Talented three-year-old Arabian Gold has continued her strong run of form at Royal Randwick this afternoon, sprinting well to win the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) comfortably by a length from Pheidon and Malice.
Jumping well, the Dubawi filly settled in good position three lengths off the early pace of Equator, Malice and Hooked, who set only a fair tempo over the back straight.
Sitting on the rails when rounding onto the final straight, Arabian Gold quickly spooled up and poked clear of the leading pack to deliver trainer David Vandyke a second-consecutive Group 3 victory after claiming the Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m) last time out on April 12th.
Vandyke was delighted with Arabian Gold’s performance in the 2014 Frank Packer Plate, and outlined his reasons for the today’s run in place of a tilt at the major Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) last weekend.
“She’s won three Stakes races now and she had a big year last year, and to come back and win two Stakes races this year is just a testimony to my staff and everyone involved” Vandyke said after the race.
“I wasn’t going to go to the Oaks, I thought we tried that distance in Melbourne and if I was going to target an Oaks, it would be the Brisbane.”
Continuing on a strong partnership with renowned owner Nick Moraitis, Vandyke was particularly thrilled in Arabian Gold securing a title claimed by equine superstar Might And Power in 1997.
“He’s (Moraitis) been with me through thick and thin over the recent six months, and to win this race after Might And Power winning it for him, it just means so much, it is terrific” Vandyke said.
Champion jockey Damien Oliver delivered a typically well time ride on Arabian Gold in the Frank Packer Plate, but revealed the trip was not all smooth sailing.
“I really had my mind made up for me early” Oliver said immediately after dismounting.
“She was travelling well; they went at a pretty leisurely tempo so she had a good kick to offer when it came.
“When they go soft like that it’s a bit easy to sprint along the fence.
“She’s got a good turn of foot; especially off a soft pace like that she really made use of her acceleration.”
Having now claimed her last two starts over 2000 metres at Group level, Arabian Gold will now head to Queensland for the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival and a likely appearance in the Group 2 The Roses (2050m) before the Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) on May 31st.
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2014 Frank Packer Plate Results
|1||9||ARABIAN GOLD||David Vandyke||Damien Oliver||–||2||54.5kg||$2.15F|
|2||2||PHEIDON||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||1.3L||1||56.5kg||$8.50|
|3||7||MALICE||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||2.6L||7||56.5kg||$9|
|4||1||HOOKED||John P Thompson||Blake Shinn||3.2L||8||56.5kg||$4|
|5||3||EQUATOR||Gai Waterhouse||Brenton Avdulla||4L||3||56.5kg||$20|
|6||8||TAKEWING||Jason Coyle||Nash Rawiller||4.4L||5||56.5kg||$31|
|7||4||SHOW THE WORLD (NZ)||Murray Baker||James McDonald||9L||4||56.5kg||$19|
|8||5||GAMBLESTOWN (NZ)||Guy Walter||Jim Cassidy||14.6L||6||56.5kg||$61|
|9||6||SHIKRA||Peter Snowden||Christian Reith||22.5L||9||56.5kg||$26|