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Racing & Sports Canberra Racing Review — Friday 9 April 2021

They raced on a Good 4 with the rail out 4m from the 1000m to the 380m providing a cutaway at the straight entrance. Blaike McDougall rode a treble and Brodie Loy a double. McDougall has a massive lead in the ACT Jockey Premiership with 27 winners this season, 18 wins ahead of his nearest rivals.  Keith Dryden had a winner on the day and heads the ACT Trainer Premiership with 19 wins over Matt Dale 13 and the Sydney Waterhouse-Bott partnership on 11.


Race 1 (1200m) Open 2


DANISH PRINCE $9 won the race improving quickly on the unplaced debut effort at Gosford. Jess Taylor stuck from that and has also ridden him in the prior when placing in a Hawkesbury trial. As expected, the longer sprint suited the gelding. He sat comfortably on the hot favourite and leader I LIKE BIG PUTTS $1.55 and despite shifting in passing the 50m got the better of that galloper right on the line. The debutant SILK TIE $4.4 was given a sweet run behind this pair and used the cutaway to advantage. Like the winner, the filly also finished the race off determinedly beaten just under a half-length. The rest were spaced. I Like Putts raced keenly in the middle stages and that may have cost the filly in the end. She fought like a tiger, but certainly disappointed given the level of market support. All three will have taken good improvement.


 Race 2 (1000m) MDN


The winner CAPITAL REIGN $3.80 debuted off a 2L Warwick Farm trial win and the 2yo looked ready-made leading the field from the favourite KIBOSH $1.95 who trailed. Capital Reign skipped clear on turning and the winning margin of 2.61L would have been greater had he not run out abruptly passing the 250m. He continued to hang out and shifted very wide on the track. Kibosh tried hard but found won much too speedy over the short sprint. Third placed HEY DUGEE was backed in from $10 to $6 and although well beaten it was a solid effort after tailing the field and using the cutaway to advantage. The stewards noted that SHECANGO $7.50 raced three wide throughout and didn’t have the best of it generally. Like Danish Prince in the previous race, Capital Reign is a nice-moving galloper who can be followed with confidence. Kibosh will have taken benefit from the run and can win when stepped up over further. 


Race 3 (1000m BM65)


Blaike McDougall rode his first of his three winners at the meeting when booting home the well-backed OUR FINVARRA $8.50 to a 1L Victory. The local raced at full fitness and had been racing solidly in better grade.  There was plenty of speed from the leading pair RUSSBUSS $6.50 and NICCI’S SONG $1.50 and Our Finvarra was positioned one-out one-back.  Russbuss took over approaching the 200m but the long-striding Our Finvarra was building and had too much in the tank on the line from a brave Russbuss, who did a bit of work after a slow start. SESTINA ($17) was a half length back in third after racing inside the winner and using the cutaway.  STONE COLD $31 was beaten 3L but was doing his best work on the line.

Stewards inquired into the disappointing runs of the hot favourite Nicci’s Song and NO DOUBT A STAR $7.50. Rider Jeff Penza said Nicci’s Song did not did not show the level of early speed he expected and didn’t respond to riding when weakening inside the final 200m.  He also said the filly did not appreciate the shifting Good 4 track conditions and would prefer a firmer surface. To the contrary, rider Jean Van Overmeire said after a slow start No Doubt A Star his mount did not appreciate the firm surface and would prefer tracks with more give in the ground. Post-race it was found the gelding bled from its right nostril.


Race 4 (1600m) CL1


The winner KNUCKLE WARRIER $3.80 was a Maiden who’d been threatening over middle distances. Back to the mile on a 9-day return he showed good early speed to settle comfortably outside the leader CRACKING MO $6 with the favourite JACK THE BRUMBY $2.80 railing in third. Knuckle Warrior showed a sharp turn of foot as they hit the stretch and it was just a walk in the park from there saluting by nearly 4L. CHOOSDAY NIGHTS $4 and MOSSY OAK $21 battled on into the placings. Jack The Brumby has a sweet run but showed nothing when the pressure went on and the firmer surface may have seen him undone. In regard to the winner Knuckle Warrior, it was a decent training effort by Keith Dryden and a positive ride by McDougall and the gelding looks to have a good future.


Race 5 (1400m) BM60


It looked a very winnable race for CAPRI LANE $2.3F and the Maher-Eustace galloper smashed them by nearly 4L. He led as expected and was ridden like the best horse turning for home well in front. The chasing bunch never looked like catching him headed by ROC DE KHAPER $8.50 and TRAPPER TOM $6.50 who finished a bit better than the rest. Moderate competition, but Capri Lane is in a star yard and will be winning more races.


Race 6 (1200m) BM70 — Federal


The winner ONS VIER $8 is always a threat and this level and reaching peak fitness this proved his day. He got a nice sit behind the speed set by EL PRADOS $19 and ZELAGO $3.1 sitting on him. Zelago got this head in front at the 200m and looked the winner until Ons Vier sprouted wings late getting up by a whisker. El Prados held third beaten a length getting the nod-in over ROYAL MONACH $5.50 who raced handy and used the cutaway. El Prados had switched yards and quickly found form and his was a decent effort. The flop was the favourite PERFECT PITCH $2.70. She was crowded on jumping but rider McDougall said in his view the mare raced flat and did not respond to riding in the straight. Trainer Keith Dryden was not altogether disappointed reckoning she was dropping down in distance as there were no immediate suitable races. She will be up in distance for her next start.


Race 7 (1300m) CL1


LONDON GAL $3.70 found the lead as expected with DIVINE FUTURE $8 stalking The winner THE DEEPEST SECRET $4.40 raced in the centre behind the speed. London Gal kicked on turning but the long-striding Deepest Secret emerged and dashed to the lead inside the 100m and went on to win impressively by 2L with Divine Future in third another length behind. By Deep Field, The Deepest Secret improving for Nick Olive and by the look of her a mile at least won’t bother. One to stick with along with London Girl who was third-up and improved sharply as the market suggested she would. EVERYONE $6 was a drifter and disappointed. Rider Brody Loy put it down to not appreciating the firmer surface. SISSECK $5.50 was slow to begin and raced three-wide throughout.  


Race 8 (1300m) MDN


The winner LEGAL CHALLENGE $2.60 provided McDougall with his third-wider on the day and it was an impressive performance from the Richard Litt-trained gelding. He missed the kick and settled rearward one off the rail at the 600m. In a nice bit of riding McDougall got clear gaps and positioned him on the outside on turning and within reach. He powered home finding the lead at the 100m delivering by 1L. He’ll be winning again. LAST QUEST $21 found second and his run was also an eye catcher. He was well-back in the run and flew home and there’s a Maiden win coming for him. Third-placed UNIQUE PRINCE $21 was beaten 3.5L but it was a solid showing from the Matt Dale gelding having only his second start. DUBAI CENTRE $4.60 and Mr Plucka $5.50 were beaten by 10 and 11 lengths respectively. The former pulled hard and weakened inside the final 200. The latter raced three-wide throughout and rider Jay Ford felt the application of the blinkers would lift his effort. Trainer Kerry Parker said the galloper may have been uncomfortable on the shifting track. He also sustained a minor injury.