Arrowfield’s night at Racehorse of the Year Awards

Winx justly filled the headlines when she won her third Australian Racehorse of the Year award, but it was also a very big night for Arrowfield which celebrated Champion Sire Snitzel and four other awards…

World champion Winx was naturally the centre of attention at the 2018 Australian Racehorse of the Year Awards, held at the Forum, Melbourne on 4 October.

No gift for prophecy was required to predict that she would be crowned Racehorse of the Year for the third consecutive season, joining the elite company of Sunline (2000, 2001, 2002) and Black Caviar (2001, 2012, 2013) as a three-time winner of the ultimate accolade.

Winx, unbeaten in her eight starts in 2017/18, six at Group 1 level, also won the awards for Champion Middle Distance Performer and Victorian Horse of the Year.

Outside Winx, though, it was Arrowfield’s night as the Stud celebrated its connections with five of the other seven national awards.

Snitzel claimed the Champion Sire Award for the second consecutive year, with all-time record prizemoney of $29.2 million and a record-equalling tally of 26 individual stakeswinners. It is the sixth time in the past 13 years that an Arrowfield stallion has won the coveted title, after Snitzel’s sire Redoute’s Choice (2006, 2010 & 2014) and Flying Spur (2007).

Arrowfield’s Bloodstock Manager Jon Freyer accepted the award on behalf of the Stud and the Snitzel Syndicate, acknowledging the quality of Snitzel’s competition, “possibly the strongest stallion roster ever assembled in Australia” and thanking all who had supported his stud career.
 
However, Freyer noted that it hadn’t all been plain sailing. “In Snitzel’s fourth year at stud we were cajoling, coercing and downright pleading with breeders to send their mares  to him and fickle as this business can be, he garnered little outside support.

“In fact, a great number of his relatively modest 63 foals in 2010 were bred by Arrowfield – but the crop included the Cox Plate winner Shamus Award and the wonderful mare Sweet Idea, now a resident of Her Majesty the Queen’s broodmare band.

“That crop was conceived on a fee of $20,000 and today’s it’s $200,000. What a ride it’s been and how much we look forward to what’s yet to come with Snitzel.”

Snitzel’s dominance of last season was demonstrated when his progeny collected three of the category awards, which are decided by the votes of racing administrators and media.

It is the first time, in the 14 seasons since 2004/05 when the 3YO Filly & Colt awards were introduced, that progeny of the reigning Champion Sire 

Emirates Park’s filly Estijaab (Snitzel-Response by Charge Forward) was named Champion 2YO after winning three of her four starts last season, including the ATC Golden Slipper G1 and Reisling S. G2 and $2.3 million prizemoney.

The third foal of her dual Group 1-winning dam, Estijaab was bred by Katsumi Yoshida’s Northern Farm and purchased by Emirates Park & Bryan Carlson for $1.7 million from Arrowfield’s draft at the Inglis Easter Sale. She is trained by Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes and is spelling after a setback cut short her 3YO Spring preparation. She is expected to return in the Autumn.

Also an Inglis Easter graduate, though not finding a buyer there, is the Champion 3YO colt Trapeze Artist (Snitzel-Treppes by Domesday). He won four of his 9 starts and $2.7 million in 2017/18, a record headed by three tremendous Group 1 victories, in the ATC T.J. Smith S. & All Aged S. against older horses and the Golden Rose  in his own age-group.

He is the second Snitzel son to be named Champion 3YO Colt, following Cox Plate & Australian Guineas winner Shamus Award in 2013/14.

Trapeze Artist is trained by Gerald Ryan for his owner-breeder Bert Vieira and success in The Everest, for which the colt is joint favourite, would be a timely boost for the Vieira family. Bert’s wife Gai is recovering in hospital from serious injuries suffered in a car crash on 5 September.  

The inaugural Everest winner Redzel (Snitzel-Millrich by Rubiton) won the Champion Sprinter title after a spectacular, five-win, $7.5 million season that also featured the VRC Darley Classic G1 and three other Group race wins. 

Redzel was bred by Lee Fleming and initially sold as a weanling, then offered by Marquee Stud at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale where he was bought for $120,000 by Triple Crown Syndications’ Chris & Michael Ward. He is trained by Peter & Paul Snowden for a large group of Triple Crown owners and is at single-figure odds for this year’s $13 million second running of The Everest on 13 October.

Snitzel, his sire Redoute’s Choice (with Lankan Rupee in 2013/14) and  grand-sire Danehill (with Exceed and Excel in 2003/04 & Fastnet Rock in 2004/05) are the only three stallions in the past 20 years to claim the Champion Sprinter in at least one of their own championship seasons. 

And it is the first time, in the 14 years since 2004/05 when the 3YO title was split by gender, that progeny of the reigning Champion Sire have won the 2YO, 3YO Colt or Filly & Sprinter awards in the same season.

Arrowfield’s trophy haul was completed by Shoals (Fastnet Rock-The Broken Shore by Hussonet), bred and raced in partnership with Jonathan Munz and trained by Anthony Freedman. She was voted Champion 3YO Filly after a stunning season against older mares, winning the Myer Classic G1 at Flemington, Surround Stakes G1 at Randwick and the Sangster Stakes G1 at Morphettville.

She is the second Arrowfield home-bred filly to win the title after Miss Finland in 2006/07.  

In all, Shoals won four of her 7 starts and $1.4 million last season while her full brother – cleverly named Groundswell – was the top-priced Australian yearling of 2018, knocked down for $2.3 million at Inglis Easter. 

Groundswell and another full sibling, 3YO filly Tides join their big sister in the Freedman stable, and The Broken Shore is due to foal again to Fastnet Rock this month. 

Redzel dominates Darley Classic

Snitzel’s son Redzel confirmed his status as Australia’s No. 1 sprinter with a dominant display of championship speed in Saturday’s $1 million, 1200-metre VRC Darley Classic, his second Group 1 victory.

And he made it look easy, jumping well, taking up the lead on the outside rail of the famous straight six course and staying there to score in 1:08.74 by 0.75 length from Terravista and Impending, ahead of Chautauqua, Clearly Innocent and Rock Magic. 

Watch Redzel win the VRC Darley Classic G1.

Unbeaten in his four starts this season, and brilliant winner of The Everest last month, Redzel has won 11 of his 21 starts and $7.7 million for the large group of owners managed by Chris & Michael Ward of Triple Crown Syndications.

Peter Snowden, who prepares the 5YO gelding with his son Paul, gave a succinct description of Redzel’s win and the key to his success. 

“Just jumped, led, sustained speed and just finished it right off. I don’t think he was ever headed. It was a dominant win again.

“This horse is easy to train. He does everything that we ask. What we found out now is to just space out his runs, and give him an easy time between runs and he comes back to life again. He is such an easy horse to train.”

Jockey Kerrin McEvoy agrees about Redzel’s professionalism. “He’s so reliable, you know he’s going to turn up and have a show. He’s just keeps achieving with what’s put in front him.

“He’s the best older sprinter I’ve ridden.”

Redzel’s major 2018 target will again be The Everest, with the race’s increased prizemoney of $13 million enough to keep him in Australia and forego a trip to Royal Ascot.

Snitzel is the only stallion represented by top 10 performers in every age category of the current Australian Timeform rankings compiled by Racing & Sports. 

Redzel (with a figure of 125) holds the highest rating among Snitzel’s tribe, 3YO colts Menari (122p) & Trapeze Artist (122), 4YO Russian Revolution (120), 3YO Summer Passage (116) and 2YO Bondi (112).

Redzel’s work this Spring has lifted Snitzel’s prizemoney to $12,379,198, almost exactly $4 million ahead of High Chaparral who has a similar margin on Street Cry and Fastnet Rock, with Not A Single Doubt fifth on $4.7 million.

Across the Tasman, a lower-profile meeting at Te Rapa supplied a significant milestone for Snitzel when his 5YO daughter Untamed Diamond  took out the $50,000 Waikato Sprint 1200m LR. She is Snitzel’s 75th stakeswinner and completed the 15th same-day stakes double on his record.

Watch Untamed Diamond win the Waikato Sprint LR.

Untamed Diamond, out of dual stakeswinner Made Of Diamonds (by Made Of Gold), was bred and sold by Arrowfield for $30,000 to trainer Richard Collett at the 2014 Inglis Classic Sale. She is the third stakes-winning Arrowfield graduate from that particular sale, after Group winners Spill The Beans and Odyssey Moon, both also by Snitzel.

Redzel's push for The Everest summit

Owners, slot-holders, trainers, jockeys, punters, racing fans and the general sporting public have all been captivated by The Everest, with 12 top-class sprinters lining up on Saturday to chase the $10 million prize.

With the contenders, jockeys and draws now all finalised, excitement increases ahead of what promises to be an intriguing and spectacular race.

Studs and stallion-owners are also excited because the $5.8 million lion’s share of the prizemoney will almost certainly shoot the winner’s sire to the top of the Australian General Sires’ table. Arrowfield’s stallion roster is represented in The Everest by Snitzel’s son Redzel, and Not A Single Doubt’s sons Clearly Innocent & Fell Swoop.

In some cases, the race result will set up a break on the premiership that may be tough to run down, if the stallion has enough firepower to compile significant additional progeny earnings. A final figure close to Snitzel’s record 2016/17 total of $16.2 million will probably be necessary, given the quality of the current top 20 Australian sires.

Snitzel has already commandeered the No. 1 spot on the 2017/18 premiership with $4.3 million and 13 stakeswinners, among them his Everest runner, and major earner last season, the powerhouse sprinter Redzel.

The 5YO gelding has been in red-hot form this Spring, winning both his starts at Randwick, the Concorde 1000m G3 and The Shorts 1100m G2 in record time on 16 September. 

His preparation has been timed perfectly by Peter & Paul Snowden to keep him fresh, which suits him and many of Snitzel’s progeny. He’s also proven at the course and distance and Kerrin McEvoy will give him every chance to use his formidable on-pace brilliance from gate 4. 

Already the winner of almost $1.4 million and nine races including the Doomben 10,000 G1, Redzel was bred by Lee Fleming from Millrich (by Rubiton) and bought from Marquee Stud for $120,000 by Chris & Michael Ward’s Triple Crown Syndications at the 2014 Magic Millions Sale. Redzel is raced by a large band of around 30 owners and takes up the Everest slot held by leading bloodstock agent & buyer James Harron, also closely associated with Snowden Racing.

Chris Ward is full of praise for The Everest concept. “It’s enormous for the industry, the interest has been huge, and Racing New South Wales and the Australian Turf Club have done a great job, considering The Everest was only launched in February.”

After Tuesday morning’s barrier draw, Chris said, “Peter [Snowden] tells us Redzel is the best he’s ever had him. He’s spot on for the race.” 

Chris is clear about the qualities that give Redzel a strong chance of success. “He can race up on the speed and make his own luck, he’s extremely tough and can sustain his sprint. And if he wins, I’ll go bananas!”

Hot on the track and happy in retirement

Group 1 winner Hot Snitzel was retired from racing in early 2016 after injuring a suspensory ligament. The son of Snitzel and Flames of Paris was bred in 2008 by the Arrowfield & Jungle Pocket partnership, raised at Arrowfield Stud and sent in the farm’s draft to the 2010 Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale.

There he was purchased for $60,000 by Chris & Michael Ward’s Triple Crown Syndications, which organised and managed the large group of people who raced him. After five years, 38 starts and eight wins (7 in Group & Listed stakes company), amassing earnings of $1,334,850, ‘Snitty’ is now enjoying his retirement with two of his owners, Steve and Debbie Graham.

Steve and Debbie first crossed paths with Hot Snitzel when they purchased a share in him through Triple Crown. Impressed by his Snitzel breeding and the success rate of Triple Crown, Steve and Debbie embarked on an unimaginable success story. When asked about her first impression of Hot Snitzel, Debbie was surprised at how small he was. “When I saw him on race day I questioned if he was actually a pony mate to one of the other racehorses there on the day! I felt like I was sending out my young child to run with the big kids – but he proved he was up for the challenge!”

Hot Snitzel provided so much joy for Debbie and Steve during his time racing, particularly when they could bring their two-year-old granddaughter Lily to the races to watch him run. Lily would enthusiastically support the horse and cheer ‘Go Snitty’ as he flew past.

The brave son of Snitzel never gave up and always ran an honest race. Nicknamed ‘War Horse’ by many owners, Hot Snitzel demonstrated a true love for racing and for being out on the track. His talent and competitive zest were finally rewarded with a Group 1 win on 9th May 2015, when Hot Snitzel easily won the BTC Cup at Doomben despite being at odds of 24-1.


The most memorable race day for the Grahams was on 26th April 2014, when he won the Group 3 Hall Mark Stakes at Randwick. Debbie recalls, “I always look at our horses in the raceday stalls before a race. With Hot Snitzel I had developed a pattern of looking for him to wink at me. On this day he not only winked at me, but also sneezed all over me, splattering my face with his saliva. I took this as a sure sign!

 “It also happened to be his strapper Harry’s last day working with Gerald Ryan so he was confident Hot Snitzel would win for him – and win he did, by one-and-a-quarter lengths! I proudly made the long walk back in leading Hot Snitzel with Harry, trying very hard in six-inch heels to keep up.”

Hot Snitzel demonstrated a kind and quiet temperament during his racing career and was labelled a gentleman by all stable staff, who cried upon hearing of his retirement. He impacted the lives not only of those who worked with him, but he also inspired in Debbie and Steve a love for a horse that they couldn’t imagine “would ever be so strong.” Their success with Hot Snitzel has given the Grahams a much deeper understanding of the thoroughbred industry, as well as warm friendships with his other owners.

On raceday Debbie would often look adoringly at Hot Snitzel and turn to Chris and Michael Ward from Triple Crown to ask “Can I please have him?!” So, when the time came to retire him, Michael rang Debbie to see if she would seriously like to take care of Hot Snitzel in his retirement.

Two weeks later a Goldners truck arrived carrying their special boy and Debbie asked the truck driver to please walk him down to the gate. He wasn’t too impressed, replying “I’m just the truck driver, lady”, but much to Debbie’s relief, he did!

The first few weeks were a steep learning curve for the Grahams, but they had plenty of help and advice from the friendly staff at Muskoka Farm where Hot Snitzel was often spelled. Reflecting on this time Debbie realises that it didn’t take long for them to feel comfortable with him, “He is just like a big dog, so lovable and kind.”

Pictured: In his old life, Hot Snitzel celebrated in the Group winner’s circle – now he celebrates Christmas with Steve & Debbie Graham’s grand-children! 

Adored by his family, Snitty now acts as Debbie’s training partner on her morning runs, racing her across the paddock.

When not racing people, or rolling in the sun, Snitty loves seeking out the attention of Debbie and Steve’s grandchildren who affectionately cuddle and play with him. If Hot Snitzel was a human, his owners think he would be George Clooney – handsome, laid-back, successful, popular and loved by everyone.

While the process of re-homing an ex-racehorse was a challenge, Debbie and Steve took it in their stride, and provide Snitty with an amazing home surrounded by love. “We have learned so much about horse ownership, from food and grooming, to washing him. I couldn’t imagine our lives without him now.”

Redzel heads Snitzel's record-breaking day

At the halfway mark of Saturday afternoon’s racing in Australia, premiership leader Snitzel was already having a very good day.

By then he had notched up a two-state 2YO stakes double thanks to convincing wins by Debonairly in the $150,000 Woodlands S. LR at Scone and Tangled in the $175,000 Champagne Classic G2 at Doomben.

Watch Debonairly win the Scone RC Woodlands S. LR.

Watch Tangled win the BRC Champagne Classic G2.

But the best was yet to come. Triple Crown Syndications’ 4YO gelding Redzel has been one of the country’s most progressive performers this season and he sealed his rise with a powerhouse victory in the $700,000 BRC Doomben 10,000 1200m G1. The Redoute’s Choice 4YO Counterattack finished strongly to complete a father-son quinella, with Derryn third.

Watch Redzel win the BRC Doomben 10,000 G1.

Both placegetters are likely to line up in $1.5 million Stradbroke H. G1 on 10 June, but co-trainer Peter Snowden confirmed that Redzel and fourth-placed Russian Revolution (also by Snitzel) will head to the paddock for a richly earned break. Between them they have won seven of their 13 starts – six of them in Group company – and added more than $1.7 million to Snitzel’s prizemoney.

Bred by Lee Fleming from the Rubiton mare Millrich, Redzel was bought for $120,000 by Triple Crown’s Chris & Michael Ward from Marquee Stud at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. He’s the second Group 1 winner by Snitzel to carry the syndicators’  all-red colours after Arrowfield graduate Hot Snitzel, winner of the 2015 BTC Cup G1 and four other Group races.

Around 15 minutes after Redzel crossed the line in Brisbane, Snitzel’s fourth stakeswinner for the day came from an unlikely quarter.  Vienna Miss was given little chance of winning the $150,000 SAJC Adelaide Guineas 1600m LR, but Katelyn Mallyon’s positive ride helped her silence punters with her maiden stakes victory.

Watch Vienna Miss win the SAJC Adelaide Guineas LR.

Bred by Tori Park Stud, Vienna Miss was sold for $100,000 by Eliza Park International to her trainer John Hyam at the 2015 Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale. Her dam Miss Doopsy (by Bite The Bullet) is a half-sister to the dam of Perth stakeswinners Let It Slip (by Not A Single Doubt) and Gangbuster.

Redzel, Tangled, Debonairly and Vienna Miss boosted Snitzel’s prizemoney to a new Australian premiership record total of $13.8 million, surpassing the previous record of $12.9 million set last season by Street Cry.

His lifetime, worldwide statistics now read:
62 Group & Listed stakeswinners (27 this season)
11 Group 1 winners (5 this season)
27 2YO stakeswinners (9 this season).

Snitzel completes Group 1 double & quinella

Two days after Summer Passage became Snitzel’s 7th Group 1 winner, stablemates Russian Revolution & Redzel gave him his first Group 1 quinella in the $700,000 ATC The Galaxy 1100m G1.

It was a tremendous performance by both horses and a notable achievement by their trainers Peter & Paul Snowden, especially as they presented 3YO colt Russian Revolution for the first time since his Spring campaign, which yielded two Group wins and a fourth in the Coolmore Stud S. G1.

Russian Revolution’s fresh state was evident as he went to the gates and he was re-shod there after casting a plate, but he quickly put that hiccup behind him. Jungle Edge took up the early running and Russian Revolution follow Redzel wide around the turn.

Redzel forged ahead and finally collared Jungle Edge at the 200-metre mark, but Russian Revolution simply wouldn’t give up and found enough under pressure to snatch a short neck victory, with Jungle Edge a brave third.

Watch Russian Revolution & Redzel quinella The Galaxy G1.

Peter Snowden said he was confident Russian Revolution’s allotted 51kg would be in the colt’s favour on a deteriorating track.

“We knew the weight was going to kick in at some stage and it was probably the difference over the last 100 metres. He’s been very full of himself in the last week or so….He’s been ready to go.”

Russian Revolution (ex Ballet d’Amour by Stravinsky) is Snitzel’s eighth Group 1 winner and second Galaxy winner after Sweet Idea in 2015. Like Redzel, he is among the 21 stakeswinners that are building a potentially record-setting season for the son of Redoute’s Choice. The Galaxy win also completed a Rosehill double for jockey Kerrin McEvoy, who rode Our Ivanhowe to success in the Ranvet S. G1 earlier in the day.

Russian Revolution’s five wins from his six starts have returned well over twice the $320,000 that Michael Wallace & China Horse Club paid for him at the 2015 Inglis Easter Sale where he was offered by Vinery Stud.  He is raced by China Horse Club and his breeder John Stuart Investments with Newgate Farm, Matthew Sandblom and Sir Owen Glenn.

Bred by Lee Fleming, Redzel was a $120,000 buy from Marquee Stud for Chris & Michael Ward’s Triple Crown Syndications at the 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. Triple Crown owners have previously enjoyed success with Group 1 winner Hot Snitzel and Group 2 winner Flying Snitzel.

The $2.5 million weight-for-age T.J. Smith Stakes 1200m G1 back at Randwick on 1 April, Day 1 of The Championships, must now be on the horizon for both Russian Revolution and Redzel.

In the meantime, their quinella has pushed Snitzel through the $10 million mark in Australia for the first time, and he maintains his No. 1 position on the Australian General Sires’ list, more than $1 million ahead of Street Cry.

Triple Crown's Redzel wins Century Stakes

It’s little more than three months into the new season and Australia’s leading active sire Snitzel has already bettered his 2015/16 tally of  stakes wins.

Redzel notched up the 12th black type success for Snitzel’s progeny this season when he scored a narrow, but impressive victory in Thursday’s $150,000 VRC Century S. 1000m LR for his jubilant Triple Crown Syndications owners.

Blake Shinn chose to head for the stand side down Flemngton’s straight course, where he launched Redzel on a powerhouse solo run that swept him to the post just ahead of the fast-finishing Terravista, with the favourite Hellbent two lengths back in third.

Shinn said, “I just rode my own race, I flew the gates and got him into stride.

“I had to rate him pretty carefully through those mid stages so that I could be strong to the line and forttunately he settled well for me, he worked with me and it was a great result.”

Watch Redzel win the VRC Century S. LR.

Redzel was bred by Lee Fleming and sold at the 2014 Magic Millions Sale by Marquee Stud to Triple Crown’s Chris & Michael Ward.

It has taken the 4YO gelding only 13 starts to earn more than three times his $120,000 purchase price, with the bonus joy of a Group 3 win and two Listed wins among his five victories.

Like Triple Crown’s earlier Snitzel-sired stars, Group 1 winner Hot Snitzel & Group 2 winner Flying Snitzel, Redzel is his dam’s final foal. He’s the seventh winner and second stakeswinner out of  Millrich (by Rubiton), herself a smart, Group-winning juvenile and third in Flying Spur’s 1995 Golden Slipper.

The Century Stakes has been a stepping stone to Group 1 success for three recent winners of the race: The Quarterback (2015), Lankan Rupee (2013) and Temple Of Boom (2010).

Redzel’s $90,000 share of the race’s prizemoney takes Snitzel through the $3 million mark in Australia this season, topped only by the deceased champion sires Street Cry, sire of Winx, and Monsun, sire of Melbourne Cup winner Almandin.

Snitzel takes the early lead

Much like his progeny on the track, Snitzel has shot to an early lead on the 2016/17 Australian General Sires’ table, with 22 winners and more than $870,000 prizemoney.

Four of those winners have been in Group & Listed stakes races on three of the first four weekends of the new season:

3YO colt THRONUM (ex Helena’s Secret by Five Star Day)
ATC The Rosebud H. LR – 6 August
Bred by Highgrove Stud, RMA Bloodstock & Widden Stud
Sold Inglis Easter, $300,000, Highgrove Stud/Sun Bloodstock
Trained by Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott for Sun Bloodstock & Sun Stud

4YO colt SOOBOOG (ex Monte Rosa by Fraar)
VRC Aurie’s Star H. G3 – 6 August
Bred by Arrowfield Stud
Sold Inglis Easter, $1.5 million, Arrowfield/Sheikh Mohammed bon Khalifa al Maktoum
Trained by Darren Weir for Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa al Maktoum

3YO colt RUSSIAN REVOLUTION (ex Ballet d’Amour by Stravinsky)
VRC Vain S. G3 – 13 August
Bred by John Stuart Investments
Sold Inglis Easter, $320,000, Vinery/China Horse Club
Trained by Peter & Paul Snowden for Newgate, China Horse Club, John Stuart Investments & D.W. Wallace

4YO gelding REDZEL (ex Millrich by Rubiton)
MRC Heath S. G3 – 27 August
Bred by Lee Fleming
Sold Magic Millions, $120,000, Marquee Stud/Triple Crown Syndications
Trained by Peter & Paul Snowden for Triple Crown Syndications & partners

These headline acts have been supported by the Group-placed 3YO fillies Athena Lass & Elle Lou, and the durable gelding Checkpoint, who added a Listed placing to the five wins and five Group placings he’s notched up over six seasons in Perth.

This is easily the fastest season start of Snitzel’s career. With more than half of his 185-strong 2013 crop yet to race, as well as 175 just-turned 2YOs conceived on a $45,000 fee, it’s a fair bet he’s only warming up.

Redoute's Choice & sons on fire at Caulfield

Redoute’s Choice and his sons Snitzel & Beneteau dominated the stakes racing on Saturday’s Caulfield card, thanks to quality performances by Great Esteem, Redzel & Ocean Embers.

The Snowden-trained Redzel, having his first start in Melbourne, opened the dynasty’s attack on the day’s prizes in the $150,000 MRC The Heath 1100 G3. He began brilliantly from gate 12, took control of the race and never let it go, winning by almost a half-length from Under The Louvre, who powered home late, and Santa Ana Lane.

Watch Redzel win the MRC The Heath 1100 G3.

It was the 4YO gelding’s fourth win from 11 starts and his second stakes success following his ATC Fireball S. LR win last March. He completes a sensational start to the 2016/17 season for Snitzel, also represented by Listed winner Thronum and Group 3 winners Russian Revolution, Sooboog and, in Japan, Young Man Power since 1 August.

Bred by Lee Fleming, Redzel is the last foal of the very good juvenile filly Millrich (by Rubiton), winner of the ATC Sweet Embrace S. G2 and third in Flying Spur’s 1995 Golden Slipper, and also dam of the Group 3 winner and sire Danerich (by Danehill).

Redzel was offered at the 2013 Inglis Australian Weanling Sale where he was a $45,000 buy for Marquee Stud, which re-sold him to Triple Crown Syndications for $120,000 at the following year’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale.

Triple Crown’s Chris & Michael Ward have achieved notable success with Snitzel’s progeny, as purchasers & syndicators of Group 1 winner Hot Snitzel and Group 2 winner Flying Snitzel, both bought as yearlings from Arrowfield Stud.

Three races later 6YO gelding Great Esteem became the 135th stakeswinner for Redoute’s Choice with another all-the-way win in the $120,000 MRC Heatherlie S. 1700m LR.

Watch Great Esteem win the MRC Heatherlie S. LR.

Great Esteem, raced in partnership by his breeder Cressfield Stud, has been a consistent performer since his juvenile season when he split Twilight Royale and Shamus Award in the VRC Sires’ Produce S. G2.  He’s won eight races and more than $400,000 from the Hayes, Snowden and now the Stuart Webb stables.

Great Esteem’s dam Park Esteem (by Singspiel), a winning three-quarter sister of Dubai World Cup winner Moon Ballad, has also left Group-placed Listed winner High Esteem and promising filly Pepperberry to Redoute’s Choice.

Cranbourne trainer Shea Eden wound up the day with his first stakeswinner Ocean Embers, a 4YO daughter of Beneteau, bred by Arrowfield in partnership with Jungle Pocket Pty Ltd. She drew widest of the 14 runners in the $150,000 MRC Cockram S. 1200m G3 but started favourite and won most impressively, with a big home-straight run that got her to the post a half-length ahead of Thames Court, with Telopea third.

Watch Ocean Embers win the MRC Cockram S. G3.

Ocean Embers, a $23,000 buy from the Cornerstone Stud draft at the 2014 Magic Millions Adelaide Sale, has now won four of her seven starts and more than $200,000. 

She is the 7th stakeswinner from the 136 foals Beneteau left in the two crops born & conceived before his death in January 2013. 4YO Prompt Return’s easy win at Doomben on Saturday and Bacarella’s excellent Silver Shadow S. G2 second on 20 August are further reminders of Beneteau’s quality as a sire.

Ocean Embers is out of Burningwood, a winning daughter of Tabasco Cat and US Grade 2 winner Wood So, whose breeding career has been split between Japan, where she left Group 3 winner Fireflaught, and Australia. She has three fillies to follow Ocean Embers: Darby Racing’s 3YO Flame Of Love (in the Waterhouse & Bott stable), a 2YO by All American and a yearling by Manhattan Rain.

Burningwood’s first Australian foal, the city winner Pyrography (by Danzero) was retained by Arrowfield & Jungle Pocket, and has an unraced daughter by All American, colts by Smart Missile and Animal Kingdom and is due to foal this Spring to Dundeel.

Jericho earns black type at Doomben

Jericho joined Smart Missile’s growing list of stakes performers when he rocketed home for second in Saturday’s $100,000 BRC Hampden S. 1200m LR.

It was a big run from the Triple Crown Syndications colt, who drew 9 and ended up at the back of the field, but stormed home when space opened up for him in the straight. Victory was momentarily in his grasp, but inexperience cost him the critical final metre, and he conceded the win to the Godolphin colt Archives, who proved resolute on the rail.  Spendthrift Australia’s promising Redoute’s Choice colt Redouble finished third.

The $250,000 Sires’ Produce S. G2 on 28 May and the $600,000 J.J. Atkins G1 on 11 June are both on Jericho’s horizon. Given that he’s progressed from city maiden winner to Carnival stakes performer in two starts, they look within his capability.

Trained by Peter & Paul Snowden, Jericho is the fifth stakes performer from Smart Missile’s first crop 2YOs, after Listed winner Sassy ‘N’ Smart, Group 3 placegetters Smart Amelia & Smart Manoeuvre, and stakes-placed Fromparis Withlove.

Jericho, the second foal of the Red Ransom mare Advance To Go, was bred by Jonathan Andrews, Louis Le Metayer & partners and initially sold under the Willow Park banner at the Magic Millions National Weanling Sale to agent Sheamus Mills for $75,000. Re-offered by Rosemont Stud at the 2015 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, he was knocked down to Triple Crown’s Chris & Michael Ward for $180,000.

Smart Missile is third in a tightly packed bunch at the top of an Australian First Season Sires’ list that will be fascinating to watch over the next two months. With six Group & Listed Races for 2YOs worth more than $1.2 million scheduled between 28 May and 9 July, this is one Premiership that remains very much undecided.