In-form jockey Tommy Berry began his fly-in-fly-out Stradbroke Handicap Day assault in fine form winning his first ever ride at Eagle Farm Racecourse aboard Sports Edition in the 2014 Hampden Stakes.
Kicking off the Brisbane racing action today was the $100,000 Listed Ambassador Travel Hampden Stakes (1200m) where Berry rode at Eagle Farm for the first time.
He showed an immediate affinity for the track, and kicked off a stunning book of rides for the day, with a perfectly-timed win aboard the Gai Waterhouse-trained Sports Edition.
The son of the ill-fated Northern Meteor, Sports Edition broke through for a win at just their second career start following a second behind today’s JJ Atkins hope Almalad at Randwick last start.
“He proved way too good for them,” Berry, who only just flew in from Hong Kong yesterday, told Sky World Racing post-win.
Moving over from out wide to settle nicely into second on the tail of the leader and race favourite Pinch River, Rob Heathcote’s Denman gelding coming off a win in the Listed Dalrello Stakes, Sports Edition ($9) was given a patient ride from Berry.
He had control of the race from a long way out but took a bit of time to run down the leader and draw away to beat home the Paul Messara-trained Limehills ($5.50) by half a length with Freezethemillions ($5.50) in a close third.
Limehills was settled midfield throughout before coming home strong over the closing stages up the middle while Matthew Dunn’s smart filly Freezethemillions put herself into the race at the 200m mark.
Coming off a fourth in the Group 3 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m) she was brave in defeat but wasn’t strong enough to get to Sports Edition who now has some early Black-Type on his record and the tick of approval from Berry.
“Stunning type,” was his assessment of the horse.
“He always had a lot of ability…took a long time to mature.
“He was a lot more relaxed today and that was the difference.”
Berry is now looking ahead to his major rides of the day including Almalad in the $500,000 Group 1 JJ Atkins (1600m) at 2:20pm, Elusive Runner on the rails in the $500,000 Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) in the next and of course the widely-drawn Rebel Dane in the $1.36 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).
“It’s a pretty big day so hopefully this is just the start of it,” Berry said.
To back Berry next ride and follow the form line of the first Eagle Farm race result of the day head to Ladbrokes.com.au where all the best Brisbane racing odds and options can be found!
2014 Hampden Stakes Results & Finishing Order
|1||2||SPORTS EDITION||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||–||9||57kg||$8.50|
|2||4||LIMEHILLS||Paul Messara||Jim Byrne||0.8L||3||57kg||$5.50|
|3||6||FREEZETHEMILLIONS||Matthew Dunn||Michael Rodd||1L||2||55kg||$5.50|
|4||11||RICH REWARD||Paul Butterworth||Anthony Allen (a)||1.3L||4||55kg||$81|
|5||1||PINCH RIVER||Robert Heathcote||Damian Browne||1.6L||8||57kg||$3.90F|
|6||8||BERIMBAU||John O’Shea||Kerrin McEvoy||2.4L||5||55kg||$4.60|
|7||9||STORMING PLEASURE||Gillian Heinrich||Timothy Bell||3.4L||10||55kg||$61|
|8||5||TALES OF FASHION||Trevor Bailey||Chad Schofield||3.6L||1||55kg||$12|
|9||7||TOTALLY SURE||Kelly Schweida||Damien Oliver||3.7L||7||55kg||$13|
|10||3||ELJETEM||Bruce W Hill||Michael Cahill||7.2L||6||57kg||$61|
|–||10||ROSELLA||Troy Hall||Tye Angland||–||0||–||–|