The 3YO son of Redoute’s Choice began well and set the early pace with Black Vanquish and Headwater until he was asked by Blake Shinn to extend 400 metres from home. He quickly shot clear and sustained his sprint to hold off all his rivals except Kinglike who nabbed him with 100 metres to go and won by 1.2 lengths in 1:09.06.
Trainer Gai Waterhouse considered the effort “a brilliant Coolmore Stud Stakes trial.”
She commented on Gai’s Blog, “I have always felt that this colt is a speed horse. He may develop into a miler with more experience, but at the minute he is a real get out and run colt, and these types of horses are very valuable in the spring.
“I have won good races up the Flemington straight in the past with the likes of Northern Meteor and Dance Hero, and I feel this colt has the sustained speed and tenacity required to really make it at the top level. He has a big Spring down south ahead.”
The $500,000 VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes is one of four Group 1 features on Derby Day, 31 October, which opens Cup Week in Melbourne.
Raphael’s Cat is raced by a partnership that includes his breeders Arrowfield and Matt & Jo Cloros, as well as Ricky Surace and Kate Waterhouse.
His dam, US Group 2 winner Cat By The Tale (by Tale Of The Cat) has a 2YO full sister to Raphael’s Cat, bought for $400,000 by Vinery Stud at the 2015 Inglis Easter Sale, and a yearling filly by Animal Kingdom. Cat By The Tale is due to foal this Spring to Smart Missile.
Raphael’s Cat joins Group 3-placed King’s Troop (trained by Gerald Ryan), Dark Steel, an impressive maiden winner at Canterbury on Wednesday and also trained by Gai Waterhouse, and the Chris Waller-trained Counterattack to give champion sire Redoute’s Choice an appealing quartet of 3YO colts more than capable of joining his current list of 123 stakeswinners.