The Team Hawkes trained gelding MARIMENKO made a brilliant Australian racing debut today at Ballarat on the Synthetic track by scoring a 5L win despite travelling 3 wide the entire race.
The now 5 year old (Northern Hemisphere 4yo) gelding who was foaled in the United Kingdom in 2017 is sired by Zoffany (IRE) and is out of Edaraat (USA) a Rahy (USA) mare.
The horse owned outright by Mrs LM Reed started his training career with Team Hawkes but never raced in Australia, having only one barrier trial in Sydney in October 2019 before being transferred to David Hall in Hong Kong in 2020. He had no less than half a dozen trials with Hall before finally making his racetrack debut in December of 2020 at Sha Tin over 1000m.
Ridden that day by Matthew Poon, Marimenko went off a 66/1 shot and ran accordingly finishing 13/14 beaten a distant 11.7L.
After that performance it was decided the horse would return to Australia to the care of Team Hawkes again this time to be trained out of the stable’s Melbourne base at Flemington.
The gelding was given a couple of unofficial jump outs at Flemington and despite his latest effort in a jump out resulting in him being unplaced, several shrewd trial watchers black booked him citing his terrific galloping action and the fact he was never placed under any pressure.
Tab.com.au went up $10 about the geldings chances in his Australian debut on the Ballarat Synthetic track but those odds were quickly knocked off and his official VOP fluctuations showed him firming again from an opening quote of $3.60 into an SP of $2.70.
There would’ve been anxious moments for his backers as he was posted 3 wide from the gate under young jockey Fred Kersley. But it made absolutely zero difference to the clearly talented galloper who zipped away in the straight to demolish his fellow maideners by 5L on the line.
It was a soft win, Kersley eased him down to a canter late on and idled to the line. He’s definitely a horse worth following. How far he progresses this Spring only time will tell but the lightly raced 4 year old by Northern Hemisphere age where he was born clearly looks a stakes class galloper be it sooner or later.