Another training record was broken at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday with Sydney superstar Chris Waller enjoying a trio of victories including in the day’s feature – the Winter Challenge 2016 – with Marenostro.
Waller surpassed his own record of season winners (167.5) with the three Rosehill victories over the weekend with Harlem Lady (Race 4), Pioneering (Race 6) and Marenostro (Race 7) in the $150,000 Listed Winter Challenge (1500m).
Given a patient ride by jockey Tye Angland, the Duelled gelding succeeded in his final run as a six-year-old with a late half-length win over Oxford Poet ($4.80EF), with the James Cummings-trained Ruling Dynasty ($31) a surprise third only a nose further back.
Paying $6 for the win, Marenostro came off a last start fourth to the Kim Waugh-trained Oxford Poet in Rosehill’s Listed Winter Stakes (1400m) a fortnight earlier, but was able to improve getting out over the extra metres.
It was the galloper’s sixth win from a dozen starts at the distance, and while able to keep his emotions in check more and more, Waller was still thrilled to break his own record once again.
“I’m blessed to be here and I’ll never forget it,” Waller told the media on Saturday afternoon.
“The first time was extremely emotional, I’m still a bit emotional today. I don’t think too much about history but I am so grateful to be able to break a Gai Waterhouse and Tommy Smith record and then my own one.
“I have an amazing team of people behind me. They’ll be there tirelessly tomorrow and on Monday for the start of the new season.”
It wasn’t all good news for Waller at the season’s final Sydney Saturday race meet as Tales Of Grimm broke down badly during his Winter Challenge run and was subsequently put down.
Winning hoop Angland gave Marenostro a tactical ride, putting the challenge to the field to keep up with his horse in a true 1500m test.
He settled the horse one on the outside of the favourite Oxford Poet just before the 600m mark and wore down the front-runner putting his best foot forward in the closing stages.
The Winter Challenge result gave Angland his 700th career winning ride.
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2016 Winter Challenge Results
Rosehill Racecourse – 30/07/2016
|1||6||MARENOSTRO (NZ)||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||–||3||56.5kg||$6|
|2||3||OXFORD POET||Kim Waugh||Tim Clark||0.5L||6||57kg||$4.80EF|
|3||4||RULING DYNASTY||James Cummings||Glyn Schofield||0.6L||5||57kg||$31|
|4||7||ZIN ZAN EDDIE||Matthew Smith||Jason Collett||0.8L||1||55.5kg||$8|
|5||9||HIMALAYA DREAM (FR)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||1.4L||10||54kg||$6|
|6||2||ALLERGIC||John O’Shea||Hugh Bowman||2.3L||8||57kg||$11|
|7||10||FINAL DECISION||Jason Coyle||Ms Kathy O’Hara||2.5L||2||54kg||$17|
|8||5||SACRED MASTER (NZ)||Chris Waller||Rory Hutchings||2.8L||9||57kg||$12|
|9||8||ALEGRIA||John O’Shea||Brenton Avdulla||3.4L||4||54kg||$4.80EF|
|FF||1||TALES OF GRIMM (USA)||Chris Waller||Kerrin McEvoy||–||7||58kg||$9|