Mazu got his Everest spot for the next two years during the week but it was a gritty, tough, even dirty win in the group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1200m) that confirmed his place among the best sprinters in the country at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
On a deteriorating track after another day of rain in Brisbane, Mazu didn’t handle the shifty conditions but claimed a victory he probably wasn’t supposed to in mud-splattered Triple Crown silks.
I was thinking at the 600, we’re in strife, jockey Sam Clipperton admitted. He was chasing a hot speed and was out of his comfort zone. He really wasn’t sure on the surface.
It is a different heavy track, as well documented, but I just tried to pick him up as best I could and get him as far down the straight on the bridle.
Mazu ($3. 10 fav) again had a change of gear in the straight as he raced to the front perhaps too early and then dug in. Paulele ($11) appeared to have him in the last 100m before a final surge from the son of Maurice gave him a short-head victory. New Zealand mare Entriviere ($7) was another 1½ lengths back in third.
He’s just a star, this horse. He knows how to win and we’ve got a great rapport with each other, Clipperton said.
Even when I was concerned, he was always going to pick up. I just had to have faith in the horse. In the end, I got to the front too early and he was thinking his job is done.
He’s just a winner. You raise the bar and he jumps it, and I feel very grateful to be on a horse of his calibre.
Mazu took his winning streak to six, five of which have come this preparation after he was gelded.
Co-trainer Paul Snowden admitted he was worried in the run but knew in Mazu he had a horse that is a winner.
He has that ability to absorb the pressure and still be strong at the end. That is why we have got a slot in the Everest, and that is why we are going to be there, Snowden said.
It means a lot when you are going through these patches with these horses and you know just how much ability they do have.
It was all there to see, but we just had to get it out of him.
We exhausted every opportunity to do that, and they call gelding the ultimate gear change, and that is what it was. Now the owners benefit and they will have this horse for many years to come.
Schiller lands biggest win in Dark Jewel
Tyler Schiller is leading the Sydney apprentice premiership race and now the big wins are starting to flow.
He added the group 3 Dark Jewel Classic at Scone on Saturday with the Bjorn Baker-trained $51 outsider Bring The Ransom.
It has been quite the last couple of months for Schiller, who hails from the Riverina and has won the Albury Cup on Harmony Rose and Wagga Town Plate on Front Page, but this was different: a group 3 on a metropolitan Saturday meeting.
That’s my biggest win, Schiller said. I thought she was a chance because of what she did at Randwick last preparation when I rode her.
Mr Baker just said to ride her quiet, and when the runs kept coming, she kept taking them and picking up.
I was a little worried that I was in the worst ground late, but she was too good.
Schilller stayed to the inside on Bring The Ransom and, after being in the second half of the field on the home turn, he took every advantage and hit the front at the 200m.
She found a couple of lengths and then held off the Kris Lees pair of Wandabaa ($13) and Never Talk ($4. 80 fav) which were closer to the outside fence than inside for a length victory.
Flying Crazy shows his best in Luskin Star
Gerald Ryan has always known Flying Crazy had the talent to compete at stakes level; it just took a while for the penny to drop with him.
The three-year-old was dismissed by many in Saturday’s Luskin Star Stakes, which was supposed to be the confirmation of Godolphin’s Andermatt, but at the 200m mark it was clear Flying Crazy was the horse to book a ticket to Brisbane.
Andermatt had been three wide while Flying Crazy had saved ground back in the field and then speared though to the inside of the Godolphin odds-on favourite and sprinting clear.
Flying Crazy ($13) then had to hold off Olmedo ($26) late to win by a half-length, with leader Zorocat ($101) holding on to third 1¼ lengths away.
He has always that sort sprint in him. He can go to the Fred Best [Stakes] next and, if he can win there, he could be a Stradbroke horse, Ryan said.
It was Flying Crazy’s third stakes win in his last four starts in two states and a territory. He started the winning run in the Canberra Guineas before heading to Brisbane and taking the Daybreak Lover Quality last start.
The talent was always there, but he would do things wrong. Since that trip to Canberra, he has just settled down and can show how good he is now, Ryan said.
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