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Sydney-based trainer John Sargent secured his own special place in racing history scoring his fourth separate Oaks win with the Australian Oaks 2015 success of his outside chance Gust Of Wind at Royal Randwick this Queen Elizabeth Stakes Day.
Sargent has prepared the winner of a Victorian Oaks, Queensland Oaks, New Zealand Oaks and now also the $1 million Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) during The Championships with his improving New Zealand-bred Darci Brahma filly Gust Of Wind.
“I love these fillies,” he said.
“These New Zealand bred staying type of fillies that seem to peak at three.”
An $18 chance in the markets at Ladbrokes.com.au in the Group 1, Gust Of Wind had her black-type debut only last Monday on the rescheduled Doncaster Mile Day card when fourth in the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m).
That followed just two runs after her debut win at Scone on February 23, an effort that had Sargent tipping her this year’s Australian Oaks winner – a predication that proved true today.
“She’s come up a level since then and has come up a real racehorse,” Sargent said.
“She’s just improved and improved and ran a very good race on Monday.”
It was a beautiful winning ride from Tye Angland who never panicked despite Gust Of Wind ruining the jump to come away last from the gates.
Bjorn Baker’s Adrian Knox Stakes winner Candelara, also on the short back-up with Gust Of Wind, won the start and led from Kris Lees’ consistent Rustic Melody early on.
The Chris Waller-trained favourite Winx meanwhile got a handy run fourth on the fence, while Zac Purton found a gap to drive through on last start Vinery Stud Stakes third placed Thunder Lady which kept Rustic Melody out wide.
Candelara and Hugh Bowman kept the front running position with a free striding run to lead throughout.
At the 1200m Gust Of Wind began to wind up and went into fourth while Waller’s other runner Ballet Suite was caught deep in fifth and her stablemate Winx getting shuffled back into sixth.
Gust Of Wind continued getting a lovely inside run approaching the turn and just got her head through to hit the lead as they went into the straight.
On the inside she fought back against Candelara who was trying to make a comeback while Winx was putting in the big strides to make up the ground she’d lost mid race.
It was all Gust Of Wind in the finish however after Angland snuck up on the inside following his canny move on the bend, the filly roaring away to win by two and a half lengths from the top fancy Winx with Candelara holding on for third, a big margin separating first from last in the ATC Oaks this year.
“I really wanted to stick on Thunder Lady and ride her…thought she’d win the Oaks,” Angland admitted post-race.
“I was disappointed at the time, then I went through this horse’s races…the distance was always going to suit.
“She got home really good on Monday, was on the quick back up and the step up in distance really suited her.
“She just kept running, she’s a great stayer this filly.”
Owner Apollo NG agreed that Gust Of Wind had a huge future as a stayer down under and even named the iconic Melbourne Cup over the two miles at Flemington in November as a possible target.
“Timing wise, John Sargent has done it a real treat as she’s just peaked at the right time,” he said.
“Win an Oaks then the Melbourne Cup, that’s the best way to do it!”
Sargent confirmed Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival plans for both her and stablemate Thunder Lady after a break in the paddock.
“It’s out to the paddock now and then we’ll look at the spring probably in Melbourne for them,” he said.
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2015 Australian Oaks Results & Finishing Order
Randwick Race 6 – 11/04/2015
|1||12||GUST OF WIND (NZ)||John Sargent||Tye Angland||–||5||56kg||$17|
|2||2||WINX||Chris Waller||Joao Moreira||2.5L||1||56kg||$2.80F|
|3||5||CANDELARA||Bjorn Baker||Hugh Bowman||4.8L||2||56kg||$7|
|4||9||RUSTIC MELODY||Kris Lees||Brenton Avdulla||6L||7||56kg||$17|
|5||1||THUNDER LADY (NZ)||John Sargent||Zac Purton||8.6L||8||56kg||$8.50|
|6||4||SAVARIA (NZ)||Roydon Bergerson||James McDonald||9.3L||9||56kg||$5|
|7||13||ZARZALI||Bart & James Cummings||Craig Williams||9.5L||6||56kg||$26|
|8||10||BALLET SUITE||Chris Waller||Ryan Moore||15.7L||10||56kg||$6.50|
|9||6||SWEET AND SPEEDY||Peter G Moody||Chad Schofield||16.4L||4||56kg||$21|
|10||11||WILDENSTEIN||Paul Perry||Brodie Loy (a)||32.2L||3||56kg||$101|
|–||7||WINE TALES||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||–||0||–||–|
|–||3||FENWAY||Lee & Shannon Hope||Blake Shinn||–||0||–||–|
|–||8||ADRIFT (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Damien Oliver||–||0||–||–|
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