For us, it was a magnificent three days with two winners and a nice 3rd placing from our six runners.
Tuesday saw Nashville Sound (Clangalang x Shezout), because of his noted wet track breeding, and impeccable form, run around as a short price favourite. Perhaps at the 400m punters, and indeed us might have had a slight heart palpitation or two as the gelding was back in the field. However, he let down with a brilliant sprint at the end of the 2350m journey and won with authority. This performance may have been good enough to run some kind of a race in the Warrnambool Cup, but as the son of Clangalang was having just his 8th start, the right decision was clearly made to contest the BM78 Handicap.
Not many horses win with such authority of races at near a mile and a half at just their 8th start. This indicates progression personified and will see Nashville Sound being very competitive in his future races over this trip and further.
While Nashville Sound was backed heavily and won accordingly, Labuan Star (Bel Esprit x Racy Alice) was friendless in betting. Perhaps it was the 61kg; maybe it was seemingly mediocre first run for the stable. If a shroud punter was to track back through Labuan Star’s form, they would see that without a doubt, this horse was the best horse in this race – hence the 61kg. Then despite being unluckily wide for the entire trip and facing a strong head wind when the tempo was being lifted, this gelding showed his best. The horse he beat by an inch had every right to run straight past him, but under the urgings of Harry Coffey, Labuan Star didn’t give in and won in tenacious fashion.
Congratulations to the owner of these two geldings. Any win on any given day is someone’s Cox Plate – and a win at the ‘Bool is as special as anywhere. Both these horse look to have big preps ahead with Labuan Star most likely heading towards the Golden Topaz in Swan Hill. We will let the dust settle with Nashville Sound but with him having missed a place just once in eight starts (he ran 5th beaten a length!), the sky is the limit.
Well done to all on another great May Carnival!