Peter Snowden’s progressive colt Galah has earned a shot at the 2011 Sandown Guineas at the end of the Melbourne Spring Carnival after their ultra-impressive victory in Race 2 at Caulfield Cup Day today, the $100,000 Listed Australia Stakes(1400m).
The nicely-bred Redoute’s Choice three-year-old stepped up from a mid-week win at Warwick Farm on a Heavy (8) track to fly home in the Australia Stakes on a Dead (4) Caulfield track.
Race favourite, the Anthony Freedman-trained Masthead, set the pace in the second, leading the field until the final few strides when a fast-finishing Galah, ridden to perfect by Kerrin McEvoy, got the better of them on the line.
Masthead looked the winner with 200 metres to travel, but Galah came up hard and fast on the outside and swamped the favourite who couldn’t hang on.
In a brilliant effort, Galah got up to take out the Australia Stakes by a half-neck while Peter Moody’s Highly Recommended finished a further two and three quarter lengths away third.
Galah won Caulfield Cup Day Race 2 in a time of 1:23.66, taking all the honours having done it tough racing wide throughout, an effort Snowden was quick to credit.
“Big effort and gee we didn’t want to get back to last,” Snowden said after the race.
“He’s got an Aussie name but he’s no mug.”
Snowden confirmed that the $250,000 Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day, Saturday October 29, was the next-up target for Galah before their spring preparation culminates with a run in the $350,000 Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) at Sandown on November 11.
“We go to the Carbine Club in two weeks and we’re certainly looking at the (Sandown) Guineas as his major race.
“Once he gets further he’ll improve even more.
“I really like him and I think he’s an autumn horse.”
Melbourne stable manager Paul Snowden was also impressed with the horse’s performance in the Australia Stakes and named the Sandown Guineas as Galah’s grand final.
“He’s been here about 10 days and slotted in really well,” he said.
“Credit to him the way he performed, he had a little bit against him today drawn wide and we had to go back.
“He’s definitely going to be better in his next two lead up races…hopefully culminating in the Sandown Guineas.”
Jockey Kerrin McEvoy gave his opinion after the race that Galah would improve with more distance and tipped him as a big chance going towards the Sandown Guineas.
“He’s going to improve over a little bit further,” he said.
“The next two races the Carbine Classic and the Sandown Guineas are going to be nice targets.”
Galah’s win showed there was definitely no disadvantage to being drawn out wide in the Caulfield Cup races today, meaning there is value to be found backing the longer-priced, widely-drawn horses in the upcoming events.
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2011 Australia Stakes Results & Finishing Order
|1st||4||GALAH(10)||Kerrin McEvoy||Peter Snowden||56.0||1-23.66|
|2nd||1||MASTHEAD(9)||Craig Williams||Anthony Freedman||57.5||0.2L|
|3rd||5||HIGHLY RECOMMENDED(5)||Luke Nolen||Peter G Moody||56.0||3.0L|
|4th||7||CROSS OF GOLD(2)||Damien Oliver||David Hayes||55.0||3.2L|
|5th||11||MONTE GAMBLER(7)||Linda Meech||Peter Morgan||55.0||3.4L|
|6th||2||RUNNING TALL(8)||Mark Zahra||Danny O’Brien||57.5||3.5L|
|7th||3||ABSALON(6)||Brad Rawiller||Jason McLachlan||57.5||3.9L|
|8th||8||COVERED IN CLASS(1)||Dwayne Dunn||Peter G Moody||55.0||4.1L|
|9th||10||I FEEL GOOD(3)||Peter Mertens||Frankie Stockdale||55.0||5.8L|
|10th||9||HELL’S KITCHEN(4)||James Winks||Mark Young||55.0||8.8L|
|Src||6||SPATHA||Nicholas Hall||Anthony Freedman|