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Flemington Australian Guineas Day

March 5th, 2016 0 comments

I am often asked to name the best horse I have ever seen. My off the cuff reply is usually “my last winner”, but after some thought there are several contenders. Commands third to Redoute’s Choice and Testa Rossa in the Caulfield Guineas is a favourite memory. And Persian Punch, the tough English stayer with two thirds in The Cup to his credit, is another favourite. And then you have to admire Red Cadeaux, with three placings out of five attempts. The VRC have recognised his popularity and stuck a plaque on the bench opposite his usual birdcage stall, number 78. Apparently his ashes are underneath. I felt a bit uneasy about sitting on top of him, so I just paid my respects.

The Kiwi three-year-old colt Xtravagant is all the rage for the Guineas. But out the back he’s just about uncontrollable. Head up, changing gait, cross-over noseband, stallion chain, salivating and letting the old feller hang out. Not my sort of horse. In the yard he doesn’t participate in the parade and does tight circles on the grass. A lay! I get $1.60 the place. The horse rockets out of the barrier but quickly compounds at the business end of the race. I must say, it is immensely satisfying when such a hyped horse goes under after showing such poor pre-race behaviour.

And oh, another unusual gear combination. A one-eyed winker and noseroll on Zebrinz. The horse finished fourth.

And the best horse I have ever seen? So You Think. And if he had stayed here he could have been anything!


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