In a wonderful training performance from the Wyong-based Allan Denham, five-year-old Alberto Magic came back off 294 days out to win the Maurice McCarten Stakes 2016 at Rosehill Gardens on Coolmore Classic Day.
Last time out the Magic Albert gelding won over 1100m at Randwick on a Heavy (9) track back in May of last year.
He trialled twice nicely in Sydney leading up to his return including a 900m win at Rosehill on February 29.
Alberto Magic jumped favourite in the $150,000 Group 3 Maurice McCarten Stakes (1100m) despite the break between runs and presented a very fit horse.
He retained his undefeated first-up record with his fourth win from as many resuming runs and also continued his gun form over the short-distance with his third win from five 1100m starts, which he has also twice placed second over.
Ridden by Jason Collett Alberto Magic took advantage of the inside alley in the handicap clash and settled into a handy fourth just off the leaders.
Quick out of the gates and taking up the front running with Tim Clark in the saddle from gate two was the Gerald Ryan-trained Angels Beach, the Bel Esprit mare also first-up not having run since an unplaced effort in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield last winter.
Six-year-old Angels Beach muscled up and took the lead from Craftiness who was racing a bit keenly with the blinkers on, while the John O’Shea-trained Barbed settled into third just ahead of the eventual winner.
Angels Beach travelled strongly in the lead, but Alberto Magic was getting a lovely ride in fourth on the inside tucked in and moving up to third on the straight with Barbed on his outside.
Over the closing stages Alberto Magic ($3.50) sliced off the fence to give chase, Angels Beach ($5.50) not giving up easily putting up a fight before being run down by the favourite who got the money.
Finishing off the Maurice McCarten Stakes trifecta was Ryan’s other runner, All American four-year-old Bachman ($6) crossing a luckless third after being forced to change course, the 1200m – 1300m sprinter hitting the line well over the shorter distance.
Denham is unsure what is next this Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival for Alberto Magic, but was just thrilled to see a “class 6 horse” win a Group 3.
“He’s done a good job,” he said.
“He had two good barrier trials and we were pretty confident coming into the race.
“But really, he’s a class 6 horse in a Group 3 and he’s done a pretty good job.
“I don’t really know (what’s next). We’ll get him home, see how he pulls up.
“He’s only small and can’t carry a lot of weight, that’s our biggest problem.”
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2016 Maurice McCarten Stakes Results & Finishing Order
Rosehill Race 5 – 12/03/2016
|1||5||ALBERTO MAGIC||Allan Denham||Jason Collett||–||1||55.5kg||$3.10F|
|2||4||ANGELS BEACH||Gerald Ryan||Tim Clark||0.1L||2||55.5kg||$4.60|
|3||3||BACHMAN||Gerald Ryan||Kerrin McEvoy||1.4L||7||56.5kg||$6|
|4||6||BARBED||John O’Shea||James McDonald||1.8L||3||55kg||$16|
|5||1||DECISION TIME||Clarry Conners||Tommy Berry||2.5L||5||58kg||$13|
|6||7||THE MONSTAR||Brett Cavanough||Ms Kayla Nisbet (a)||2.8L||10||55kg||$15|
|7||8||TAHITIAN BLACK||David Pfieffer||Tye Angland||3.9L||6||55kg||$41|
|8||9||EMINENT DUKE||Jan Bowen||Brenton Avdulla||4.4L||4||55kg||$21|
|9||10||ON A SHINING STAR||Ken Callaughan||Ms Winona Costin (a)||6L||9||55kg||$101|
|10||2||CRAFTINESS||Joseph Pride||Corey Brown||6.8L||8||57kg||$4.80|