Now in its third year running, The Thoroughbred Club of Australia – Canberra Branch Annual Autumn luncheon, as a prelude to the John McGrath Auto Group Black Opal Stakes has quickly grown to become a highlight of racing’s social calendar, with previous events all selling out, previous speakers engaged include Gai Waterhouse and Gerry Harvey.
The deeds of the bonny Canberra mare Single Gaze over the spring and in Saturday’s CF Orr Stakes confirm her as one of the best performed mares in Australia.
Single Gaze has a Timeform rating of 118 off her Caulfield Cup placing.
Current Timeform ratings for Australian mares
Single Gaze 118
In Her Time 118
Owners of racehorses and Mercedes-Benz vehicles will be among Canberra’s whose who at one of the upcoming pre-celebrations of Canberra racing’s event of the year.
On Thursday evening, 15 February from 6pm to 8pm the elite Mercedes-Benz showroom in Fyshwick will celebrate the impending Black Opal Stakes with a lavish cocktail party. Among the guests will officials, racing ambassadors, local racing identities and socialites.
The $5000 trophy and black opal pendant will be on display in the showroom as well as the Riharna Thomson Memorial Bracelet.
Canberra-trained Single Gaze is on track for a cracking autumn campaign with an outstanding second behind Hartnell in Saturday’s G1 CF Orr Stakes at Caulfield.
The Nick Olive-trained mare burst through late on the rail to just miss and looked unlucky.
The 1400m was expected to be too short for Single Gaze first-up off the 3200m Melbourne Cup, but Olive said the Caulfield Cup runner-up had come back in best-ever order and so it proved.
Trainer Matt Dale captured his first “Federal” when Fun Tickets was tough to the line winning at Friday’s Canberra meeting.
Fun Tickets was one of two Dale winners on the card, the other being promising 3yo filly Further To Fly.
Friday saw the third running of the $50,000 Federal and all have been taken out by Canberra-based trainers.
Dale was full of praise for the Federal concept; introduced by the Canberra Racing Club when Canberra-trained horses were excluded from Highway Handicaps in Sydney.
Canberra trainer Luke Pepper says sprinter Viceroy is right on his game for Friday night’s BM 70 at Canterbury.
Viceroy will be peaking off a couple of unlucky Saturday city runs with Tye Angland riding off a low draw.
Viceroy relishes Canterbury having won 2/3 at the venue including first up three runs back.
Pepper says Viceroy goes into the race mentally and physically on-song thanks to a mixture of swimming, jumping and regular track work at Thoroughbred Park.
Pepper says the horse is good natured, a pleasure to train and enjoys racing.
Canberra-trainer looks to have another promising youngster on his hands following Sizzling Belle’s win in Saturday’s 2yo Plate at Rosehill.
The Magic Millions-purchased filly hit the lead in the straight with Kathy O’Hara aboard and held off Outrageous who came hard.
A bit of a Single Gaze lookalike, Sizzling Belle will target the $275,000 Black Opal Stakes to be run on 11 March on Canberra’s Super Sunday.
Talking racing and race riding with Patrick (Paddy) Scorse is a pleasure.
The 19yo Canberra-based apprentice heads the ACT Jockey Premiership, and presents as a well-grounded individual; articulate, thoughtful and professionally-focused.
His ambition is to be a leader in his craft.
The son of respected former leading rider and Sky Racing host John Scorse is rapidly shaping as ‘a chip off the old block’.
‘Dad’ couldn’t have been more proud when ‘Paddy’ rated Always Court beautifully in front to win the recent Narooma Cup.
Fell Swoop’s liking for Melbourne will see the classy Canberra-trained sprinter head south for the start of his autumn campaign.
Trainer Matt Dale is confident Fell Swoop will regain his best form after he pulled up with the thumps when placed last in the $10 million Everest at Randwick in October.
Nick Olive’s Caulfield Cup runner-up Single Gaze is set to trial at Canberra on Friday in preparation for an autumn campaign.
The Matt Dale-trained Hermosa Beach will also make a return in the same heat — at 6:05pm.
There will also be plenty of interest in the second trial which features a stack of two and three year old debutants from prominent local stables.
Dale’s Luzonica is the only raced participant having placed at Canberra at her only run.