Alexander/OTI Relationship Continues to Flourish

Since he started training seven years ago, Archie Alexander’s stable has played a key role for OTI. On the weekend, that relationship was to the fore again with Chaillot’s incredible win in the Listed Tessa Rossa Stakes and Eagles Crag’s authoritative win at Benalla.

Since setting up in Ballarat, Archie has gained the reputation of an astute trainer, capable of placing his horses to perform at their best. With his wife, Annie, regarded as an astute horsewoman in her own right, and his racing manager Jeremy Rogers, Archie’s team won 62 races last season with a strike rate of 20.6%, the third highest in the state.

Known for his skills with fillies and mares, on Saturday Chaillot, after 3 trials, had her first start this prep over 1300m at Sandown. The mare needed every inch on the Hillside Track to reel in the leaders and win by a head. She dashed home her last 400m in 22 seconds flat, and was still second last at the 200m mark. Her ability to finish fast is undoubtedly her greatest asset and helps offset her frequent sluggishness from the gates.

Few doubted that Eagles Crag would dominate his 1600m race at the deferred Benalla meeting on Sunday. This son of Fastest Rock who was born, bred and purchased in Germany, has the ability to work through his classes at distances between 1600m and 2000m. Given he is still a colt, and a beautifully bred one at that, his owners still harbour dreams to get him to stallion status.

Eagles Crag (IRE) ridden by Ben Allen returns to the mounting yard after winning the Rangedale Drainage & Industrial Services BM64 Handicap at Benalla Racecourse on September 26, 2021 in Benalla, Australia. (David Thorpe/Racing Photos).

As is typical of Archie’s operation, plans are now set for these two exciting horses to progress through the spring. Eagles Crag will go to a heat of the Melbourne Cup Carnival Country Series at Hamilton on October 9 in the hope of winning his way into the $500,000 Final on Oaks Day at Flemington. Chaillot will stay in mares races and progress towards the Group 2 Tristarc Stakes on Caulfield Cup Day before tackling the Group 1 Empire Rose Stakes on Derby Day at Flemington.

With 11 OTI owned horses in Archie’s care, owners can hopefully look forward to many repeats of the weekend’s success over the rest of the Spring Carnival.