Willinga Beast salutes for Snitzel

Snitzel, seen here at Arrowfield in September 2023, remains a dynamic force in Australian racing & breeding. (PHOTO: Joan Faras)

Arrowfield’s 4YO home-bred mare Willinga Beast gave her champion sire Snitzel his 145th career stakeswinner  – and 12th this season – with a victory full of verve and spirit in Saturday’s $160,000 Hinkler H. 1200m LR at Eagle Farm.

Four races later 2YO colt Bittercreek became Snitzel’s latest juvenile Group 1 performer when second to Broadsiding in the J.J. Atkins G1.

Those two performances came 24 hours after the Snitzel colt from Members Joy sold for $575,000 at the Inglis Great Southern Weanling Sale. Offered by Bell River Thoroughbreds for Suman Hedge & Sheriff Eskander, and purchased by Jim Carey, he is the top-priced weanling colt sold this year.

A city winner and Group 2-placed in her first two starts at two, Willinga Beast added a pair of Spring 3YO Group 2 placings to her record and has rarely finished further back than fifth in 10 further black type starts since then.

This time, with champion jockey Craig Williams aboard, she bounced out smartly and settled second behind Maximum Vortex before driving forward just after the turn. She responded generously to her rider’s urging and held the favourite Pereille and the closing pack at bay, to score by just over a half-length in 1:09.66. Most impressively, Willinga Beast covered the final 600 metres in 34.29 – the fastest last sectional on Stradbroke day.

Trainer Kris Lees said, “Craig got her to relax – that was the main thing. On paper, there didn’t look like a lot of speed, but our concern was getting back in the field. Great ride, great result and good to get a stakes race with her.”

Willinga Beast is the second foal and the best of 3 winners so far left by Time Check (by Shamardal), an American-bred half-sister of Essaouira (dam of Champion 3YO Filly Alizee and Group 1 winner & sire Astern), and daughter of 2YO Group 2 winner Alizes. This is also the family of juvenile Group winners Amur (by Snitzel) and Zulfiqar (by Exceed and Excel). 

New stakeswinner Willinga Beast as a yearling. She is the 4th SW from only 19 runners by Snitzel from mares by Storm Cat’s grandsons. (PHOTO: Georgie Lomax)

Willinga Beast was a $625,000 yearling purchase by Willinga Park & Australian Bloodstock from Arrowfield’s 2022 Magic Millions Gold Coast draft. She returned last month to the same sale-ring where Arrowfield bought her for $675,000 as a racing and breeding proposition from Yarraman Park’s National Broodmare Sale consignment. 

She is the 20th individual Arrowfield graduate stakeswinner this season, a list headed by Group 1 winners Autumn Angel & Celestial Legend. 

Time Check has an unraced 2YO filly by The Autumn Sun named Atomic Clock in the Ciaron Maher stable, a yearling colt by The Autumn Sun and is in foal to Anamoe. 

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