Magic Millions weekend signals the start of the new year, perfect time to clear out the black book of all the names of those slow horses and fast women we encountered in 2019 and start with a clean slate.
A high quality weekend of racing which continues to grow in the sunshine state and hopefully will only be improved in the coming years with RQL prize money increases for the lead up races and some long needed input into capital upgrades for the “niche” Bundall circuit.
We’ve had a look at both Sydney and the Gold Coast meetings here to try get you kick started for the new year.
Invincibella: (GC Race 5) On a day full of glitz and glamour, it was this bonny mare who stole the show for mine. Claimed the fillies and mares feature for the third year running and plumped up her stud value after claiming her second G2 Dane Ripper and her first G1 Tatts Tiara over the QLD winter. An absolute ripper mare who clearly has a penchant for a bit of XXXX in her water. Won well, and racing in great heart, stick with her.
Etana: (GC Race 2) Another high quality mare who thrives up north. Progressed from a Sale Bm64 to a G2 Doomben Roses last prep, her form was just moderate to begin this campaign back down in Melbourne. The writing was on the wall with her last run down south, a change of scenery, she found herself strung up momentarily on the corner in The Wave before letting down nicely. Was clearly the best horse on paper in the race Saturday, and duly saluted with an impressive win. Another who has franked strong 3yo form out of the QLD winter and can go on with it.
Primitivo: (GC Race 3) Specked at big odds first up in spite of only ever having won a maiden first up or below a mile, which told punters he had come back in good order. Was just a pass mark that day, but an absolute eye catcher 2nd up when rattled home from the back splitting the in-form Something Fast and subsequent winner Phaistos. Great training performance to step out to the mile and half straight from a mile, and appears to be a much more genuine horse the back end of last prep and the start of this campaign, compared to the one we saw getting rolled at long odds on in a C1 over the Wagga carnival.
Champagne Cuddles: (GC Race 4) Never shirks the task when it comes to lining up against the big boys and girls. Her last ten or so starts reads like the who’s who of sprint racing. Track record holder here and just looked her race. Appeared to be struggling to muster early and was soon eased out of the race by Rawiller after it became apparent she was galloped on in early exchanges. Dent to punters who were on a roll early and took the shorts, but has been a real fan favourite with her pint size frame and distinct baldy face, so I’m sure I speak for all when I say we wish her well in recovery.
Lady Demi: (Syd Race 2) She does feature here a bit, but genuine claims this time in. First up, slow away, held up on the corner and again between runners from the 400/200m, motored late. Won’t be a price next time Terry Robinson brings her to town but should be winning. Overcame plenty of adversity in the run just as I’m sure the Robinson Team from Shoalhaven Heads/Nowra have had to overcome plenty in the past fortnight in order to get their team worked and it’s a credit to the horsemanship of all involved that they were able to bring two to town and both race so well.
Eleven Eleven (GC Race 6) Visitors draw, posted three deep facing the breeze the trip, and had the hide to box on and split Alligator Blood and Exhilarates. If it hadn’t been for the police escort, G. Hickman could have easily have claimed his 2nd 3yo Millions.
The Candy Man: GC Race 3) Good against his own lot, but can’t get it done at away games or once the interstaters turn up in town.
Albumin: (Syd Race 3) Jury was probably out on him Saturday and he turned in a shocker. Needs to show something shortly.
Pinup Miss: (Syd Race 7) Has had enough for now but much improved mare worth keeping an eye on next time.