With only a brief moment to pause and reflect on what was a tremendous Sydney Carnival for us, we were among many to be off to ‘The Bool’ this week. Once again, this three-day carnival did not disappoint. A truly fantastic few days of racing both over the jumps and on the flat. The atmosphere was electric. Well done to the Warrnambool Racing Club.
It was a huge thrill for Gallic Chieftain to record the third win of a horse carrying our silks in the Listed Warrnambool Cup. He follows in the grand footsteps of New Kid In Town (for Lee Freedman in 2006) and Tall Ship (Darren Weir, 2015). While much credit will be lauded upon Darren Weir for winning the race for a fifth successive year (and rightly so, as it is a phenomenal training performance), we must also applaud John Allen for an absolute peach of a ride. He and the horse deserve their time in the sun for the win, overcoming the wide barrier and conceding weight to his nearest rivals in the run to the line.
Right on the heels of Gallic Chieftain was our other runner, Romanesque. Credit too to Jarrod McLean, for preparing this horse so expertly. Romanesque was backing up from Day One of the carnival when he was somewhat unlucky when finishing 2nd in a Benchmark 78 Handicap. Coming from last on the turn, he showed a great turn of foot to finish third. He now has a Listed placing to his name.
A very exciting race for OTI, many congratulations to all involved.
Looking ahead to the weekend, we have runners in two states of Australia and another in France. Tom Melbourne is on the Gold Coast in readiness for the G2 Hollindale Stakes over 1800m. He had a luckless Sydney Carnival, but Chris Waller believes this to be an ideal race for him. With barrier four drawn and Corey Brown on-board, we expect him to very competitive.
In Adelaide, Aloisia gets another chance to shine in the G1 Australasian Oaks over 2000m. Her bad luck in the barrier draws has continued, drawing yet another wide alley. A return to winning form over Saturday’s 2000m journey however would not surprise.
In France, Casterton will be stepping up to Group 3 level over 2400m following an impressive Listed win last time out at Longchamp, the scene of Sunday’s event. The ground should suit the horse, and Andre Fabre is very pleased with his progress.