Gerald Ryan’s progressive Snitzel gelding Dances On Stars enjoyed a winning start to the New Year at Randwick on Wednesday taking out the Carrington Stakes 2014 on the January 1stmeet.
The four-year-old posted their first victory in 13 months breaking the drought with a tight victory in the $100,000 Listed Tattersalls Club Carrington Stakes (1100m) as a $4 chance.
Ridden by Brenton Avdulla the 54kg lightweight was first-up off a six month spell not having raced since the Civic Stakes back in July.
Despite the lengthy time between runs they showed top form similar to that which saw them run a narrow second to Sizzling in the Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1400m) during the winter.
They had far from a perfect run having been held up throughout before Avdulla spotted a tight opening that they drove through to win in the final stages.
On the line they had a long neck to spare over the Paul Perry-trained runner-up Hidden Warrior ($12), the horse Dances On Stars got on the back of to follow, who showed good improvement from their ninth in the Razor Sharp Handicap a fortnight ago at Kensington.
Finishing off the winning Carrington Stakes trifecta was then Clarry Conners’ resuming Dee’N’Gee ($7.50), the six-year-old stepping up in class for their first run since August.
Avdulla had nothing but praise for the horse post-win, Dances On Stars now having won $357,250 in prize money thanks to Wednesday’s $60,000 first prize.
“It was just a matter of when the gap would come,” Avdulla told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“I tried nine times [to get throught] and missed and on the 10th time I was lucky.
“He’s a very promising horse, and he was racing against the better three-year-olds in Brisbane, and he never disgraced himself.
“I got enough luck from the 100 [metres] and he was good enough to do it.
“I jumped him out the other day, and it was the most decent hitout he’s had.
“I thought there was going to be a bit more speed than there actually was, but it probably worked out in my favour.
“He’s only got a short turn of foot on him so that’s the way I rode him.”
The disappointment of the race meanwhile was the short priced $2.30 favourite Heart Testa who could only manage to beat home one other runner when sixth, albeit still only beaten 1.2 lengths.
Ryan is now looking at striking while the iron is hot with his son of Oakleigh Plate winner Snitzel, Dances On Stars likely to back-up in the $100,000 Listed Canterbury Classic (1100m) under the stars at Canterbury on January 24.
“We had a go at the glory as a two and three-year-old, and now we just want to place him where he can win,” Ryan said.
“It was all about today and … a race like the Canterbury Stakes [sic] in three weeks [would be suitable].
“You’ve just got to get what you can before the good horses come back around.”
The full Carrington Stakes 2014 results are listed below with the rest of the Sydney summer sprint race updates to follow right here at Races.com.au.
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2014 Carrington Stakes Results & Finishing Order
Randwick Race 5 – 01/01/2014
|1||6||DANCES ON STARS (NZ)||Gerald Ryan||Brenton Avdulla||–||5||54kg||$4|
|2||2||HIDDEN WARRIOR||Paul Perry||Glyn Schofield||0.2L||3||57.5kg||$12|
|3||7||DEE’N’GEE||Clarry Conners||Peter Robl||0.4L||2||54kg||$7.50|
|4||8||PRETTYFAMOUS (NZ)||Mario Caltabiano||Nathan Berry||1L||6||54kg||$16|
|5||5||MASTER HARRY||Ron Quinton||Sam Clipperton (a)||1.1L||4||55kg||$18|
|6||4||HEART TESTA||Chris Waller||Jason Collett||1.2L||1||56.5kg||$2.30F|
|7||1||ZARATONE||Bjorn Baker||Ms Kathy O’Hara||2.5L||7||59kg||$9.50|
|–||3||PAMPELONNE||Tim Martin||Chad Lever||–||0||–||–|