Damian Browne again showed why he is rated among the nation’s best riders with a clever win on the heavily-backed Cannizzaro at the Gold Coast on Wednesday.
It may have been only a midweek metropolitan race but Browne showed the younger riders a few tricks when Cannizzaro, who firmed from $2.60 into $2, took out the CDS Recycling Plate (900m).
There were only six runners but five of them were noted leaders and Cannizzaro was caught three-deep to the first and only corner.
Rather than panic, Browne sat quietly and balanced on Cannizzaro who then came away in the straight to win by 1-1/4 lengths over Ramblin’ Daisy.
“He had a bit on those and it was just a matter of keeping him comfortable,” Browne said.
Browne will ride at the country’s feature race meeting at Caulfield on Saturday and has Group One mounts on Looks Like The Cat in the Caulfield Guineas and Traveston Girl in the Thousand Guineas.
Cannizzaro is prepared by in-form trainer Natalie McCall who is hoping to make her mark in Melbourne with smart gallopers River Lad and Lady Echelon.
McCall won the Wayne Wilson Medal last Friday for the best performance by a Queensland trainer in the 2013-14 season, courtesy of River Lad’s Stradbroke Handicap win.
The Medal, named after the late race caller Wayne Wilson, is awarded annually and considered the state’s most sought-after award by trainers.