Wyong trainer Kristen Buchanan celebrated the first Group win of her career thanks to a gutsy all-the-way victory in the last at Randwick Racecourse on Day 2 ‘The Championships’ with Two Blue in the Sapphire Stakes 2016.
A rising eight-year-old, the honest daughter of Dubleo lined-up for her 38th career start and enjoyed her eighth career success in the $300,000 Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m).
Two Blue was second-up in the Sapphire Stakes, the multiple Group placegetter coming off a close sixth to Sultry Feeling in Rosehill’s Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) on March 19 when beaten under one and a half lengths.
Adding to her consistent second-up record, she improved with the give out of the track at Randwick on the Slow going, her regular rider Paul King continuing his association with another gun ride.
“He just rides her an absolute treat,” Buchanan said of King post-win.
Two Blue bounced away beautifully from a wide barrier to take up the lead from the John O’Shea-trained Ottoman, while the rails-drawn Shamardal four-year-old Vezalay settled into third.
Around the corner Two Blue led them into the straight, with the runs coming from a number of other challengers including the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Bounding and Brook Road for Newcastle’s Kris Lees straight off his $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) win with Lucia Valentina.
Two Blue ($26) was too good for them on the day though and wouldn’t give up the lead, hitting the line first to beat home the Mick Price-trained Group 1 performer Secret Agenda ($10) at the big odds in the Sapphire.
Finishing off the trifecta in third was Brook Road ($12), the God’s Own five-year-old improving on her seventh in the Birthday Card Stakes.
“She’s really just an honest, trying mare,” King said after his victory.
“Big credit goes to Kristen Buchanan.”
Buchanan was over the moon with the Sapphire Stakes result, giving full credit to the mare and her hoop.
“She’s been an amazing mare, it’s just so great to see it all come off,” she said.
“She’s absolutely fabulous.
“She just loves being a racehorse.
“She just has the incredible desire to win, which just makes her the horse she is.”
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2016 Sapphire Stakes Results & Finishing Order
Randwick Race 10 – 09/04/2016
|1||9||TWO BLUE||Kristen Buchanan||Paul King||–||9||54kg||$26|
|2||13||SECRET AGENDA||Mick Price||Dwayne Dunn||1.8L||10||54kg||$9.50|
|3||8||BROOK ROAD||Kris Lees||Chad Schofield||2.2L||2||54kg||$12|
|4||10||VEZALAY||Leon & Troy Corstens||Stephen Baster||2.6L||1||54kg||$20|
|5||6||CRADLE ME||David Pfieffer||Jason Collett||3L||5||54kg||$7|
|6||2||GRIANTE||David Brideoake||Craig Williams||3.2L||6||58kg||$7.50|
|7||4||SULTRY FEELING||James Cummings||Hugh Bowman||3.5L||12||55.5kg||$6|
|8||3||BRING ME THE MAID||Ciaron Maher||Damien Oliver||4L||3||57kg||$26|
|9||5||PEACE FORCE||Gerald Ryan||Tim Clark||4.9L||14||55kg||$31|
|10||7||I’VE GOT THE LOOKS||Peter & Paul Snowden||Christian Reith||5.3L||8||54kg||$21|
|11||1||BOUNDING||Peter & Paul Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||5.7L||4||58kg||$5F|
|12||12||BERRY DELICIOUS||Jason Coyle||Thomas Huet||6L||13||54kg||$31|
|13||14||OTTOMAN||John O’Shea||James McDonald||7.5L||11||54kg||$13|
|14||15||NO MORE TEARS (NZ)||Stephen Marsh||Tommy Berry||9.6L||7||54kg||$15|
|–||17||LUCKY CAN BE||Ron Quinton||Sam Clipperton||–||0||–||–|
|–||18||HIEROGLYPHICS||Anthony Cummings||Damian Lane||–||0||–||–|
|–||11||PRIVATE SECRETARY||Gregory Hickman||Brenton Avdulla||–||0||–||–|
|–||16||PRESS REPORT||Lee Curtis||Ms Winona Costin (a)||–||0||–||–|