In Australia, that is...
With spring racing just getting started in earnest Down Under, late Friday nights (and early Saturday mornings) are pure bliss for me. And after a long work week, there’s nothing better for relaxing than firing up Twinspires (ironic, isn’t it, that I can bet on horses half-way around the world, but not at Presque Isle Downs, about 75 miles from my home).
At Moonee Valley, 3-year-old filly Dan Baroness won the G3 Champagne Stakes, her first graded stakes placing. However, the Testa Rossa filly Ortensia impressed me most, getting second over Impressive Eagle. Ortensia is a headcase; all the other horses had to clear the paddock before they led her out and immediately to the track. She apparently freaked out and flipped over once before, so they handle her cautiously. Still, she's very talented; look for her in the 1000 Guineas on October 15.
16-1 longshot Guillotine threw a shocker in winning the G2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes, on top of 22-1 Casual Pass and 80-1 Tears I Cry. Not often a graded stakes sees so many high-priced horses coming in, so very disappointing performances for Maldivian, Pompeii Ruler, and Alamosa who had finished second, third and fourth respectively behind Weekend Hussler in the G2 Memsie last out.
In the G1 Manikato Stakes, 5-year-old gelding Typhoon Zed narrowly defeated 4-year-old mare Absolut Glam who was making her seasonal debut after last seen winning the G1 Winter Stakes at Eagle Farm back in June. Doubtlessly, Typhoon Zed benefitted from his current fitness level, having reeled off three consecutive placing including winning the G3 Concorde Stakes on August 30. Still, Absolut Glam looked fabulous closing strongly late and we’ll see big things from her this campaign.
In the race I was most looking forward to witnessing, lovely 5-year-old Carnegie mare Tuesday Joy rebounded from her tough Memsie loss to Weekend Hussler and took the G2 Arrow Training Stock Stakes with extreme ease. Trainer Gai Waterhouse is aiming her for the G1 Turnbull Stakes on October 4, hopefully a rematch with Weekend Hussler as both colt and mare aim for the ultimate prize, the G1 Melbourne Cup on November 4.
At Rosehill, I was all over Hurrah who won the G3 Kingston Town Stakes, but my quinella was ruined when the favorite Red Lord beat out Sir Fussalot. Considering Typhoon Zed’s big win, I played Hurried Choice in the G2 Theo Marks Stakes, as the 4-year-old Choisir mare had finished third behind him last out. It was an angle that paid off big time, as Hurried Choice won impressively over the other mare in the race, Forensics. Longshot Ice Chariot finished third, as favorites Hoystar and Theseo failed miserably. Girl power!