Almalad Still Unbeaten After JJ Atkins 2014 Win

June 7, 2014

Almalad Still Unbeaten After JJ Atkins 2014 Win

Gai Waterhouse pulled off a freakish training feat on Stradbroke Handicap Day stepping the promising Almalad up from a 1200m handicap at Randwick to a Group 1 over the Eagle Farm mile to win the 2014 JJ Atkins.


Almalad did nothing right in the run but still won the 2014 JJ Atkins. Photo: Daniel Costello.

Going back-to-back in the race after the success of Romantic Touch last Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival, Waterhouse was always confident Al Maher gelding Almalad could handle the acid test in today’s $500,000 Group 1 Tatts Group J.J. Atkins (1600m).

The JJ Atkins winner did nothing right.

Pinging from the gates they over-raced, cartwheeled around the track, let horses up on their inside but then still had the ability to win anyway.

“He was naturally going to go forward early,” Waterhouse’s stable representative Mark Newham said.

“Gai was happy for Tom (Tommy Berry) to put him forward and then let him get comfortable.

“He took a little while to get comfortable and didn’t make the corner all that well but it’s the result that counts.

“When you put the acid to him he will respond and that’s what we got today.”

Newham was also quick to credit the task of Waterhouse to have Almalad ready for the JJ Atkins having only seen 1200m and raced twice before.

“Gai’s one that can do it consistently,” he said.

“Some of the things she can do with horses still amazes me like this one today.”

Almalad was up front challenging for the lead early with BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes winner Time For War as the duo fought for the position of pacemaker.

One of the top fancies in the race, the Chris Waller-trained Brazen Beau meanwhile was settled much better fourth and then on the fence.

Nash Rawiller kept Brazen Beau along the rails in a cushy ride to ensure they saw out the mile before they went up the middle on the straight.

But Almalad didn’t give in having another go up on the outside and getting there in the final stride.

He held off the punters’ early pick with Brazen Beau ($2.45) a long neck away second and the fast finishing Tony Gollan-trained Looks Like The Cat ($7) who was brave in defeat again for third just a nose off the top two.

“I didn’t give him the best of rides,” Berry said after the win.

“We came out of the gates quite well and had good early pace…I probably should have taken him to the front.”

While it wasn’t the prettiest or rides from Berry, Newham didn’t mind once they got to the line first.

“I don’t care how he rides them as long as he gets the result!” he said.

A definite champion in the making and a horse to watch as they mature and learn from experience, Almalad was having just their third career start today.

They remain unbeaten then having won their two opening runs in Sydney firstly over 1000m at Gosford in December and then, as mentioned, over 1200m at Randwick on May 24 over Sports Edition.

The form of that race has certainly stacked up on Stradbroke Day in Brisbane too with runner-up Sports Edition winning the Hampden Stakes to kick off the day.

Like Sports Edition, Almalad was ridden by Tommy Berry who is over from Hong Kong for the day and simply flying.

He also won, for Waterhouse, the Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes on Cosmic Endeavour before his Group 1 triumph.

“Mark Newham and I have had a wrap on this bloke for a while,” Berry added about Almalad.

There’s every chance Almalad will return in the spring and target the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) in Melbourne this October, another Group 1 Berry could be aboard for.

“It doesn’t matter how many (Group 1s) you win,” Berry said.

“It’s an addictive drug I can’t get enough of.

“I’ll be a happy many flying back (to Hong Kong) tonight.”

Futures Caulfield Guineas betting markets are sure to be updated by then following the JJ Atkins results, new odds going up shortly.

So make sure you’ve got an account open with the country’s fastest growing bookie who is also offering Best Tote or SP + 20% on the Stradbroke Handicap today.

2014 JJ Atkins Results & Finishing Order

Eagle Farm Race 6 – 07/06/2014

Place # Horse Trainer Jockey Margin Br. Wgt. SP
1 6 ALMALAD Gai Waterhouse Tommy Berry 9 57kg $4.80
2 1 BRAZEN BEAU Chris Waller Nash Rawiller 0.2L 4 57kg $2.45
3 5 LOOKS LIKE THE CAT Tony Gollan Damian Browne 0.3L 6 57kg $7
4 3 PRESSING Mick Price Damien Oliver 1.3L 3 57kg $8
5 7 CARELESS John O’Shea Kerrin McEvoy 1.4L 11 57kg $21
6 2 TIME FOR WAR Gerald Ryan Tye Angland 2.4L 1 57kg $9.50
7 8 FURBISH Allan Denham Jim Byrne 5.2L 10 57kg $41
8 4 MOHAVE John O’Shea Hugh Bowman 5.5L 8 57kg $26
9 9 STROAK Bryan Guy Michael Cahill 5.8L 7 55kg $71
10 11 EMOTIONS IN MOTION Tony Bita Tegan Harrison (a) 12.1L 2 55kg $2.1F
11 10 SAGATONA Liam Birchley Glen Boss 15.9L 5 55kg $61

Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2018 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.

Spring Racing

Rogerson Dreams of 2018 Melbou...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feat...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feature Redzel

Inaugural champion Redzel has officially secured his position in the 2018 The...

2018 The Everest Field Takes S...

2018 The Everest Field Takes Shape: In Her Time Confirmed

She missed out on a shot at the world’s richest race on turf last spring but...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 Th...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 The Everest Slot for Aquis

The first official slot in The Everest 2018 field has been confirmed with...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC Oaks Bid

Ben Smith’s ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes winning filly El Dorado Dreaming is in...

Horse Racing Today

Waller to have multiple runner...

McDonald to team up with Care ...

McDonald to team up with Care To Think in the 2018 Kingsford-Smith Cup

James McDonald will be hoping for a quick return to the Group 1 winner’s stall...

Santa Ana Lane to chase Stradb...

Santa Ana Lane to chase Stradbroke Handicap after 2018 Goodwood win

The Anthony Freedman trained Santa Ana Lane has earned a start in the 2018...

2018 Doomben Cup winner Comin&...

2018 Doomben Cup winner Comin’ Through beats stablemate Egg Tart

The Chris Waller trained Comin’ Through claimed his first Group 1 victory when...

Leicester Top 2018 SA Derby Ti...

Leicester Top 2018 SA Derby Tip for Weir to Make History

Victoria’s leading horseman Darren Weir is out to emulate the late, great Bart...

Race Results

Viewed Victorious in Caulfield Cup

Race 1 Result – $101 500 AGL Renewable Energy Stakes – She’s Got Gears Wins

Race 2 – $101,500 Schiavello Plate – Avienus Wins

Race 3 – $101 500 Lavazza A Modo Mio – Linton Street Wins

Race 4 Results – $151,500 Listed Herald Sun Stakes – Strawberry Field Wins

Race Previews

2009 Caulfield Cup Barrier Draw Announced

Who Are the Top Contenders for Tomorrow’s Caulfield Cup?

Victoria Derby in sight for Onemorenomore

2009 Melbourne Cup Field

Eclipse Stakes Final Field & Preview

Fields & Form

Can Kelinni Win Sydney Cup 2013 for the Punters?

Moroney Gets into Queensland Derby 2013 Rhythm

Buffering Draws 7 – 2013 BTC Cup Final Field and Barrier Draw

SA Fillies Classic 2013 Field Released

13 two-year-olds in 2013 Champagne Classic Field