Much loved Queensland trainer Desleigh Forster...
Class four-year-old Vega Magic put his Winterbottom Stakes 2016 claims on show with a narrow win at Ascot Racecourse in the weekend’s Colonel Reeves Stakes.
Local trainer Sean Casey confirmed plans to back-up on November 26 returning to the track with his Lope De Vega gelding Vega Magic to shoot for an elite level win in the $1 million Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m).
One of the headline races during the Perth Summer Racing Carnival, the Winterbottom Stakes became a viable target for the horse after he beat home a strong field in Saturday’s $150,000 Group 3 Colonel Reeves Stakes (1100m).
Vega Magic now boasts an outstanding record of four wins from five starts at the Ascot course.
His second-up win in the Colonel Reeves Stakes was an improved effort on his ninth when beaten only 2.25 lengths first-up in the Group 3 Prince Of Wales Stakes (1000m).
The extra meters and drop down in weight saw him turn the tables of the Prince Of Wales Stakes winner Rock Magic who finished a narrow second in the Colonel Reeves Stakes beaten only a half-head after closing well.
“To fight off the best sprinter in the State, what a run,” Casey told The West Australian post-win on Saturday.
“We know how special the horse is and he’s going to give us a lot more enjoyment.
“You’ve got to have a lot of respect for Rocky [Rock Magic] going into the next race, but this will do a lot of confidence for all of us going into the big one.”
Finishing off the trifecta and adding value to the first three as a $21 outsider in betting was the Chris Gangemi-trained Bourne Supremacy.
No four-year-old has won the Winterbottom Stakes since the mighty Tony Noonan-trained mare Ortensia in 2009.
The Colonel Reeves Stakes – Winterbottom Stakes double meanwhile was last achieved by Barakey in 2012.
All-in Winterbottom Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au are led by the interstate raiders set to make the trip west – Terravista ($2.20) and Malaguerra ($3.50).
The Joe Pride-trained Captain Rio seven-year-old Terravista is best known for his 2014 Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) win at Flemington.
His last win was back in October last year, but he looked on track for a return to form when runner-up to Redzel beaten a nostril flare first-up on Crown Oaks Day in the Listed G.H. Mumm Stakes (1000m) under a hefty 60.5kg.
Malaguerra is in flying form for Peter Gelagotis, the Magnus five-year-old last seen winning this spring’s Darley Classic on Emirates Stakes Day.
Vega Magic is also at single-figures in the pre-field Winterbottom Stakes betting markets paying $9 to upset the better credentialed visitors, while Rock Magic is just further down at $13 for the locals.
To check out the full early Winterbottom Stakes betting odds make sure you head to Ladbrokes.com.au – home of Odds Boost (T&Cs apply).
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