Feature race reviews
The two key races last night from a stable viewpoint were the Canterbury Classic for the open class pacers and the McMillan Equine Sires' Stakes heat for the three year old pacers. We look at our stable runners.
The first Addington heat of the Sires' Stakes was Race Three and resulted in a perfect result for the stable with Heisenberg defeating Stars Tonight.
Able to hold his place off the gate early, Heisenberg ended up in a beaut spot for driver Gavin Smith, one-one from the mile peg. Stars Tonight and Ross Houghton had similarly ended up in a good spot, on the back of the stablemate.
With the early speed in the race dominated by two of the favourites in Global Domination (lead) and Grand Chico (breeze), the Robert Dunn pair were enjoying the best of runs just off the speed. As the speed backed off with 1000m to go, it was Gavin that seized the initiative, off and around them with Heisenberg, quickly ending up in the parked spot and putting pressure to the leader from the 800m. After heading the pacemaker just before the turn, the brakes were released and the response was instant as Heisenberg powered away by three lengths at the 200m. Kept up to his work over the last 100m, he held on comfortably over the fast finishing Stars Tonight and the favourite, The Moonshadow, in a smart 2.23.3 for the 1980m on an off track.
Last night's win was Heisenberg's was second from just the ten starts and has certainly marked him as one of the early favourite's for this year's Sires' Stakes final.
Almost as impressive was the run of the runner-up Stars Tonight. Having just his 5th race start, he had defeated Heisenberg the previous week. However, with the draw adavantage Heisenberg's way this week, he was always going to be chasing his stablemate's tail. At least four lengths off the leaders at the 800m, he certainly produced some good sectionals for the last two quarters to close the margin to two lengths at the line.
Both runners will now be guaranteed starts in the big go on Cup Day and with plenty of improvement still in the pair, there are some exciting times ahead for their connections.
There was plenty of interest in the Canterbury Classic also with our five runners engaged. In a race that did end up somewhat of a tame affair, dominated from the front by pacemaker Dream About Me and Tim Williams, it was the placed efforts of two of our runners in Alta Orlando and Letspendanitetogetha that produced plenty of smiles, with the big go just over five weeks away.
It was the Purdon/Rasmussen pair of Ultimate Machete and Dream About Me that made the best of beginnings, with the latter leading out this year's early cup favourite. As the field hit the mile marker, there had been no moves in the race. The best placed of our runners were Billy Badger (breeze) and Captain Dolmio (three back markers) and Letspendanitetogetha (three back outside).
With still no moves by the half mile peg and having stolen a 64.7 second last half, it was Dream About Me that was looking a $1.10 chance as she began to sprint down the back. Billy Badger hung tough outside the pacemaker until the turn, while inside and outside, Captain Dolmio and Letspendanitetogetha were both coming with their runs.
Over the last 150m the runs started coming from all directions, but it was the Mitchell Kerr trained Forgotten Highway that almost sprung the biggest of surprises to be beaten by just half a head at the line, as Dream About Me showed her class in the testing conditions.
As the lead pair battled it out in the run to the line, one could not help but be impressed by the Robert Dunn pair of Alta Orlando and Letspendanitetogetha that both boomed home late to be beaten under a length at the line. Alta Orlando's run in particular was nothing short of amazing. He was well back throughout in a leader dominated race. Even at the 400m, he was conceding Dream About Me six lengths and had to come the widest with his run. His closing sectionals of 27.82 and 26.35 were nothing short of stunning. He looks sure to shorten in the cup markets.
Letspendanitetogetha was very good again in running 4th. His manners have been great the last few and he is at the top of his game. The sit and sprint nature of the race was not really Captain Dolmio's go and he was in the worst affected part of the track. He will lose few supporters in finishing 7th. Billy Badger's run was commendable as he was the only runner to do any work in the race, while Zadaka had no hope after being at the back throughout.
Posted: Sat 06 Oct 2018