The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Co-trainer David Eustace confirmed plans to head overseas to Royal Ascot in the UK mid-year with the team’s powerhouse filly Coolangatta who was huge fresh defeating a crack field of older sprinters first-up in the 2023 Black Caviar Lightning results at Flemington.
The three-year-old daughter of Written Tycoon became the first filly to win the Group 1 $1 million Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) down the famous Flemington straight in 19 years with Regimental Gal (2004) the first before her.
She was fresh after running fifth at the track last Melbourne Cup Carnival behind In Secret in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) and was always set for the 1000m Group 1 first-up for the autumn.
Coolangatta is proving a genuine 1000m specialist having won her first elite level last spring at The Valley in the Group 1 Moir Stakes.
They couldn’t match her again in the Black Caviar with the filly flying to the front inside the final furlong to defeat her older rivals at $9.
“Unbelievable she was so impressive she travelled into it so well she’s had a faultless prep,” Eustace, who enjoyed his 21st Group 1 success in partnership with Ciaron Maher, told Racing.com post-victory.
“It’s a great thrill.
“We were really confident she’d improved physically (from last prep). She’s bigger, she’s stronger, she’s heavier.
“This had been the race targeted for a long way out and it’s just fantastic to get another win.”
Huge late to run into second was the returning Peter Moody-trained $10 million Golden Eagle winner I Wish I Win ($8.50) running a phenomenal trial for the upcoming Group 1 $1.5 million Newmarket Handicap (1200m) back at headquarters on March 11.
I Wish I Win is now into $5 in all-in 2023 Newmarket Handicap betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Getting up late into third in a typically brave effort over the 1000m on firm going was the winner’s Manikato Stakes winning stablemate Bella Nipotina ($14) who heads towards the inaugural $4 million The Quokka slot race in Perth on April 15 representing Ladbrokes.
“Bella was fantastic, she’s so brave and was a credit to her,” Eustace said of the third-placed mare.
September Run ($21) who threatened at one stage up the inside was the best home for Chris Waller in fourth.
The disappointment of the race was the Waller’s $20.6 million earner and 2021 champ Nature Strip who finished sixth as the beaten odds-on favourite at $1.95.
The veteran eight-year-old, who has been at the top level for so many seasons, held the lead at a crucial stage close to home but couldn’t match the finishing burst of the young guns who ran him down in the end.
Kah had been aboard Nature Strip for his win in the Black Caviar Lightning two years ago and was part of the charge to undo the champ this season celebrating her second success in three runnings.
“It was a really well judged, timed ride by Jamie,” Eustace said.
“She (Coolangatta) was pretty convincing.”
Eustace said he was unsure of the next-up option for the Black Caviar Lightning winner but that ultimately they would target the Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes (1000m) at Royal Ascot in June.
“To be honest from here the dream would be Royal Ascot for everyone involved,” he said.
“She’s shown she likes the straight and I think everyone in the group would be keen to go there.
“Where she runs next I’m not sure but ultimately we’d like dot give that a crack.”
The Black Caviar Lightning Stakes has been a lovely guide to the King’s Stand Stakes over the years and Nature Strip won last year’s event by over four lengths.
Choisir (2003), Takeover Target (2006), Miss Andretti (2007) and Scenic Blast (2009) all won the Lightning Stakes – King’s Stand Stakes dual country double in their respective years.
Head to Ladbrokes.com.au for the best range of odds and autumn racing markets on Coolangatta and the others out of the Black Caviar Lightning this prep.
2023 Black Caviar Lightning Results & Finishing Order
|1||11||COOLANGATTA||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Ms Jamie Kah||8||53.5kg||$9|
|2||2||I WISH I WIN (NZ)||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||0.4L||3||58.5kg||$8.50|
|3||5||BELLA NIPOTINA||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Ben Melham||0.5L||6||56.5kg||$14|
|4||7||SEPTEMBER RUN||Chris Waller||Blake Shinn||0.7L||5||56.5kg||$21|
|5||9||BUENOS NOCHES||Matthew Smith||Craig Williams||2.2L||10||55.5kg||$8.50|
|6||1||NATURE STRIP||Chris Waller||James McDonald||2.3L||1||58.5kg||$1.95F|
|7||3||BALLER||Tony Gollan||Mark Zahra||3.3L||7||58.5kg||$21|
|8||8||MARABI||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Ben Allen||3.5L||4||56.5kg||$9.50|
|9||4||FIRE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Damien Oliver||6.5L||2||58.5kg||$61|
|10||10||MILLANE||Peter G Moody||Daniel Stackhouse||6.7L||9||55.5kg||$81|
|6||ROCH ’N’ HORSE (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Jamie Mott||0|
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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