Bunny Wins but no Grafton Cup for Desert

July 7, 2011

Bunny Wins but no Grafton Cup for Desert

Brett Dodson kicked off his July Carnival crusade in fine style on Thursday, the Coffs Harbour horseman taking out the Grafton Cup Prelude with his smart six-year-old Desert Bunny.

Desert Prince gelding Desert Bunny, winner of the 2010 Port Macquarie Cup, set both a race and track record with a gritty victory in the $17,000 Grafton Cup Prelude (2108m).

Ridden by Matthew Bennett, Desert Bunny ($7) blitzed the previous time record of 2:09.38 with a sharp Grafton Cup Prelude win in 2:08.91.

After frontrunner and defending Grafton Cup Prelude winner Long Journey Home faded at the top of the straight, Desert Bunny made their move up the outside rounding up their rivals.

Pulling away to lead by up to a length and a half, the eventual winner held on despite a number of challenges to post a half-neck win over Rodeo Playboy ($11) and a fast finishing King Of The Nile ($7) who was the same distance away in third.

Despite the Prelude win, Desert Bunny is not nominated for next Thursday’s main event, the $150,000 Wykes Tyerpower Grafton Cup (2350m).

Having run dead last in the Wauchope Cup (1518m) at Port Macquarie at their previous start on June 21, connections chose not to nominate Desert Bunny for the Grafton Cup.

Instead the now record-breaking runner is entered for a much softer race on Ramornie Handicap Day next Wednesday at Grafton, the $18,000 Yellow Tail Wines Benchmark 70 Handicap (2100m).

There were 23 early entries for the 2011 Grafton Cup including Ipswich Cup winner Gold In Dubai, Bryan Guy’s Premier’s Cup victor Shuffle The Cash, Beaudesert galloper Spechenka coming off a Caloundra Cup win, the Bruce Hill-trained Warrior Within and Chris Waller’s Melbourne Cup-bound The Verminator.

Grafton Cup Prelude runner-up Rodeo Playboy and third placegetter King Of The Nile were both gallant in defeat and are now likely to firm right in for the grand final in a week’s time.

Prepared by Joanna Methven in Ballina, King Of The Nile was especially impressive in the Prelude making a big late move to come from worse than midfield and finish in the money.

A rising eight-year-old, King Cugat gelding King Of The Nile was just three runs back from a three and a half year break from racing and enjoyed the step back in class from their last-start 14th to Frozone in the Listed Tatt’s Mile (1600m) at Eagle Farm on June 25.

Today was King Of The Nile’s first defeat at Grafton, the galloper having won their three starts at the Northern River’s track back in 2006 – 07.

Disappointments in the Grafton Cup Prelude ahead of next week’s Cup included the Fred Cowell-trained Blackett Street ($5.50) and former Sydneysider Circle Of Fame ($4.40F) who ran fourth and fifth in a photo finish a length away from the top three placegetters, and the locally-trained Starlist who was two lengths away sixth from the winner.

Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2018 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.

Spring Racing

Brave Smash to race in Chris W...

Rogerson Dreams of 2018 Melbou...

Rogerson Dreams of 2018 Melbourne Cup Win with Surrey

A son of triple Melbourne Cup hero Makybe Diva, Surrey, could develop into a...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feat...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feature Redzel

Inaugural champion Redzel has officially secured his position in the 2018 The...

2018 The Everest Field Takes S...

2018 The Everest Field Takes Shape: In Her Time Confirmed

She missed out on a shot at the world’s richest race on turf last spring but...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 Th...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 The Everest Slot for Aquis

The first official slot in The Everest 2018 field has been confirmed with...

Horse Racing Today

Calanda to carry top weight in...

Tradesman is top weight for 20...

Tradesman is top weight for 2018 Tattersall’s Cup

Ipswich Cup winner Tradesman has been given the top weight for Saturday’s...

Bumper Nominations for 2018 Ta...

Bumper Nominations for 2018 Tattersall’s Club Tiara

The last Group 1 of the current racing season is set to have a capacity field...

Moss ‘N’ Dale chal...

Moss ‘N’ Dale challenging for favouritism in 2018 Eye Liner Stakes betting

Victorian sprinter Moss ‘N‘ Dale is making a solid bid for favouritism for the...

Final field of 11 for 2018 Ips...

Final field of 11 for 2018 Ipswich Cup

A final field of eleven will line up in the 2018 Listed $175,000 Channel 7...

Race Results

Viewed Victorious in Caulfield Cup

Race 1 Result – $101 500 AGL Renewable Energy Stakes – She’s Got Gears Wins

Race 2 – $101,500 Schiavello Plate – Avienus Wins

Race 3 – $101 500 Lavazza A Modo Mio – Linton Street Wins

Race 4 Results – $151,500 Listed Herald Sun Stakes – Strawberry Field Wins

Race Previews

2009 Caulfield Cup Barrier Draw Announced

Who Are the Top Contenders for Tomorrow’s Caulfield Cup?

Victoria Derby in sight for Onemorenomore

2009 Melbourne Cup Field

Eclipse Stakes Final Field & Preview

Fields & Form

SA Fillies Classic 2013 Field Released

The Goodwood Day Fields – National Stakes 2013

Adelaide Cup Winner Riayla Heads RA Lee Stakes Field 2013

Linton Continues Stradbroke Handicap 2013 Campaign in Adelaide

Can Moody Score Second Goodwood With Moment Of Change?