Champion trainer Darren Weir bookended the Caulfield Cup Day card winning the first with Jennifer Lynn and then the last with his ultra-consistent galloper Voodoo Lad taking out the Ladbrokes Moonga Stakes 2016.
A five-year-old son of I Am Invincible, Voodoo Lad continued his gun form dropping down in class for the $150,000 Group 3 Ladbrokes Moonga Stakes (1400m) after his brave second to Bon Aurum on September 24 at the Caulfield track in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m).
He jumped the deserving favourite in betting and won accordingly, jockey Brad Rawiller jumping aboard the horse for the first time since a win at Warrnambool back in May.
From 17 career runs, Voodoo Lad is yet to finish out of the money with the Ladbrokes Moonga Stakes result his ninth win as part of a great record that also shows six seconds and two thirds.
The Moonga Stakes field jumped evenly in a line, with Gary Moore’s last start Premiere Stakes winner in Sydney Takedown one of the first to show early speed along with the Chris Waller-trained Good Project.
Second-up after the unplaced return in the Premiere Stakes in a luckless run, Good Project went to the front and led from Takedown and Matthew Williams’ roughie hope Turnitaround.
Holding onto the inside, Good Project showed the way as Voodoo Lad sat back off the speed starting to come with a run as they approached the turn for home.
Good Project led into the bend, but Rawiller was soon on the scene with Voodoo Lad ready to go on the outside.
In a crucial stage on the straight Takedown was held up in a pocket, unable to get out when he wanted.
With 200m to go Rawiller hit the button on the favourite and Voodoo Lad ($2.50) dashed away full of steam going strongly to the line posting a two length win from the luckless Takedown ($4).
It was a nice Moonga Stakes win for the punters, and even though he didn’t get the clear run, Takedown probably wouldn’t have been able to stop the flying Voodoo Lad who raced three deep with cover ready to produce at the right time and come with his barnstorming run home.
Finishing off the top three and adding value to the Moonga Stakes trifecta was Turnitaround ($126) who paid $25.50 for the place at race sponsor Ladbrokes.com.au.
“He was second in a Group 1 last start and dropping down to a Group 3 today,” Rawiller said of Voodoo Lad post-win.
“He won exactly that way, he’s a good horse.
“They were going steady and down the side he really wanted to go.
“When I started to move on him he was too good, simply too good.”
Weir said the next-up options were wide open for Voodoo Lad including a possible trip to Perth for a shot at one of the Group 1s at Ascot Racecourse during the Perth Summer Racing Carnival.
“He was great,” Weir said.
“He’s been a happy horse for quite a while now. We just keep the routine the same with him.
“The horse is in great form and can’t see why he won’t continue to be at great form.
“I think he deserves to have another crack at a Group 1.
“He was perhaps a little unlucky in the Rupert Clarke.
“I’m not sure really [where to next]. I’ll have to see what’s coming up. I’m not sure about him at a mile, but Perth may be an option.”
Get the right odds on Voodoo Lad next race online at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $700 first time match deposit bet (excluding NSW) with use of the code SPRINGBONUS (T&Cs apply).
2016 Ladbrokes Moonga Stakes Finishing Order
Caulfield Race 10 – 15/10/2016
|1||12||VOODOO LAD||Darren Weir||Brad Rawiller||–||9||56.5kg||$2.50F|
|2||4||TAKEDOWN||Gary Moore||Blake Shinn||1.5L||5||58.5kg||$4|
|3||13||TURNITAROUND||Matthew Williams||Dean Yendall||1.8L||11||56kg||$151|
|4||1||GOOD PROJECT||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||1.9L||8||59.5kg||$21|
|5||2||STRATUM STAR||Darren Weir||Luke Nolen||3.15L||14||59.5kg||$18|
|6||6||FAST ’N’ ROCKING||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Stephen Baster||3.25L||12||57.5kg||$10|
|7||14||ADIRONDACK||Shawn Mathrick||Ms Jackie Beriman||3.45L||16||56kg||$301|
|8||9||DURENDAL||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Damian Lane||3.75L||3||57.5kg||$12|
|9||17e||DANE THUNDER||Shane Bottomley||Ben Allen (a)||3.95L||7||56kg||$201|
|10||7||SERTORIUS||Jamie Edwards||Noel Callow||4.15L||1||57.5kg||$201|
|11||11||HOPFGARTEN||Robert Heathcote||Craig Williams||4.25L||10||56.5kg||$12|
|12||10||MABEEL (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Dwayne Dunn||4.75L||4||57.5kg||$20|
|13||15||DAN ZEPHYR||Pat Carey||Rhys McLeod||5.5L||13||56kg||$61|
|14||3||FAMOUS SEAMUS (NZ)||Noel Mayfield-Smith||Kerrin McEvoy||6.75L||6||58.5kg||$41|
|15||5||SMOKIN’ JOEY||Wez Hunter||Chris Symons||8.25L||15||57.5kg||$101|
|SB||16||LUCKY LIBERTY||Henry Dwyer||Chris Parnham||–||2||56kg|
|–||8||AMOVATIO||Chris Waller||Damien Oliver||–||0||–||–|