2018

Doomben Cup Goal for Ambitious

Tuesday, 24th April 2018

Trainer Anthony Freedman says Queensland's weather will determine whether or not talented Japanese import Ambitious makes an appearance over the winter carnival. Freedman is keen to run the son of Deep Impact in the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 19 May provided the track is not rain affected. Freedman says Ambitious' last start performance when eighth behind Winx in the Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) should be ignored when nothing went right for him in the run. He had previously shown his class when finishing an unlucky second to Almandin in the Gr1 Tancred Stakes (2400m) at Randwick. "He's been up there about a week," Freedman told racing.com. "I was really happy with the way he came through the Queen Elizabeth. He lost shoes and it all went terribly wrong the other day but he's still in good shape and the plan is certainly to head towards the Doomben Cup." Freedman added: "If we get wet tracks he certainly won't run. He'll just take a break up there but if we get the right track, he'll certainly be running."

Online Catalogue for MM National Broodmares Online

Tuesday, 24th April 2018

Comprising almost 1,000 lots, the catalogue for the 2018 Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale is now online. The auction will present a spectacular line up of breeding prospects – from race fillies and top young breeding prospects to proven Gr1 producers. "We are overwhelmed with the support that the vendors of Australasia have given the sale again this year," Magic Millions managing director Barry Bowditch said. "There will be so many opportunities for buyers across all levels of the market. This sale has produced so many elite results for both vendors and buyers – the dams of current day stars Winx, Trapeze Artist, Estijaab, Levendi, Shoals and Hiyaam were all purchased here providing buyers with immediate returns on investment." A supplementary catalogue is currently in production and will be released next month. To view the online catalogue for the 2018 Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale click here. The catalogue is also available for download on the Equineline iPad app. Hard copies of the catalogue will be posted early May.

National Broodmare Sale

Winx To Enjoy Some R&R

Tuesday, 17th April 2018

Chris Waller says Winx will enjoy a couple of days relaxing before heading for a break following her historic Queen Elizabeth Stakes victory on Saturday. The superstar mare, who must surely now be acknowledged as the world's best racehorse, created history on several fronts when strolling to an outstanding win in the $4 million showpiece. Chief among her numerous milestones were recording and 18th Group 1 win and equalling Black Caviar's record of 25 consecutive wins. With connections having ruled out a trip to England for Royal Ascot, focus now turns to a potential tilt at an unprecedented fourth Cox Plate victory for the great mare. "She'll be in the stables for a couple of days and wind down before heading to the spelling farm," Waller told Melbourne's Radio Sport National. As for Winx's Spring campaign, Waller said no plans had been made. "We'll just take one run at a time. We haven't said anything about where she's heading or what she's doing," he said. "If she's racing well and the Cox Plate is in front of her she'll run, but if I'm not happy with her the day before a Cox Plate she won't run."

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The imperious Winx in full flight (image: Steve Hart)

Wonder Mare Winx Wins Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes

Monday, 16th April 2018

On day two of The Championships at Royal Randwick, Darley's deceased shuttler & Gr1 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry (Machiavellian-Helen Street, by Troy) celebrated an elite race success when his champion 6YO daughter Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) created history on several fronts when strolling to an outstanding last-to-first win in the showpiece event of The Championships - the weight-for-age $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) - defeating Gailo Chop & Happy Clapper. The victory, which not only saw Winx equal Black Caviar's record of 25 straight wins but also become the first mare to win successive Queen Elizabeth's, advanced her record to an astonishing 29 wins (including the Gr1 Cox Plate – three times, Gr1 George Ryder Stakes - three times, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes - twice, Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes – three times, 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 35 starts for Australian record earnings of $18,998,425. Trainer Chris Waller was in awe of Winx's accomplishment, saying she was not only a superior racehorse but that she excels under pressure. "It's hard to find the right words but that was very special, there was an arrogance about it," Waller told the Daily Telegraph. "She keeps lifting for the big occasions. Winx is a very dominant horse under pressure. It's only in those pressure scenarios that we see the best from her." As for Hugh Bowman, the Dunedoo-born jockey said he was just honoured to be a part of the Winx story. "The bottom line is she's got 10 to 12 lengths on her rivals, it makes it easy for me," Bowman said. "I know I've got the engine to round them up. She's just an exceptional athlete. I'm just so elated, I'm so proud of her and I'm just so proud to be a part of it." Winx was a $230,000 Magic Bloodstock purchase at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale from the draft of Coolmore Stud.

Winx's wonderful milestones:

  • Equalled Black Caviar's record of 25 consecutive wins
  • All-time record Australian earnings of $18,998,425
  • Recorded her 18th win at Group 1 level - a world record
  • The first mare to win back-to-back Queen Elizabeth's

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The world's best - Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Four Successive Oaks for Karaka Graduates

Monday, 16th April 2018

Unforgotten became the fourth consecutive NZ Bloodstock graduate to win the time-honoured Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) at Royal Randwick on Saturday. The sequence began in 2015 when Gust of Wind (Darci Brahma), a $90,000 Premier Sale purchase, beat subsequent superstar mare Winx to claim the race. Gust Of Wind is the last horse to defeat Winx who has now won 25 races in succession. The $65,000 Select Sale buy Sofia Rosa (Makfi) followed in 2016, then Bonneval (Makfi) last year. Bought for $150,000 at the 2015 Premier Sale, Bonneval was crowned New Zealand's Horse of the Year for 2016-17. Champion ex-pat New Zealand trainer Chris Waller secured Unforgotten for $360,000 at the 2016 Premier Sale, and the filly was quick to show promise with four wins from her first seven starts including the Gr2 Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) in mid-March. Unforgotten was bred by Roncon and was offered by Curraghmore at the 2016 Premier Sale. Raced by Waller, Magic Bloodstock Racing, Mr F W Cook, Mrs C M Cook, Mr N A Greenhalgh, Mrs M T Greenhalgh, Mr R Shrimpton, Mrs C Shrimpton, Mr I Bruce, Mr R Smith, Mr P Y W Ng, Mr K H Warriner, Mr J T C Lake and Mr B L Mathieson, Unforgotten has now won five of her nine starts for $1,095,520 in earnings.

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Who Shot Thebarman Wins Gr1 Sydney Cup

Monday, 16th April 2018

On day two of The Championships at Royal Randwick, deceased former White Robe Lodge stallion Yamanin Vital (Sir Tristram-She Might Hula, by Caucasus) celebrated an elite race success when 9YO New Zealand-bred gelding Who Shot Thebarman (Yamanin Vital-Ears Carol, by Carolingian) turned back the clock to produce a sterling performance and win the $2 million Gr1 Sydney Cup (3200m) for 3YO+, defeating Zacada & Sir Charles Road. Who Shot Thebarman, who is owned by New Zealand-based siblings Dan, Humphrey, Michael and Shaun O'Leary, improved his record to 11 wins (including the Gr1 Auckland Cup, Gr2 Zipping Classic, Gr2 Moonee Valley Gold Cup & Gr2 Avondale Cup) and 11 placings (including the Gr1 Melbourne Cup & Gr1 Sydney Cup) from 51 starts for $4,655,586 in earnings. "He's been such a frustrating horse because he's run so many great seconds and thirds in Sydney Cups and Melbourne Cups," trainer Chris Waller said of the evergreen stayer. "He's given us one hell of a ride. He's nine years old and if Winx is not a pretty good advertisement on how to look after a horse I think Thebarman takes the cake. That's the best he's looked today as a nine-year-old." There was drama before the race when Japanese raider Prestwick was a late withdrawal due to veterinary advice.

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Who Shot Thebarman (image: Steve Hart)

Winx's Toughest Challenge: Bowman

Friday, 13th April 2018

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.

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Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes Final Field & Barriers

Wednesday, 11th April 2018

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.

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Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Consensus Is QE Placing Will Suffice

Wednesday, 11th April 2018

Trainer Stephen McKee is under no illusions about taking on Winx in Saturday's $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick with Kiwi mare Consensus, reports NZ Racing Desk. "I don't see it as running against Winx. I see it as the $755,000 [prize money] for running second," McKee said. "Gailo Chop and all the other good ones will be there, but the breakdown of prize-money is great and the track should be good, which will suit our mare." A winner of last year's Gr1 Zabeel Classic (2000m), Consensus has been in good form this season recording a runner-up finish in the Gr1 Captain Cook Stakes (1600m), a fourth in the Gr1 Zabeel Classic, and most recently a second behind Devise in the Gr1 WFA Classic (1600m) at Hastings. "She's got a lot of black type so she's really got nothing left to prove at home," McKee said. Most recently, the 6YO finished a respectable fourth behind Almandin in the Gr1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill in her first Australian appearance. "She came through the race well and she had a nice hit-out this morning with Jason Collett on board," McKee said. "This race fits in well for the mare before she goes to Brisbane." Consensus' primary winter target is the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 19 May.

Happy Clapper Wins Gr1 Doncaster Mile

Monday, 9th April 2018

At Royal Randwick on day one of The Championships, Darley's unbeaten European Champion juvenile & dual Gr1-winning shuttler Teofilo (Galileo-Speirbhean, by Danehill) celebrated an elite race success when 7YO Australian-bred gelding Happy Clapper (Teofilo-Busking, by Encosta de Lago) showed his superiority when scoring a comfortable 2 length win in Australia's premier mile handicap, the $3 million Gr1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) for 3YO+, defeating Comin' Through & Arbeitsam. This was the third top-flight success for Happy Clapper who advanced his record to 11 wins (including the Gr1 Canterbury Stakes, Gr1 Epsom Handicap, Gr2 Tramway Stakes, Gr2 ATC Villiers Stakes) & Gr3 Newmarket Handicap) and 12 placings (including the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes, Gr1 VRC Emirates Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes, Gr1 ATC Doncaster Handicap – twice & Gr1 ATC Queen Elizabeth Stakes) from 34 starts for $5,945,050 in earnings. Winning trainer Pat Webster said the Doncaster was the one race he always wanted to win when he was growing up. "You can have your Golden Slippers and you can have your Cox Plates but when we were kids The Doncaster was always the race we wanted to win. I watched my first Doncaster from the Leger when Tobin Bronze won in 1967," Webster told Sky Racing. "I grew up here and this is the race I've always wanted to win. It's a dream." Jockey Blake Shinn commented: "That is amazing. I have just won a Doncaster," he said. "To win a Doncaster and put my name in the history books with this horse who deserves it is very special." Happy Clapper became just the tenth horse in history to claim the Epsom & Doncaster double, joining the likes of Winx, Super Impose and Gunsynd. Happy Clapper also earned himself an automatic entry in the Gr1 Breeders' Cup Mile at the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Kentucky on November 2-3.

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Happy Clapper (image: Steve Hart)

Winx All Class In Exhibition Gallop

Monday, 9th April 2018

Winx looked a picture of health when stepping out in an exhibition gallop at Royal Randwick on Saturday. The superstar mare covered the 1000 metres in 1:02.19s with a final 600m in 34.26s. The hit-out was in preparation for her final autumn appearance in Saturday's $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick. Both trainer Chris Waller and Winx's regular rider Hugh Bowman were happy with the work. "She makes it look like it was dead-set three quarter pace and was only just getting into her stride," said Waller. "Today was the most she has done in the past few weeks. Next week she'll have one more piece of work to keep her nice and sharp." Bowman commented: "She is fresh and ready to go. When she knew I was about to slip her a bit of leather she really took advantage of it and worked home really quickly. She enjoyed the work and so did I."

Day 1 Of The Championships Hailed A Success

Monday, 9th April 2018

The opening day of The Championships has been hailed an outstanding success with close to 20,000 patrons enjoying Day 1 of the prestigious carnival featuring four Group 1 events at Royal Randwick, reports racingnsw.com.au. "The racing was world-class and we could not have wished for a better opening day to The Championships," said Racing NSW’s Chief Executive Officer, Peter V’landys. "It augurs well for next Saturday’s second day when we can come out to Royal Randwick and witness the world’s best racehorse, Winx, in action competing in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes." Australian Turf Club Chairman, Laurie Macri, said: "Day One of The Championships has provided top class racing on a fantastic Royal Randwick surface. Since its inception in 2014, The Championships has gone from strength to strength." The Championships continue at Royal Randwick on Saturday 14 April when superstar mare Winx will be looking to equal Black Caviar’s record of 25 consecutive wins in the $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m).

Exhibition Gallop for Winx

Friday, 6th April 2018

Racing fans have been provided with an added incentive to attend the opening day of The Championships with news that Winx will take part in an exhibition gallop at Royal Randwick on Saturday. The champion mare will gallop over 1000 metres following the running of race one at 11:30am. Winx, who set a new world record of 17 Group 1 victories when landing the George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill two weeks ago, is set to make her final autumn appearance in the $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on 14 April.

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Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Sydney's The Championships Kick Off Tomorrow

Friday, 6th April 2018

Royal Randwick will host the opening day of The Championships tomorrow which will feature the running of four Group 1 races and more than $10 million in prize money. The ten race program is headlined by the time honoured $3 million Gr1 Doncaster Mile, the $2.5 million Gr1 Darley TJ Smith Stakes, $2 million Gr1 Australian Derby, and the $1 million Gr1 Inglis Sires'. Patrons will also be able to see champion mare Winx participate in an exhibition gallop following race one as she prepares for her final autumn appearance in the $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes on Saturday week. The Royal Randwick track was rated a Good 4 on Thursday morning. The first race on Saturday is at 11.30am and last race at 5.10pm. Gates open at 10.15am. Click here to view the fields for Royal Randwick.

Gr1 Doncaster Mile: Preview & History

Friday, 6th April 2018

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.

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Chocante On Track for Brisbane

Friday, 6th April 2018

A glowing report from a Group One-winning jockey has boosted trainer Stephen Marsh's confidence ahead of another Australian campaign for talented Kiwi stayer Chocante, reports NZ Racing Desk. "Troy Harris rode him in a trial at Taupo before the horse went to Sydney last year and he rode him again at Cambridge the other day and said he felt as good, if not better this time around," Marsh said. Last seen finishing eighth in the Gr1 Captain Cook Stakes in December, Chocante had embarked on a successful Australian campaign in the spring where he was placed behind champion mare Winx in the Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) and Foundry in the Gr1 The Metropolitan (2400m) in Sydney. The son of Shocking is now set for a return to the Queensland winter carnival where he won last year's Gr2 Brisbane Cup (2200m). "He's going to run in the open handicap over 1400m on Saturday and then he'll go over to Brisbane," Marsh said. "He's coming up really well and while we wouldn't be expecting him to win at Te Aroha, he'll give a little bit of cheek at some stage of the race." Chocante will open his Australian campaign in the Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) at Doomben on 21 April. His primary target is the Gr1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on 19 May.

Kementari Ready for GF

Thursday, 5th April 2018

Trainer James Cummings says the signs are positive that star colt Kementari can round out his 3YO season with a win in Saturday's $3 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile at Randwick. Cummings says Kementari is now ready to peak after four runs this time in, which have included a maiden Gr1 success in the Randwick Guineas (1600m) on 10 March and an excellent third behind Winx and Happy Clapper in the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) two weeks ago. "We'd been impressed to see the change in the horse leading into the George Ryder and after racing so well against Winx he seems to have come out of it with more energy," Cummings told Godolphin.com. "He's certainly looking like he's still on the rise which is perfect considering what he did at this track and distance in the Randwick Guineas two starts back." Cummings added: "We feel like we're going to see a big performance from him and for us, it's very exciting to saddle up a colt of his calibre in such a prestigious race. He gives a real sense of this being his grand final." Kementari, who will carry just 51.5kg on Saturday, is currently the $3.70 TAB favourite for the race ahead of Happy Clapper ($5) and fellow 3YO D'Argento ($7).

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Kementari (image: Steve Hart)

Webster Happy With Draw

Thursday, 5th April 2018

Trainer Pat Webster expressed his delight after Happy Clapper drew perfectly for Saturday's Group 1 Doncaster Mile at Randwick, but he is conscious of the weight advantage he must concede to his chief market rival Kementari. Happy Clapper, who will jump from barrier one in the $3 million feature, is considered a top contender for the major prize having finished runner-up to champion mare Winx in the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) two weeks ago. However, under the handicap conditions of the race, the 7YO must overcome a 3kg turnaround in favour of Kementari who finished so close to him (3rd, beaten 0.75 length) in the Ryder. "We drew two last year and finished second, so from one this time we should be winning," Webster joked when speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald. "People who say barriers don't count are mad. I would take barrier one in a steeplechase. It is the fastest way home." Webster added: "I don't know how Clapper can beat him [Kementari] at the weights but the old fella doesn't know how to run a bad run over the Randwick mile." Happy Clapper will be hoping it is third time lucky having finished runner-up in the Doncaster in the past two runnings of the race. Kementari is currently the $3.70 TAB favourite for the race ahead of Happy Clapper ($5) and fellow 3YO D'Argento ($7).

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Happy Clapper (image: Steve Hart)

Gr1 Doncaster Mile Field & Barriers

Wednesday, 4th April 2018

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.

No Royal Ascot For Winx

Thursday, 29th March 2018

Winx will be staying home with connections deciding against campaigning the champion mare on the international stage. "Following lengthy discussions between the owners, Hugh Bowman and I, it has been decided that Winx win will remain in Australia following the Queen Elizabeth Stakes...and not embark on an international campaign," trainer Chris Waller said in a release. "When contemplating a decision on her future there were a diverse range of matters to be considered, from wellbeing risks associated with travel to seasonal changes her hormones may undertake. As her trainer, it is my responsibility to continue to carefully manage her career as it enters the twilight phase." Waller continued: "Winx has nothing to prove to anyone. She is and always will be regarded as a legend of the turf and it is champions like her that make up the fabric of this great sport." Waller said the decision was made in the interest of prolonging Winx's career which is set to include an attempt to become the first horse in history to win four Cox Plates. "This is the best way to get her racing a little bit longer. It is our plan to continue to race her into the spring," he said.

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Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Racing Eagerly Awaiting Winx Decision

Tuesday, 27th March 2018

Trainer Chris Waller has hinted that a decision regarding an international campaign for champion Winx is imminent. Winx, who set a new world record of 17 Group 1 victories in Saturday's George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill, is set to make her next appearance in the $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on 14 April. In the meantime, racing fans around the world are holding their collective breath while her connections discuss whether or not to embark on an overseas campaign aimed at Royal Ascot in June. "Obviously we know when it is [Royal Ascot] and what the races are in Europe but today was very important to see her come back and be fairly dominant," Waller told the Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday. "It's onwards to the Queen Elizabeth in three weeks time. It's the signature race in Sydney which we were never really going to miss." He added: "We've got to talk about coming back if she went to Europe and race in her fourth Cox Plate. She can only really go there for one run, possibly two, but we've got to put all the cards on the table. We'll speak to the owners and have a check on the horse as well."

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Winx (image: Steve Hart)

World's Best Winx Wins Gr1 George Ryder Stakes

Monday, 26th March 2018

At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, 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) broke the world record for the most number of Group 1 wins with her 24th consecutive victory in the $1 million Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) for 3YO+, defeating Happy Clapper & Kementari. Not only did Winx become the first horse in history to win three George Ryder's, but she also claimed the outright world record for the most number of Group 1 wins, with her 17th Group 1 title surpassing the previous benchmark set by US champion John Henry in 1984. The win advanced Winx's astonishing record to 28 wins (including the Gr1 Cox Plate – three times, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Gr1 Caulfield Stakes, Gr1 George Main Stakes - twice, Gr1 Doncaster Mile, Gr1 George Ryder Stakes - twice, Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes – three times, 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 34 starts for $16,563,925 in earnings. Trainer Chris Waller commented: "It's pretty special, I try not to get too caught up in it," said Waller, "I like everybody else who is a racing or sporting tragic have to be pretty proud of her today." Winx's regular rider Hugh Bowman said: "I could feel the crowd erupt as we went to the front at the 200 metres. What a special, special horse she is and I'm just so grateful to be her jockey." Bowman added: "Each horse is an individual but this horse has captivated the attention of the world." Winx is set to make her next appearance in the $4 million Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on day two of The Championships (14 April). Connections will also decide in the coming days whether or not to embark on an overseas campaign aimed at Royal Ascot in June.

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The world's best horse Winx (image: Steve Hart)

Winx Claims Gr1 World Record

Monday, 26th March 2018

Magic Millions graduate Winx stands alone as the most winning Group 1 flat racehorse in history after she stretched her group race streak to 24 in Saturday's Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill. History was made across the board, with the superstar mare becoming the first horse to win three George Ryder Stakes titles and surpassing American champion John Henry as the most successful flat galloper of all time with 17 Group One victories. Winx's world record 17 Group 1 victories are:

  • 2015 Queensland Oaks
  • 2015 Epsom Handicap
  • 2015 Cox Plate
  • 2016 Chipping Norton Stakes
  • 2016 George Ryder Stakes
  • 2016 Doncaster Handicap
  • 2016 George Main Stakes
  • 2016 Caulfield Stakes
  • 2016 Cox Plate
  • 2017 Chipping Norton Stakes
  • 2017 George Ryder Stakes
  • 2017 Queen Elizabeth Stakes
  • 2017 George Main Stakes
  • 2017 Turnbull Stakes
  • 2017 Cox Plate
  • 2018 Chipping Norton Stakes
  • 2018 George Ryder Stakes

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Ten Entered To Take On Winx

Tuesday, 20th March 2018

Superstar mare Winx headlines a field of eleven horses nominated for Saturday's Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill. The George Ryder is shaping as an intriguing race with the likes of star colt Kementari, dual Gr1 winner Happy Clapper, and Winx's highly promising younger stable-mate D'Argento set to contest the $1 million weight-for-age feature. The Chris Waller-trained Winx surpassed Black Caviar in setting a new Australian record of 16 Group 1 victories when she opened her autumn campaign with an effortless 7 length win in the Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick two weeks ago. She will be chasing her 24th consecutive victory in the George Ryder, after which connections will decide whether or not to embark on an international campaign aimed at Royal Ascot. Click here to view Rosehill nominations.

Humidor Wins Gr2 Blamey Stakes

Monday, 19th March 2018

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.

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Humidor (image: Mark Gatt)

Exhibition Gallop for Winx

Friday, 16th March 2018

Champion mare Winx will be given an exhibition gallop over 1000m following the running of race one at Rosehill on Saturday. The Chris Waller-trained superstar surpassed Black Caviar in setting a new Australian record of 16 Group 1 victories when she opened her autumn campaign with an effortless 7 length win in the Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick two weeks ago. Winx, who has now won 23 races in succession, is scheduled to run in the Gr1 George Main Stakes on Golden Slipper Day at Rosehill on 24 March.

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Winx winning the Gr1 Chipping Norton (image: Steve Hart)

Winx Breaks Gr1 Record In Chipping Norton Stakes

Monday, 5th March 2018

At Randwick in Sydney, 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) sauntered to the line 7-lengths clear for trainer Chris Waller in the $600,000 weight-for-age Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m), defeating 4YO entire Prized Icon & 5YO gelding Classic Uniform. Having her first start since winning a record equalling Gr1 Cox Plate last October, Australian racing's queen was allowed to lope along near the rear by regular pilot Hugh Bowman. Sooled into the race turning towards the business end of the mile, where she ambled up like a Bentley on a Sunday outing with Bowman relaxed at the wheel, Winx effortlessly raised the bar by establishing a new Australian record of 16 Gr1 victories en-route to winning 23 straight. Having broken Black Caviar's Gr1 win record with her third Chipping Norton Stakes achievement, the mighty mare appears to have the Sydney autumn, and possibly English racing at her mercy. Her next start is expected to be in the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes, where she is on track for another Gr1 feature race treble. "It's always a concern to see how horses come back. To see her come back like this is pretty special," said Waller, whose emotion was clear to see. "She's getting the imagination of Australia. It's a great way to portray our sport." Now the winner of 27 of her 33 starts, with record southern hemisphere earnings of just under $16 million, Winx's new record of 16 Gr1s, all while undefeated, comprises the:

  • 2015 Queensland Oaks
  • 2015 Epsom Handicap
  • 2015 Cox Plate
  • 2016 Chipping Norton Stakes
  • 2016 George Ryder Stakes
  • 2016 Doncaster Handicap
  • 2016 George Main Stakes
  • 2016 Caulfield Stakes
  • 2016 Cox Plate
  • 2017 Chipping Norton Stakes
  • 2017 George Ryder Stakes
  • 2017 Queen Elizabeth Stakes
  • 2017 George Main Stakes
  • 2017 Turnbull Stakes
  • 2017 Cox Plate
  • 2018 Chipping Norton Stakes

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Winx makes it a record 16 Gr1s (pic: Steve Hart)

Nozomi Wins Gr3 TAB Multiplier Autumn Handicap

Monday, 5th March 2018

At Flemington in Melbourne, Darley's deceased shuttler & Gr1 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry (Machiavellian-Helen Street, by Troy) made it a state stakes sire double (following the incredible win if Winx) when 6YO gelding Nozomi (Street Cry-Rose of Danehill, by) saluted in the $150,000 Gr3 TAB Multiplier Autumn Handicap (1400m) over Violate & Cool Chap. Nozomi, a half-brother to Gr2 Mooney Valley Classic winner Kazanluk (Red Ransom) from Danehill's multiple Gr2-winning daughter Rose Of Danehill took his record to 6 wins (including the Listed Geelong Classic) and 5 placings (including the Gr1 Victoria Derby) from 28 starts for $533,720 in earnings. Ebullient trainer Anthony Freedman revealed, "He's a lovely old horse. He's a stable favourite. He had a good spring without winning so we'll push on to maybe The Blamey and maybe the Easter Cup." He added, "He always works well. He's a good track worker and he looks magnificent."

Chipping Norton Perfect for Winx

Friday, 2nd March 2018

Meanwhile, trainer Chris Waller says tomorrow's Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick is the "perfect starting point" for Winx at this stage of her career, reports racingnsw.com.au. "Everything we have tried she has done with distinction whether it be 1100 metres in her first career start or right through to 2200 metres when she won the Queensland Oaks. She really is an amazing athlete," Waller said. "Everything has gone to plan and we wouldn't change anything in any way." He added: "She is a lot easier horse to train now than when she was four. With age she has matured and become strong. She copes with her racing and training better and is handling it better mentally. There are so many positive signs that she is just as well now as she has ever been." Winx has not raced since October when she created history by joining the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates. She also surpassed three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva to become the greatest prize money earner in Australian racing history.

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Twelve Potential Rivals for Winx

Tuesday, 27th February 2018

Winx is one of thirteen horses nominated for Saturday's $600,000 weight-for-age Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick. The champion mare has not raced since October when she created history by joining the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates. She also surpassed three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva to become the greatest prize money earner in Australian racing history. Victory in the Chipping Norton will see her claim her 23rd successive win and her 16th at Group 1 level. Winx tuned up for her return when easily defeating five of her stable-mates in a specially convened open trial over 1200 metres at Randwick on 17 February. "The trial has brought her on and she is ready to go in the Chipping Norton," trainer Chris Waller told AAP. "She's had a very good week since then and we couldn't be happier." TAB has installed Winx as the $1.08 favourite for the Chipping Norton. Click here to view all nominations for Randwick on Saturday.

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Winx winning an historic third Cox Plate (image: Mark Gatt)

Payne Delighted With Ace Colt

Tuesday, 20th February 2018

Trainer David Payne is not ruling out taking on Winx in the autumn with Ace High providing the colt performs up to expectations beginning with Saturday's Gr2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill. "I'm happy with him, we're just building him up to his target. If he finishes a length or two off them I'd be happy," Payne told racingnsw.com.au. "His real targets are the Rosehill Guineas and the Australian Derby. By chance if he wins one over a mile [the Randwick Guineas] he's worth a fortune." Payne added: "We'll see how Winx is going and we will look at the Queen Elizabeth as well." A dual Group 1 winner of the Victoria Derby and Spring Champion Stakes in the spring, Ace High (High Chaparral-Come Sunday, by Redoute's Choice) resumed with an excellent fifth in the Gr2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) two weeks ago recording the second-fastest final 600m split of the race in 34.42 seconds. "He's definitely a better horse and stronger," Payne said. "Often a Derby flattens them and over the years you see them not come back but he's come back well."

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Ace High winning the Victoria Derby (image: Mark Gatt)

Winx Purrs In Trial

Monday, 19th February 2018

Trainer Chris Waller was delighted after watching Winx run out a cosy winner of her special trial at Royal Randwick on Saturday. In lieu of racing in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes over 1400m, the champion mare raced against five of her stable-mates in a specially convened open trial over 1200 metres to prepare her for her seasonal reappearance in the Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on 3 March. "Race conditions are pretty hard to simulate but it was a pretty good attempt there," trainer Chris Waller told Sky Racing. "The key now is not to over-train her in between. She had a pretty solid trial today that simulated a race so...I think in two weeks time we’ll have a horse ready to run a solid mile race." When she resumes the champion mare will be chasing her 23rd successive win and her 16th at Group 1 level.

Winx Relation Aiming To Blitz Rivals

Friday, 16th February 2018

The opening race at Flemington tomorrow will see the debut of twice Horse of the Year Winx's close relation in Nuclear Blitz. By Gr1 Golden Slipper winner and Gr1 producing sire Sepoy, the filly is from Encosta de Lago mare Miss Atom Bomb, a half-sister to both Winx and Gr3 Kindergarten Stakes winner El Divino. Nuclear Blitz was a $300,000 purchase by Dermot Farrington Bloodstock from the draft of Bhima Thoroughbreds at the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale. In what appears a hot field of 2YOs, Nuclear Blitz is currently at $7 and fourth in the market behind current pre-post favourite Pierro Belle ($3), a superbly bred filly from the flying yard of Tony McEvoy. Pierro Belle is by another Gr1 Golden Slipper winner in Pierro from high class Gr3-winning mare Pane in the Glass.

AAP Racing Megaform

Valuable Colt Set To Pounce On Debut

Thursday, 15th February 2018

In what is assumedly a clever ode to the Best Picture Winner of 2000 in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, $250,000 dollar colt Crouching Dragon is poised to make his debut this evening at Cranbourne in the APM Maiden (1200m). Racing in the well-known colours of Sun Bloodstock, Crouching Dragon has been prepared by Team Hayes and will be accompanied by in form hoop Michael Dee. Crouching Dragon is by Street Cry, sire of two of the most outstanding racehorses of this century in Winx (17 straight wins) and US Eclipse Award Winner Zenyatta (19 straight wins and 2nd at her final start before retiring). Crouching Tiger is from Gr3 Furious Stakes-winning, Gr1 Flight Stakes-placed Danehill mare Moonflute. Moonflute is also a half-sister to Pine Away, dam of Gr1 winner, Absolute Glam, Gr1 Galaxy runner-up, Nobby Snip and Forever Rafter (dam of Gr2 NRC Thousand Guineas Prelude runner-up, Miss Gunpowder). Crouching Dragon was offered by Baramul Stud at the 2016 Magic Millions Yearling Sale and has been tuned up for his first-up tilt with 3 impressive trials.

Apollo First-Up for Foxplay

Tuesday, 13th February 2018

Group One winner Foxplay (Foxwedge-Butters, by El Prado) will open her autumn campaign in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday, reports racenet. Foxplay is taking advantage of the absence of her champion stable-mate Winx, who instead will resume in the Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on 3 March. "I wasn't going to run Foxplay in the Apollo but now that Winx isn't there she will run," trainer Chris Waller said. Foxplay, who has not raced since finishing a close-up fifth (beaten 1.1 lengths) behind Shoals in the Gr1 Myer Classic in the spring, is being aimed at a defence of her title in the Gr1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes during The Championships.

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Foxplay winning the 2017 Gr1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (image: Steve Hart)

Hartnell Wins Gr1 CF Orr Stakes

Monday, 12th February 2018

At Caulfield in Melbourne, triple Gr1-winning former English Derby victor & successful Darley shuttler Authorized (Montjeu-Funsie, by Saumarez) celebrated an elite race success when 7YO UK-bred gelding Hartnell (Authorized-Debonnaire, by Anabaa) maintained his excellent first-up record when resuming with a slashing win in the $500,000 weight-for-age Gr1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) for 3YO+, defeating Single Gaze & Brave Smash. The Godolphin-owned Hartnell improved his record to 12 wins (including the Gr1 The BMW, Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, Gr2 PB Lawrence Stakes, Gr2 Hill Stakes, Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr3 Sky High Stakes & Gr3 Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket) and 13 placings (including the Gr1 Cox Plate, Gr1 Melbourne Cup, Gr1 Underwood Stakes, Gr1 Makybe Diva Stakes, Gr2 Apollo Stakes, Gr1 Ranvet Stakes, Gr1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes & Gr1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud) from 38 starts for $4,766,610 in earnings. Trainer James Cummins said Hartnell could very well now head to Sydney for a clash with champion mare Winx in the Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on 3 March. "I would like to run him in the best race available to him and that might be the Chipping Norton," Cummings told Godolphin.com. "I also like the idea of keeping him fresh, so we'll see how he comes through this win. He's a unique horse...I haven't trained one like him."

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Hartnell in the Godolphin blue (image: Mark Gatt)

Winx Entered for Dubai

Thursday, 8th February 2018

Champion mare Winx features among the nominations for next month's US$6 million Gr1 Dubai Turf (1800m) in Dubai. The Dubai Turf will be run on the world's richest day of racing, Dubai World Cup night, to be held at Meydan racecourse on Saturday, 31 March 2018. If Winx does compete in the UAE it would be a huge coup for the Dubai racing carnival, however it seems highly unlikely with Chris Waller previously stating that no decision regarding an international campaign will be made until after she runs in the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) in Sydney on 24 March. Other Australian horses that hold entries on World Cup night include Gr1 winning sprinters Hey Doc, Music Magnate and Viddora (US$1 million Gr1 Al Quoz Sprint), and Abbey Marie, Coldstone and Wyndspelle (US$10 million Gr1 Dubai World Cup). Click here to view all entries for Dubai's feature races.

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Winx (image: Mark Gatt)

Chipping Norton New Target for Winx

Wednesday, 7th February 2018

Champion mare Winx will now launch her autumn campaign in the Gr1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on 3 March. Trainer Chris Waller confirmed the change of plans after Winx's regular rider Hugh Bowman had his appeal to have his suspension reduced dismissed by the Racing NSW Appeals Panel on Monday. Winx was originally scheduled to resume in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on 17 February. "Hugh Bowman is a very important part of Winx and we feel that we can go straight into the Chipping Norton first up without the need to resume in the Apollo Stakes as we had originally planned," Waller said. "She races well fresh and we are ahead of schedule with her, so I will simply give her a third trial to ensure her fitness levels are high enough to compete at her best in this race."

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Winx winning an historic third Cox Plate (image: Mark Gatt)

Winx Sibling Progressing Slowly

Tuesday, 6th February 2018

Meanwhile, Winx's unraced 3YO brother is likely to make his eagerly awaited debut sometime after the autumn, reports racenet. Named Boulder City, the son of Snitzel and Vegas Showgirl is trained by Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott and was purchased for $2.3 million by Waterhouse and Julian Blaxland at the 2016 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale from the draft of Segenhoe Stud (as agent). Bott said the stable had had to adopt a patient approach with the highly valuable colt. "He's gone out for a spell so we'll hopefully we'll see him after the autumn carnival," Bott said. "He was a later foal so he's always been a little bit immature in that sense and has always had that reputation to live up to." Bott added: "He's a rangy sort of type...and looks like he's going to get over a bit of ground in time. Obviously we would like to have got him to the races a bit sooner but I'm hoping all the patience will be rewarded."

Trapeze Artist Wins Gr2 Expressway Stakes

Monday, 5th February 2018

At Rosehill Gardens in Sydney, Arrowfield Stud's incumbent Champion Australian Sire Snitzel (Redoute's Choice-Snippets' Lass, by Snippets) added a Group race quinella when 3YO Australian-bred colt Trapeze Artist (Snitzel-Treppes, by Domesday) resumed with a promising win in the $200,000 weight-for-age Gr2 Expressway Stakes (1200m), defeating Showtime & Addictive Nature. Trainer Gerald Ryan said he would immediately raise the bar with newly minted millionaire Trapeze Artist by running him against champion mare Winx when she resumes in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on 17 February. "He's won at weight-for-age now so we may well take on Winx next," Ryan told Sky Racing. Trapeze Artist improved his record to 4 wins (including the Gr1 Golden Rose & Gr3 Black Opal Stakes) and 1 placing (the Gr1 Inglis Sires' Produce Stakes) from 10 starts for $1,073,550 in earnings. Hailing from the female family of Gr1 winners Crawl and Boardwalk Angel, Trapeze Artist was passed in for $250,000 at the 2016 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale from the draft of Vieira Group. His record now reads 2 wins from 3 starts for $195,200 earnings. Interestingly, Trapeze Artist also traces his female line back to New Zealand mare Entreaty, the dam of legendary racehorse Phar Lap.

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Trapeze Artist (image: Steve Hart)

Winx to Trial Today

Monday, 5th February 2018

Winx will make her second public appearance this campaign when she barrier trials at Rosehill this morning. The champion mare, who ran a pleasing sixth in her first trial on 22 January, will step out in the opening 1000 metre heat of the morning at 8:15am. The Chris Waller-trained mare is scheduled to open her autumn campaign in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on 17 February. Click here to view today's Rosehill trial fields.

New Rider Talk for Winx Premature: Tighe

Friday, 2nd February 2018

The connections of Winx say that speculation about who might replace Hugh Bowman as the rider of the champion mare is premature, reports racenet. Bowman is set to miss the ride on Winx when she resumes in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on 17 February after he incurred two suspensions at Warwick Farm on Australia Day and the Karaka Million meeting at Ellerslie last Saturday. However, Bowman has not given up hope of riding the great mare and has lodged an appeal against sentence which will be heard by the Racing NSW Appeal Panel on Monday. Winx's part-owner Peter Tighe said any discussion about a new rider will be put on hold until the outcome of Bowman's appeal is known. "I can assure you we have not had a serious conversation yet about who will ride Winx if Hugh is unavailable," Tighe said. "One very good reason is the Apollo Stakes is still almost three weeks away." He added: "What happens if we lock a jockey in now and they are suspended or injured on Saturday? We would look silly and we would have to go through the whole process again." Winx is scheduled to have her final trial at Rosehill on Monday.

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Winx winning her third Cox Plate (image: Mark Gatt)

Winx Jockey Decision This Week

Tuesday, 30th January 2018

Chris Waller says a decision about who will replace the suspended Hugh Bowman as the rider of champion mare Winx will be made this week, reports racingnsw.com.au. "Obviously there's a lot of things to think about in replacing Hugh to ride Winx for her next start," Waller said. "We'll probably include Hugh Bowman in the decision as well because obviously there's a lot of pressure involved with the rider of Winx, a lot of expectations." Waller added: "I don't want to put any jockey in that situation that's not comfortable with it. I don't want him or her to think he or she may be the reason she doesn't win...I'm waiting to make a decision in a few days time..." Winx is expected to have the second trial of her preparation at Rosehill on 5 February before kicking off her autumn campaign in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on 17 February.

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Winx (image: Mark Gatt)

Expressway Option for Ace Colt

Thursday, 25th January 2018

Trainer David Payne says he is considering running Ace High (High Chaparral-Come Sunday, by Redoute's Choice) first-up in the Gr2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on Saturday week after his impressive barrier trial performance on Monday. Ace High, a winner of the Gr1 Victoria Derby & Gr1 Spring Champion Stakes last spring, finished fifth in a star-studded 900 metre trial won by Golden Rose winner Trapeze Artist that also featured champion mare Winx (6th), and Australia's best sprinter Redzel (7th). "He's always shown a bit of speed but what I like about him is he's got more gate speed now," Payne told racenet. "He's got a lot stronger. If you look at him, his hindquarters have filled out, he was a bit light behind before. He carries a lot of condition for a High Chaparral." Running Ace High under weight-for-age conditions in the Expressway would see the 3YO carry just 55kg. The alternative would be 60.5kg in the Gr3 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) against his own age group. "He would have a lot of weight to carry so he might go to the Expressway," Payne said. "His first couple of runs will be just to get him fit. The main target is still the Randwick Guineas, Rosehill Guineas and Derby."

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Ace High (image: Mark Gatt)

Arrogate Named World's Best Racehorse

Wednesday, 24th January 2018

Arrogate has been crowned the World's Best Racehorse for a second consecutive year at a ceremony at the iconic hotel Claridges in London overnight. The now retired US star earned a rating of 134 which saw him once again earn the title ahead of champion Australian mare Winx with 132. The decision to award Arrogate the top prize is a controversial, if not surprising one given he was beaten at his final three race starts. Indeed, it seems the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) placed particular emphasis on Arrogate's stunning Dubai World Cup victory in March in awarding him a rating of 134. Winx, on the other hand, has been in exceptional form for the past two years winning her last 22 races in succession and collecting her 15th Group 1 victory with an historic third Cox Plate in the spring. Click here for the complete rankings.

Overseas Campaign Beckons Winx

Tuesday, 23rd January 2018

Trainer Chris Waller says a decision regarding a potential international campaign for Winx will not be made until after she runs in the Gr1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) in Sydney on 24 March, reports racingnsw.com.au. The champion mare's connections have made it clear they are keen to showcase her exceptional talent on the world stage, with the Royal Ascot meeting in June the primary target. "One thing we respect is how hard it is to travel a horse and to get her home," Waller said. "She will be the best guide. We've given it plenty of thought but it will be after her third run this preparation – probably the George Ryder – before we talk about her future." Waller added: "The Ascot picture is simply to satisfy a lot of people that want her on the other side of the world to perform. To show how good she is. But the horse comes first."

Easy Does it for Winx

Monday, 22nd January 2018

Chris Waller says champion mare Winx will be given a quiet trial when she steps out in the opening 900m heat at Rosehill this morning (8:15am). "I expect her to finish midfield in the trial," Waller told ANZ Bloodstock News. "She has come back well. She is fit and sound but we are all aware she is in the twilight of her career." Waller added: "I actually feel the most relaxed I have felt for a long time training her. Maybe it is because the third Cox Plate is out of the way." Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) created history in the spring when she joined the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates and surpassed three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva to become the greatest prize money earner in Australian racing history. The 15-time Gr1 winner is expected to open her autumn campaign in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) in Sydney on 17 February.

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Winx winning her third Cox Plate (image: Mark Gatt)

Ace High to Trial

Monday, 22nd January 2018

Top-class 3YO Ace High (High Chaparral-Come Sunday, by Redoute's Choice) will make his first public appearance in star-studded barrier trial at Rosehill this morning. A winner of the Gr1 Victoria Derby & Gr1 Spring Champion Stakes in the spring, Ace High will trial over 900m in the opening heat of the morning (8:15am) that will also include champion mare Winx, star sprinter Redzel, and Golden Rose winner Trapeze Artist. Trainer David Payne said Ace High's primary autumn targets are the Randwick Guineas, Rosehill Guineas and Australian Derby in Sydney. "They will be too sharp for him tomorrow but he has got to have a blow out to get him a bit fitter," Payne told ANZ Bloodstock News. "He is quite a lazy bugger and you have to make him work. We swim him as well, so the fitness is there, but he will wear a set of blinkers just to make him focus a bit more." Payne added: "He will race in Sydney first up and it will either be over 1200 metres or 1400 metres and then we’ll get him to the Randwick Guineas, Rosehill Guineas and hopefully the Derby."

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Ace High winning the Victoria Derby (image: Mark Gatt)

Karaka Distaff Lines Boast Rare Residual Value

Wednesday, 17th January 2018

The last five racing seasons have seen New Zealand mares produce in excess of 270 stakes winners and 39 Gr1 winners in Australia alone. These include an array of Gr1-winning sires the ilk of Dundeel (ex Stareel), Mongolian Kahn (ex Centafit), Sacred Falls (ex Iguazu's Girl), Tarzino (ex Zarzino), Tivaci (ex Breccia) and Turn Me Loose (ex Indomitable). From a racetrack perspective, Champion mare Winx is a daughter of NZ mare Vegas Showgirl, while Gr1 winners Terravista and Tiger Tees (both ex Parfore) and triple Gr1 winner Gingernuts (ex Double Elle) exemplify the distaff depth of the New Zealand market. This year's Karaka Sale is represented by a swathe of female Gr1 gold including:

  • Daughters of Gr1 winning mares - Arapaho Miss (Lot 34), Honor Babe (Lot 259), Keepa Cruisin (Lot 305), Lashed (Lot 329), Miss Raggedy Ann (Lot 397), Prize Lady (Lot 499), Seachange (Lot 561), Shez Sinsational (Lot 577) and Soriano (Lot 608)
  • Full-sisters to Group 1 winners - Werther (Lot 48), Recite (Lot 101) and Turn Me Loose (Lot 272)
  • Half-sisters to Group 1 winners - Shamrocker and Rock Diva (Lot 77), Music Magnate (Lot 119), Maco'Reilly (Lot 169), Gingernuts (Lot 170), Sound Proposition (Lot 180), Miss Keepsake (Lot 285), Melody Belle (Lot 371), Nashville (Lot 533), I Am a Star (Lot 619), Veloce Bella (Lot 694), Shootoff (Lot 725) and Miss Mossman (Lot 786)

Winx Pleases Waller

Tuesday, 16th January 2018

Chris Waller has provided an update on the progress of Winx after watching the champion mare gallop at Rosehill on Saturday. "I was happy with what she did," Waller told racenet. "She'll have another two gallops before trialling on Monday week. She's absolutely spot on. There's no change in her from this year to this time last year." Waller said the only real difference with Winx was that she was now more mature. "We're training a mature horse now and it's somewhat easier," he said. "In her early days she used to put 15 kilograms on each preparation and it was confusing but now I know what we've got and I'm really happy with her." Winx (Street Cry-Vegas Showgirl, by Al Akbar) created history in the spring when she joined the legendary Kingston Town as the only horse to win three Cox Plates and surpassed three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva to become the greatest prize money earner in Australian racing history. The 15-time Gr1 winner is expected to open her autumn campaign in the Gr2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) in Sydney on 17 February.

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Winx winning her third Cox Plate (image: Mark Gatt)