Con Karakatsanis’ exciting sprinter Howmuchdoyoulove me took out the 2012 Caulfield Sprint this afternoon booking themselves a spot in some of the upcoming Group 1 sprint features during the Melbourne Cup Carnival including the $1 million Group 1 Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) at Flemington Racecourse on Emirates Stakes Day, Saturday November 11.
A bargain buy for just $5,000 at the 2010 William Inglis and Son 2010 Classic Yearling Sales, Written Tycoon gelding Howmuchdoyouloveme is now a dual stakes winner and a very promising prospect in Melbourne this spring.
The lightly-raced four-year-old was last seen running away to win the Listed Ramornie Handicap (1200m) in Grafton by four lengths back in July, and while only about 85% fit today according to jockey Brenton Avdulla, they seemed to do it easy.
“It’s a big thrill to ride him,” Sydney-based Avdulla, who started his apprenticeship at Caulfield, said after the Caulfield Sprint 2012 win.
“I’ve been with him every step of the way.
“They (connections) were thinking of selling him, but I’m glad they kept him.
“I was a little bit worried today because he’s probably only about 85% fit.
“But he was just too strong.”
Jumping favourite for the $220,000 Group 2 Perri Cutten Caulfield Sprint (1100m), Howmuchdoyouloveme got away from the gates fairly and was able to find the front early with sufficient speed on.
The big galloper maintained that forward running position and lead-all-the-way controlling the race, walking around the corner and bouncing away to open it up over the final couple of hundred metres.
The chasers came for them on the straight but they had no chance of catching the winner, Howmuchdoyouloveme eventually finding the line two lengths clear of Stephen Brown’s Exceed And Excel six-year-old Canali, who tracked second throughout, with the now Bryan Dais-trained Latin News completing the trifecta a further long neck away in third.
Thrilled with the performance Karakatsanis, much like Avdulla, had a few concerns about how the favourite would handle resuming racing in this noted class rise but he had nothing to worry about in the end.
“I just knew it was a pretty tough ask to come up from Listed level to the spring carnival in a Group 2,” he said.
“He was first-up in 10 weeks and I knew he’s going to have a lot of improvement under his belt.”
Karakatsanis confirmed their next race would be in the $250,000 Group 2 Salinger Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day, Saturday November 3, followed by a shot at the big time in the 2012 Patinack Farm Classic – a race dominated for the past two years by superstar mare Black Caviar.
“We’ll just see how he pulls up but at this stage he’ll go to the Salinger and if he goes well there he’ll back up in the Patinack,” he said.
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2012 Caulfield Sprint Results & Finishing Order
Caulfield Cup Day Race 6 – 20/10/2012
|1||7||HOWMUCHDOYOULOVEME||Con Karakatsanis||Brenton Avdulla||–||2||54.5kg||$3.50F|
|2||4||CANALI||Stephen Brown||Luke Currie||2L||5||55kg||$10|
|3||10||LATIN NEWS||Bryan Dais||Dwayne Dunn||2.4L||6||53.5kg||$26|
|4||9||ALTAR||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||2.5L||7||53.5kg||$5|
|5||5||CURTANA||Peter G Moody||Ben Melham||3.75L||8||55kg||$16|
|6||6||FREERETURN||Jason Warren||Craig Newitt||3.85L||4||54.5kg||$13|
|7||1||MID SUMMER MUSIC||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||4.35L||10||58.5kg||$10|
|8||3||THANKGODYOU’REHERE||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||Glen Boss||4.65L||3||57.5kg||$7|
|9||2||GREEN BIRDIE (NZ)||Tony Vasil||Craig Williams||4.85L||11||58kg||$14|
|10||11||STANZOUT||Colin Davies||Nicholas Hall||7.6L||1||53.5kg (cd 54kg)||$101|
|11||8||METALLURGICAL||John P Thompson||Christian Reith||7.7L||9||53.5kg||$20|