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Victorian breeding basks in the glow of racetrack success

Stellar performances by some precocious young horses illuminated Victorian Owners and Breeders Raceday (VOBRD), which celebrated its 10th edition at Caulfield yesterday.

 

With Victoria’s Minister for Racing Anthony Carbines and many of the racing and breeding sectors’ biggest names in attendance, VOBRD once again showcased the robust health of the state’s thoroughbred industry.

 

Victoria’s premier off-season race meeting, offering almost $3 million in prizemoney and bonuses, was headlined by the $1 million TBV VOBIS Platinum Showdown (1200m), which was won for the first time by a debutant in Clinton McDonald’s speed machine Stanley Express (Starspangledbanner x Vivid). The other feature race, the $500,000 IRT VOBIS Platinum Guineas (1600m), went the way of classy filly Elphinstone (Street Boss x Inflection), who avenged her defeat in last year’s Showdown for the Tony and Calvin McEvoy training team. 

 

Stanley Express (Starspangledbanner)  wins the TBV VOBIS Platinum Showdown (Image: Racing Photos)


Elphinstone (Street Boss) wins the IRT VOBIS Platinum Guineas (Image: Racing Photos)


Stanley Express’ triumph earned Rosemont Stud a $35,000 VOBIS Sires nominator’s bonus and continued the strong recent run of their stallion Starspangledbanner, following recent Stakes wins for his juvenile fillies Herastar (Listed Cinderella Stakes) and Lincolnshire (Listed Dequetteville Stakes). The latter, who is trained by the in-form Peter Moody and Katherine Coleman stable, took her earnings past the $100,000 mark after finishing fourth behind Stanley Express in The Showdown.

 

Stanley Express’ dramatic win, which followed the pre-race scratching of hot favourite Bold Bastille, extended McDonald’s purple patch and was another feather in the cap for renowned bloodstock agent Shane McGrath, who also picked out Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) heroine Hayasugi (Royal Meeting x China Road) at the 2022 Inglis Australian Weanling Sale.

 

Whilst the $110,000 he paid for Stanley Express was a touch more than Hayasugi’s $47,500 fee, it has still proved an outstanding bit of business as the chestnut gelding collected a cheque for $571,000 from his very first competitive appearance.      

 

Darley also enjoyed a memorable day with Impending and Territories joining Street Boss, who stands at their Victorian farm, siring VOBRD winners.

 

Berkeley Square (Territories x Bahamas) carried his career earnings close to $1 million when he ended an 18-month barren spell with victory in the Avenel Equine Hospital VOBIS Gold Heath (2000m), whilst Albanian I Am (Impending x Bernicia) scored a third career win with a dominant display in the Here For The Horses Handicap (1800m).

 

Berkeley Square wins the Avenel Equine Hospital VOBIS Gold Heath  (Image: Racing Photos)


As has been the case in recent editions of VOBRD, Swettenham Stud’s flagbearer Toronado enjoyed another very fruitful afternoon. And whilst he was unable to embellish his remarkable record in The Showdown - his progeny Prince of Sussex and Shesallshenanigans having won in 2019 and 2023 respectively - Toronado did come away from the day with two more winners on his resumé.

 

After progressive mare ExtraTwo (Toronado x Red Pixie) had stamped her class with a third victory in four outings for Ciaron Maher Racing in the VOBIS Gold Distaff (1400m), Celui (Toronado x Momma’s Snitzel) capped another satisfying day for Adam Sangster’s operation when he led all the way in the Cylinder VOBIS Gold Dash (1200m).                  

 

TBV would like to thank Barastoc, Sheen Panel Service, IRT, Avenel Equine Hospital, Racing Victoria, DCE, Darley, Yulong and Blue Gum Farm for sponsoring races on the day, and thank Melbourne Racing Club for organizing such a great day for the industry.

 

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