A long-range plan to target the Group 1 2013 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) has paid off for Danny O’Brien at Flemington today as three-year-old Shamexpress flew home to win the $1 million sprint.
O’Brien set the O’Reilly colt for the prestigious event following his Coolmore Stud Stakes third in November and he peaked perfectly in the high pressure environment of the Newmarket.
Jockey Craig Newitt was able to find cover early which allowed the speedster to show an electrifying turn of foot and benefit from carrying just 50.5kg.
Once in the clear inside the final furlong there was no stopping Shamexpress who flew down the outside of the Flemington straight to run down race favourite Moment Of Change.
Jumping at $15, the future stallion prospect was largely forgotten in betting but O’Brien was always confident he would perform if he got the run to suit.
“It’s been a long-range plan since Coolmore day,” O’Brien said.
“He’s come here in great shape and we got the right ride today.
“Craig produced him beautifully and he really let go like a top class Group 1 sprinter.”
Newitt was aboard Shamexpress for the first time but took the ride confident he could match it with the older horses.
“I came here today pretty confident that this bloke would run well,” Newitt said.
“He was the forgotten horse really…he’s been very well placed.
“To come here today with 50.5kg I knew he was ready to run a big race.”
Moment Of Change was brave to lead for the majority of the race but tired late while Aeronautical overcame huge odds to grab third.
So, the Newmarket’s been run and won but many of these sprinters will be going on to other races so follow the form and back your winners at bookmaker.com.au!
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Newmarket Handicap 2013 – Results
|1||14||SHAMEXPRESS (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||Craig Newitt||–||10||50.5kg||$15|
|2||2||MOMENT OF CHANGE||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||0.1L||6||56.5kg||$3.20F|
|3||8||AERONAUTICAL||Lionel Cohen||Darren Gauci||0.2L||1||52.5kg||$81|
|4||12||UNDENIABLY||Mark Kavanagh||Tim Clark||3.2L||3||52.5kg||$41|
|5||13||BETTER THAN READY||Kelly Schweida||Craig Williams||4.7L||7||50.5kg||$4.80|
|6||6||SPIRIT OF BOOM||Tony Gollan||Brett Prebble||4.9L||5||55kg||$13|
|7||10||FONTELINA||Anthony Cummings||Glen Boss||5.65L||9||52.5kg||$16|
|8||1||LUCKYGRAY||Gino Poletti||Shaun O’Donnell||6.4L||13||58kg||$10|
|9||9||BIG BUDDIE||Andrew Sawden||Anthony Darmanin||7.9L||2||52.5kg||$201|
|10||11||SATIN SHOES||Clarry Conners||Tommy Berry||8L||11||52.5kg||$41|
|11||5||BARAKEY||Jim P Taylor||Jason Brown||9.25L||12||56kg||$6.50|
|12||3||ORTENSIA||Paul Messara||Dwayne Dunn||10L||8||56.5kg||$21|
|13||7||LONE ROCK||Robert Smerdon||Ben Melham||10.1L||4||53.5kg||$51|