000m) for 3YO+, defeating Samovare & Maurus. Bred and raced by Gerry Ryan's Limerick Lane Thoroughbreds, Kiwia continues to build an imposing record which now stands at 6 wins and 3 placings from 10 starts for $382,650 in earnings. Trainer Darren Weir said Kiwia was likely to heads towards the Bendigo Cup.
At the Gold Coast in Queensland, highly talented 6YO US-bred gelding It's Somewhat (Dynaformer-Sometime, by Royal Academy) showed his toughness when holding on for a brave front-running win in the $350,000 Gr2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Maurus. Last seen posting his maiden top-flight victory in Australia's premier mile race – the Gr1 Doncaster Mile Handicap – in April, the Godolphin-owned It's Somewhat improved his record to 9 wins (including the Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr2 Ajax Stakes, Gr3 Craven Plate & Gr3 Neville Sellwood Stakes) and 10 placings (including the Gr1 Doomben Cup & Gr1 George Main Stakes) from 32 starts for $3,143,679 earnings. It's Somewhat will be remembered as the last horse to win a stakes race in the royal blue silks for outgoing trainer John O'Shea whose tenure with Godolphin ended on Sunday. Former champion jockey Darren Beadman, who will take over as interim trainer for Godolphin, said: "He [O'Shea] has taught me a lot of over the past couple of years and he has been a great friend to me. I really haven't had a chance to absorb what has gone on this week but I realise there is a big challenge ahead." Beadman added: "Not many Doncaster winners come to the Gold Coast but it was a strong field. We gave him a trial after the Doncaster but there is no doubt the race will have been good for him." It's Somewhat will make his next appearance in the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 20 May.
Gr2 winner Secret Gesture (Galileo - Shastye, by Danehill), in foal to War Front, brought $3.5 million an hour after the start of Tuesday’s opening session of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale in Lexington, Kentucky. Consigned by Hunter Valley Farm, Secret Gesture, who was also Gr1 placed on several occasions including in the English and Yorkshire Oaks, was knocked down to John Ferguson on behalf of Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed. "Just a lovely mare from a beautiful family," Ferguson said. "So from our point of view, she was a mare that could make the difference." From the family of Gr1 winners Sagamix and Sagacity, Secret Gesture is a full sister to Gr3 winner Sir Isaac Newton and Australian stakes winner Maurus.
At Moonee Valley in Melbourne, LP Stallions & Lauriston Park's triple Gr1-winning stallion Desert King (Danehill-Sabaah, by Nureyev) added a Group success when 6YO mare Real Love (Desert King-Flaming Heart, by Salieri) scored by 3 lengths for trainer Darren Weir in the $200,000 MVRC Gr3 JRA Cup (2040m) for 3YO+, over 6YO UK-bred gelding Maurus (Medicean-Shastye, by Danehill) & 4YO gelding Tarquin (Hard Spun-Daanet Al Dunya, by Rahy). A homebred for prominent WA owner-breeders Bob & Sandra Peters, Real Love improved her record to 10 wins (including the Gr2 Perth Cup, Gr3 BRC Premier's Cup, Gr3 BRC JRA Cup, Gr3 Asian Beau Stakes, Gr3 Queen's Cup & Listed St Leger) & 12 placings (including the Gr2 Perth Cup, Gr2 Western Australian Derby, Gr3 Western Australian Oaks, Listed Torney Night Cup, Listed Carbine Club of WA Stakes & Listed Natasha Stakes) from 31 starts for $1,321,910 earnings.
Progressive stayer Maurus (Medicean-Shastye, by Danehill) can provide trainer David Vandyke with his first feature winner on his new home track when he contests the $175,000 Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) at the Sunshine Coast on Saturday, reports racenet. Raced by Paul Fudge's Waratah Thoroughbreds, Maurus broke through for his maiden black-type success when winning the Ipswich Cup over 2150m last start. The 5YO UK-bred gelding set a new weight carrying record of 58kg for the race - the most since metrics were introduced in 1971 - and in the process boosted his record to 6 wins from 17 starts for $354,000 earnings. "I think he's come on since the Ipswich Cup and I expect him to run a better race at Caloundra," said Vandyke, whose stables were formerly based at Warwick Farm in Sydney. "The Caloundra Cup is his grand final and we'll be looking at an improved horse up to 2400 metres."
Trainer David Vandyke has revealed that a foot abscess that brought a premature end to Yankee Rose's autumn campaign has resurfaced in the last week, reports racenet. The aptly named daughter of All American stamped herself as the best juvenile filly in Australia courtesy of her second placing behind Capitalist in the Gr1 Golden Slipper and her brilliant win in the Gr1 Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) in the autumn. However a foot abscess in the lead-up to the Champagne Stakes forced her to abandon her bid for a juvenile Gr1 double. Yankee Rose, whose primary spring target is the Gr1 WS Cox Plate in October, returned to Vandyke’s new stable on the Sunshine Coast last week but the foot abscess continues to be a concern. "We’re just struggling with a foot abscess which is obviously very frustrating because we had so many problems last preparation with her feet,” Vandyke said. "It’s an abscess in her toe which has made her quite lame and unable to work but she should come right in the next couple of days. Her previous abscess was in her heel.” Vandyke said he will use swimming in substitution for track work to get Yankee Rose fit and ready for the spring. She is expected to open her spring campaign in the Gr1 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on 10 September before contesting the Gr1 Flight Stakes (1600m) against her own sex at Randwick on 1 October. She will then go third-up into the Cox Plate (2040m) on 22 October followed by the VRC Oaks (2500m) 12 days later. "That’s the direction we’re headed. She couldn’t have found the line any better than what she has in her four career starts. Her closing sectionals have been outstanding. Everything points to her getting a mile and further,” Vandyke said. "I think the experience I’ve had with European-bred horses like Sir John Hawkwood and Maurus, that need very little work to run over ground, helps me realise what I need to do, or what I don’t need to do to get this filly to a Cox Plate and Oaks."
At Ipswich in South-East Queensland, 5YO UK-bred gelding Maurus (Medicean-Shastye, by Danehill) set a new metric weight carrying record when scoring an easy 3.5-length win for trainer David Vandyke in the $175,000 Listed Ipswich Cup (2150m) for 3YO+, over 4YO entire Jumbo Prince (Outback Prince-Maggie Jain, by Lujain) & 7YO Irish-bred gelding Instrumentalist (Amadeus Wolf-Kobalt Sea, by Akarad). Raced by Paul Fudge's Waratah Thoroughbreds, Maurus not only registered his maiden black-type success but also set a new weight carrying record for the Ipswich Cup of 58kg - the most since metrics were introduced in 1971. The win took his record to 6 wins and 7 placings (including the Gr3 TC Kingston Town Stakes) from 17 starts for $354,000 earnings. "It's been a dream year and Waratah has been such a good supporter of mine. It's a shame Paul Fudge couldn't make it to the races today but he will be over the moon because he's always promised to be a top horse, that's why we ran him in the Doomben Cup," trainer David Vandyke told Sky Racing. "To be so dominant today in what was good time is outstanding." Vandyke indicated the Listed Caloundra Cup in two weeks time was the logical next target for Maurus. "It would be a shame to see him go the paddock after that because he was so dominant," he said.
At Royal Randwick in Sydney, 5YO Irish-bred gelding Libran (Lawman-True Crystal, by Sadler's Wells) registered his first stakes success since arriving in Australia when scoring by 0.2-length for trainer Chris Waller in the $125,000 Listed Randwick City Stakes (2000m) for 3YO+, over 4YO gelding Allergic (Street Cry-Cajou, by Encosta de Lago) & 5YO UK-bred gelding Maurus (Medicean-Shastye, by Danehill). Owned by Highclere Thoroughbred Racing Australia, Libran took his record to 6 wins and 2 placings from 16 starts for $222,852 earnings.
At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, 7YO French-bred gelding Silverball (Kahyasi-Mikalia, by Kaldoun) registered his second stakes victory in Australia when scoring by 0.5-length for trainer Chris Waller in the $125,000 Gr3 Kingston Town Stakes (2000m) for 3YO+, over 5YO UK-bred gelding Maurus (Medicean-Shastye, by Danehill) & 6YO Irish-bred gelding Foundry (Galileo-Sharp Lisa, by Dixieland Band). Silverball took his record to 7 wins (including the Listed Lord Mayors Cup) and 7 placings (including the Gr2 UAE Derby) from 24 starts for $824,956 earnings.