Regally bred Encryption has capped a stellar weekend for Godolphin by winning the Black Opal Stakes, although the victory is unlikely to help Hugh Bowman’s sore head.
Encryption, out of champion Lonhro by dual Group One winner Guelph, shortened from $51 to $35 for the 2018 Golden Slipper after triumphing in Sunday’s $300,000 two-year-old feature in Canberra.
Sydney’s premier rider Bowman is recovering from a concussion suffered when he fell from fellow Slipper contender Performer at Randwick on Saturday.
His injury paved the way for Godolphin trainer James Cummings and Glyn Schofield to continue their fruitful partnership, with the jockey making the most of the pick-up ride.
Bowman was booked to ride four horses which won during the meeting in the nation’s capital, including Assimilate who claimed the Listed Canberra Guineas.
With Schofield aboard, Encryption ($3) claimed the game Sizzling Belle ($7) in the last 50m after the Canberra-trained filly put in an almighty effort in attempting to lead all the way.
The Peter and Paul Snowden-trained Bondi ran on for third after being sent out the $2.70 favourite.
Cummings didn’t commit to running Encryption in the Slipper after the win, pointing out the colt is bred to run 1400m to 1600m.
“His mother won a Sires’ (Produce Stakes) and I think he could be potentially be that kind of horse,” Cummings said.
“He’s got heaps of speed but he’s got a wonderful nature and a pedigree to get seven furlongs so we’ll keep all that in mind.”
Cummings was in no doubt over the colt’s class.
“If attitude determines altitude this horse will go a long way,” he said.
The victory comes after Kementari won the Randwick Guineas on Saturday and Blair House and Benbatl gave Sheikh Mohammed the quinella in a Group One race in Dubai overnight.
Cummings foreshadowed a big 12 months for Encryption, who he believes has strong scope to mature and improve.
Schofield backed a tilt at the Group One ATC Sires’ which is run over 1600m later in autumn.
“He’s not just naturally fast and quick or precocious, he’s got a lovely temperament and I’m sure he’ll run a mile no problem,” Schofield said.