Four stakes performers for Smart Missile

Thanks to a pair of South Australian farms, Smart Missile now boasts four stakes performers from his first crop of juveniles – more than Not A Single Doubt & Snitzel managed between them at the same stage of their careers.

The Phillip Stokes-trained filly Smart Manoeuvre can be counted unlucky not to be a Group winner after putting up a valiant effort in Saturday’s  $120,000 SAJC Sires’ Produce S. 1400m G3 at Morphettville. 

Despite getting back early and coming wide around the turn, she was still able to launch a big finish that brought her within centimetres of the victory claimed by a resolute Flying Jess, with 1.4 lengths back to third-placed Morvada. Smart Manoeuvre’s sectional times, 34.45, 22.27 and 11.25 were the best of the race.

Watch Smart Manoeuvre’s 2nd in the SAJC Sires’ Produce S. G3.

It was Smart Manoeuvre’s second black type performance following another late-burst third in the SAJC Breeders’ S. G3 on 16 April, and her fourth weigh-in appearance in four starts.

Raced by a partnership including her breeders Mill Park Stud, Mills Breeding & Wayne Raven, Smart Manoeuvre is the first foal of stakes-placed city winner Furline (by Tale of the Cat), a daughter of two-time Group 2 winner Umaline, from the family of Group 1 winner Captain Sonador.

Mill Park also bred last Saturday’s impressive debut 2YO stakeswinner Modern Wonder (by Snitzel) whose stablemate, another daughter of Smart Missile, Fromparis Withlove finished third in the $120,000 MRC Redoute’s Choice S. 1200m LR at Caulfield.

After settling a little worse than midfield, Fromparis Withlove showed plenty of verve at the business end of the race, finishing just under two lengths from the winner Oregon’s Day.

Watch Fromparis Withlove’s 3rd in the MRC Redoute’s Choice S. LR.

Noting on Twitter that a scope had revealed a clod of dirt the filly had swallowed during the race, co-trainer Troy Corstens added, “Look forward to the Spring!”

Fromparis Withlove was bred by Kambula Stud, from the stakes-winning mare Umaquest, a daughter of Umatilla, who also features as the second dam-sire of Smart Manoeuvre.

Purchased by Malua Racing and Bahen Bloodstock for $140,000 from the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale, Fromparis Withlove is her dam’s second stakes performer in the past fortnight. Her half-sister Yattarna won the ATC James H.B. Carr S. G3 on 16 April. Umaquest has a weanling filly by Written Tycoon catalogued for the Magic Millions National Sale, and is in foal to Not A Single Doubt.

Smart Manoeuvre and Fromparis Withlove join Sassy ‘N’ Smart (CJC Welcome S. LR and 2nd, Matamata Breeders’ S. G2) & Smart Amelia (2nd, ATC Widden S. G3) to give Smart Missile a quartet of first-crop 2YO stakes performers – so far.  (At the same stage of their careers Not A Single Doubt and Snitzel each had one stakes performer, Regal Flame & Chance Bye.)

Snitzel filly makes stakes-winning debut

2YO filly Modern Wonder surprised everyone, includng her trainers, with her easy debut victory at double-figure odds in Saturday’s $100,000 SAJC Dequetteville S. 1050m LR.

Modern Wonder jumped well and settled comfortably just behind the early leader and second favourite Moshki, who led the field into the straight.

As the pressure came on, it was clear that Modern Wonder was travelling better than all her rivals. Jockey Stephen Baster’s urging was met with an instant response and she powered home to score by two lengths from Motown Lil and Neapolitan.

Watch Modern Wonder’s SAJC Dequetteville S. LR win.

Modern Wonder is the 38th stakeswinner for Snitzel and the 18th to score in stakes company at two. Snitzel leads the Australian 2YO Sires’ table by winners (14) and wins (19) and has added six new stakeswinners to his record since New Year’s Day, including dual Hong Kong Group 1 winner Sun Jewellery.  

Troy Corstens, who prepares the filly in partnership with his father Leon, admitted, “I didn’t expect her to win like that. Everything she’s done she’s shown that she’s above average. I think she might be a bit of a freak, actually.

“I always said she’d only have one run and then go to the paddock, but we’ll wait and see how she comes through it and what’s around.”

Closer analysis of the race confirm the brightness of Modern Wonder’s prospects. She returned fast closing sectional times of 56.86 for her last 1000 metres, 44.02 (last 800m), 33.53 (last 600m), and posted 22.81 for her last 200 metres.

Modern Wonder hails from the celebrated South Australian farm, Mill Park Stud which bred her with the Mill Thoroughbred Breeding Partnership and sold her for $175,000 to Malua Racing & Bahen Bloodstock at the 2015 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. China Horse Club paid $420,000 for her full sister at this year’s Magic Millions Sale.

The fillies’ dam, Elusive Wonder (by Elusive Quality) was also a smart 2YO, winning on debut and finishing third in a Listed Race at her second start. Other recent members of this family, which descends from 1926 French Oaks winner Dorina, include Adelaide stakeswinner Liberty Rose and her son, the stakes-winning Perth sprinter Grand Jardin, by Snitzel’s sire Redoute’s Choice.

Modern Wonder is the sixth stakeswinner by Snitzel out of a mare by a grandson of Mr. Prospector, a group that includes Arrowfield graduates Sweet Idea and Oakleigh Girl.

Not A Single Doubt gets a Moonee Valley double

He’s well-established as a consistent source of smart juveniles and short-course sprinters, but Not A Single Doubt is versatile too, and more than a few of his progeny train on and get over 1600 metres or more.

Two of them were successful at Moonee Valley on Saturday, the mare Every Faith and the gelding Word Of Mouth, both foaled in 2010 and both sold at the 2012 Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale.

Every Faith produced a strong finish to land the $80,000 Benchmark 90 opening event on the card, her fourth win in a $247,000 career that includes a Listed stakes win.

Second-up from a spell, Every Faith was was patiently ridden by Dwayne Dunn and improved steadily from the rear to make the lead 100 metres out and hold on to win by a neck from First Bloom and Coronation Shallan.

Bred by Dr Gene Tsoi, Every Faith is the first foal of the winning Zabeel mare Zephyria, also the dam of Group 2 winner Alpine Eagle (by High Chaparral), a 2YO colt by Starcraft and a yearling filly by Snitzel.

Another Zabeel mare who visited Not A Single Doubt in 2009 is Gypsy Tucker. whose resulting filly turned out to be Gypsy Diamond, a dual Group winner & Group 1-placed at 1600 metres, and winner of this season’s 2000-metre ATC Japan Racing Association Plate G3.

Every Faith was bought for $130,000 by Barbara, Barry & Rebecca Saunders from Three Bridges Thoroughbreds at the 2012 Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale and is trained for them by Robert Smerdon.

After winning her maiden race at Seymour as a Spring 3YO, she was fifth in Kirramosa’s VRC Oaks and returned in the Autumn to win the SAJC Laelia S. LR and finish 7th in the Queensland Oaks G1.  Every Faith’s liking for 1600 metres has become more obvious this season with two wins and a second at that distance, all in Melbourne.

Word Of Mouth’s career has followed a similar pattern, except that his four wins have all been achieved around 2000 metres and he has not yet tackled black type company.

That may change after his 4.8 length romp over 2040 metres at Monee Valley on Saturday for trainers Leon & Troy Corstens and a large group of owners managed by Brad Spicer.

Spicer Thoroughbreds bought Word Of Mouth as a yearling for $150,000 from the draft of Swettenham Stud which offered him on behalf of breeder Peter Arvanitis of Hillside Thoroughbreds. From the unraced Hennessy mare Exo, Word Of Mouth is a half-brother to stakeswinner Diamond To Pegasus, from the family of Group 3 winner Permaiscuous (by Danzero).

Word Of Mouth came to notice this time last year when he progressed quickly from maiden company at Tatura to a Flemington win and three placings at Caulfield. His earnings now exceed $300,000 with bonuses, among them a juicy $20,000 VOBIS Gold Owners’ bonus attached to Saturday’s race.

Not A Single Doubt’s winners at 1600 metres and beyond also include Singapore Group 1 winner Always Certain, Group 3 winner My Ex Mate, whose nine wins all fell in that distance range, and the good Queensland mare Bang On (10 wins up to 2100 metres.

However, the son of Redoute’s Choice hasn’t lost any of his ability to sire early-running 2YOs. Not A Single Doubt has been among Australia’s top 10 sires of juveniles every year since 2011 and he’s there again this season with $1.1 million prizemoney and 14 winners in fifth spot on the current table.