Stamping his claims as a serious spring contender when charging home to win the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) on September 6th, veteran jockey Jim Cassidy is confident of further success for classy runner Hawkspur in this afternoon’s Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick.
Jumping from the gates well in the Chelmsford Stakes, Cassidy settled Hawkspur in prime position on the heels of the early leaders, finding a clear racing line upon reaching the final straight and extending to finish a nose in the clear of Royal Descent; Bagman running on for third to deliver trainer Chris Waller a trifecta and incredible first six for the first time in his career.
Allocated the ideal barrier 4 for the George Main Stakes this afternoon, Cassidy did not reveal how he will ride the Purrealist gelding in the Randwick feature but is confident of success from anywhere in the pack.
“I will assess how the track is racing on the day, keep an open mind about tactics,” Cassidy told The Daily Telegraph.
“But I can tell you Hawkspur is not one-dimensional; he can be ridden forward or quiet.
“There was no fluke about his win last start and I’m very happy to be on him again.”
Securing an impressive total of eight wins and seven places from just 32 competitive starts so far, Hawkspur was touted as one to watch over the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival after charging home to win the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) in winter, and while experiencing some success, was unable to live up to the hype that followed his campaign from event to event; fading to finish a forgettable 20th in the Melbourne Cup on November 5th.
Finishing third in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) and fourth in both the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) most notably over five autumn starts this year, Hawkspur has steadily built to the task this time in; finishing seventh in the Group 2 Missile Stakes (1200m) and fifth in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) prior to his Chelmsford Stakes success.
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