Mark Kavanagh’s class mare Wild Rain returned to winning form for the first time this year with a smart run at Caulfield Racecourse in Saturday’s Sir John Monash Stakes 2016.
The Manhattan Rain four-year-old hadn’t enjoyed a victory since her Listed Doveton Stakes (1000m) success in December last year, and was racing for the first time since her sixth at Flemington behind Headwater in the Listed Kensington Stakes (1000m) from late January.
The bookies took no chances with the short-distance specialist however, Wild Rain and jockey Damien Oliver going out at a $5.50 starting price in the $150,000 Group 3 Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m).
Oliver was also fresh having his first Saturday book of rides in Melbourne since late last month and he gave Wild Rain the perfect ride first-up.
She was far too strong over the 1100m continuing her ace record over the distance that now stands at four wins and three seconds from eight starts.
“She gave a good kick on the turn and I knew she would be hard to run down,” Oliver told The Sydney Morning Herald post-win.
“I think this is about her level but the key is the short course. At the thousand to 1100 metres she is very effective.”
On the line Wild Rain had one and three-quarter lengths to spare over the Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra-trained outsider Trevinder ($21), who relished a return to his pet track at Caulfield.
In third just a nose further back was Lord Of The Sky ($11), but he lost the placing and was relegated to fourth after the successful protest by jockey Nicholas Hall aboard the Robert Smerdon-trained Atmospherical ($12), racing first-up since his dead last when 17th to Flamberge at the track in February’s Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m), who officially rounded out the Sir John Monash Stakes trifecta.
Kavanagh’s son Levi was trackside for Wild Rain’s win and said a strong piece of work at Flemington last Friday had the team confident she could score a first-up win in the Group 3.
“We had her scheduled to trial the week before and they got called off because of the rain,” he said.
“I think she’s improved and come back better this time, so fingers crossed we can pick up a few more with her.”
Next-up Kavanagh indicated the $120,000 Listed Carloyn Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on August 20 would make a nice next-up assignment for Wild Rain.
The Sir John Monash Stakes favourite was the David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Fast ‘N’ Rocking ($2.80) who only managed to cross a mid-field sixth three lengths off the winner after failing to get a clear run.
He is still set to back-up in a fortnight back at the track for the $150,000 Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) where his hoop Dwayne Dunn is confident of improvement.
“They were bunched outside of me early and they sucked me in to going down to the rail,” he said.
“He’ll be hard to beat in two weeks’ time.”
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2016 Sir John Monash Stakes Results
Caulfield Race 8 – 16/07/2016
|1||13||WILD RAIN||Mark Kavanagh||Damien Oliver||–||10||56.5kg||$5.50|
|2||10||TREVINDER||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Chris Symons||1.75L||15||58.5kg||$21|
|3||15||ATMOSPHERICAL||Robert Smerdon||Nicholas Hall||1.85L||3||56.5kg||$12|
|4||3||LORD OF THE SKY||Robbie Laing||Patrick Moloney||2.05L||9||58.5kg||$11|
|5||4||GENERAL TRUCE||Tony Vasil||Andrew Mallyon||2.45L||5||58.5kg||$26|
|6||1||FAST ’N’ ROCKING||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Dwayne Dunn||2.95L||6||58.5kg||$2.80F|
|7||6||THERMAL CURRENT||Darren Weir||Dean Yendall||3.05L||4||58.5kg||$11|
|8||5||LE BONSIR||Mick Price||Michael Dee (a)||3.25L||1||58.5kg||$31|
|9||8||MIRAGE||Darren Weir||Jordan Childs (a)||3.35L||8||58.5kg||$41|
|10||14||GIRL GUIDE||Ciaron Maher||Craig Williams||3.45L||7||56.5kg||$9|
|11||12||RUNSATI||Bryan Maher||Ms Linda Meech||4.7L||2||58.5kg||$15|
|12||9||TUDOR||Doug Harrison||Craig Newitt||4.9L||13||58.5kg||$31|
|13||7||WEINHOLT||David Brideoake||Luke Currie||5.65L||14||58.5kg||$18|
|14||2||THE CYNIC||Patrick Payne||Steven Arnold||5.75L||11||58.5kg||$21|
|15||11||OLIVIER||Darren Weir||Harry Coffey (a)||7.5L||12||58.5kg||$18|
|–||16||KAYJAY’S JOY||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Dylan Dunn (a)||–||0||–||–|