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A shock occurred in the Lightning, the three year olds did their thing again and Alizee bounced back into the winners list. All that and more in this weeks edition of ‘The Good, The Bad and The Ugly’.


Gytrash Stuns In Lightning

According to the market, it was going to be a procession for Nature Strip in the Lightning (1000m) at Flemington but instead, a South Australian rising star confirmed what most thought that he was a Group l horse and beat some of the best sprinters in Australia in doing so, bringing up a career highlight for Gordon Richards, who has been training for 50 years and recorded his biggest success. The old warrior Redzel ran his usual brilliant first up race to finish second, with Loving Gaby the clear eye catcher from a Newmarket Handicap perspective. Nature Strip led the outside division but 200m out you knew he was in trouble and battled for fourth.

Gator Wins A CS Hayes Epic

The CS Hayes (1400m) looked an intriguing one on paper, with Alligator Blood taking the kiwi star Catalyst, plus the additions of Dalasan and Chenier. It turned out to be an epic and a race that will be remembered and replayed for years to come, with Alligator Blood and Catalyst staging a brilliant battle up the Flemington straight, but it was the Magic Millions winner who showed once again he’s the toughest three year old in Australia, lifting himself off the canvas to beat Catalyst, with Chenier in third. Bring on the Australian Guineas.

Alizee Too Good In Apollo

Winx might be gone, but Hugh Bowman continued his remarkable run in the Apollo Stakes (1400m), piloting classy mare Alizee to a second up win in the Group ll at Randwick. He won the race on the mare early on by getting her to sit in the box seat, much closer in the run compared to previous runs where she has got back. That, combined with the heavily backed Dreamforce not getting the lead as expected, set it up for the mare and she took full advantage.


I think it has to go to Sweet Deal in the Triscay. That was just sustained speed from the front and she bolted in. Did plenty of work to cross and find the front, running her first 600m in 34.6/thereabouts, so those behind had their chance to run on. She just kept going under Nash and was just far too good in such an impressive return, and she’ll only get better over further.


Not easy to win a Stakes race on debut, but Ole Kirk did that in the Talindert at Flemington. The $1.1 Million colt, related to Black Caviar, was unwanted in betting, but gee he surged hard late and what impressed me most is that he took narrow gaps, which is a really good sign for a two year old, especially on debut. Blue Diamond/Golden Slipper probably too soon, but he’ll be a lovely three year old.


Front running perfection from Kerrin McEvoy aboard Mount Tabora in the Flemington opener. Looking at the sectionals, he rated it perfectly. Didn’t go too slow, didn’t go too fast. Just went at a tempo where he was able to control without being pressured but at the same time not walk. Didn’t beat much, but the ride was a beauty in front.


I think the replay will sum it up best when it comes to Larimer Street in the Inglis Millennium at Warwick Farm on Wednesday. Clearly should have won and I think if Bossy had his time again, he would have stayed inside and edged out towards better ground, whilst having clear air throughout. Ugly watch if you were on.


Dame Giselle – One trial, wet ground, don’t drop off her. She’s still in the Slipper mix
Cascadian – He’s still my Doncaster pony. Excellent return
Attorney – Too soon for a Sydney Cup maybe, but can win a lead up or two for sure
Emeralds – If we get a wet track for the Surround, I’ll be having something on again. Huge return
Verry Elleegant – Big tick. Relaxed beautifully and found the line well. She’s on track
Skelm – He’s flying. Slow tempo cost him
Admiral’s Joker – Too far back, good late
Hasta La War – Still comfortably the one to beat in the Adelaide Cup


Cuba – Third up he can bounce back I feel despite being disappointing second up
Dalasan – I’m marking him down as a dry tracker from now on


All Clear

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