Group 1 racing was again in Perth on Saturday, where South Australian mare Viddora took out the 1200m G1 Winterbottom Stakes. Away from the spotlight there were plenty of other notable performance across the Country. Here’s our take on them.
ASCOT – G1 Winterbottom Stakes
This five-year-old mare has established herself at a new level in 2017 with three of her last five runs rating between 100.7 and 102.
Her slight new peak of 102 in this race (up from 101.8) is comfortably below what we’d call genuine Group 1 class, but that matters little to connections and punters that backed her.
By comparison, Takedown rated 101.5 last year and Buffering 105 the year prior (approx +1.6L superior to Viddora.)
DOOMBEN – A new 3YO talent emerges!
Greg Hickman was quoted during the week saying that he things this 3YO son of Pierro has gone to a “new level” and he was proved correct! Pierata returned with a very strong 100 rating performance in winning the 1200m Winning Rupert Plate. That’s a +3L improvement on his previous peak as a 2-year-old.
There was a stack of quality in the various speed measure benchmarks we take into account and good indicators to suggest that he can rate higher in the future.
A simple comparison of 1200m races on the day shows that he ran faster time than the older horses in the G3 George Moore Stakes, with significantly faster sectionals. He looks a very promising 3-year-old colt and the clear top contender for the 3YO Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) in January.
DOOMBEN – The G3 George Moore Stakes
MONSIEUR GUSTAVE: 95.5
He set an above average speed in front which gave all of the chasers every chance to run him down (Snoopy was a little unlucky) and while another stride would have produced a different result, his nose was in front on the line.
Measures from this race highlight that it was well below average by G3 standards (1.5L below the median rating), which will make for interesting analysis and potential betting opportunities when runners out of this race compete with alternative form lines.
JUNGLE EDGE: 101.0
The steady rain at Sandown and Heavy 9 conditions were ideal for the Mick Bell trained 7-year-old and he proved far too classy for his opposition, winning by 2.5 lengths.
His 101 rating is up there with his best form and around 1L shy of his 103 peak, earned at Doomben during the Winter carnival.
Six of Jungle Edge’s last seven runs in heavy track conditions have returned an average rating of 100.9…. while the very best of his Good track form sits in the 95.5 to 96.7 rating range. He’s a terrific wet tracker!
There’s was plenty of hype around after his visually impressive win over 1600m, but we’re not getting carried away with him just yet.
The fact that he was eased late says the win probably carries more merit, perhaps a 95 to 95.5 rating (at most) if he was ridden out, but that’s a standard Saturday class rating, no better.
On speed measures there was nothing that stands out about the race or performance at all. The time and sectionals were just fair and perhaps the best reference is a simple comparison to the race prior over 1600m, won by Mrs Gardenia. She ran over 4L faster overall time and a nearly identical last 600m rating.
The three horses that finished behind Vinland had Provincial Maiden wins as their best form so far and at the level we’ve assessed this race, they’ve all run to clear new career peaks. When the form lines of the race and speed measures both suggest the race can’t be rated any higher then it normally proves very reliable.
Of course Vinland can improve further, but at this stage we’ve got him pegged as a standard Saturday class horse.
MRS GARDENIA: 96.5
She’s a progressive Mare from the Weir Stable, going from a 90.5 rating first up to 89.2 second up and then 92.1, 93.2 and 96.5 on Saturday.
When horses are improving like that we don’t yet know their true peak. It will be interesting to see how far Mrs Gardenia can go.
The Waterhouse / Bott stable continue to produce terrific training performances and that was the case with Broadside here. He was first up over 2000m off a 63 day break and won easily by 2L with 4.3L to the 3rd horse.
There was good merit both in his overall time and sustained sectional figures, culminating in a 100 rating, which is a new career peak.
In the past his best has come over 2400m, so his prospects to maintain or even improve on that rating further in his subsequent runs this preparation look good.
EGYPTIAN SYMBOL: 99.8
A fast pace over 1100m and rain during the day which saw horses running on out wide advantaged, were ideal conditions for Egyptian Symbol to win first up.
Her 99.8 rating was an equal career peak and looks to set her up nicely to be a competitive force in similar stakes races over the Summer months.