Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Corey Brown will certainly earn his riding fee aboard Tony Gollan’s courageous Toowoomba galloper Temple Of Boom on Saturday, the four-year-old coming up with the ‘visitor’s draw’ for the WJ Healy Stakes.
One eight top races running at Eagle Farm on Saturday for Tattersall’s Tiara Day, the $175,000 Group 3 W.J. Healy Stakes (1200m) attracted a final field of 11 and Piccolo gelding Temple Of Boom was the one to draw the extreme outside gate.
Temple Of Boom is still one of the top three elects for the WJ Healy, the galloper currently on the third line of betting behind Robert Heathcote’s Stradbroke Handicap fourth-placegetter Buffering and the Peter Snowden-trained Pinwheel.
Gollan and his gallopers have been a strong force in the Queensland racing scene in recent years, Temple Of Boom one of his best-performing runners and Gollan is hoping that Brown’s previous association and experience on the horse will see them through on Saturday.
“Corey has ridden him three times and knows the horse well,” Gollan said.
“I won’t be speaking to him (Brown) until Saturday so I hope he’ll have a game plan worked out by then.
“I would have like an inside draw but this horse never runs a bad race and at some stage I expect him to look the winner in the straight.”
With a consistent record of seven wins and eight minor placings from 19 starts, Temple Of Boom will be second-up for the season on Saturday.
After a strong spring-summer campaign that culminated with a win in the $200,000 Magic Millions Sprint win on the Gold Coast in January, Temple Of Boom was bought back on June 11 where he finished a brave fourth in the Listed Lightning Handicap (1000m).
The Stradbroke Handicap Day result was a good one from Temple Of Boom, ridden by Brown, as they struck interference near the 800m and still managed to come within three lengths of the winner Trusted Partner.
“He was a bit fat as he hadn’t raced since Magic Millions Day,” Gollan said of Temple Of Boom in the Lighting Handicap.
“We knew the Lighting wasn’t going to be ideal for him first-up because he was going to get a lot of weight and he is only a small horse.
“We would have liked to resume him somewhere with a weight like he has in the Healy (55kg).
“I thought he raced well on resuming, he knocked up about 100m out so I am a bit concerned we are a touch behind with him.
“He has improved nicely since his first-up run and we are just hoping he can find that little bit extra.
“Off his first run he was just short of condition that little bit and we hope he has made the necessary improvement for Saturday.”
It was also a wonderful sign for Gollan that Temple Of Boom had fully recovered from a freak accident the horse suffered in trackwork after their Magic Millions success that forced them to have over four months off from racing.
“He jumped a puddle coming off trackwork one morning and cut his front tendon,” Gollan said of the incident.
“It wasn’t serious but he had to go back to the paddock which put him out of the autumn carnival in Sydney.
“That was very disappointing as it was too late for the winter but if he runs well (on Saturday) there’s a chance he might go to the Ramornie.”
The next run Gollan has pencilled in for Temple Of Boom is the Listed Ramornie Handicap (1200m) running at Grafton on July 13.
“He’s trained on well but I won’t know until Saturday if he’s at the top of his game or whether he might need the run again,” Gollan said.
“He’s not a big horse and if he happens to win the Healy then he’d probably get too much weight in the Ramornie.
“I’ve always rated his stablemate Spirit Of Boom as a better horse but Temple Of Boom has won in Melbourne and won on Magic Millions Day.”
Gollan will also be represented on Saturday by said stablemate and half-brother, Group placegetting Sequalo colt Spirit Of Boom in a $50,000 3YO Handicap.
“He is still a clot and can do a couple of things wrong when the tempo doesn’t go his way but we think Saturday is a nice race to finish his preparation off with,” Gollan said of Spirit Of Boom.
Meanwhile Brown boasts a strong book of six rides.
The jockey’s prized mount at the meeting is aboard raging favourite Beaded in the closing Group 1 showdown of the season, the $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m).
A win aboard Peter Snowden’s classy mare and Doomben 10,000 champion will see Brown equal regular rider of super freak Black Caviar, Luke Nolen, on seven Group 1 wins for the season.